As I mentioned in my post last week, I was feeling pretty heavy-hearted and anxious in the days following the US Presidential Election. I do not live in the US, but I feel the choice they made effects us all on a global scale, and yes, I do find this a scary and worrying time. My heart was troubled.
So what does Jill do when she's worried or sad or scared? She tries to find ways to cheer herself up. And in this case, it meant that Christmas came to town a little early this year...
My rule for Christmas decorating had always been "last weekend of November" for putting up the tree and getting the house all Christmasified. But two years ago, I was on the Christmas House Tour that our church hosts annually, and I had no choice but to get the decs up early. It was a month-long project to get ready, and with the tour being Dec. 1st that year, I literally started getting ready on Nov. 1st.
You know those people who say, "Ugh I get sick of my decorations by Christmas. I can't wait to take them down after the holidays."? I am not one of them. That year, when I was pretty much fully decked out by mid-November, I LOVED having my house bursting with Christmas cheer. And I was still sad to take it all down in early January. So last year, I thought, "Why wait?" No, I didn't start decorating November 1st, and no, I did not decorate as much as I did the year of the tour, but I did start around mid-November, and I was glad I did.
So this year, while I was feeling anxious and upset, I made the decision to go ahead and start decorating on the weekend. This was the earliest I've ever decorated aside from the year I was on the tour. I still followed the "not before Remembrance Day rule" as it was on Friday (although I don't really think it's disrespectful to decorate before); but on Saturday I let the hollying and jollying begin. I got my house cleaned first thing in the morning, then Mom and I headed out to a local school that was hosting a Christmas Craft & Bake Sale. JUST the thing to put me in the festive mood! Not only that, I finally got a start on my Christmas shopping, as I picked up my first gift at the sale! Woo hoo! I also got a hand-painted wine glass for myself for the holiday season that says "Drink Up Grinches!", a new pair of Funky Leggingz, some new winter scents for my Scentsy warmer, and we also had lunch from the canteen and bought some sweets from the bake sale.
Then I just couldn't wait to get home and START!! Last spring, my friend Josee moved out west, and before she left, she bestowed upon me her Christmas tree. I have a smaller tree that is a hand-me-down from my mom, but I decided I would put it up in my dining room and use Josee's in the living room. It is a BIG tree and it took me all afternoon and into the evening to get it up and decorated. I just puttered away it, and kept putting on Christmas movies to get me through the task. It was also an extremely sheddy tree, and I had fake needles from one end of my house to the other. Yikes!
But it looked sooo beautiful once it was up and decorated. I think I'll buy more lights for next year because I didn't quite have enough to properly light up this gigantic tree, but I was happy with it in the end anyways.
I was pretty tired once the tree was finally done (you know you're getting old when putting up a CHRISTMAS TREE exhausts you), but I did dig out some of the other decorations, and the living room and front hall are now mostly done. Next step is getting the dining room tree up and starting to work on it, and decorating that room and the kitchen. I have a few things for the upstairs too.
So yes. I did it early. Maybe a little too early. But you know what? It really does make me happy. I love how my living room feels with the lights off and just lit by the glow of the tree. It's cozy and comforting and somehow a little bit magical. This is my time of year, and why shouldn't I celebrate it for as long as I can? There's no law against it, and I'm going to maximize it for all it's worth.
Also, I have a couple of holiday parties that will be happening at my house, with the first being December 2nd, so I had to make sure and have the decorations up in time for that. By the time this weekend is over, the bulk of it should be done, which frees me up for baking, shopping, wrapping, and getting ready for the Christmas parties with friends and family. It's kind of a relief to know it will be done and I can just soak up the beauty of it while I work away at other Christmassy projects.
Christmas came to my town early this year, and I couldn't be happier about it. Let the holiday fun BEGIN!!!