All is calm, all is bright……{sort of}.

Well, kinda-sorta…..all is definitely bright around my home, but not all is not calm…..

How are you handling this season?  I find myself vacillating between
enjoying this month and absolutely loathing it at the same time.
My to-do lists are longer, social opportunities are more plentiful,
kids need more clothes, more treats, more money, Target
sees me more often, so does the wine shop, gift shop
and post office.  And don't even get me started on my
unfortunate 'wine incident' my computer encountered
last week!  The Apple store saw LOTS of me
this week and it wasn't all pretty.

December is a month that I have trouble blogging - being present 
with my family celebrating the birth of Jesus is what should
be important, right?  When I go online I am often left 
feeling like I'm just not cutting it - homes are decorated to 
look as if Better Homes & Gardens is showing up for a photo
shoot any minute, kids are crafting happily, bloggers are baking
teacher gifts wrapped as if they are presenting it to Martha Stewart
herself!  Don't even get me started on the gift guides - aren't we
still in a recession? 

I know all those images are meant to 
inspire, but sometimes, I acknowledge, they can also
leave you feeling inadequate and that is the opposite
of what I want to do here.  Nevermind that I 
am participating in a Holiday House Tour next week -
but don't you worry - when you see the photos you will
know that BH&G isn't visiting the Forever*Cottage.  While I am being
completely honest and forthright, I will admit to you and only you -
{the one pictured above is momma's tree with simple white lights}.

So spill it - how do you feel about all the holiday posts?

A little of both?

* And I do look forward to showing you our holiday home -
simplicity at it's finest.  What's hard to  photograph is
love, comfort, delicious smells and the sound of laughter -
because isn't that what it's all about?
The rest is just 'stuff'.

Thanks for listening - 

23 comments on "All is calm, all is bright……{sort of}."
  1. Right there with you friend. Deciding to my studio at the same time was really silly. I'm so beyond frustrated with the mess and chaos. Ready for it be over. Isn't that awful?!?

    1. No it's not! This is a sort of crazy month - elicits all sorts of emotions and not all good. Why do we expect so much? Breathe in and out friend! You of all people have your priorities in order….embrace that! xo~

  2. We have a tree, but it's sitting undecorated.. can I just leave it like that, no lights, no trimmings? LOL

  3. Thank you for saying all of that. There is so much pressure for the holidays to be perfect. And we look at all the pretty pictures and think that everyone else is making it happen. But they're not. Remember, we're seeing what they want us to see. :) Merry Imperfect Christmas!!! Julie

  4. oh definitely feeling the tension between the two.
    peek season for both my businesses and the time of year my home-body self really wants to be home!
    LOVE your tree!! when i saw those on my trip i flipped!! always wanted one like that. xo

  5. I truly appreciate this post. I was looking at your beautiful home the other day on instagram and thought...why can't mine be that pretty? As I trip over soccer gear, school books and wrapping paper. Thank you for making me feel normal. Merry Christmas!!!

    1. Oh Emily - we have plenty of soccer gear, school books and other junk strewn about over here!

  6. i love your little tree in corner! you have a knack for simplicity at its finest :) we have alot of family strife going on this year so our home is anything but merry..that is what disappoints me more than the lack of decorations.

    1. Shannon, I am sorry to hear that - it's exactly what I was trying to say - this time of year can also be quite difficult for so many - it sort of shines a bright light on what we may be struggling with or our losses as the expectations for perfection and job loom large!

      Be well~

  7. My house is a 91 yr old little country house in rural Minnesota with drafty windows, creaky floors and crooked walls. Yet I love it and I'm very pleased with the decor. I look at those pictures (and every blog I read has beautiful photos of their gorgeous homes - you included!) and really admire them. I'm 65 and a widow so I don't do a lot of decorating. But still, I look around this house and I love it. Would I like something like I see on my blogs - sure. Don't we always want what we don't have. But I'm very happy with what I have, and the way I see it, the bigger the house and the more beautiful stuff sitting around - the more to clean, and at 65 I have way more important things to do than clean!!! Merry Christmas, Jill, to you and your family.

    1. Jo,
      Your home sounds lovely! BOO on cleaning! So many more important and fun things to do!

  8. Thank you and Amen! Pinterest and blogs are usually my best girlfriends in the evenings after I put my babes to bed, but this month, I am SO over the christmas home tours, wish lists, and wednesday wants. It's not realistic, it's not life, it makes me feel badly about my new home that needs so much work and so many projects waiting. But people only show you what they want you to see :-) Your home and blog are so realistic, thank you for that, it's a treat every evening :-)

    1. awww, Dina, thank you.
      Merry Christmas to you!

  9. I always appreciate the mess behind the perfectly staged kitchen island. You know - all the things they had to removed from it to get that magazine worthy photo; crayons, paper, cereal boxes, homework, groceries still in bags, etc. We all have those moments of not measuring up when we see the photos on Pinterest and in magazines. But, no home is perfect and we just need to keep reminding ourselves of that.

  10. I have really slowed down on my approach to Christmas decorating. I decided a few years back that it was really about traditions, "our" traditions and not something instructed to me through Pinterest or even other blogs. I have never much liked the "model" homes or the magazine quality rooms that I am starting to see reproduced on a large number of blogs these days. I am more drawn to rooms that sing out the character and personalities of the people that live there.

    This year, what has really gotten to me are the number of "house tours". Every time I click to a favourite blog it seems I am faced with 5 days 40 bloggers or 5 days 20 trees etc...... I will admit that I have avoided most of those tours this year. There is a feeling of "sameness" washing over me in many of these homes. The amount of "stuff" being purchased scares me and yet a lot of it doesn't seem to reflect joyous moments from past years or celebrations but rather recent purchases at a local home decorating or box store.
    Please don't take that as a criticism of you joining in to one of these tours. I have always admired your home and I am sure it will be beautiful. I will peek in to see what you have done. I am not sure what that says about me other than my feeling that I have become very selective.

    I also hope this does not sound like a rant. I love this time of year. But I have to remind myself as to what it means to me and my family and hold on to that.

  11. I hear ya! So feel your pain. I was just chatting with a friend about the shelf elf and how we feel like such failure's compared to everyone else on social media! It's hard to keep up.

    Thanks for being honest. Have a GREAT weekend! Can't wait to see the rest of your house all decorated!

  12. Perfectly said Anagloinquebec! I couldn't agree with you more! I am planning on taking a step back from the blogs over the next few weeks and focusing on what is important to my husband and I and our four kids. Happy Holidays! Meg

  13. So true! LOVED the last paragraph in this post!


  14. I stumbled onto your blog through bloglovin' and I'm glad I did. I totally agree with your perspective here. Blogging can be a stress reliever and...it can be stressful. Very easy to get caught up in the comparison game, etc. I appreciate your candor!


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