Behind My Red Door

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Should we or shouldn’t we….

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…decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving that is? It seems there are some pretty varied opinions about that in blog land lately. I say to each his own! If you want to decorate now, go for it – please just make sure to post lots of pics for all of us to enjoy!! And if you like to keep your fall or harvest decor out up Thanksgiving dinner is done, hurray to you as well. I LOVE to decorate for Christmas. As well suited as our home is for fall decor, I think it is equally well suited to Christmas decor with all my neutral walls and red accents everywhere. I just love my Father Christmas collection, my prim tree with prim ornaments, my old fashioned feather trees, my gingers, my angels, the manger, and greens(faux and fresh) and berries. I love it all.  Traditionally I have decorated for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving. I think it has been that way because in my neck of the woods harvest decor is still prevalent through Thanksgiving Day.  Cornucopia’s and sheaves of wheat and pumpkins are everywhere. When I was growing up, stores didn’t stay open 24/7 and the day after Thanksgiving was the day the store owners started to put Christmas out. Our favorite Holiday moves were on anytime after Thanksgiving.  Other than Santa in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, Christmas did not start until the turkey was eaten. It just is how it always was. Typically home owners followed suit. Sometime after Thanksgiving Day, Christmas decor would start to slowly appear in windows, an don porches and in homes. Slowly over the years, that has changed. I am not saying it is good or bad, it just is. My tradion of decorating for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving probably started when I was working. Even though as a mom I only worked part time and I was always home with my kiddo’s, I always took work home and November was a busy month in school. Progress reports, Open Houses and special projects kept me busy. So the long weekend after Thanksgiving gave me the time to put fall away, clean up all the bittersweet messes and get Christmas out. Because I decorate both fall and Christmas in a big way, I always need a lot of time for the switchover and that doesn’t even include the real greens I cut from our yard to tuck in a zillion places. By doing the switchover that weekend I was also ready for the important birthdays we have in December. Our favorite local radio station starts playing Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving so that fits right into my time frame as well. But despite waiting until then, I was always the first of my friends and family to have our home decorated for Christmas.

ginger tree

But last year I decorated for Christmas before Thanksgiving for a few reasons. Twigs from Mercantile Gatherings  wanted pictures of our house with spring decor, so fall  had to come down a little early so I could get those photo’s taken and sent off. And then I needed to decorate for Christmas, take photo’s and get them submitted to A Primitive Place as our home was chosen as their first featured Holiday Home. It seemed a bit strange to me to be eating Thanksgiving dinner with Christmas decor all around. Not because there is anything wrong with that, just because it was not tradition. I like tradition! I remember mentioning it to the family, and none of them seemed the least bit concerned. But I also remember thinking, I won’t decorate for Christmas this early again.

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However, it is a woman’s prerogative to change her mind, right? And new traditions can be made, right? So that said, I am still not sure when I am going to decorate this year. I will admit that most of fall is already packed away. The bittersweet that was looking very sad and rather dusty because I picked it too early, is gone. I have my special Thanksgiving items in the dining room, but the rest of the inside Behind My Red Door is mostly back to non-seasonal. And I am enjoying the clean uncluttered look right now.

But that also means the house is ready for the Christmas decor!! So will I or won’t I?? That remains to be seen right now!! I have to say, seeing some sneak peeks at some other’s Christmas decor sure has me tempted to get mine out. And the Hallmark Channel has been advertising Christmas movies. And I was looking for a recipe in my old Christmas Issues of Early American Life and of course I looked at all the pictures too. And I loved seeing Janae's and Linda Harris’s homes in Country Sampler. Well it’s all so tempting!  Doing Christmas right Behind My Red Door takes time and cleaning up the mountains of leaves outside is where my energy was spent this weekend. And it would be way too early to add the lives greens I use if I start too soon. Oh the dilemma!  So just in case these are surrounded by Christmas the next time I post, here are a few pictures of my limited Thanksgiving Day decor.



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So whether you start now, or wait until the last minute, when your Christmas or other seasonal Holiday decor (for my non Christian friends) is out and you have posted some pics, please  stop by and let me know so I can be sure to take a peek!


Friday late afternoon  as I was pulling into the driveway, I saw the mail carrier had left a bundle by the garage door. When I picked up the box and saw the return address, I couldn’t imagine what was inside but I was excited to find out.  When I opened the box I am sure I squealed with delight. My sweet prim friend Sherrie from SC sent me a huge bunch of tallow berries from her very own  tree from her very own yard! Aren’t they wonderful???!! 007

Sherrie said “They are also referred to as the popcorn plant, because when it opens it so resembles a kernel of popcorn and also when the kernels are popping open  it sounds like popcorn popping.  It is very common in the Low Country around Charleston, S.C.”


She even left some of the colorful leaves on because she knows I love my foliage. Wasn’t that thoughtful? It didn’t take me long to decide where they would go. I wanted to take the yarrow out of this basket and replace it with something else that could stay up for the rest of the year and the tallow berries are simply perfect!!151

And I moved the basket and hung in on my fowl rack in the dining room. I just love it there with the berries.  025

I had to take a picture from this angle too – it’s perfect! 037

And I even had enough tallow berries for this little basket in the living room!!055

Thank you so very much Sherrie. You are so kind and so thoughtful!


I often get question about it so I’ll let you know upfront, I have had this fowl rack for many many years. I got it at a shop called With Heart and Hand, now in Norfolk MA but previously in Franklin, MA. It used to be one of my favorite prim shops but they have changed direction in the last few years. Unfortunately their website is not updated. The intro says they have over 500 bolts of fabric and homespun and that has not been the case for sometime now. When the cost of gas was so high, I made the long drive there just for the fabric (after consulting the website) and was shocked to find the fabric loft no longer existed and there were less than a dozen bolts of fabric. I pointed that out to the owner and she was totally unfazed. And well over a year later she has not changed the inaccuracies on the website. So do be warned if you decide to make the trip, don’t expect rooms of prims and bolts of fabric. She does carry lots of jewelry and scarves and glitz and glam and  they still do carry some prims, but not nearly as much as in the past. I personally no longer find it worth my time but you may feel differently.


Speaking of foliage, Mr. Red Door and I spent many hours outside the last 2 days cleaning up the leaves in our yard. It sure does seem more daunting the older we get. Well at least it does to me – Mr. Red Door being the strong burly man that he is, would never admit that!! My sore muscles and achy joints however protest more each year and I whine a bit more each year as well. When I went outside to start raking, they were literally 3 feet deep against the chicken wire fence our neighbor erects each fall to stop any leaves from any other tree not on his property from finding it way to his property. I was tempted to run and take a flying leap into the deep pile, but I probably would have broken a bone or pulled a muscle, so instead, we got busy tackling that daunting mess. We both dug in and worked together and we got them cleaned up for now. There are plenty more across the street that will blow over here and park themselves in our yard against that silly fence, and our maple still has some stragglers hanging on, so we will be out there cleaning up a few more times. But there’s a bright side to that – when we are done, the outside will be ready for Christmas Decor as well!


If you haven’t already, please do stop over to A Primitive Place and take a peek at my November Musings. I included some fun ideas and recipes for showing thankfulness, and a great cranberry relish recipe as well. Just scroll down the menu on the left to find Primitive Musing. While you are there, check out Char’s latest craft tutorial. Remember, you don’t need to be a member to access the website full of ideas. Only the forum requires you to sign up.


If you want to joint the Gratitude Attitude Challenge, click here to go to Mercy’s blog. We are posting something we are grateful for in every post until December 19th. This is the perfect time of year to stop and take stock of the blessings in our lives.

Despite my whining, I am truly grateful that this 54 year old body can still work hard when I need it too. I enjoy working along side Mr. Red Door when there is a lot of work to do outside or big projects inside. Many times I do the projects on my own. My mom and her mom were both not afraid of hard work, and I have followed in their footsteps. Delicate is not a word that has ever been used to describe me. I was born with big hands and feet as well as broad shoulders and I feel the good Lord gave them to me for a reason so I am proud to use them as long as I can!  And I am also grateful for modern medicine and the arthritis drugs that give my achy joints some measure of relief after all that hard work!


My sweet Lili is on her way over here so her mommy and daddy can attend an adult birthday party at a restaurant. I bought her a new walker this week – not that she will walk anytime soon, but she can sit in and it has a nice tray for her rattles and teethers. She just loved being upright and seeing the world! I’ll get to feed her some cereal and applesauce and we might even take a walk outside before the sun sets. We’ll fit in lots of snuggles too – if Grampy doesn’t try to monopolize her that is!

Here she is with her new sneakers ..

Thank you as always for stopping by and making Behind My Red Door part of your day! I so appreciate each one of my bloggy friends and I love reading your comments!

Until next time – hugs, Grammy Linda