Let's start in the entryway, shall we? The little cabinet right in the main hallway is the new home for my beloved Willow Tree Nativity, which my mother gifted to us piece-by-piece over several years. We finally completed it last year, and it is probably my most favorite Christmas decoration.
Our Willow Tree nativity hanging out underneath our family photo collage in our main hallway
A little closer look
Moving into the kitchen, we have some Santa towels, candy canes, and all the lovely Christmas cards we received hung along the top of the pass-thru window.
Also pictured: Christmas cookies on a cooling rack, and a big pot of Eric's sauce being prepared for use in our Christmas lasagna! Even our cooking is festive!
Cards from dear friends and family
As I have mentioned in years past, I collect nativity sets. They are just my favorite piece of Christmas decor, and I'm starting to accumulate them in all shapes and sizes. In the corner of the kitchen counter in the above picture, you can see another one, one of my very first ones, also a gift from my mother:
How cute are these little guys?
In our dining room, we have a festive Christmas tablecloth and our advent wreath in the center of the table:
Pardon the ugly brown box against the wall - that's Baby Girl's crib! Because it was delivered earlier than we planned, it (and the other furniture pieces) have found a temporary home in their boxes in our dining room until we can make room to set them up.
We also have some Santa/snowman decor near the bookshelf across from the dining room table, and the lamp shelves there are sort of a Tower of Nativities now. There's a tiny one we bought in Philadelphia this summer, a gorgeous one my dad got me several years ago, and an adorable little one my cousin Molly bought for me in Mexico.
Decor by the bookshelf, and our lamp with shelves covered in nativities
On the left, the top shelf, including a holiday family photo from a few years ago and our tiny Philadelphia nativity. On the right, the pretty one from my dad on the middle shelf.
Close-up of my Mexico nativity on the bottom shelf
I have to pause here for a moment because I mentioned my cousin Molly, so I have to talk about Molly for a second. (Remember Molly, of the Margarita Bridal Shower and the Awesome Mexico Wedding?) Now that it is "Facebook and Christmas Card Official," I can happily share that my cousin Molly and her husband Arturo are expecting a baby boy in May! How fantastic is that?! She's like a sister to me, and being able to go through pregnancy together and ultimately having our babies just two months apart is pretty much the coolest thing ever. Our kids will totally be BFFs and it will be awesome. Congrats, Molly & Arturo!
Back to my apartment, let's make a stop in the hallway that leads to the bedroom, bathroom, and my dear sweet washer and dryer. On our little set of drawers in that hallway, we have a beautiful new Advent calendar my Aunt Debbie sent us, and (you guessed it!) another little Nativity that I bought in Illinois when I was visiting Molly for her bridal shower.
The Advent Calendar is all about the Christmas decor at the Met - very pretty.
How sweet is that little nativity?
Now, back to the main living area.
Home sweet home (also, boxes for Baby Girl's dresser and chest of drawers making a cameo in the foreground)
On the window sill, we have another new, sort of different Nativity we just bought this year, and we have miscellaneous decorations adorning the tables.
We saw this at Macy's and just thought it was really different. Isn't it cool?
Snowman on the coffee table
Bowl of ornaments on the end table
We still have our handy-dandy stocking hanger:
Still so much nicer than taping them to the windowsill! And don't worry, it has extra hooks so it will be able to accommodate FOUR stockings next year!
We still have our lovely Christmas dog, ready to model whenever necessary:
Achilles hanging out with the Grinch
Waiting for Santa? I'm assuming he's sad because both of our stockings are full but his is still waiting. Don't worry pup, treats are coming!
And of course, the main event - our tree! I love our tree more and more each year. This was the first year that we did not have to use one single "filler" ornament, a/k/a all the red and silver balls we bought when we first got the tree because we didn't have any other ornaments. Now our tree is filled with ornaments that mean something to us and carry special memories, and that is something I love very much.
Looks like Santa came already!
I just love our holiday home. It feels warm and cozy and festive. I'm always sad when it's time to take the decorations down, although we do leave them up until Epiphany so we have some time left to enjoy them. And, this year taking them down should be a little easier to handle, because when they come down they will be sent off into storage to make room for Baby Girl's furniture and belongings! And who can be sad about that? But for now, I will happily enjoy my tree while it's still up and glowing so beautifully!