For the second year in a row, I’m proud to be participating in Jen’s Holiday Homes Tour.  Come on in!

This is our first Holiday Season in our new home.  It was very tempting to go run out and buy all new stuff.  I restrained that urge as best I could…

This is our equivalent of Jen’s Big @$$ Tree.  It’s about 12-15 feet tall and stands in the front foyer.  As in the past, it’s ringed with my Santa Bears and the main ornaments are my Santa Bear ceramic ornaments and the rather fragile antique glass ornaments I have from my Mom and my Grandmother.

One thing we did add this year…

Tree #2!  It’s a measly 9′ tall.  This one holds all of our family ornaments.  And a few other new ones I bought…basketballs and footballs!  Hey, this is really the family tree.  We’re a sports obsessed family, we ought to have some sports on the tree.  Not including all the football playing Santas and Denver Bronco ornaments. *shrug*

Oh…and don’t worry about Uncle Mistletoe and Aunt Holly down there.  They’re just taking a nap.  The Boy likes to take them off the chair there and play with them.  He put them to bed under the tree the other night before he was put to bed.

Check it out – here was our first Christmas Present!  We bought it the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  It’s the Big @$$ TV hanging up there.  Our old plasma bit the dust and so we upgraded to this 52″ baby.  I think it blends well with our holiday decor, don’t you?

Our stockings are hung as well.  Since we never put in a fireplace, they are hung on the stair rail in the foyer.

Here are a few things I did buy this year.  I had the garland for the railing, but wanted to spice it up with something a bit more whimsical and fun.  So behold the candy canes, candy bits, and funky balls/tear drops.  They’re all “shatter proof” and the Boy has taken to playing “music” with them – aka bouncing them against the rails.  That’s why they’re shatterproof!

Our major addition to the Holiday Season this year is our Advent Calendar.  We always had them growing up and I remember them quite fondly.  Ours were always filled with treats of some kind.  I didn’t really want to load my 3 year old up with sugar every day this month, so I took a different approach – each day provides a different activity for us to do.  Some aren’t really related to Christmas (make pizza, have an indoor picnic), some are based around our kid’s new obsession with movies (watch Frosty/Rudolf/the Grinch), and a few are traditional.  (Oh, and everybody say hi to Uncle Mistletoe again!)

One day for our advent activity we made paper snowflakes.

Another day the Boy, Grandma, and I all made Yule Kag.  This is a Danish Christmas bread and that is how we’ve always spelled it.  A Google search tells me there’s a zillion ways to spell it, but that ain’t one of ’em.  I’ll stick to it though – this is a family recipe we’ve had for years.  But anyway.  The bread is a thick cardamon spiced fruit bread.  It is part of Christmas to me.

This wasn’t part of our advent activities, but look!  An appearance by the Girl!  The Boy here has a definite fondness for candy canes.  So I let him take my meat mallet to this bag of them.  Smash ’em up good Boy!  We’re making peppermint bark for gifts!

Here’s today’s advent activity.  I hope you’ll all join us tonite to take an hour or so to turn up your favorite holiday tunes, grab your loved ones, and turn a step or two around your living room.

We feel very blessed to be living in our new house, surrounded by so much family this holiday season.  Thanks for stopping by to share a bit of it with us.

It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes, or bags! What if Christmas doesn’t come from a store?  What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more?

~Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Wishing you and yours everything more this holiday season!