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Sunday, December 12, 2010

It's December 12...and this is as good as it gets.

I know this is heresy, but I'm not a big holiday decorator. I don't do the pumpkin thing at Halloween or put out a basket of colorful eggs at Easter. I don't even put out a flag on the Fourth of July, although my neighborhood association usually puts one in all our yards.

Christmas isn't any different. As huge a production as it was for my family when I was growing up, putting up a tree simply isn't something I get carried away about. I do the obligatory searching on eBay for aluminum trees and Sputnik ornaments, but I'm never willing to shell out that kind of money for something to enjoy a few days a year.  (I think one part of my aversion to holiday decorating is that I like the way my house looks, and I hate dismantling it...even for those few days. The other part is that I really, really hate the take-down-and-pack-up after the holidays are over.)

This year I found what I consider a suitable alternative to authentic mid-century decorations, although I know what I'm about to say will sound like fingernails on a chalkboard to you purists.  I got a tabletop "aluminum tree" at Target for $19.95, and I'm just happy as a clam with it.  I got out the oddball wooden Santas, threw a few ornaments in a Kromex tidbit server and called it a day. I even put them all in one place so I can just swipe them off the credenza into a big box on December 26. However, so as not to appear as Scroogish as I really am, I said I was putting them there in one big, un-festive lump so my grandson wouldn't be tempted by them.  (I fear Instant Karma's gonna get me for that one.)

Anyway, without further ado, here's  my contribution to the season.  Try to contain yourselves.

And so this is Christmas...

I have to admit that I'm pretty happy with the miniature retro-style ornaments I found.

OK, I know I blew my stellar reputation by admitting that I'm the Cynic of Christmas Present, and the picture of my Target tree undoubtedly compounded your shock and dismay, so I feel I need to do something to atone. I've decided that I might be able to make up for my lack of enthusiasm for holiday decorating by doing a Yuletide countdown on the topic of mid-century Christmas decor.

For the next twelve days, I'll walk you backward through my childhood and share with you my memories of Christmas in the 1950s and 60s.  Enjoy! my pre-Scrooge days, c. 1954
( daughter and SIL are right.
 I DO look oddly maniacal and dorky at the same time.)

Me again...with my mesh Christmas stocking, c. 1951
(Gotta love the footed PJs and uncropped family photos!)


  1. Very cute.
    I like the tree and I'd be REALLY happy with those miniature retro decorations you found.
    I don't decorate much for holidays either but spent a fair bit last year as I was hosting Christmas dinner for friends. Got some very nice vintage baubles from ebay (and vintage topper) but have left it at that this year. I may put up my snowflake stickers on the window but that's as far as I'll go this year.

  2. Dana, I think it's beautiful! It's just enough to display holiday spirit. I'm the same as you about the decorating thing. I love to decorate and look at it but it's the "take it all down and put it away" that keeps me from getting it all out in the first place. I have bin after bin of Christmas decor. I feel guilty every year for not displaying it. What's "krazy"...I keep buying it!

  3. I've been contemplating the Target tinsel tree as well. Yours looks fabulous! I have the same issue with the post Christmas take down. In fact, there's a set of bells on my front door from 5 years ago. I also have two cats who are still very young, I fear any tree would be on the floor in no time!

  4. Aw Dana - you're too sweet, doing the groundwork for me. International shipping can be a bit extortionate but fortunately I'll be in the US in less than two weeks!
    Bit too late for this year but I could stock up for next year. Thanks again :)

  5. Whew, thank goodness...some kindred spirits. That makes me feel better! Now all I have to worry about is payback for using my grandson as an excuse...LOL

    @Moondoggie: I found the mini retro ornaments at Target, and they had them in multi-colored like I got, in just red and green, and a different style in turquoise. Since you're in the UK, I looked to see if they were sold online, but I only saw the turquoise ones.

  6. Sometimes less is more. We left the majority of our decorations in the basement. I'm with you, dislike the take down. I found a white tree at a thrift store and like it just fine. I love your target tree. I had an empty Kromex sitting on my coffee's full of miniature ornaments now. Thanks for the idea!

  7. I actually have toned down my "holiday" decorating as well although Christmas still seems to bring out the best (or worst) of it. Love your mini tree even though it is new! And the pictures are fab!

  8. @Hunting Tigress: Thanks for the compliments and welcome to my blog! I'm feeling better and better about being a Scrooge, because it seems I'm in good company. :)