Last night, I lamented to my husband how I wished I had put up my outdoor decorations when we had that string of nice weather… like all my neighbors did.
But it was a few days before Thanksgiving! WAY too early in my book.
Truth be told, I like to process my holidays one at a time. I don’t buy Halloween costumes in the summer and I don’t decorate for Christmas before December. Over Thanksgiving weekend my daughter asked me to circle the block so we could count how many houses were decorated. Quite a few… and many with their trees already up. (Oh boy!)
For me to tackle the task of decorating for the holidays, the creative juices need to be flowing. When I lived in the city, my “must decorate” deadline fell anytime before the guests arrived for my annual holiday party. The adrenaline rush of needing to finish before the first guest arrived provided some much needed creative incentive.
I embrace holiday decorating the way someone would a marathon. It’s a lot of hard work preparing, but worth it in the end. I'm a designer after all. I’m not decorating for Christmas, I’m designing our Christmas! (Or so I was trying to explain to my husband without sounding too ridiculous. Too late).
As I pled my case for stalling, I couldn’t help but think, am I just justifying why I haven’t started yet? … And wasn’t even considering it for another few weeks? Did I lose my Christmas spirit?
Often the task seems daunting. When all of my decorations come out of their off season hiding spot, it's a big pile of sentimental mess. Every year I need to throw out some old, tattered bits and replace them with a few modern baubles. Plus, every year there are different ideas and trends. And of course there's Pinterest! I have way more ideas than time to do them all. And I don’t like to do the same thing year after year. It gets a bit overwhelming.
So now, it’s December. And the pressure. is. on. The kids want the tree up, the neighbors already decorated and the Elf is on the damn shelf. Christmas spirit or not, it’s time. It usually helps me to have an idea or theme (or something loosely labeled as such). While scrambling to pull together this years design, I decide on the theme, "outside in". That means, using last year’s outside decorations inside and vice versa. As I roll up my sleeves to get started this afternoon, I look forward to that moment when I stand back and admire the accomplishment. It’s always worth it.
PS - Here are 2 images of my progress so far...
A former city girl with a degree in graphic design from Parsons, Cynthia Jordan is now based in a suburb of Philadelphia where she is CEO of her household and a contributing writer for Spruce + Furn. She shares tips and tricks for setting up your home, hosting etiquette and her advice for dealing with common domestic challenges - the Right way. Have a question for CJ? Email her at: AskCJ@spruceandfurn.com and she’ll answer your question in an upcoming post!