This year we’re getting into the holiday spirit, which says a lot because both A. and I have been scrooges in our adult lives — though I always knew that would change if I had kids.
C., who turned two this month, is old enough to get the magic of Christmas. And because I’m turning into a six-bedroom house at 30 weeks pregnant, family — including my 18-month-old niece — traveled cross-country to the desert, where the skies are California blue with highs in the 60s, but it’s cold enough in the evenings to light a fire.
So this year was our chance to decorate with homemade family ornaments and stockings that will last year over year and create our traditions.
We made ornaments to deck the halls. A. turned wood and glued on rocks I tumbled to make wreaths.
We picked up pinecones lying haphazardly in our backyard and strung jute through them. I made a bulb (picked up a small plastic one from WalMart) filled with pine and pomegranates.
A. made a bell out of wood, using a tumbled rock as his knocker.
I found a recipe for homemade gingerbread ornaments and made stars, snowmen and Christmas trees.
And A. made a star for the top for the top of the tree out of wood and painted it our kitchen yellow.
Over the past month, A. and I crocheted stockings (see photo above) to hang on the mantel. I spent a few hours looking for patterns — for the big red stocking to the far left, I followed this pattern, and for the big white stocking with red stripes, I followed this pattern.
But I really wanted to replicate a cream-colored knit stocking I saw in the Anthropologie catalogue.
So I made up my own pattern (the two cream colored ones above) — I’m thrilled I’m getting good enough to make my own patterns. A. crocheted three of them, including the Dr. Seuss boot and small red-and white-striped one. (We think you can see our personalities quite clearly though the stockings.)
I’ve been reading C. “Twas the Night Before Christmas” and “Santa Mouse.” And we plan to leave Santa homemade cookies — with a handwritten note and a thick glass of milk — near the fireplace before C. goes to bed on Christmas eve.
We’ll have a wood-burning fire and cuddle under blankets and play board games and watch C. and his cousin sing “Jingle Bells” on a homemade stage A. made.
Yes, I’m excited about Christmas this year. I hope you are, too. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.