Holiday Decorating – you either love it or hate it. Personally, I love it, although I admit, it can be a bit overwhelming. I used to always wait until after Thanksgiving to decorate, but the past couple of years, I have started decorating a few weeks before Christmas. By that time my fall decor has been up for several months and I’m just ready for a change! This also allows me to take my time decorating and not feel stressed about the December “to do” list. I wait to hang the stockings and buy the Christmas tree (#team real) until after Thanksgiving. It never truly feels like Christmas until those items are up. While I don’t think I do anything extra special, several of you have been anxious to see a home tour, so without further ado, here it is – amateur pics and all!
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Christmas Front Porch
A decorated front porch is the best way to spread Christmas cheer! The mums were dying and the were pumpkins rotting from my Fall Porch so this was my first holiday decorating project! I break my porch decorating into 3 steps:
- Fill urns with plants or flowers. For my winter porch, I always choose some type of evergreen arrangement. Some years I create this myself and others I buy arrangements. This year I found a gorgeous arrangement from a local grocery chain (Meijer) and used those in each urn. The giant red ornaments give the porch a great pop of color!
- Place a seasonal sign on one side of the porch and another object on the other side. This “Baby It’s Cold Outside” sign is from Wal-mart, but I feel like I saw fun signs everywhere! Hobby Lobby had a ton of cute ones, as did Marshall’s and even Target. On the other side I filled a wood crate with greens and birch logs. To help fill the crate, I started with an old fake garland that I don’t use anymore and then filled in with fresh evergreens and pinecones. The birch logs are the star and are the finishing touch on any winter arrangement.
- Fill in porch with some other smaller pots of flowers/plants. I found this pretty arrangement at Lowe’s which helped keep things super simple on my end. This container would be so cute filled with greens!
Front Porch Final Touches
JEN (on left): SWEATER | JEANS | HEELS
AMY (on right): FLANNEL | PANTS | HEELS
To finish off my Christmas front porch, I added fresh garland and threw some ornaments and greens in my lanterns. To give the garland more dimension, I added star shaped twinkle lights, snowflake ornaments, and red ball ornaments. This is an easy way to make your garland look extra special!
I also added a bowl filled with treats for all the delivery drivers! These guys work mandatory overtime during the holiday season and I wanted to show my appreciation. Funny story, we have a good friend that works for UPS. He was coming to our house and told his co-workers he was headed to a party that night and mentioned the location. His co-worker who delivered in the area asked the name and when our friend told him our last name, the guy said oh yeah, blue house, wife’s name is Amy, I deliver packages there all the time. I thought it was hilarious, my husband, not so much.😂. Either way, I left a note on my bowl of goodies telling them I couldn’t do my job or get my Christmas shopping done without them! My kids think it’s the coolest thing ever and love to help keep the bowl filled.#itsthegivingseason
Back Porch Details
BLACK & WHITE RUG | HOLIDAY DOORMAT | HEELS
I used the same formula to decorate my back porch. I filled an urn with greens that I got for free at Lowe’s, added some fake berries and pinecones from Hobby Lobby and used more birch logs as the finishing touch. I love the layered rug look everyone is doing and I found my rugs at Target. I added a little sign and a candle holder, and of course, every house needs a Christmas wreath! Home hack: I stick a 3-M hook on the other side of the door to hang my wreath with ribbon.
The Hearth and Hand garland from Target is fantastic! It sells out every year so if you don’t have it, keep it in mind next year! Hobby Lobby always has a great selection of faux garland, too. I fell in love with this simple and modern “JOY” Christmas art and am happy to use it every year. The light up star was a new addition this year and I love the twinkle it adds! The candlesticks on each end look gorgeous when they are lit and add a cozy touch. Just be careful when using real candles with garland, I’ve almost started two house fires😬 It might be time to try flameless!
The stockings will hang too low if we use nails or hooks under the mantle so I use these simple stocking holders from Target. The black and gold colors, as well as the low profile, keep the mantel looking simple and modern. The faux fur stockings are a classic and a felt snowflake garland adds dimension.
Christmas Coffee Table
The star of the coffee table is these two wood trees that rotate. This was a lucky Target find from a few years ago. I found something similar on Etsy, but the dimensions are larger than mine. These trees are just cool and every kid (and most adults) that come over want to spin the blocks and arrange the tree. My kids look forward to this every year.
I added some faux greens and a cute little snowball garland. I also added a mini Poinsettia, but mini evergreen trees and fresh flowers would work here, too. Sometimes I light a candle and add that to the tray, too.
This tray rests on the living room coffee table and is kid friendly too. My kids don’t really play with the Little People Nativity Scene anymore, but it holds fond memories. I will always find a spot for it! Christmas is my kids favorite holidays, so I like to add decor that they can touch, feel, and enjoy. I know this isn’t going to win any design awards, but it is easy and warms my heart to see kids playing with it.
Hot Chocolate Station
By far my kids favorite decoration is the hot cocoa station! This is so easy to do, you guys! Grab a tray, throw some little bowls on it and fill them with whatever hot chocolate condiments you want! Marshmallows, candy canes, sprinkles, M&Ms, anything goes! This year I saw an adorable Hot Chocolate Kit at Costco and that is wear these cute little gingerbread guys came from! HomeGoods and TJ Maxx are both great spots to find some fun and unique hot chocolate bar items. Add hot cocoa mix to a mason jar, throw out some Christmas mugs (I love the Crate & Barrel kid size mugs for this) for an extra touch, and your hot chocolate bar is all set! This stays up all winter long and is the perfect treat on a snow day.
A Holiday Dining Table
Faux and fresh greens are the easiest way to add a holiday feel! Stick some greens in any vase or on top of a table runner, like I did here, and you have an instant holiday look. Number one easiest holiday decorating tip – just walk outside, trim some greens, and enjoy that fresh pine scent!
Props to my oldest daughter for decorating this Christmas chalkboard. She found inspiration from Pinterest. Didn’t she do an awesome job?! Give us a follow on Pinterest to keep up to date with all the inspiration we are finding! We pin everything from home decor, recipes, fashion, and beauty tips!
I hope you enjoyed this home tour and it will inspire you when you are decorating, even if it’s next Christmas! Truth be told, after I have my stuff up for a few weeks, I start to feel cluttered and am more than ready to take it down right after Christmas. The good news is all the pretty greens, birch logs, candles, and cozy blankets can stay around all winter long!
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