A little less stress, please. A little more beauty?

During the holidays, we long for our homes to be extra beautiful and welcoming, the picture of peace and serenity...don't we??

Farmhouse at Christmas.jpeg

So it has always struck me kinda funny that to create this much desired peace and serenity,  we bring out stacks of boxes bursting with stuff, create chaos as we empty their contents willy-nilly in the center of our houses, and then try to assimilate all of these extra items into an already full house--

And we do all of this during some of the busiest weeks of the year.

Seems crazy when we look at it that way, right?

Simplicity is at the heart of joy and beauty, but we often forget that during this season.  So, as we start to get big plastic bins out of the attic and spread their contents around our homes, I would like to invite you to try a different approach this year...one that will hopefully leave you feeling less frantic, and more peaceful & joyful indeed:

  1. Create a staging area--a place you don't mind if it is messy--the attic or basement itself where the holiday items are already stored, or perhaps a guest room. THIS is where the boxes and all of that STUFF will be unpacked and sorted--not in the middle of everything in the main part of the house.
  2. Focus on only ONE ROOM AT A TIME...We seldom have huge blocks of time to decorate, so think of one room you want to focus on--or even a single shelf or small area of that room--when you have a bit of time. Take just a handful of items from the staging area to the spot you are working, so there aren't big piles of things to deal with that can overwhelm you. (Decorating in small doses helps us to remember that this is a season, not a single event, and a process to enjoy, not an item on our checklist.)
  3. Decorate with only your most favorite decorations this year and abandon the devotion to decorating things a certain way because it is the way you always have in the past. Bah Humbug! Try something new, follow your heart, do something fun!
  4. Embrace Simplicity--small, subtle, yet sparkly touches around the house can be more beautiful than going whole hog...and they will be less stressful to gather and put away come January 2nd.
  5. Share the Spirit--After you have HAD FUN (rather than stressing and fussing) putting your favorite items where they can be enjoyed for the holiday, come back to your staging area. There will be a lot of items left over that you don't truly love or really need, and that is GREAT! Consider donating these to a charity as soon as possible so they can bless someone else's holiday. Your generosity will be so appreciated, and there will be less to put away and more storage room left over when you are done.

Decorating for the holidays is meant to be a celebration, not a chore. Be mindful and selective, so that you do things to adorn your home not simply out of obligation or tradition, but because it truly brings you joy.

AMEN & Happy Holidays!!