What to Keep and What to Pitch

The older I get, the harder it is to make even the simplest choices. My Christmas decoration closet runneth over, and that’s a problem because it is also the safest place to go when a tornado comes through. Looking at it, you would think one already did. Every year, I drag out plastic storage tub after tub, decide what I want to use, and organize carefully place cram the rest back in the closet. Since I have started the flea market booth, it is easier to downsize because I have a place to go and a purpose.

Of course, I would have kept all the kid’s first ornaments, precious handmade ornaments from them and students I had in the past, heirloom decorations, but we lost those one rainy year when our basement flooded. All the ornaments in the storage room were in cardboard boxes at the time; we had never experienced flooding before. Sad, but we move on. Thank goodness our pictures were stored in the attic! Since then, I have managed to hoard collect a lot of other stuff. So, these are some of the things I kept and used in decorating for Christmas this year.

Our basement is a bit more rustic than our traditional rooms upstairs, so this rusty candle jar, purchased from a little shop in West Virginia, fits in perfectly. It came from our daughter, and reminds me of the tears and joy when she landed her first job as a TV reporter at WBOY. It is surrounded by some collectible Boyd’s bear figures I acquired from teacher friends and some old baskets and wooden cheese boxes.
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This antique table belonged to my parents, the scarf was crocheted by a family member, and the very old basket containing pinecones was given to me by my dad…it belonged to a great aunt.
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This creche wreath was given to us by my SIL. Her mother made one for each of the sibblings, and I have treasured it and display it every year since. It is sitting on the ledge of the stairwell along with two kings that our son had special-made at a local shop. Keepers.
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This vintage Santa has been around for many years and is very versatile. He sometimes sits on the porch to welcome guests. At other times he appears in various rooms of our house.
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My mother and I made this arrangement when we moved into our new home some 18 years ago. I change out the ribbon, candle, and globe occasionally, but the basket and greenery remain.
DSC00041 I have it on the dining table this year, and the antique secretary that belonged to Saint’s great grandmother holds a newer mirrored nativity scene I picked out for my birthday on a visit to Uncle Franklin and Aunt Jane’s. I like the juxtaposition of the metal trees I picked up just this year from a flea market in Dexter during our girl’s weekend.
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I’m keeping this Pinterest project that I did last year. I made the garland from twine and old book pages, the balls from rag strips, and the bow from burlap, of course.
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I used to decorate every room in the house. I still couldn’t resist adding this handmade snowman box from a vacation with friends in Wisconsin to the guest bathroom.
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This is the mantel, this year. It contains two angels, a gift my BFF gave me a few years ago, and, if you look carefully, you will see the antique oval frame I upcycled in the fall. I love it so much, I incorporated into the Christmas. It’s a keeper, I think.
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The glass collection of snowmen and trees get a place on the coffee table this year. I love the little ones inside the cloche.
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And finally, I have very few sentimental ornaments left, so…I like gaudy trees and I cannot lie!
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I know. You’re wondering what I possibly could have pitched<del sold, but trust me, I have receipts to prove it. Sales have been pretty good at the flea market this month!

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For the Birds

While this post has little nothing to do with birds, it does connect indirectly in that chickens are birds, and I had my first real experience with chicken wire, today. I have seen it used in tons of projects and just thought I needed to have some around. Every time Saint  goes out for something, he always asks, “Is there anything you need?” Of course, he expects me to say no, but for the last few weeks I have been saying, “Chicken wire.”

Lo and behold, one day he came home with chicken wire. I thought it might come in sheets or panels, but no. It came in this giant roll.

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It’s a little bit flat out intimidating. So, I did not use it for quite some time, but the hot, hot weather here has driven me right past fall and into dreaming of a white Christmas. My searches at garage sales and thrift stores have yielded an entire closet full of Christmas junk treasures. I faced a dilemma; make something or throw some of it away.

For two dollars, I had purchased a square thingy with gold leaves all around it. At another yard sale, I bought a little ring of glass beads. I’m working on some much larger pieces that require paint and stain, and I thought I might use these as accents, but the tones didn’t match. I decided to put the two together to make a wreath or door hanging, and it would require putting the chicken wire on back. (You thought I had forgotten about that, didn’t you?) That’s how I came to the title of this post. That chicken wire is for the birds! First, you can’t cut it with scissors. Well, you can, but then you have to buy new scissors. This required a trip to Saint’s old Craftsman tool box for the wire cutters.

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Several band aids later, I have this little piece of wire and no fingernails. The good thing is, those spiky things make it really easy to attach to other things.

Now I had a square of gold leaves with a circle of gold beads, and nothing in the middle. Until…I remembered a project from last Christmas. Paper flowers are all over Pinterest, now, but these made out of brown bags are my favorites, and it was perfect for the center of my wreath.

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Looks pretty nifty for a thrifty three bucks, wouldn’t you say? Here it is hanging on my door.

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Maybe with a little greenery? Or maybe it’s the 102 degree temperature. Actually, I think it is just not right with my door color, but I’ll bet it will look absolutely amazing with the other Christmas things I’m working on for the flea market booth. I’m planning an awesome Christmas display, and I can’t wait to show it to you in November.