Getting in the holiday spirit {even if it kills me}

December 3 at SeaWorld.

Moving to Florida has been the best thing for our family and we are feeling so lucky to be where we are.  Of course one of the drawbacks of the amazing winter weather is that it doesn’t exactly put me in the Christmas Spirit when I’m going to a WinterFest in a sleeveless tank top and shorts.

December 3 at SeaWorld.

Things as simple as decorating the tree, decking the halls, and even the chore of taking a Christmas photo and designing the Christmas card all seem out of place.

To combat this and ensure that my family and I make the most of this holiday I’ve been laying it on a little thick around here.  My children need to have this holiday in their life.  I know that most of my fondest childhood memories revolve around the holiday season and just because it is currently 80 degrees outside it doesn’t mean that Christmas isn’t coming in 2o days!  Starting a few days after Thanksgiving I started decking the halls.  This year nearly every decoration was utilized including the extra artificial trees.  We have 4 trees in our home.  You read that right…  Everett has a mini tree that used to he his father’s and that has tiny little german wooden ornaments.  Fletcher has a leftover tree from our apartment days that is really by design an ornament tree.  He got to pick his favorite ornaments from our lot and hang them up.  This was incredibly exciting for a little boy and I’m sure we will let him have his own tree every year now; he really does love it!  The third tree is in the entryway and is the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree that I bought from Urban Outfitters when I was in college.   The fourth is out artificial 7.5 foot tree next to the fireplace.  We considered a real tree this year but again talked ourselves out of it even though we could definitely fit a taller tree here.

For heaven’s sake, I even decorated my mailbox and dressed my lions up in doggy Christmas sweaters.  Yes.  I.  Did.

The rest of house got the holiday treatment while I enjoyed the sounds of Christmas carols, because nothing gets me in the spirit like Christmas music.

We are also fully in the swing of our Elf on the Shelf adventures already and this is the first year Fletcher is “getting” the story behind it so I have to be very careful!  I had to hide my computer and photos of butchering the poor elf for his “hacks” to spare Fletcher the truth.  Despite being an atheist family we do enjoy the traditions that come with Christmas such as Elf on the Shelf and I think it drives me even more towards the deep-end to make sure the kids have pleasant memories of this time in their lives.

Oh boy… then there is the Christmas card photo.  My husband and I were near divorce over this, as it seems to happen every year that I want an elaborate set-up.  With no family or friends to take our photo we have to DIY with a tripod and a wireless remote (such a necessity that is more than worth the minimal cost.  We have used ours dozens of times).  This year I had an entire scene to create complete with props.  Since my cards haven’t been mailed out I won’t share the final image but here is a sneak peek:


Update:  Here is our Christmas Card.  I can share it now that they are mostly in the hands of our family and friends.  I’m entering it in The Paper Mama’s card contest.  There are so many fun entries and lots of inspiration.  It might be too late for this year’s card but next year go back and check it out.

Christmas Card "Not a Creature Was Stirring"
Christmas Card “Not a Creature Was Stirring”

Even my husband got on board and put out the Christmas Lights on our house over the weekend. We are nearly dead but it seems like Christmas is coming and by going the extra mile hopefully it will actually feel like Christmas when the time comes. The boys are getting a very large gift so I am hoping we won’t go overboard on the presents like we did last year. I read somewhere that when you grow up poor you tend to overbuy gifts for others and that rings true for me.

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