One of the most enjoyable holiday crafts I’ve done is what I lovingly refer to as ‘song trees’.
My initial goal of 6-8 paper song trees, quickly grew to a couple dozen, as they were so beautiful, and easy to put together, that I gave away about as many as I made for myself.
Here is one of my best, time-saving, holiday decorating tips: I use quilt batting, torn into shelf-size pieces, in the bookshelves to create a ‘snowy’ background. It can be purchased by the yard or in a roll. Rather than empty the bookcases of the regular, year-round décor, I simply push the items toward the back of the shelf, draping and covering them with the torn pieces of quilt batting. (See examples above) There you have, an instant, simple backdrop for all those festive & beautiful holiday colors!
As a child, I never realized how hard my Mother must have worked in order to assure that all her children would wake on Christmas morning to the hope and promise every child holds on to during the holidays.
I believe the most precious memories about Christmas are rooted in the traditions which are repeated every year….things that are sure….and predictable. It’s an unspoken expectation that everything which is perhaps unstable about this present life will, at least for a brief moment, come back into order and take the shape of something familiar which we can recognize.
No matter how simple that tradition may seem, it causes the uncertainty which threatens our peace of mind to lose some of its power, even if only for a short time. One of those traditions in our house is waking up to lots of goodies in our Christmas stockings.
I have to say (or confess) though, that a few times over my past 30 years of motherhood, “Santa” has been a little late in filling the stockings before the children woke up on Christmas morning! I think he was too tired from the long night of delivering presents all over the world, and he slept in just a little too long…. or maybe he forgot to set his alarm clock….
The kids were so good about waiting patiently for “Santa” to get out there and magically cause those empty stocking to become overflowing with surprises, never calling him out for his untimely oversight.
To my recollection, my Mother… um.. I mean Santa… never forgot to fill the stockings of my siblings and I.
Every year, we knew exactly what we would find… a large orange in the toe of the stocking, topped off with assorted nuts still in-the-shell, lots and lots of old-fashioned ribbon candy, colorful hard candies, peppermints, and yummy old-fashioned chocolate-covered crème drops! Every now and then, the hard candies would stick to the felt-stockings, but it made no difference to us! We just pulled it off and savored it anyway! These little morsels of sugary sweetness kept us happy all day long!
“It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.”
~Arthur Conan Doyle