Ho. Ho, Ho and Merry Christmas to all my Gal Pals.
I love Christmas! I decorate my house from top to bottom in 6 rooms. Many of my Facebook friends have been to my house during the holidays and can tell you that my loft is all North Pole with Santas, elves, reindeer and toys, my living room is outdoor Christmas with winter birds, snow bears, and the red truck with the evergreen tree in the bed of the truck, my guest bathroom is decorated with angels, the kitchen and dinette area are decorated with snowmen with gingerbread accents, and my formal dining room is my red and green room that is decorated with poinsettias, holly, fake evergreens (I am allergic to the real thing), berries and green/red plaids. I have two and a half Christmas trees (the half is my 38 year old daughter’s baby tree). Speaking of my daughter, I recently asked her how she could possibly be MY daughter. She wants nothing to do with real plants and I had a botanical garden at my former house. She wants nothing to do with Christmas decorations and I have to rent an 8 X 10 storage unit to house all my Christmas decorations. She reminds me of Maxine who is confused about Christmas traditions. One of my favorite Maxine sayings is “Apparently ‘deck the halls’ is good but decking the Christmas carolers is bad. Go Figure!”
On a more serious note, I tend to get very reflective during the Christmas holiday. My favorite room in my house is my dining room because that is where I put up my memory tree. I have at least 75 ornaments that have special meaning because most were given to me by my family, friends, and students. Why is it that I can remember who gave me each and every ornament from over 30 years ago and yet I can’t remember anything that happened this past weekend? Go figure! I love Aunty Acid who said “My bed is a magical place where I suddenly remember all of the stuff I was suppose to do”. Then I become upset because I didn’t remember them and I can’t go back to sleep. Anyway, the most precious ornaments on this tree are the ones that remind me of those who passed on before me. A cardinal ornament for dad who used to watch them feed in his back yard, the beautiful ornament I made with my mother while sitting at her kitchen table, the golf shoes and cigar ornaments for my husband who did not have the temperament to golf, and the ornament my son made for me when he was young that has an adorable picture of him in the center. I tend to get very weepy when I hang these ornaments. I find it helps me to remember the reason for the season and because Jesus was born and died for me I have the promise that I will see my loved ones again. Knowing this I can move on and remember that until then life is good.
OK, lets talk about Christmas outfits. There was a time when I was teaching that I would buy cute Christmas tops and sweaters. I wore them for years because they were like new each year after only wearing them once or twice during the holiday season. However, after a while you say to yourself “Why are you spending so much money on Christmas clothing when you can buy yourself something you can wear several times each year?” That is when I started buying red tops and sweaters and using my fun Christmas accessories to make them seem more festive. As I have said in previous blogs I really dislike the drab colors of winter so red is my alternative color. I think everyone looks great in red. I remember a red-headed friend of mine who said she looked terrible in red. I have a hard time believing this. There are over 200 shades of red. There are shades of orange-reds, pink-reds, brown-reds (eg., scarlet, burgundy, maroon ), etc. There is something for everyone! You can wear navy, winter white or black pants with a red top. Red is a bright, warm color that evokes strong emotions. Red is associated with love, warmth, passion, power and comfort. Red is also considered an intense or even angry color that creates feeling of excitement or intensity. Even if you don’t like my outfits you have to admit that they look festive and that is the goal.
Before we look at the outfits I like to always add a little outdoor design that relates to my fashion blog. Below is a picture from the front of my house where I have shown you past seasonal decorations.
I took this picture just before sunset so you could see the bales of hay and the little evergreen tree next to the stag. I live in an area of Lockport called Willow Walk and if you walk around the neighborhood you will see several willow trees. I thought it only appropriate to put up a willow tree decoration that looks beautiful when each branch blows in the wind. The horns of the stag and the willow have warm white lights that pulsate on and off while the penguin, bushes and the body of the stag are made up of cold white lights. Even though the display is really monochromatic the two different whites add some dimension to the scene. The reason I am using this picture to make my point about not spending money for something you can only use for a short period of time is because there is nothing in this picture that says Christmas decorations. It is a beautiful outdoor scene that I can keep up until March unlike the very definite Christmas display I have put up on my front porch that will need to come down by January 6th.
Let’s get started!
Congrats to my sister for making me look thin in this picture! I love this outfit and will wear it often around the holidays. This is a simple red oversized top with black trim, leather looking skinny pants, and leather boots. It is the accessories that make it look like a Christmas outfit. I am standing in the North Pole room next to a sleigh filled with toys for good girls and boys. One thing I know is that Santa is a man because no woman wears the same attire every year.
I bought this tie at a Christmas craft show. If you are a crafty person, it should be easy to make. I love these earrings where the large part of the candy cane is the piece behind the ear. I am not sure if I ever previously described my white stone ring but the setting of the stone flips over and there is a purple stone on the other side.
I am standing in my formal dining room with my memory tree behind me. This is a great hostess outfit. If you are a person who does not want to wear a lot of red, just adding the red pashmina makes the outfit festive. The wide leg pants and the oversized black top are so comfy because they are made from materials that stretch. This is the kind of outfit you want to wear when you might eat too much. The front hem of the top comes to near mid-thigh while the back falls to mid-calf with tuxedo-like tails. When I hostess both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day celebrations, I typically won’t wear shoes so I make sure my toe nails are polished with red nail polish that match my finger nail polish. Below are the accessories that make it feel like a Christmas outfit.
I believe my friend and co-worker Jill made the pin. I worked in a school where some of the staff members made such cute jewelry and I loved going through their selections. During Christmas I might pull out the fine jewelry like this ruby ring that my mother passed down to me because she knew how much I loved it. When I wear it I feel like she is with me.
I am standing next to the tree in my living room. I love to wear three-quarter length sleeves because you can see the Christmas jewelry. I love the ruffle look at the bottom of this top. You cannot see the large red buttons that go down the front but they look wonderful with the round candy-like decorations on the scarf. You can see that I pull up the viewer’s eye by adding the winter white color through my necklace which makes the outfit more cohesive. It is rare that I don’t wear the same color shoes as my pants but here I make the exception because it adds that fun element to the outfit.
I am sure one of my co-workers made this bracelet but I cannot remember who it was. My pearl ring matches the pearls in the necklace and the synthetic jeweled ring matches the synthetic jewels in the bracelet. The round green and red earrings go beautifully with the round candies on the green scarf. This is called pulling together a coordinated outfit. Pictured is my only Christmas watch that has a decorated Christmas tree in the center. I bought it merely because it is Christmasy. There is no way I can read the time on it unless I have on my cheaters which won’t happen because they don’t look good with the outfit.
Well that is it until next year. Another year down and as crabby Maxine says “Stop looking at me when people say ‘Out with the old’!” I will leave you with a quote from Jay Leno that sums up this year “The Supreme Court has ruled that they cannot have a nativity scene in Washington D.C.. This wasn’t for religious reasons. They couldn’t find three wise men and a virgin!”
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all my Gal Pals! Remember, God loves you and so do I.