Tree-Trimming Day

comments: 77

Treetrimming2_1 I recommend starting with hot chocolate. Always start with hot chocolate.

Treetrimming1Ours comes from little kits we made as Christmas presents two years ago. I can tell you that the stuff holds up well. This tasted as good as could be. Not too sweet. Of course, you must add your own whip and sprinkles, yeah?

Treetrimming4A fire is nice, while you put the tree together. Or, rather, while you wait for someone else to put the tree together. Last year it started to fall over, fully loaded. Yeeeikes. But this year it's been repaired. Phew.

Treetrimming10Then the other stuff comes up from the basement. Wreathes. Made these, years ago now.

Treetrimming11And ornaments. Made the little felty frocks and skirts a few years ago too. Gosh, time flies. Someone from one of the old Ella Posie holiday bazaars made the little glittered dresses and mitts , but I can't remember her name. Cute though. And thank you to everyone who has been so kind, trying to help me find the Lucias I was wanting — I don't think I was able to get back to everyone individually yet. Unfortunately, they were almost $100 when I calculated the exchange from krona to dollars! Wow. So, I'm going to try and make my own version out of stuff from the regular store. But I really appreciate the info — thank you so much.

Treetrimming6Here's the snowman my mom made in 1970. I thought I had some others but I think they got divvied up between us girls. I showed my mom the magazine the other day and she couldn't believe it. She said these were a lot of work. Super-cute though. I love him. Enamel paint is so cool.

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Here are some of my other favorite ornaments. I have a lot vintage balls on my tree. I just like all different colors and I really like round shapes. We do a sort of candy-colored Christmas. Lots of red and pink, and of course silver.

Treetrimming19I also love having a fake tree. We got it about five years ago, and though it was kind of expensive, it is, in the long run, a lot cheaper than buying real ones every year. We also got it because we felt so sad seeing the dried up brown little tree out on the curb after Christmas. This one just gets back in its box until next year. I think she's pretty happy with us. She really likes getting dressed up. I do miss that live-pine smell, though. Must get a little clutch of branches somewhere.

I keep most of my decorating for Christmas to one room. Otherwise I get too overwhelmed and I don't like that. I use white fairy lights in several rooms as actual light sources year-round, anyway, so they're always a little bit festive. We also put most of our Christmas lights on remote-control thingies. You can get them at Kmart, or probably Target or something. It's really great — no bending over and fumbling with the plugs with tree branches poking you in the cheek. You actually stand across the room and point the thing, and click. Other lights we have on floor-pedal plug-ins that sit on the floor, so you just step on them. It's great.

Treetrimming18Another wreathe. From the party last year. That was a really fun night. I keep thinking I should have the girls over to the house to make some this year. When should we do that, girls? I still have a bunch of the styrofoam forms. It's a totally fun thing to do.

Treetrimming12Anyway, on to the mantle. The Sweatery Stockings get hung. Might have to make us some stripey ones. Those were my favorites.

Treetrimming7And the village goes up. It's my favorite, favorite thing. I absolutely love seeing them around the blogs — I know Blair's is up, and Claire's working on one, and Danny's is made of cards, anybody else? Here was mine last year. I have to put those snowflakes up still. Forgot about those. They all fell out of the ceiling last year, so I need to think about how to get them up. I think I had some batting snow drifts, too. To make all the hills and dales I stacked up a bunch of white foam blocks I had around, and then laid a bunch of lights underneath a double-layer of white linen (also had that around — wouldn't buy linen for something like this, but it has a nice texture).

Treetrimming8Most of these houses are vintage, including the church, found at an antique expo. But I think I might make another village this year myself. I love those little graham cracker houses in the new Martha. Man, those are adorable. I don't know what I'm going to do for my special project this year. Maybe that patchwork wool quilt I was talking about a few months ago. I don't know. Something.

Treetrimming9_1Ahhhh. What a great weekend. We always do our decorations right after Thanksgiving. I love love love love love love love it when Andy is home for four days in a row. It is so very difficult for him to get the actual holiday-days off; I am incredibly grateful that we got to spend this whole special weekend together. His presence makes everything bright to me, just . . . everything. This is Audrey waiting for him to come back into the room. That's just how I feel. He's at work today. Come back. Come home. It's nice here now.


Looks beautiful...We always decorate the tree at christmas eve. It`s fun to see how people have different traditions in different places.

What a beautiful, inspiring post. I love your ideas--so fun and reminds me of a fairyland! :) The shot of the hot chocolate had to be my favorite in the post though... it looks so yummy! :)

I love all the pink in your tree!! Suuhhhhweet!!

I always dream about a candy colored Christmas but we do a much more red and green and gold one around here.

Your house looks positively dusted with sugar!!!

Oh Alicia! What a sweet cozy world you inhabit. I'm loving the colours and sparkly branches. Be still my heart :)

Everything looks so soothing and cozy and magical. Thanks for sharing!

your post last year about your grandmother's tree and village and flustery hands, and pocket book held close in her lap, was one of my verrrrrry first blog posts i'd ever, ever read. it was magical, and opened up a whole new world to me, as you can well imagine. my goodness, how much has passed since then - and how pleased i am to see that you've referred to that post again this holiday season. it is a classic bit of memory you very generously shared with the rest of this world. when i get my little paper village(s)up, perhaps i'll share them as well, along with bits and pieces of memories that come along with them. xo

This post made me so happy I'm sitting here smiling at my computer like an idiot! Hehe - oh this makes me warm and happy - your home looks beautiful!

Absolutely breath taking. Wow! I'm in love with your village.
And I have a fake tree but went to a little store and found a candle that smells like a real tree. I had people actually double take our tree and ask "It's fake right? It smells like a real tree."
They are not cheap, but I swear, they really really smell like a christmas tree(the English pine scent)

I love your decorations! the village is so magical, kind of mary blair-ish. incredible. thank you for sharing!

your house looks beautiful! I don't know if this helps but down the street from my house in chicago is a swedish american museum. I haven't had a chance to see if they have your dolls but we have a st. lucia night here next weekend and I wouldn't be surprised if they had some! this is a link to their online store and phone number..good luck!

Very lovely.

Oh, this all makes me so happy! So pretty.

So, do you have to spray something on the gumdrop wreath to get it to last? I imagine those things have enough preservatives on their own though! I may try that this year.

Goodness, this is a visual feast. So festive.

And your dog looks a lot like mine. Is it a BC??

All the pics feel so warm and cozy. It makes me happy too. Thanks for sharing.

You just gave me a Christmas rash, Alicia!! Agghh...I was perfectly fine sitting her, now my head is buzzing and my hands itching with all the Christmas decorating that I want to do....and gum drop wreath...I HAVE to make one!!


i love your christmas decorations, so inspiring. i also loved your post about the steel cut oatmeal, we had to make a last minute stop to the grocery on thanksgiving and they had those exact oats in the tin, I couldn't resist! we tried your recipe and have been eating it for breakfast each morning since! i took some photos for flickr :)

lovely. Makes me miss Christmas. It's strange not to have Thanksgiving to mark the beginning of Christmastime...I just realised it's coming. I hope I can get a tree this year. It would be so sweet in my little French apartment. Yours is sweet, too. xo.

looks perfect. we are hooked on those same cocoa kits - perfect gifts for the girls' teachers. and our village. out of the box. on the piano. but still deliberating about snow and lighting... hmmmmm. thanks for the inspiration!

we have a fake tree too! it's just a little white one which suits me pretty well i think (and it's about all we can fit in our tiny brooklyn home) and i usually hang little felt circles and white lights on it.
Oh, and i love those glittery vintage houses. they are just so pretty!!! someday when we have more than one closet, i would love to actually have xmas stuff!
a girl can dream!

Thanks for including all the links in that post... i am going to visit them and create beyond my wildest dreams! I actually have been looking for some ideas to make my own stockings, so thank you so very much!

and i'm checking out the hot chocolate kits too :)

Everything is gorgeous, and I'm crazy about the ornament ball wreath. Always so much wonderful eye candy over here! :)

Thank you for letting me in your home with this post. It's absolutely gorgeous. I'm dying to decorate around here but haven't had the chance just yet.

I love your decorations. Makes me want to dig my own stuff out and start putting it up. Those gumdrop wreathes are adorable and would be a perfect activity to do with my children. Thanks for the great idea!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.