Holiday prep

One advantage to choosing to follow CDC guidelines and to not celebrate Christmas with those outside of our household is that I have more time to meet my December goals with no company coming so I told Keith I wanted to do minimal decorating. It worked out well for me because the lights, the reindeer, and the undecorated tree were all put up by him. And yes, we put the artificial tree up but I’m not putting any decorations on it this year. It’s festive enough as it is.

Today is a slow day in the quilting room although I’m getting ready to head up now and trim and bind at least one and maybe two quilts and then I’ll sit up and hand stitch the rest of the binding I’m working on. I did finish putting my photo ornaments together, ran some Xmas errands, and went to the dentist. I now have a temporary crown to replace the broken one and still have to go back for the permanent one. I should never have waited in the first place. In the end it caused me more pain and grief AND more money but it was what they suggested and I went along. Bad decision on my part.

So I’m curious … in these challenging times, are you more likely to go whole hog decorating for Christmas to cheer yourself up or are you like me, taking the opportunity to downsize the decorating and use the time for quilting or something else?! Here are my ornaments all ready to ship to the kids – they do have decorated trees at their houses!


  1. Our family won’t be coming to our house this year, so while we still put up our small 4’ table top artificial tree, I did not put as many ornaments on it as I usually do and did not decorate the house as much either. The house still looks festive, but it was kind of nice to cut back a bit for a change.

  2. I’d like to get the tree up and some decorating done so we have a festive backdrop for opening gifts. We’re gathering on Zoom – the gifts have slready been delivered to the various homes, but I know that our kids and grands will be looking for the tree.

  3. The tree with just lights is very festive. I did put up the tree but have been questioning why since no one else will see it. And I hung the stockings on the fireplace. There are so Christmas quilts and pillows scattered about. Nothing too overboard. But we didn’t do any outdoor decorating this year. A neighbor sent out letters challenging everyone to light up the neighborhood, but I think there are fewer lights than normal. And if left to Dave – there would be no tree or stockings or anything.

  4. I have minimal decorations this year and scaled back many of my own holiday traditions because my heart is just not in it this year. I’m staying home – not traveling to my sister’s house, which upsets her. She’s “tired of COVID” and has resumed her normal activities which frightens me because she and her husband have multiple health issues that make them susceptible to COVID.

  5. My husband and I moved to our house in January, so we have different spaces to decorate (or not!) this year. Many of our “old” decorations just don’t seem to fit here…and I’m probably tired of them, too. We have decorated our front porch with lighted garlands, bows, poinsettias, and a wreath. Inside we have a pre-lit tree and have put a few ornaments on it. We have hung the stockings. Our son is home from grad school for a month and our daughter will drive in for a two week visit. We plan on having a cozy family time together. I envision playing lots of card/board games, going on walks, and lazing about.

  6. Your ornaments are adorable!! We will also do minimal decorating. We only have a 3 ft tree but will not put that out because of the new puppy. I will decorate the fireplace with garland and lights and set out my favorite decorations and that will be it. I have been cutting back on my decorations over the years anyway and like the look much better. And less to dust too! We do have our lights hung outside every year so that is done and I decorated the front porch. It will be so different not seeing family for yet another holiday. But I would rather keep it a safe Christmas and have everyone stay healthy.

  7. Mary I find the older we get the harder it is to get the tree decorated and then put it all away. So we have found we have reduced our decorating so we do not resent it. Also did you do a set of ornaments for yourselves ? That would look very nice on your tree for this year. We planted a pine tree in our front yard so we could decorated it out doors, There is a mesquite tree out front closer to the road BUT it has these long thorns…so we do not decorate it!. We too have reindeer lights. We do put up luminarias in our front walkway for Christmas Eve. It is our tradition. Christmas should be enjoyed by all. Enjoy yours also Mary.

  8. Good morning Mary. I like your tree, and in my eye it is very festive. I think our little tree is about 2 1/2 ft tall. It is a flocked artificial tree that my sister gave me this year. I think she said it is the top of an older tree . i like it. On our front door I put our berry wreath. I love those tiny red berries and the foliage. Father Christmas stays out year round. He has been with us for many years, as has our polar bear decked with a red scarf for the season. That is the extent of decorating here . We saw our first bit of snow two days ago, just a skiff, but it stayed on the ground here. I was at the cottage two days ago, no snow, but the beautiful ocean was doing its magic with me. I don’t know yet if we will be able to congregate with our immediate family for Christmas dinner. We have not has a case of Covid in our county yet that is known, but this virus is very aggressive, so I stay at home. I am having oodles of dental work done this year, and those costs are high, so I guess I’ll be happy with that blessing. Two crowns before years end.I know I am getting old, as I don’t much like many of the new arrangements for some of my favourite Christmas tunes. Enjoy your days

  9. I have 3 Christmas decorations this year for our camper, only 3. We have been in our camper 2 times at Christmas and decorations were everywhere. But I’m older now and my life has changed. I always decorated our home lavishly with Christmas decorations that were older, so many memories. But now we have very little company as all grand children are adults and have their own families. We still love to decorate but I think when we move next year, I will clean out my stuff. I used to have 3 trees with ornaments and kept enough for 2. It’s very cheery with all the red ribbons etc, my mother hated to put away her Christmas things. We are really preferring warmer weather than what happens in our area at Christmas so I’m not sure when or if holiday decorations will happen for a long time. Your tree is quite pretty just as it is now and your ornaments are cute. My DIL sent me a photo of the ornaments I made for grandsons in 2000. I’m sure your grandchildren will appreciate theirs.

  10. Hi Mary! I’m SO GLAD you shared the idea of the ornaments of the kiddos. I have the first set of our littles for 2020 ready to go. Now I’ve ordered more to represent the previous three years or one year – I found I could take off the little charm that says 2020 on some of the ornaments. What a great tradition you’ve shared and that I’m adopting. Fun! Oh, I always go all out decorating and did so this year, too. I enjoy it! ~smile~ Roseanne

  11. Christmas decorating-I thought, why bother? Then I thought how much some sparkly lights would cheer me up and dug out a pre-lit 3′ tree put my nutcracker collection on the fireplace and wove bright lights in and around. In the evening I snuggle under a Christmas quilt and enjoy the bright colors. Minimal, but festive.

  12. We will see our son, that is it. He is in MA and was exposed to the virus so we play a waiting game. In Maine, I have decorated with a few more candles and wreaths and our creche. The rest of the decorations are in MA and I thought about bringing them up, but as our schedules have shifted due to his exposure, this will not be the year. We are not usually in either place for Christmas, ever, so I never go all out. I was thinking of getting a few more things, but then, I have to go to a store, or order online and neither am I inclined to do.

  13. Zero decorating this year. Just me and my youngest son here. The rest of the family lives far, far away and my youngest grandchildren are in their mid-teens. I’m enjoying the lights of my neighbors across the street, and also thankful that *I* will not be the one climbing on the roof to take them down!

  14. Oh Mary, on any average year it takes about 2 hours max to set up my decorations. I let my husband get a real tree and that only takes a couple hours to decorate in addition. In past years I had a lengthy daily commute and didn’t have the time and this year I have the time and discovered I still didn’t want to put up a lot of decorations. We have kids or I would do without a tree.

  15. We bought a full size cut tree, but I’m putting out fewer decorations, just my favorites. Our neighborhood is big on outdoor Christmas lights so it’s very festive at night. Lots of kids playing together since there’s no in person school.

  16. We usually have a real tree on years when we stay home and put up the fake when we travel for the holidays, but my husband put the fake one up the day after Thanksgiving so we could have it an extra long time this year. It’s just lights and glass bead garland, but it sparkles. I’ll miss seeing the grandkids, but I find myself looking forward to a quiet holiday, with no stress from having to plan and do so much in such a little window of time. I’d like this to be how the holidays feel all the time.

  17. I put out a few decorations. I still need to put up the tree for the grandchildren. We will have just 8 for Christmas (our son & wife and 3 grands and our daughter.)

  18. I love all the light decorations, we still have the same as last year with everything on our tree but I like the idea of lights only, maybe next year 😉

  19. I too have lights, a few other things out. Decorated stockings for the local nursing home, bought some goodies for in them. Lotion, good smelling hand soap, playing cards. Maybe you should give your littles a Christmas frame with your picture in it.

  20. We only put up our lighted tree last year, and honestly, it was lovely and so much easier when it came time to put it away. We’re also doing picture ornaments this year, but we’re keeping them! I found cute ones for all the dogs in the family, too. That will be plenty on our tree this time around. Might even put up the smaller lighted tree, too. We’ll see.

  21. We put up more decorations than usual just because my husband was willing to do all the work and I’ve been threatening to throw things out since we haven’t decorated in the past few years. But most of our decorations are my quilts so I should be glad they are being appreciated.

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