Monday, February 24, 2020

Christmas and Such

Growing up Christmas decor went up the day AFTER Thanksgiving and came down New Year's Day. Always. Without fail. In Oregon, Liberia, the Philippines. Always. 

We started our little family with much the same tradition....but then we left it up longer as kids were coming home from college and we weren't going to spend a day taking things down when we had them with us so few days....and then we began opening gifts on Jan 6th - or later...

BUT SERIOUSLY - Wednesday is the start of Lent. I realized I never posted photos of this year's decorations. I didn't get photos outside - it was too cold....and I didn't get photos of the main nativities...but I found these shots.

It seems fitting to post them now. Today, I took down the tree and began to take down Christmas decor. I realized  I like the bright and cheery lights...and much of my Christmas stuff reminds me of mom. I was simply not ready to pack it away....that, and I was busy prepping for a retreat until the end of January...and haven't had time to breathe since I arrived back home. LOL
New to our tree is Gram's tree topper. 
 I opened mom's old trunk and filled it with fun bits and pieces. I plan to leave a bit of this throughout winter. 

This is above the trunk....
Nativity from Japan, Globe from Mom and Joy ornament
given to me by a friend during one of Mike's deployments

I found the Mary which goes with this countdown  AFTER Christmas. I have it all packed nicely away awaiting it really is time to switch Christmas for Lent.  It's time to add the extra sections to the countdown and switch Mary for Jesus and the cross....

I usually leave the snowmen until AFTER Christmas. I put them out then so I have  definite, cheery winter decor...this year I put them out with was DARK in November and December and I needed all the cheer I could generate. LOL 

This was one of Mom's's made by the same German company that makes the wonderful dinosaurs we enjoy.  It's a kids' nativity, but has lots of tiny details.  I also had the Fisher Price set down for the kids. I had the Willow Tree and the first set we bought out too. 
Krista and Stacia made these

You know I love the chalk paint....I may need to leave this out. 

In memory of our RV Christmas'

Window in the nook 

My Gram's nativity sat on my desk these past months...

I bought stockings so we'd have one for everyone hung by the fire....I love the new Native pallet nativity. I bought it at Colony Christmas. 

I used to wrap our Christmas books and the kids would pick one to unwrap and read each day. These books were mostly lonely this year...but I kept some of our favorite during the great "downsize for Japan" episode.

 We opened the Jesus Stocking today...and read the wonderful words of affirmation. We all jotted down times we saw another acting like Jesus. My personal favorite was, "Michael put up with De'Etta's bad attitude." ::snort::  Alright - y'all! Chill! I wrote it.

We've decided to put a box or something out during Lent and continue to watch for Jesus-like actions, jot a note down and put them in the......stay tuned to see WHAT we put them in. LOL

Note the new female military nutcracker in honor of Krista commissioning as a Reserve Chaplain. 

I've begun to pack away Christmas....slowly.  The tree is down. The ornaments are packed away.

Michael suggested I put Granny Annie's rocker in the corner, where the tree was, instead of a recliner. I'm not sure we'll love it - but I do enjoy having the ottoman out of the way!

I decided to replace the Nutcrackers on the China hutch with snowmen. I added a red bucket of "snowballs" and took away the Christmas ornaments. Pine cones, plaid and snowmen are still appropriate up here....more appropriate than tulips and pastel. ::wink::  I started to take down the "Joy" but Stacia insisted joy is a year-round theme around here! She's right.

I removed the poinsettias and left the pine, lights, and pine cones in the trunk. I replaced the Christmas doo-dads with an antique book Mom Mary gave Stacia, and some antique books from Grams and Grandma T.  I left the snowmen. 

Michael informs me the pine swags over the entry mirror and the wreath on the door are both wintry - and not I'm happy to leave them a bit longer. 

The LED lights in the antique canning jars from Mom Mary (Mom G) will stay in my kitchen until it no longer gets dark before bedtime.  I've tried various things in these jars and I like the lights the best. Granny Annie and Mom G had these on the back porch as long as I knew them. It makes me smile to have them in my kitchen.

It wasn't ALL about Christmas decorations today....I prepped for Bible study, I got a nice long work out in, I fixed Dad's telephone contacts, I fixed Dad's voicemail box again, we played a couple of games with Dad, I spent 90 minutes on phone calls with medicare supplemental insurance brokers, I managed to get Healthnet to agree to send out the info Mutual of Omaha wants in order to insure Dad rather than what "they always send,"  and I started a new batch of kombucha....Thanks to Robert and Sandy for keeping me in scobies. I'm determined to get more than 3 batches before I kill my scoby this time.

Tomorrow....I'll have to deal with all the other boxes waiting to be loaded with Christmas decorations....and the six appointments I made for Michael, myself, and Dad at the DMZ  DMV ...but I'm satisfied with the day. 

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