Down the December Trail ...
The Chickadee Post, Mid-December

A Christmas Corner Tour

Here's a little tour of a spot in our home that makes our afternoons and evenings (even our dark mornings) quite cozy: a Christmas corner in our family room. The boys love to curl up next to the fire, so I planned around it ~ bringing in cushions and baskets of books. I also made our mantel a centerpiece of decoration ...

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First, tucked down in the far right, is the basket of winter-themed books (please see my leftand sidebar for a description of its contents). This bed-rest in Christmasy red has been borrowed from Crackerjack's room for the month of December. :)

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A close up of the winter books ... these will stay out well after Christmas. Winter often overstays its welcome here in New England, but roundabouts February a few early spring titles will appear here.

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And now for a quick tour of the mantel. Our theme this year is a woodland Christmas, a "Heaven and Nature Sing" kind of thing. Front and center we have a prayer card of The Holy Family, glowing in the light of a starry votive candle. Also we find a wooden lion and lamb, together, a universal symbol of peace.

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At the far left and right, are holiday prints that I collected years ago and recently framed. If you are familiar with the Chinaberry catalog, you might remember the lovely covers that used to grace every issue ~ whimsical and sweet with tiny fairies and ladybugs, etc. They were hand-drawn by artist Louise Popoff, and I was quite disappointed when they stopped using her work. (They now use book illustrations which, of course, are lovely too. But I still miss that artwork.) Anyway, this year I finally worked these enchanting prints into the decor ...

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You might notice in a few of these shots, the huge pine cones (there are two, one at each end). I found them at Whole Foods for $1.99. Normally, I wouldn't buy pinecones as they fall rather reliably from our own spruce and pine trees, but I couldn't get over the size of these! The funny thing was, the other day the boys and I read about "Digger Pines" which have cones "as big as softballs" and we think that's what these might be! We've never found any so big around here (in the wild, not the market, that is).

We also have a few little toys nestled in here and there, and that's a holly garland behind it all. I'd love real greenery, but so would my cats (and even at 16, they'd find a way up there), so plastic it had to be ...

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The bears and the apine village ...

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The wise old owl, the fawn and the squirrel ...

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More village buildings, the rabbit and hedgehog ... I also nestled our Advent candles into the scene: plain glass votives with sheer ribbon wrapped around each (three in purple, one in pink).

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The two main Christmas baskets (the one on the left holds our favorites).

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The windowsill holds still more books (I change them up each week), and the rectangular basket holds our magazines (mostly mine, but a few of the boys' too).

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We also have our current nature story basket. I pick puppets from our main stash that correspond with the birds and animals we've been observing. Just now there is a cardinal pair, a crow, a hawk and a black squirrel. (Yesterday we added a woodpecker.)

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And, the Christmas tree is done at last! (I finally just let the boys have at it, lol.) I will take pictures today, but here is a glimpse of some ribbon I found this year - isn't it perfect for our woodland-themed tree?

I'll be back later today* with tree pictures and a bit of news from The Chickadee Post ... :)

*Make that first thing tomorrow ~ the day got away from me! See you bright and early, then ...

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