Saturday, December 1, 2012

A Simple Christmas

This week I watched a morning news program, and my heart sank.
The visiting crafter-artist gave the audience lots of ideas for Christmas decorating.
I didn't approve of any of them.
And then I had to confess my pride.
There is a real possibility that her ideas were lovely,
and my idea of beautiful is off-key.

Here is the problem with Christmas decorating.
It can be fussy and exhausting.
And it can fail to lead my heart in the right direction.

So this year I resolve to not buy one new thing.
The only new ornament is this one of Malachi.
To his left is his Grandma Murphy as a little girl, with her mother.

My mom's childhood portrait.
I added these photograph ornaments last year.
They are copies of old family pictures, glued onto cardstock.

Our little tree, mostly decorated with vintage ornaments and birds.

I can't help it.
I love old ornaments.
The next few Christmases,
with a toddler charging about,
they won't even come out of their boxes.

A piano panel.  Peruvian pots. A sketch of Jesus with a little child.
I know the words are,
"God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen."
But I ran out of room.
And what could be better,
at this season,
than me resting in Him,

The kids are still having a fit over these stockings.
I made them out of old clothes.
That's not the problem.
The problem is that they are half the size of the old stockings.

This mantel took about ten minutes to put together.
The antlers hold the stockings,
and the green branches are white pine
trimmed from our trees.

The little silver tree in the entryway.
It's held in place by driftwood.

When I see this phrase, 
it's impossible not to start singing the words.
Sing it out.
There is power in the spoken word.

My daughter's little tree.
Every year I plead with her to not get it out.
In fact, this year my daughters did most of the decorating.
They love the tradition of it.

A new wreath made my my older daughter.
(Poetry and atlas pages)

So the house is ready for Christmas.
It's as simple as I could make it,
with kids who want to drag out every decoration we own.
All I care about this year is what is under the tree.
No, not the gifts.
Those will be secondary.
I mean the baby.
The baby we call Malachi Jude,
who gazes in wonder at the lights.

I'm reminded, when I hold his chubby little body,
of the only thing that matters at Christmas.
A baby.
I am astounded that God chose
such a beginning.
"Because eternity 
     Was closeted in time
    He is my open door
To forever."
(Luci Shaw)


  1. Laura, this looks so
    simple and magical.
    Congrats on your
    sweet baby boy ~
    what a gift, indeed!!
    Beautiful, beautiful.

    xo Suzanne

  2. Beautiful decorations...beautiful baby...beautiful words. Enjoy every sweet minute :) Blessings, Laurel

  3. such beautiful words, laura! we have a little baby under our tree this year, too; another jude--peregrin jude! yes, what a good reminder he is that all that really matters this christmas is THE baby.

    on an aesthetic note--i love the antlers! i think we share a simple country/rustic/vintage style!