12 Days of Christmas Day 11 – Three Favorite Decorations

Merry Christmas Eve, Readers! I can hardly believe it’s here. As I’m sure you’ve realized, I love this season very much. All of the anticipation, planning, waiting, and work culminates in the celebrations we hold today and tomorrow (or, for some, through the weekend). As this is a very special time, I decided to do something more personal with this post than I have ever done before: in addition to inviting you into my digital space, I’m going to show you some of my favorite decorations in my physical space.

We all have that one ornament that has a special story you want to tell anyone who admires it, or the trinket that has been passed down through the generations, or the tacky decoration that you have to keep displaying each year just because. These are the things that make Christmas decorations so special, even nowadays when they are usually mass produced. While it isn’t necessary to decorate in order to celebrate Christmas, it can greatly enhance the experience. Today I am going to show you a few of my favorite Christmas decorations! I wanted to talk about all of them, but that sounded like an unreasonably long post. Instead, I am just going to talk about the three that I am most excited about this year. This is a very hard decision; this year is the first time that I have had my own place to decorate on my own, with no other input – and I love the way it turned out! I bought several new decorations this year, and it’s almost impossible to decide if I should showcase my older, mostly passed-down decorations or the newer ones that I picked out myself. They’re all so cool and hold a special place in my heart!

Okay, yes, my way of getting around my self-imposed limit of three items is by counting this entire corner as one thing. Mostly, I want to talk about my tree, but there are some other decorations that deserve a mention in this picture too. There’s the stocking hanging on my lamp which my friends and former coworkers from a previous library made and sent to me last year, the bell tower which plays a series of Christmas carols via little bears hitting the bells with tiny hammers (and making a surprisingly loud sound!) which was gifted from my Mom’s former boss and friend, and the pillow I made from an outgrown church Christmas musical shirt. But over it all is the stunning white tree! At least, it’s stunning to me. I didn’t intend to buy a tree this year; at the most, I thought I would get some green garland and make an outline on the wall. However, when I came across this one on sale for $10, I couldn’t pass it by! Today, the bottom half of the tree is just about filled with the Christmas cards I have received. There are only a handful of ornaments on it this year besides the cards, but they are all special, and I look forward to slowly adding more over the years!

This is the decoration that I am most proud of this year. The greenery is from an unused Advent wreath; the candle was a birthday/early apartment-warming gift last year; and the nativity garland is something I have had for years. I have never put these pieces together before, but to me they look like they could have been sold as a single piece! I love the way the colors work together. This is sitting on my all-white blanket chest/window seat, and the stark background makes the arrangement even more eye catching. It’s not flashy, but I think it may be more in line with the true meaning of Christmas than most decorationss.

I know this one is silly, but for my last decoration I decided to share my Christmas cactus – decorated for Christmas! Now it is truly a Christmas cactus, despite not even thinking about blooming at this point. My Grandma randomly gave me this plant, and honestly I was skeptical about it staying alive because my apartment gets so little sunlight (thus the disappearance of my Echinacea from my posts). However, this spindly little plant is doing okay so far! I have had it for about a month and haven’t seen any really noticeable changes. I just love the stocking hanging above it emphasizing that it is a Christmas cactus.

And a few honorable mention pictures:

I’ve included my blog header in these images, because changing it for the season is a part of decorating my digital space and not that different from putting up decorations in my physical space. This year I used Canva to design a custom blog header for free, and I love how it turned out! I am so glad my coworker talked me into setting up a free account. If you do any kind of casual work with graphics, signs, social media, or displays, it’s a great resource! Just pay attention when you’re designing things to which features are free and which are not.

I also included a picture of the cute ice skating animals we found to decorate the bookshelves in the library. Shortly after I got them put up, we went back to only allowing curbside materials pickup and computer use, so very few people see them besides my coworkers. They’re just cute, and deserve to be shared with more people.

I hope you enjoyed this glimpse of my “real” life outside of the blogosphere! Do you have a favorite Christmas decoration or ornament? I love hearing the stories behind people’s favorites – they are usually heartwarming or funny, and tell you more about the person telling the story than they probably realize.

This post is linked up with Faith @ Stories by Firefly for the 12 Days of Christmas blog party. Check out her page for more posts filled with Christmas cheer! Also, today is the LAST DAY to enter the GIVEAWAY she is hosting, so get your entries in today if you want a chance to win the Christmas prize pack.

Until the next chapter,

Merry Christmas!

Jana

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