Right now I'm big on a mostly gold theme. I sprinkle in bits of champagne color and other neutral colors that blend well. We own a fake tree, but the compromise is that one day, when we are actually home for Christmas, we will put up two trees - one fake and one real. I grew up in dry Arizona and we had a fake tree my whole life. I like that you can buy one tree, with lights already attached, and not need to worry about watering it or cleaning the carpet each day. Miles grew up with a real tree and loves the fresh smell and the enjoyment of picking out a tree with the family and bringing it home. I'm fine with two trees anyway - one that can be a theme for the OCD side of me, the other that can display all of our random, home made, special ornaments.
Here is our current tree - thankfully after a few days of it going up, Finn lost interest, but for those first few days I had to re-arrange some ornaments as he was pulling some off and bringing them to me and saying "ball". . . errr, good job kid, now leave it alone!
I never found a tree topper that I liked,until my mom sent me this butterfly and I thought it was perfect:
I have a lot of Cale related items on the tree, specifically a lot of pretty little butterflies. For Christmas of 2010 my sister-in-law sent me an ornament with his name, birthday and cute little baby feet. That ornament is now the first to go on the tree every year. And while I want to always include him in the holiday decor, I don't want it to just be about him - it's not Cale's tree, but rather our family tree.
So I've included other ornaments that either have significance, or I just thought were pretty - fish for our little Finn, I fell in love with the globe ornament I snagged a few weeks ago at Kohls, and the sparkly french horn makes me smile and think about my sister. In fifth grade you could try out an instrument and join the band. I picked the flute. Kate picked the hardest of the bunch - the french horn . . . .she was no longer in band by the time middle school rolled around.
Here are some pictures of other items in the dining room near the tree:
Moving into the family room, the only thing that is really decorated is the mantle. This was the hardest to decorate because of the stockings. For Christmas of 2010 I just put up two stockings, but it killed me that I wasn't putting up three. We didn't decorate last year as we were getting ready to put the house on the market, so this year I was faced with having to decide how I wanted to display our stockings. I felt like having one up for Cale would be nice so that he was included, but would it just sad and more depressing? I played around with it a little bit, but ultimately decided to do something my friend Brandy did. I hung a stocking for Cale, but it's hanging from a bookshelf in the room near the other stockings, but not along with them. Right now his sketch is by the stocking, but I've ordered a Christmas Tree from Carly Marie and will frame that and put it on the shelf instead and his sketch can go back to the mantle where it normally is displayed (as shown in the bottom right pic). I may even change his stocking and make it a bit smaller and more unique from the rest, but for now this is what I have:
I ended up making our stockings this year. I wanted something either with burlap or linen, but when I looked on ETSY they were at least $20 per stocking. So I went to Hobby Lobby and bought fabric I liked in matching fabrics (the stockings themselves are canvas) and made four for $40.16 and I have a ton of fabric and lace left over. I was going to take pictures of the process and blog about it, but that didn't happen and who really cares. If you are interested, I followed this tutorial which was really helpful.along these lines, but that will probably wait until next year.
So there you have it. Christmas decor a la Casa Hidalgo.