Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Ghost's Of Christmas Past!

So, Thanksgiving is over and it's time to hit the ground running! I've had a lot of time to sit around and think these past few days as one of my children has been sick and I'm just plain tired from the past few weeks! I've so enjoyed being home and being still….
Well, relatively speaking that is! I'm really never still…my mind is always thinking of the next project or the next idea or the next meal or the next something at the shop! It just keeps on running! And I'm really glad for that! This year we've gone ahead and started Christmas decorating! We have NEVER done this ever, ever, ever before but we will be out of town next weekend for my grandfather's 90th birthday party so we thought, "Why not?" All of the "exterior illumination" is my husband likes to refer to it! ( You, know…from Christmas Vacation!) and the small trees are done as well. I even did some baking and froze some treats for gifts…then, I started reminiscing about the way I had hired people to decorate for me for the past three years…it's really been longer but I don't have those pictures on my laptop! I always have a Christmas party for our closest friends and I've always hired out the decorating and I've done the cooking. This year, I'm attempting to do both so I wanted to look back at the beautiful way my home was decorated by three different, very talented individuals! I'm hoping to at least make it look somewhat professional once I'm done so I will refer back to these pictures often, I'm sure!
Take a look and see what you like….

Please overlook my lack of photography skills and focus on the flowers and the greenery!

There really is nothing like a beautiful boxwood garland and gorgeous, fresh flowers!
This was the Christmas after my daughter's wedding and I missed my sweet friend Kathy that had done the flowers for Holly's wedding so much so that I hired her to do my house for Christmas! I really hired her to have some really good laughs! We had such fun! And she is unbelievably talented!

This was stunning…and these cake stands have come in so handy over the years!

We are always crowded for the Christmas party but everyone seems to like all being in one room! So we try to make it work!

Here you can see those great cake stands again when my sweet friend Lindsay did my Christmas decorating! She has also done a good bit of floral arranging for me at my shop for Open Houses, etc…

Maybe I can at least duplicate the ornaments hanging from the chandelier! I still have them along with the ribbon!

I really loved how she incorporated flowers with our beautiful lit crosses that we sold at the shop that year! I already have them out for this year…they are still beautiful!

Please take note that my walls are really a very pretty shade of green…this lighting does not do them justice!

I really loved how she pulled out the color from my drapes with her ribbon and flower choices!

Here's where it will get tricky for me! How do I do this over the door thing? If you have any suggestions I would LOVE to know them!

I truly loved everything Lindsay did!

Last year I was all over the pheasant thing thanks to a great picture I had seen on Pinterest! I'm pretty certain it was on the blog, Providence, Ltd. which is a fabulous blog belonging to none other than Mona Thompson and her precious sister!

So, sweet Alison helped me with the decorations last year and she did a great job!

Pinterest was new to me then and it spawned a lot of new ideas! All for the better!

We were also able to "re-purpose" the ribbon and the ornaments from the year before so Jim was happy about that!

I always love the cozy feel of our den at Christmas! It is my favorite sight right before we go to bed! It truly makes my heart glad!

And, last year was the year of my sunroom tree! Just a sweet little tree for me to enjoy while blogging, pretty much! It's already up again this year as of today!

And, there we are...set for yet another party! Wonder what I will do this year? Seated? Stand around? Who knows! It's always a dilemma!

Here is the other idea from Pinterest last year! It was another inspiration from Mona! I still love that picture!

Isn't it great? I'm still on the search for these darling figures! I have everything else…but they truly make it!

Wonder if Mona has them and would want to sell them?

Alison did a great job and I sure did love that magnolia garland! Wish they didn't have to die! Alison also does many things for the shop when it comes to flowers! She also truly "works" at the shop whenever the opportunity arrises.

So, what's in store for this year's Christmas? The jury is still out! One thing is for certain…I will be taking a peek at all of these pictures as the decorating begins! So thankful for all of my talented friends and looking forward to a wonderful Christmas season! I may even be looking back at a VERY old picture or two that was printed in Southern Living Magazine as well as their cookbook that year! Not sure who the decorator was though! Sorry! But I still like it! 

Thanks for taking a look back at my Christmases Past! They sure do bring back a lot of joyful memories! I can't wait to make some more special memories this Christmas season!
Take care!


  1. Carolyn-
    I love every single picture!! The greenery is amazing. I have always loved your nativities!
    Thank you for sharing this inspiration. Maybe I can get moving.

  2. Just beautiful, Carolyn. I am going to use the cake stands for inspiration. I have also been very eager to get started on the Christmas decorating, I am not sure why, and we, too, did our 'exterior illumination' today - I will be sharing that quote with Rick. Can't wait to see more of what you do this year!

  3. Love all of your wonderful inspiration...and fun to find that I have inspired you too...sorry about the figurines they are a vintage pair that I found several years ago and would have a hard time parting with...Let the decorating begin!!!!!

  4. Carolyn everything looked so beautiful! I really like the natural crosses you found. I wish I could do more with flowers and greenery in our home but it's to dry and everything wilts before the holidays. I've managed to pull things together with natural items taken from our yard that doesn't wilt so I'm happy. Really beautiful decorating lucky girl!


  5. Your home is so beautiful, how fun to be in such a decorated home for the holidays. Love everything. Also admire your Mackenzie Childs collection in your hutch, just started collecting myself. Happy holidays.

  6. So so pretty....everything looks fresh and beautiful. I'm getting inspired to decorate this year for Christmas, thanks to you and Mona......

  7. OMG Carolyn..its all sooo gorgeous! Every one of these pictures could be on a magazine cover. Love how you do things over there. Its so much fun to experiment and play around with the holiday decor this time of year...a lot of work but its so satisfying when you see it all come together.
    We got back and it was so nice to be away by the beach but must admit I really missed blogland! Its nice to be back, and now that I am rested, its time to get busy. Real busy! You are so talented, and this post was a real treat to come home to! Hope Thanksgiving was fabulous for you.

  8. GORGEOUS!!! I agree with Tina. I was thinking, "Wow, I wonder if the editors of Traditional Home are seeing this?" Breathtaking. Sorry Miller was sick. Jordan is sick too. Driving him back to college this morning, he's feeling a bit better. If you are always on the go, then blogging is probably good for you. It forces you to sit, savor and relax a bit. xo

  9. Wow Carolyn! This is gorgeous and you have been so generous to share all this. The little carolers on the mantle are darling and the boxwood garland is just perfect. I agree that it's so important to have everyone together .. so YES! Bring everyone in! People love that :)

    On being at home.. my (college age) daughter has caught a virus and I think we now both have it. Chicken noodle soup is on the stove. I DO enjoy the down time though.. it feels good to close the house up and curl and just allow the body to recover. We were eating crackers, oatmeal, 7 up and chips.. strange combination but it was settling :)

    Have a nice start to a new week!

  10. Amazing! I had so much fun looking at it all! Very high class and sparkly and beautiful. Love your wall color! Everything just looks so pretty!

  11. Carolyn,
    These are all Ah-mazing!!!! I don't have a favorite b/c they are all so special. I think it's fun that you've had slightly different looks/colors over the years. It's fun to reuse our main things, but I don't think I've done it "exactly" the same b/c that is the creative fun.

    I do especially love the buffet with the crosses. I've never seen anything like that and I think it keeps the reason for the season in the fore front.

    I know it's such a busy time for you....enjoy every day.'re familiar with Mary Carol Garrity of Nell Hill's in Kansas right? I love her Christmas decor books and she's a shop owner like you!

    xoxo Elizabeth

  12. Wow, Carolyn, it all looks fabulous!! As a Southerner, I am such a fan of boxwood garlands, and beautiful berries, but I have to confess, I LOVED seeing the portraits. These images really got me excited for decorating this weekend!!

  13. Truly beautiful! So many great images!!!

  14. My sister was married here and their staff handled the affair with professionalism and grace. They definitely helped to make this a memorable experience.