1. jodie filogomo

    Putting up the tree really does it for me for some reason. We usually put it up the day after Thanksgiving, but since we ordered a new one this year we had to wait another week until it was delivered!!
    But now, it feels like Christmas. And with the cold weather outside…it won’t be long until it’s white!!

  2. Christie – I’ve been experiencing your lack of enthusiasm for the holidays the last few years (since distancing myself from the religion that consumed the first 55 years of my life). Advent was always my favorite time of year — and I struggle to tap into the meaning behind it apart from the religion. I’m trying to focus on hope, gratitude, kindness, peace – which ideally I do 365 days a year. 🙂 The one thing that I’ve felt drawn to this year (which I haven’t really done in many years because of work obligations) is baking. So I’m doing a bit more of that. I hope that you find your Christmas spirit – perhaps through gentle silent nights if not by decking the halls…Peace.

    • Thank you for sharing your personal experience, Janet. I agree that all of the things you listed are the ideal meaning of Christmas, which we should do all year long with or without an organized religion. When the children were little, their excitement made the season especially happy. Now my children are grown, and even the grandchildren are into their teen years. It’s a different feeling–another transition for me to work through. Thank you for planting the seed that peaceful silent nights can be the Christmas spirit too. Happy baking!

  3. Cindy

    I put up my Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving and often take it down the day after Christmas, but always by New Year’s Day. I love the “holiday season” and start anticipating it as soon as Halloween is over. I enjoy winter from December 1 until December 31. Unfortunately it lasts long past that. Happy holidays!

  4. Living in a hot climate..Australia it can sometimes be hard to get all Christmasy. Once many years ago our family did a cold lunch…we all vowed never to do that again. Roast turkey, ham etc…who cares if its 100 deg in the kitchen…

    • I can’t imagine a warm Christmas, Bree, since I’ve always lived in a place where December is cold and usually snowy. And I agree with you, tradition trumps temperature. Roast turkey and ham it is! Happy holidays!

  5. Hi Christine – I love the festive atmosphere in my city in December. All the stores put up their best displays, even the local parks have light displays. I also look forward to enjoying my family party and meet-ups with my friends. I hope you find your holiday spirit. #MLSTL

    • I do love the festive atmosphere of December. Just driving somewhere in the evening and seeing all the Christmas displays in people’s yards is an adventure. Just hearing Christmas music in the grocery store makes me smile. The holiday get-togethers are starting. I’m getting there. Thanks for joining the conversation, Natalie. Enjoy your holidays!

  6. Living in South East Queensland, Christmas for us is listening to Walking in a Winter Wonderland at the supermarket when it’s 35C outside lol. The first Sunday in December is for our family the official Christmas kick-off. The tree is up, the baking has commenced and the carols have started. I do love this time of the year! (Visiting from #MSTL)

    • I love that image, Joanne, of singing along to Winter Wonderland in your shorts and flip-flops. The Christmas spirit does not depend on the weather. I hope you are enjoying the start to your Christmas. Enjoy!

  7. Hi Christie I’m a little envious of the snow that is falling in your area. Christmas for us in Australia is usually, hot weather and beach. Of course we have the snow covered Xmas cards which does seem a bit strange. I’m trying to stay away from m the commercialism of Christmas and focus on family and the spirit of Christmas.Sounds like we have a similar attitude #MLSTL Shared on SM

    • I love hearing from my friends in Australia, Jennifer. The snow-covered cards and winter-themed carols in contrast to the sunny beach make me smile. And yes, we are similar in our focus on the spirit of Christmas this holiday season. Have you seen the Charlie Brown Christmas? It’s one of my favorite–“and on earth peace goodwill towards men.” That and It’s a Wonderful Life.

  8. Going out and picking our fresh cut tree does it for me. We always go to get the tree Friday or Sat. after Thanksgiving. Husband was too sick this year but our youngest son and our son in law went with me.

    • We always had a fresh-cut tree when I was a child, Victoria. And choosing the tree was an adventure. I carried on that tradition with my own children, but once they were grown, I got lazy and reverted to a pre-lit artificial tree. In some ways, I miss the real tree. I’m glad your son and SIL were able to go with you this year in your husband’s place. I wish you all the best and much peace and joy this holiday season.

  9. It sounds very Christmassy to me Christie, with snow and cold weather. We have warm sunshine days and summer is well and truly on the way here. I love hearing about your ways of getting into the mood. Shared for #mlstl

    • It is Christmassy here for sure. I do love the fresh snow. It covers up the bare trees and dead lawns and makes everything look magical. If only winter was just in December and then we had warm sunshine days! That’s not asking too much is it? 🙂 That’s one thing I’m looking forward to in retirement–December holidays with the family and then off to warmer places for the remainder of the winter! Enjoy your summer Christmas!

  10. I can see it would be difficult going from sunshine to snow and also being out of your normal holiday routine, Christie. I’ve had a mixed year and to overcome my ‘ho hum’ I’ve been working on a project My 25 Day Countdown to a Happy Christmas. Each day I will be taking a prompt from my Advent Calendar which will be designed to bring more happiness and less stress into each day leading up to Christmas. I’m sure the holiday music is also somewhere in my prompts as music can really lift our mood. Thank you for sharing with us at #MLSTL and have a fabulous week. xx

    • Thanks for your understanding, Sue. I feel a little guilty that I don’t feel more happy–if that makes sense. I am grateful for the opportunity to travel and take a little break. I am also grateful for my family and my home. Emotions aren’t always logical, are they? I am feeling gradually more in the Christmas spirit. I’m just getting back up to speed with my blogging, and I know I’ve missed the first few prompts in your Countdown to Christmas, but I plan to jump in and catch the rest. It sounds like just the thing I need. Wishing you and yours the happiest of holidays, Sue!

  11. I like the idea that you’re working at creating the Christmas spirit on lots of different levels Christie. I’d normally have my tree up by now, but we’re on holidays (Rottnest Island – sun, sea and quokkas) and I can’t even feel a twinge of Christmas atm. I’m sure I’ll be doing a few of the things you’re cranking up (minus the snow!) to get myself into the mood too.
    MLSTL – I’ve shared this on my SM 🙂

    • I hope you are enjoying your holiday at the moment. I’m sure you are. Christmas will be waiting for you when you get back. I think I just wasn’t prepared for the effect the break in my routine would have on my enthusiasm for the season. I thought I would just come home and jump in where I left off. That didn’t happen, but I am getting in the spirit now. I hope you will too.

  12. I do love Christmas and all that goes with it, and that includes putting up a beautiful tree, Christmas music, movies and the whole bit. And now there’s naughty elves to add to the build up! We don’t have to worry about the winter here as we’re often sweltering in Christmas heat.

    • I’ve enjoyed hearing about summertime Christmas from my friends across the globe, Christine. I forget Christmas doesn’t automatically mean snow and cold. I hope you are enjoying all that comes with the season!

  13. I decided to go very minimalist this Christmas. I’ve put a few decorations up in only two rooms and I like it. Over the last few years I’ve been getting rid of decorations that just aren’t that meaningful to me. For some reason, this year I haven’t had the thrill I usually get about the holidays. But it’s still early!

    • Well, it’s comforting to know I’m not the only one slow to get into the Christmas spirit, Jean. I’m with you on downsizing the Christmas decorations permanently. I enjoy the subtle decoration and stress less about getting it up and then taking it down.

  14. I’m starting to feel the holiday spirit, grandbabies are beginning to put things on their wish list so that definitely helps! Tree goes up right after Thanksgiving and stays up until after the new year. Fav Christmas song, oh that’s hard, there are so many. And I hate winter! Thank you Christie for linking up and co-hosting with me at the #BloggingGrandmothers End of the Year Link Party 2018!

    • The grandbabies are what makes Christmas the most special. We’re on a similar schedule as far as the tree. I don’t mind winter for a short time, but after Christmas, I’m over it! Bring on the warmth! It’s a pleasure cohosting #BloggingGrandmothers End of the Year Link Party.

  15. Christie, I too am having a challenge this year. We are traveling Dec 10-17 and then leaving again Dec 27. I decided to not do a tree (we still get real) because of the limited time and unpacking/packing days. I’m debating even getting out any decorations! But I like the idea of Christmas music… need to do that! And last night we did do one of our traditional Christmas events. So a bit of Christmas spirit at least. Thinking peppermint schnapps in hot chocolate might be in order. Visiting from #MLSTL.

  16. I have a wreath on my door, but that’s as far as I’ve gotten. Hoping for the tree this weekend. I think the spirit of Christmas will really hit me once my kids are back from college and the nest is full.

    • Family is the key for me as well. My husband did get the tree and the stockings out, and I already feel the Christmas spirit stirring. Tomorrow a couple of the grandchildren are going to help set up the train around the tree. I think that will do the trick. 🙂 Happy holidays to you Leah!

  17. Hi, Christie – I love the ways that you chose to get into the Christmas Spirit. Each of the items that you mentioned work well for me too. We always put up our tree and decorations in December. This year, we choose December 1st. We have a large picture window in our front living room. Last year we began the tradition of putting up our real Christmas Tree on our porch outside of the window and decorating and keeping it there. We can see it well from both inside and out…and it gives us much more room inside for company. Merry Christmas to you and your family!

    • I love the idea of a tree outside the window, Donna. It leaves the extra space, as you mentioned, and the tree probably holds up better outside in the cold, rather than the drier, heated air indoors. We got out our tree and the Christmas stockings yesterday, so that went a long way towards getting me in the spirit of the season. Merry Christmas to you and your family as well!

  18. I love a tree but this year we are in the middle of moving which is making it hard. It’s in the corner right now…waiting for decorations that haven’t been packed.

  19. Christmas carols, music and snow capture the Christmas spirit for me. But now we live in Australia I find it lacking – although I do love Christmas. But for us it’s more likely to be a sausage sizzle on the beach first thing Christmas morning and then salads and cold meats for lunch on Christmas day. #MLSTL and shared on SM

    • That’s a great idea, Bethany. I find if something is on the calendar, I’m more likely to get it done. I have baking cookies on my calendar now. What kind of ornaments do you make?

  20. Hi Christie
    It’s December 17th so I assume you have gotten into the spirit.
    We just put our tree up this weekend so we are a bit behind the times. I’ve been cleaning house and playing my Christmas music while doing so. This really puts me in the spirit. Anticipating guests and family coming and going over the next few weeks. I love it. Tomorrow my son comes home for several days. This really get the season going. Christmas shopping has mostly been on line but I took my 2 year old grandson to see Santa one afternoon. Very memorable. I do enjoy the season from Halloween to New Years.
    Merry Christmas

    • Hello Laura! I am feeling more in the spirit of things. I did most of my shopping online as well, and now the gifts have all arrived and I spent the weekend wrapping them while I listened to Christmas music. Last night we went to a Christmas play with one of our daughters and her family. And, of course, the homemade treats from neighbors and coworkers have started to arrive. All in all, it’s been a lovely week. I enjoyed reading about your preparations and am happy that your son is going to be there with you. Was your grandson afraid at all of Santa? Merry Christmas to you and yours!

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