I had hoped for a real Christmas tree this year but it didn't seem financially responsible since we didn't get the tree up till the 2nd weekend in December and we were going to be out of town for Christmas day. Instead I pulled out the old 3ft standby and loaded it up with my motley assortment of ornaments. This year's new ornament was Isaac's hand print in clay. I hope it doesn't get broken!
This little fella was the very best thing under the tree.
I love getting Christmas cards so I displayed them on a ribbon in our dinning room. In fact, I still have them on the wall because I enjoy them so much. This year our family sent out our very first Christmas letter and picture. I even stamped the cards and got everything sent out before Christmas. That was quite the feat for this procrastinator!
Instead of overloading the tree with ornaments I filled a crystal bowl from our wedding with ornaments. It was nice to actually use this bowl instead of having it wrapped in paper for over 2 years.
I love having a mantel to decorate! Since I couldn't have a real tree this year I decided to at least have real greenery. I trimmed up a bush in the backyard and 'poof' free greenery. I had fun learning to finger knit and made the yarn garland one evening while skyping my mom. In order to get some height I searched the yard for sticks and then spray painted them gold. Good thing I had some gold spray paint on hand! (probably purchased from some project that was never finished). You can't really see what is in the picture frame but I printed out a free word art picture of Isaiah 9:6 to go along with the nativity scene. It is very important to focus on the true reason for Christmas.
Not only did I decorate with handmade touches I also was able to craft a few gifts as well.
For our neighbors I made some challah bread and gifted it along with a jar of homemade apple butter from this fall. Our neighbors were sweet and also gave us some treats. We got delicious pecan sticky bread and cookies from one neighbor and 2 lbs of deer burger from another. Tasty treats, although I must say the sticky bread was my favorite.
I made caramels for Ike's daycare ladies and was reminded why I only make caramel once a year, I hate wrapping the little boogers.
For my 2 year old niece I made a felt cake with removable 'frosting' flowers so that she could decorate a cake just like her mommy.
I had so much fun creating these little handmade touches for Christmas! I think the little things are what make decorations and presents so special!