Monday, December 8, 2014

Little Touches of Christmas at Home

I wrote a photo post on one of my other blogs about From Autumn to Advent and shared the start of our Christmas decorating.

Here are some new touches of the season at our house that I haven't used before. (You can see previous years' decorations and tips here: Easy Christmas Decorating on a Dime.) Let's take a little tour, starting with the front entryway!

Flag from my mother's house.
I had a different one up before,
but it was a little too long
and kept hitting the garden wall.
So I swapped it out for this one!

Raindrops on poinsettia leaves -
I bought these live plants at Aldi
to put on the garden walls.
I always have pots of seasonal flowers
on the walls at either side of the front walkway.
I also bought an inexpensive
poinsettia mat for just in front of the door.
Poinsettias seem to be a recurring theme this year!

Just inside the door,
on an antique cane chair,
I keep a basket of bottled water.
These are handy for grabbing
on the way out of the house.

The matching chair is the
perfect spot for a a teddy bear.

I laid a poinsettia table runner
on the bench in the front hallway.

I usually hang stockings from
the hall closet doors.

In addition to the bottled water in the front hall,
I keep bottles of tea and water in the dining room.
The Christmas bags are a nice way to store them!

I couldn't resist this Christ-honoring
gift bag at the dollar store.
I'm using it to store my youngest daughter's
Christmas craft supplies that we'll use
for home school this month.
Most of these were half price at Michael's,
or purchased from the Dollar Tree store.

 Victorian Santa framed print -
not sure where I got this!

I bought a miniature
Christmas tree at Michael's.
I haven't found a top ornament for it yet,
but I did adorn it with 18 red bows
(one for each family member,
including sons-in-law and grandsons)
and four children's red and green 

bead necklaces from the dollar store.

New matching hot pads and dish towels,
fresh for each season!

Silk poinsettias from the dollar store 
tucked into a snowman basket 
for my bedside table.
I like to look at something cheerful
when I open my eyes in the morning!

A little something for my desk.

Another little something for my desk,
one reflecting "the reason for the season."

The candy dish next to my desk -
I keep it stocked with sugar free mints,
but it looks like my son 

has raided my supply again.

I've used a garden flag as 
a bathroom curtain for many years, 
but never thought to change it out 
at Christmas time! Poinsettias again!

I had bought these bells to use as
ornaments on my mini-tree,
not realizing they were a garland instead.
Now they're laid out on a lace runner
on my bed's bookcase style headboard.

I must have given this to my mom
many years ago for Christmas...

This handwritten prayer of mine,
written just for her on one of the pages,
is especially poignant now that she
has actually entered Gloryland -
where God's presence is now her
"clear and eternal reality."

I found a trove of Christmas books
on sale for 50 cents each at our
library's used bookstore.
These are just four of them.

I've been reading Jotham's Journey
to my little girl for school.
The Sparkle Box is about being kind
to the poor in Jesus' name at Christmas.
We love this!
Today, we brought hot chocolate
and chili con queso to our homeless friends
in disposable hot cups.
"You are an angel! Why are you doing this?" Jose asked.
"For the love of Jesus," we say.

The book Simply SenseSational Christmas
by Terry Willits is both beautiful and inspiring,
with ideas for appealing to each of the five senses.
Pine scents! Mantle displays!
Bells! Spiced cider! Pillows!
Lots more!

And - for the inner sense -
"Take time this Christmas to find
a cozy corner and be alone with God.
Spend time reading his Word.
Let God order your holidays.
Try to get up early to read the Bible,
write in a journal, and pray.
As you spend time in quiet solitude,
God will clearly lead you through
the holidays with his peace and priorities."
God bless!

Virginia Knowles

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