I’m enjoying this holiday season. With the exception of todays hot sun, the “cooler” weather has been really cozy and nice. Alex will have this christmas off this year and we’re planning pizza breakfast of course, but really I’m just happy to enjoy the few moments between the busy weeks with him in our cozy home.
You know— I’m always sharing my mixed thoughts on the holidays— I’m anti black friday and I hate the over-commotion of sales and things– but I do love the goodness the season can bring— if you let it. But I want to know: what are you thoughts? Do you love christmas? Do you cry during the holidays? Happy cry? Sad cry? Are you over presents? Do you opt to donate gifts rather than buy gifts? Do you have non-traditional holidays? Like with everything, we have a good mix of emotions, thoughts, and traditions over here. Mostly, I’m looking forward to a big ole’ cup of hot cocoa one of these chilly nights :)I know I JUST updated about my cookbook— but here’s another one: I did the software update and now my software isn’t working. So all I want for christmas is for technology to cut me a bit of a break…. and pizza…. and family… oh, and that cup of hot cocoa!

Either way, I hope you guys are enjoying this busy time of the year. I’m looking forward to late night gift wrapping for M– Alex and I have been doing it around 1 am, every christmas eve. It’s kinda nice to look forward to 🙂

ps. A lot of these decorations were from wayfair— where I was up on their site sharing our holiday “shelfie” 🙂 You can check it out: HERE. And if you missed it, you can of course see our Christmas tree, HERE.


  1. I have to say, I do love your Christmas tree. Though I am biased towards the untraditional. 🙂

    To answer your question, my family and I opt not to celebrate the holidays. I'm not religious in any form, but am open to thought for all kinds and so one day a few years back I watched the documentary 'What Would Jesus Buy?" Though a bit over the top and cheesy it truly hit the nail on the head with regards to how I felt about the holidays. Days of the year that have become so immersed in marketing, consumerism, greed, need, and the resulting stress of it all. That and I didn't like the idea of someone saying, 'Yes, this is the day you will be giving' (ie Christmas) or "this is the day to be thankful' (ie Thanksgiving) or loving (ie Valentine's), etc. It all felt inauthentic and forced.

    So after watching that film and thinking about how I really felt about it all, I donated all decorations, my tree and the idea of these preselected days and decided to celebrate every day. To give daily, be thankful and love wholly. My parents joined in and I have to say it has brought us together more so, reduced stress and made me a more giving and thankful person. Growing up, Christmas was HUGE in our house and so this was a bit of a drastic change for our family but we quickly found it was the best change for us, highlighting what's most important…the everyday, the now.

    I don't comment often (this may be my first comment) but I want to say thank you for your kind authenticity and eagerness to connect and welcome the thoughts of others. Questions at the end of blog posts tend to normally be a ploy of many bloggers to get more comments and followers but, on here, it feels actually wanted and a little community that you built that I'm happy to be a part of.

    Cheers to you,

    • Yes! I remember watching that a while ago—- I should re-watch it again since I have forgotten most of it.

      You really sound a lot like me— I do keep up with a lot of the tradition aspect because I grew up with it– and I did really enjoy it, but I struggle with holidays in general. If I could get my family on board (we typically do christmas eve dinner and presents with mine– and just recently started doing christmas day with alex's), I would stray more and more away from presents and things. Happy my family opted out of it this year. Marlowe will get a present and my niece, Trudy will get a present, that's it. Well, Marlowe wrapped a pom pom she made for my brother– I said that works 🙂 It's awesome your family has joined in with you.

      And thank you! I am eager. I don't tend to ask a lot of reader questions at the end of posts— because even if they're not, it feels like they can seemed forced. But for me, someone who is (also) not religious, I do wonder how people (especially Christians) look at the holiday season since it's become even more consumer driven. All the sales (that now start on thanksgiving) seem to take away from the holiness that is supposed to surround the day for so many and/or the family togetherness that should be there.

      Thanks for answering! And reminding me of that documentary! 🙂

  2. I love seeing the children happy and having fun, and having them home from school. But I can't stand the commercialisation and the thoughtless waste. Things like Christmas cards and wrapping paper that just go straight to landfill sadden me. But we try and have a greener Christmas and do our bit for the environment. This year we'll have some vegetables from our allotment for Christmas lunch which will be a treat. CJ xx

    • What do you do about wrapping paper, cj? I typically use old paper grocery bags we have around or fabric— always looking for new ideas though! Happy holidays!

  3. I love the spirit of Christmas, the camaraderie, the music, the coming together and the love that is exchanged. What I loathe is the materialistic nature of people in stores, the nonstop bell ringing and the people themselves. While some might enjoy the "hustle and bustle" I do not enjoy being jostled, hit, or other wise being mobbed over some celery (true story). I feel that we celebrate life and our beliefs everyday so we do not get overly caught up in the commercialization of it. Lights, a tree and music. Everything we want. <3

    • I will not in anyway go to stores. I haven't even gone to the grocery store in almost two weeks! It's just ways too hectic out there for me! Better at home with the family—- and non aggressive celery eaters 😉

  4. I love Christmas, but it's not my favorite holiday. The gift guides and sale posts and holiday outfits you see all over the blogosphere to me are not what Christmas is about. I look forward to going to church to celebrate Christ's birth, and be close to my family, but it's really not as huge a holiday for me as Pascha (Easter,) the resurrection. That one really humbles me, every year. Have a blessed Christmas. Xx

    • Thank you for answering—I always debate on putting together a "gifts that give back" post– but even that seems like a slight stretch to what I want to promote for the holiday season. I do think it should be more family (and/or christ) based, if it is to be celebrated.

      &My mom has always preferred easter too 🙂

      Merry christmas!

  5. I personally love Christmas. Not because of the holiday but because on this day our families get together. The lights. The weather. The music. It's a jolly season and I love it!

    P.S I love all the holiday decor in your house. Very festive!

  6. You always do such a great job decorating! You get the perfect amount of "festive" without overdoing it 🙂
    Personally I love Christmas. I think it's a wonderful time of year that gives me memories of being little and having my entire family together. Nowadays, I will admit – I do cry sometimes – because my brothers and sister and I all live in different states because of work and school and we don't always have the chance to be together for the holidays. But we try, and we make the most of the time we DO get together!
    ~ Samantha

  7. We opt out of Santa. We focus the holiday on giving to others and being near and with family. Presents are still had and so are all the lights (and cookies!) but we always try to use this time to look back on the year and be thankful for all that we have.

    I just wrote a blog post about Santa and Christmas that I'll be posting soon.

    • I'l be honest here, I enjoy the extra leverage santa gives me— but I am looking forward to phasing that out in the next year or two. And I do like the idea of one gift for each family member— but the sell sell sell is so overwhelming that I feel like it's hard to strike a good balance! working on it 🙂

  8. Looks wonderfully festive and cosy, I love your set of nesting dolls, never seen one like that before! Personally I aim to actually try and relax and enjoy Christmas Day this year, I always put too much pressure on myself to make it perfect!! Currently taking a break from wrapping, food shop listing and tree decorating – not crying yet! 😉 Wishing you a happy festive season! x

    • my main priority this christmas is just sit back and relax 🙂 I'm wishing you lots of luck on yours too! And no crying 🙂

  9. I look forward to the late night gift wrapping too. I'm not a big fan of a lot of stuff, but I do enjoy some gifts (giving and receiving). I love the traditions more, and as my kids get older (8 now), I'm beginning to see more of that in them). I agree that Black Friday is miserable, but I do enjoy seeing people out and about the small shops all getting ready in this season. Have a wonderful week.

  10. it looks wonderful. i love how you call the weather 'cooler', coming from someone who has yet to spend a christmas without snow…

    i don't love christmas, but now that my friends and family know that i really mean gift-free christmas when i say gift-free, it has become a lot more bearable. for me, it's all about time with those i care about.

    • I'm sad to say it was 81 F here yesterday. Like, it REALLY heated up. Christmas snow sure is nice though— and it makes the cocoa make more sense 🙂

  11. I love your cheerful, understated decorations! Your house is such an inspiration to me.

    I also have a complicated relationship with holiday presents. As a kid, I felt a little deprived because my parents were never big on Chanukah presents (and I didn't have a Christmas tree or anything like that). Now, I love buying gifts for my loved ones, but going around the circle opening presents can leave me feeling hollow sometimes. So much love and thought goes into them, but it's really not the presents we want… it's a feeling of closeness and understanding and love and spending quality time together. I'm definitely still working on figuring out how to get the most out of this season. I do love the family time, but not sure how gifts fit into it yet.

    • Yes, this is how I feel! I used to love buying gifts for people– but I don't know there's always something slightly uneasy about it. I feel a lot better when there's just time spent together 🙂

  12. Your house looks so wonderful yet again, Drea. In a dazzling sun and equally beautiful in the shade of colourful holiday baubles.

    As for your question – I welcome Christmas with mixed emotions, I await but step back, feel giddy but sense some sadness. I love being optimistic and friendly but maybe this time of the year imposes more of all the good things? Extra smile, additional greeting even if you may not feel it. I don't know.

    Have a happy holidays, friends xx