Sunday, December 13, 2009

A little bit of sparkle …

121209 manger

Growing up, I always looked forward to getting our Christmas tree and setting it up. We didn’t do much other holiday decor; the tree was magnificent on its own, sometimes with a train going round the base and among the pile of presents gathered there. At my Tio and Tia’s house, my Tio created magical little buildings by hand from cardboard with doors and windows, the windows covered with a type of glassine for sparkle, and cotton for snow. As a single parent, the tree my daughter and I set up glowed in gold and crystal with lots of little white lights. I loved those lights because they tinkled softly as they blinked on and off. With her on my lap and my arms wrapped around my precious daughter, we’d have all the other lights off and just gaze at the tree together in the quiet of Christmas … tink … tink … tink …

For holiday decorating, I still prefer simple displays, just a little bit of sparkle, enough to mark the season, but not so much as to distract me from the focus of Advent. I haven’t had a tree in years; I’m allergic to real ones and even a fake one is more work than I care to do, rearranging furniture, moving things around. Instead, I just do a few simple displays.

The first to go up at the beginning of Advent: the manger and my advent candles. The manger’s on the new etagere this year, with tiny lights to light it.  As always, the angel hanging above falls if nudged even a little. Christmas tradition.

120809 advent candles close-upInstead of an Advent wreath, I gather the appropriately colored candles (three purple, one rose, one white) and place them on an oval glass tray with a bit of greenery, some sparkly ribbon, beads, gold ornaments and crystal gems. (Photo is from the 2nd Sunday in Advent last week.)

Those are the two most important displays for me. Everything else is just for a bit of sparkle. Lights on the etagere, garland and lights on the staircase, a glass bowl of rocks and shells to which I’ve added some ornaments and beads.

A simple, peaceful Advent as I await the celebration of the birth of a Savior.

   120809 etagere lights120809 staircase garland

121209 beach display

120809 ornament bowl







Peace and goodness to you and yours.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Your decorations are lovely. Simplicity is always elegant and effective!

Mike said...

Beautiful! Glad I'm not the only one who doesn't do a tree lol I prefer simplicity like you :) Blessings

Laura Hegfield said...

So beautiful, simple and filled with Spirit! (you and your home!)


Jan said...

Rose, I love the way you've chosen to decorate for the holidays. Just enough sparkle! And the things that mean the most to you brought into focus. Such beauty and inspiration you offer. I have my Advent candle a'glow too, I love that. It reminds me of the ever-present Spirit....I decorate simply, too, and it is quite satisfying...May you and your holidays be blessed!

rebecca said...


This is so beautiful and nice. Goes to show that a tree is not necessary as long as the Spirit is there. You've given me food for thought....

Feliz Navidad to you my friend....

Caroline said...

Rose, these photos are filled with such joy and spirit. I love to see how others's wonderful! Your happiness shines right through!

Connie said...

As always Rose, your simplicity to decorating is very calming and reflects the reason for the season. Your sweet spirit shines through in everything you do. Thanks for sharing


sheri said... pretty. Funny. I was actually thinking of you while i was reading my southern living - an article about vinyasa yoga. and you popped into my mind. funny huh?

The Christmas advent post was lovely. It is a special time of year, even though i'm posting lately about family challenges instead of the pure joy of the season. bad blogger.

I really really loved your post about your mom the other day. How sweet. I feel my grand-dad around me a lot - sometimes very clear, like you describe your mom. Other times, just a presence. Telling me he's here. I miss him so much. It will be one year next month that he passed.

Have a wonderful holiday dear one!

dec0r8or said...

Your house looks simply divine for the holidays, Rose! And believe me, the more the years go by, the more I pare down the decor. Sometimes it's just too much STUFF, you know? I've got my tree up, and my lead flats ice skaters so far, and that's it! I may put up some garland and lights outside tomorrow...but I think that'll be it. I just like to sit and enjoy! :) Merry Christmas to you, Rose!

Jannie Funster said...

Yes, just gorgeous glowing displays. Why would you even need a tree with those around??

Do you mind if I ask you what kind of camera you took these with? Very good quality.