She loved Christmas Eve. Christmas was always so much fun, so lovely, but Christmas Eve was extra special, magical in a way that only the holiest of nights can be.
Most of the day on Christmas Eve was spent finishing up in the kitchen on all those handmade goodies–cookies, candies, gingerbread, and hot cocoa mix– before we delivered baskets of them to neighbors and friends in the afternoon. Then the four of us, Mom, Dad, my brother, and I, would gather at home.
Christmas trees are my thing. My thang, y’all! I’ve had some favorites over the years, my Scandinavian tree, the Woodland theme that got featured on RealSimple.com, and last year’s cheery Vintage Tinsel tree.
This year I went a different way. And it has a lot of meaning to me. Every bit telling my story.
Little white birds floating somewhere between heaven and earth. Free. Resting in the fact they’re taken care of.
Red berries and bare winter branches.
Tiny white lights and tiny silver ornaments that reflect that light.
Mexican wedding cookies, also known as Russian Teacakes, also known as You Can Eat the Whole Plate Before You Realize it Cookies. They’re like shortbread biscuits rolled in fluffy sugar. And of course in my recipe, I throw a little extra Christmas inside.
I love making presents. Even if I’m giving a gift that I’ve purchased, I almost always give something handmade, as well. It’s just that little extra “I love you” that makes giving so special. If you need an idea for something you can make, this tassel necklace is inspired by one I saw from Anthropologie a few years ago and is super easy.
To make it, gather your supplies: embroidery thread or fine yarn in the color(s) you like, some cardboard pieces about the size you want your tassels to be, chain, jump rings, scissors, and small pliers.
You’re one of my favorite months. You’d be my favorite but you’re gone too fast. That’s why November beats you, because I still have you to look forward to when it’s only November.
I love the cold. Cheeks red from it. Cuddles to get warm. Coffee and cider to fight the chill. Kitties warming my lap, fuzzy socks, blankets made by people I love.
I love how people want to be nice. They want to give, to remember those who don’t have enough and make sure they do. We call and visit our family and friends. We even send them real-life, actual post-office-delivered mail!
As you probably know if you’ve been following me for any length of time, I live for Christmas. It’s so bad. So, so bad. But I’m a proud Christmas nerd!
I like having themes for my gift wrap every year and this time, it’s red plaid and brown paper and twine. A throwback to my 90’s days maybe? Or lumberjack chic? I like that. I’ll go with lumberjack chic.
I started out by making the tags. I used regular store price tags, glittered them on the edges, and replaced the string with a pretty gold ribbon. Then I made a bazillion origami paper stars out of brown paper. Here is a great tutorial on the specifics of how to make them. For this size, I started with a 3 1/2 inch square of paper. When they were finished, I threaded them with twine using a large-eyed needle.
This year, it was all about vintage. Colored lights, tinsel, and the billion and a half old glass ball-shaped ornaments I’ve been collecting for years. I even had the perfect topper: a Santa star wreath from the 60s that my grandma gave me years ago from her own stash.
Here’s the breakdown: