Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year.

I use to start decorating November 1st. but then my daughter Caty reminded me to at least wait until after Remembrance Day and I thought this was a good idea.

So the reason I like to get started early is to enjoy the lovely lights twinkling in the dark month of November. The major projects:  Christmas cards, outside lights,  putting up the tree, decorating the fireplace mantel and the banister is fun when  you do a little every day…the creative juices can flow and there is no stress.

It is also a good time to put away the decorations that have been up from the previous season so that you don’t have a room full of  competing decorations. Simplicity with a focused color theme can keep you from over doing the decorating..

Keep a box handy and label it so you know where all your trinkets are after Christmas.

This year I looked at everything with fresh eyes-not putting up all the decorations.  Since I love Christmas and all the pretty ornaments and garland and wreaths that come with it-it is a bit of a challenge not to put everything out.

Since we re painted this year our palette has changed in terms of color and layout; everything looks different.

Our Gold tree use to look lovely against the burgundy walls but now that the walls are pewter Revere (warm Grey) the tree needed a punch so we ran some red ribbon thru  the tree and it looks lovely-just a bit of color can make all the difference. So glad I did not have to buy new decorations.

tree

One of my other favorite things to do is make  Italian Pitzelle cookies and randomly hand them out to friends and strangers-it is amazing what a cookie can do. This requires a good bit of baking but it is relaxing and enjoyable doing it with the light twinkling and the lovely carols playing.

cookies

For the young children, I make bags of Snowman Soup (hot cocoa, chocolate kisses, a candy cane and mini marshmallows in a snowman zip lock bag) and once again the instant joy this brings to big and little children is wonderful.

treats

So thankful for the Love, Joy and Peace this season brings as we celebrate the birth of Jesus.

Tell us what traditions your family has and what you do to simplify your life during the Holiday Season in the comments section below.

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