In this most awful of years, it was hard to work up the energy to decorate for Christmas. As the new stay-at-home order in Los Angeles loomed close, I briefly considered giving up on a tree this year, something I've done only once before, ten years ago when we were in process of moving into our current house. Then, as dusk was falling just hours before the new order took effect, I dragged my husband out to grab a tree at our local garden center. The tree subsequently sat on our backyard patio for several days before we finally hauled it into the house, where it sat for several more days before I finally decided to get my act together and hauled out the Christmas decorations.
So, starting with the outside front entry, here we go.
|I purchased a basic wreath from the garden center and embellished it with Nandina berries and Pittosporum from my garden, along with a bow I've had for years and a few ornaments|
|Two of the ornaments, a Santa-like angel and a ladybug, fit the garden theme. The rappelling gnome is the only one left from a group of four I bought decades ago.|
|The gnome on the left was pulled out of the garage where he spends the majority of the year. Like the gnome, the dog-like gargoyle on the right got magnolia seedpods and berries to guard.|
Stepping inside, the small front foyer has its own faux tree.
|I put every bird ornament I have on this faux tree and placed my favorite bicycling Santa at its base|
The natural tree sits in an open area between the dining area and the living room as we didn't want to disturb the cat by taking over the back corner of the living room where she spends her afternoons.
|This placement avoided moving any furniture, or the cat. The ornaments are an eclectic mix collected over all the years my husband and I have been together.|
|I have a lot of ornaments that reflect light. The most special is the heirloom ornament on the top left, which I dates back to the earliest Christmases I remember before my father died when I was six.|
The cat was left (mostly) undisturbed.
|Big yawn from Pipig (Swedish for "Squeaky") to emphasize that I woke her up taking this photo|
|Look of annoyance that I interrupted her long afternoon nap|
While the tree is the main attraction in the living room (besides Pipig of course), I threw decorations in a few other places.
|I've collected a few snowglobes over the years, displayed this year on the mantle my husband built following last year's home remodel|
|Another Santa with a friendly gnome/elf helper|
After all was said and done, I can't really claim this is "Christmas-lite" but the decorations are a little sparer than usual. No garlands, fewer ornaments on a smaller tree. Very few presents under the tree as I direct-shipped most gifts to their recipients. I look forward to more festive celebrations next year, when it should be possible to gather together again without risking harm to anyone.
I hope you find ways to enjoy the holidays even under the current circumstances.
All material © 2012-2020 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party