My favorite thing right now is to get up early in the morning, when it is still dark outside and while the kids are still nestled snuggly in their beds and dreaming of sugarplums, sneak past the kids' bedrooms, plug in the Christmas tree lights and the lights on my mantle, make a cup of coffee and sit with Jesus. This is where I find peace and hope for my day. This is when I hear Him whisper to me.
Some months ago, I had gotten out of the habit of getting up early and spending quiet mornings alone with Him. I was getting up right before I had to get the kids up for school. Then after sending them off to school, I would attempt to sit down with my coffee and Jesus, but Hudson was not usually very cooperative during this time and needed my time and attention. I would end up getting frustrated with him for interrupting me. And so it just wasn't the same. There is grace for mommas in all seasons and I've been in seasons when time alone with Jesus just wasn't happening. That is okay and there is no rule about having quiet times. But my heart misses Him when I don't get that alone time with Him. So then a week or so ago, I told the Lord if He would wake me up early, I would get up and spend the quiet mornings with Him. And you know what? He did. Day after day, He's been waking me up and I love it. There is something special to me about this time of year and spending the mornings with Him. I can't explain it. At night, when I go to bed, I look forward to the next morning. And I even started setting my alarm because I really don't want to miss it. But He's still been waking me up just before my alarm goes off.
While I'm here writing and you're here reading, I thought I would give you a little Christmas home tour. This year, I really wanted to keep the Christmas decorations simple. I didn't want a lot of red and green decorations sitting around, cluttering up every nook and cranny of my home. There is nothing wrong with that of course, but for me, simple is peaceful; and less is calming. Too much stuff overwhelming my home gives me anxiety and then I just start going through the house throwing things in the trash. Seriously.
A few months ago, I read a quote by Nate Berkus that has stuck with me. He said, "... my goal is to create a feeling for our homes, not a theme." And that is exactly what I want in my home. When you walk into my home, I want you to feel warm and cozy. I want it to feel Christmasy, but not look overly decorated or styled for Christmas. For me, neutrals, natural elements, candles, and cozy textures make it feel warm, cozy and Christmasy without screaming "Christmas", so that is what I used this year.
I am hoping that after Christmas, when we toss the trees in the trash, most of the decor will still be versatile enough to just stay up through the winter.
The pom pom garland is from Anthropologie. I've seen it all over my Instagram feed and just love the thick, nubby texture of it. The pom poms remind me of snowballs, but still have a cozy, warm feel to them.
A simple boxwood wreath from Trader Joes filled a blank spot on my wall.
I'm sure I've mentioned by now how much I love Joanna Gaines and the HGTV show, Fixer Upper that she does with her husband, Chip. Well, she also has a shop online called Magnolia Market and it is filled with such fun, unique things. I found these bells in her shop, as well as that cotton wreath.
And a sweet friend, who knows me well, surprised me with a winter candle from her shop. It makes my house smell so Christmasy.
Last year, we put our Christmas tree downstairs next to the fireplace instead of upstairs on the main level. But I really missed smelling the tree during the day and seeing the tree all lit up in the evenings (since we don't hang out much downstairs). So this year, I decided I really wanted a tree upstairs to enjoy. We had to rearrange a few things to make it work, but I think it was worth it. I kept the decorations very simple.... white lights, burlap ribbon, and a finger crocheted yarn. Tim got me this leather pouf last month when he went to Morocco.
Another thoughtful friend saw this woodsy ornament and said it reminded her of me. It is the only ornament that made it on this tree because it is perfect and I love it.
And I plopped a bird's nest with a wooden owl at the top of the tree in lieu of a star.
The kids got to decorate the downstairs tree as wild and crazy as they wanted. They used colorful lights and every single ornament we own. I didn't even go back and spread the ornaments out evenly among the branches after they were finished. I just let it be... perfectly imperfect! This is progress for me!
Have a wonderful weekend!