This is one of my favorite little corners. The ceramic tree was painted by my Aunt Debbie years ago. She gave it to my mom, and my mom passed it on to me a few years ago. I love the way it looks on the sea glass green desk. People don't really "do ceramics" anymore. I wouldn't even know where to buy a project like that. My mother-in-law gave me the white Santa. It's hard to see, but he has a bird resting on each hand. I love birds--they're all over my house (not real ones, but I sorta wish that was the case ... Martha Stewart has a HUGE bird cage--HUGE--filled with birds in one of her dining rooms. It's gorgeous). The mercury glass tree is just Home Goods.
This is the front table that sits behind the front door. It's covered in a true mix of "high" and low." The candelabra with the crystals all on the way on the right is part of a pair. I found the pair at a consignment shop for TWELVE dollars a few days before Christmas in 2006. Apparently, some woman who was cleaning out her mom's house dropped them off and they narrowly missed a sad death in a landfill. I was told they're from Russia? I can't actually tell if that's true. They're one of my favorite things. Since the Fluffs hang out on the back of the couch, the white candles are flameless (because we had too many near-misses with real flames and fluffy kitty tails). The glass tree next to them is from Simon Pearce. If I had unlimited money, I would buy ten or twenty of them and put them all over my (currently non-existent) mantle and in the center of my dining room table for the winter.
The wood church was unfinished when I bought it at Michael's last year. I spray painted it white and glittered it gold. I want to create stained "glass" for the windows, but I can't figure out how. It sits on top of a mirror that I (not kidding) filched from someone's trash on the side of the road. (The turquoise frame that surrounded the mirror has been turned into a cork board.) All of the green trees are from Michael's and Kmart, and the glass nativity came from my Aunt Janet. The plastic Infant of Prague--serving as a statue in the "churchyard"--came from a flea market.
The stockings are hung on the staircase with care ... because we don't have a fireplace. My mom did the crewel work on my stocking. She started it when she was pregnant with me ... and it remained unfinished until a year and half ago when I finally put the whole thing together and assembled it on my sewing machine. My mom bought a chocolate velvet for the back, and it was her idea to do the brown pom-poms around the edge. It was so hard to sew together. Seriously, it took 26 years to start and finish this project. And I wonder why I have so much trouble and personal issues with procrastination?? Clearly: it's genetic!!
I'm not sure what I'll use on the table for Christmas Eve. Typically, I use a darkish green damask tablecloth with white china. The other day, I picked up a goldy-beige damask table cloth (like the placemats here) that would work with white china or the china in this picture. I'm tempted to do beige ... but we're eating two courses with marinara sauce ... so that may be a really, really bad idea. The green has been covered in marinara over the years, but it washes out every time. I'm always sad in January when I have to remove all of the ornaments from my Norfolk pine in the corner. Sometimes I think I'll keep them up all year, but I ultimately force myself to put them away.
I wanted to have cloth napkins for last year's Christmas Eve dinner, but I couldn't find anything I liked that was affordable. I ended up buying a huge tablecloth and simply cutting it into 18 or 20 inch dinner napkins. The tablecloth produced 12 or 13 napkins--perfect. I've been using them all month this year.
This is the only spot in the house that isn't primarily silver, gold, beige, white, and green. It's the only place where I can use some turquoise and it makes sense. I ordered the snowflakes from Lillian Vernon years ago and used fishing line to create a garland from them. The cupcake ornaments are from Anthro--I think I've had them since college. They look weird on my tree, but they make sense in the kitchen. My friend Joan bought me the bunny at Anthro when she and I were in NYC during Christmas week for the APA. The turquoise garland is from a skein of Pomp-a-Doodle--you can find it in the yarn aisle at Michael's or Jo-Ann Fabric. I like to think my window is wearing a necklace. Everybody could use a necklace.
My only real task tomorrow is to make sure all of my gifts are wrapped and bowed. I have to do my nails at some point too. And I have to vacuum again and make sure the floors aren't completely nasty. And I have to keep out of Ron's way as he officially tackles Christmas Eve Dinner 2011--a daunting task if ever there was one.