Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Mantle 2010

Being pregnant (and working hard to keep it a secret from my mom) kept me away from the majority of the holiday link-up parties around ye ol’ blogosphere last year.  So, although I decorated for the 2009 holidays, y’all didn’t get a chance to see much of it.

This year, there are no secret pregnancies, so, yea!  I can share photos with the world Mom!

First on the docket is the 2010 Mantle Party, hosted by Layla via The Lettered Cottage.

The entries will blow you away, and load you up with inspiration if you have yet to decorate your mantle.  Be sure to head over there if you have an hour or ten to spend on blog-hopping.  (If time doesn’t allow that luxury, just look at my pictures!)

It’s taken several years, but last year, we were able to complete our Willow Tree nativity.  It took me a while to come up with a “backdrop” of sorts, since our mantel is so long, and the wall above it so high and narrow.  Glittered rattan stars from Old Time Pottery above the manger, and natural pinecones from my mom’s home in Florida flanking each end, finally gave me the look I wanted.

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Our family stockings hang, for now, in front of the (wood-burning-which-is-why-we-don’t-use-it-with-little-ones) fireplace and chimney.  It works, since we don’t actually fill them (since we spend Christmas elsewhere), but if ever we are home for Christmas morning, I think the stockings might move to the open staircase banister…

(And, yes, I know I need to have Erin’s stocking embroidered.  I’ll get right on that…)

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One of my favorite things about our mantel/fireplace is how I’ve dressed up the firebox, since we don’t use it.  It’s nothing complicated –  a sampler from my grandma, a few more pinecones, everyday glassware with extra bulbs and ornaments, and some jute-wrapped vases I had lying around.   I think the sparkle, though, adds so much to what would otherwise be a drab spot.

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Last year, I even had some candles in amongst the jars, creating a great spot for some photo ops:

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And finally, just a $5 Kroger bloom in a usually-has-a-hosta-in-it pot, set with a stocking holder we aren’t using this year, and that’s it!

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It’s nothing extraordinary, but it reflects me and my tastes and I love sitting in the room looking at it.  Since our two trees are in other rooms of the house, the mantle has solo holiday-inspiring duty for the living room.

Speaking of the trees…..you’ll see those soon enough!


In addition to Layla’s party today, Rhoda (SouthernHospitalityblog.com) is hosting a “Christmas Vignette” linky party on December 2nd; Kate (CentsationalGirl.com) is hosting a “Christmas Craft” linky party on December 7th; and Sarah (ThriftyDecorChick.com) will wrap up the Holiday Home event by hosting a “Christmas Tree” linky party on December 9th.

I don’t know that I can participate in the craft one….unless I count the bag-filler-stuffed-pickle-jars adorning my end tables…..I’ll have to think about that one.  But as for the other two, count me in!  See you at the party, Interpeeps!


Jessie Weaver said...

It's really lovely! Does Seth leave all your stuff alone? If so, sign me up for 3!! ;) Of course next year I'll have a 3-year-old ... and also a 1-year-old. It may be awhile before floor decor.

I'm looking forward to getting decorated today or tomorrow. You've inspired me! I love what you've done with the Willow Tree nativity.

amy (metz) walker said...

Loving the decorations!

gottaluvboyz said...

Looks beautiful, Monica!

Kelly @ Sufficient Grace Ministries said...

I probably said so last year, but I love your stockings...and I love that Duncan has one, too! =)

Debbiedoos said...

Monica that is so precious, and I am happy you are able to share this year. I found your blog from Sullivan and Murphy's glad I did...very sweet!

Carmen @ Life with Sprinkles on Top said...

I love that you can use the inside of your fireplace. It looks so pretty!

{oc cottage} said...

I thought about putting things inside the firebox too...but I couldn't keep that cats out! Your looks GREAT!

m ^..^

Sara said...

Love it!

Alison Agnew said...

just visiting from the lettered linky...love your mantle and christmas decor. we have the pb stockings for our kidlets as well, so of course i'm now following!



Kristen said...

I love your mantle with your nativity. We are having to stick to a Fisher Price nativity around here for a few more years. How do you keep your kids from touching everything?! I love that you can use the inside of your fireplace - it looks so pretty with the candles.

Jen said...

Very pretty!
and love those stockings!

Denise said...

your back in blogville! that apparently the watermelon episode was quiet a catastrophe.

lovely mantel. we have the same nativity set. i love mine.

i really like your stockings. btw- josie is 8.5 and her stocking was finished 2 years ago.

Unknown said...

oh my goodness we really are twins! we have the same stocking pretty much and i have always always been in love with that nativity set!