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Decorating for the holidays!

We always decorate for Christmas on Black Friday…I don't like going out shopping on Black Friday. I do more on-line shopping.

How do you manage your asthma and allergy triggers while decorating for the holidays? 

I wipe everything down as we pack it up after Christmas, and wipe it all back down as we unpack it. 

We also have an artificial tree. My dh is allergic to real Christmas trees. 

Dh is in charge of bringing everything down from the attic. If something is really dusty, boxes etc, he wipes it down before he brings it down to the living room. Dust and I do not get a long at all.

This blog about has some great tips about selecting a tree and dealing with dusty decoration.

When will you start decorating for the holidays?

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  • Pljohns

    We are about the same Melissa but not this weekend.  We will usually decorate the first weekend of Dec but this year, due to round trip to GA next weekend for MIL stuff, it will be the weekend after.  We have an artificial tree as well and I do the wipe down, wipe off thing too.  Unfortunately, I have to get everything down except the tree-I won’t drag it down he stairs-the guys get to do that and most of the time, DH will put it up and leave the decorating to me.

    This year, I have a “Chevy Chase’ Christmas Vacation” Christmas shaping up.  My parents will be here this year and now that MIL lives here, we will have her as well and BIL is coming into town too.  Neither Mom likes the other so it’s going to be an interesting time.  They will all be here for Christmas Eve dinner-hopefully no cat fights break out

  • Marie E Natzke

    We used to put up a large village but we can't do that anymore. So I put up 2 small ones. One in the back porch and one in the living room. I did the living room one in 2 days and the back porch one last weekend. Hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving!

  • Melissa G

    Lynn, I surely hope there are no cat fights! I completely understand though, my mom and mil don't get along either. It is a very frustrating situation. 

    Marie, your Christmas decorations are gorgeous! I love the villages! 

  • Shea

    Oh Marie so lovely!!! You are inspiring me to put up our little wooden train village

    So far I brought our little Christmas tree in (its a living plant, a Norfolk Island Pine– which is not a true pine and is allergy-friendly, I got it at Lowe's years ago and it grows a little every year.. Its kinda like Charlie Browns tree lol… I keep in in the front of the house outside in a pot and bring it in every Christmas and we decorate it). We put a few lights and other decorations out too– but we have more to be done thats for sure! 

  • Deborah Bartlett
    Melissa G posted:

    Lynn, I surely hope there are no cat fights! I completely understand though, my mom and mil don't get along either. It is a very frustrating situation. 

    Marie, your Christmas decorations are gorgeous! I love the villages! 

    Should I send you two litterboxes….just in case cat fights break out?? 😂😂

  • Deborah Bartlett

    Many of my holiday decorations are from the 1950s. I love love love retro ceramic knick knacks. Red and white stuff! DH was SUPPOSED to set up artificial tree today. He is napping. Going back to work tomorrow after 4 days off. I will decorate little by little. I will clean everything off first, just as I did before storing it away. Lots if work!!! But it's all so beautiful!

  • Pljohns

    Shea I love your tree!  We had one growing up just like that-dont’ know what ever happened to it but I remember it well.  

    My parents will be with us for Christmas and mom LOVES Christmas but they never decorate at all so the years they are with us, i try to make it look extra special.  Guess I’ll get started in the next week or so.

  • Melissa G

    Lynn, we love decorating for Christmas. My entire first floor is covered in Christmas decorations. 

  • Deborah Bartlett

    Just thinking….I bought 2 bags of Great Value mini pretzels at Wal-Mart for 80 cents each. I have 6 bags of candy melts, all different colors. I will dip the pretzels in the melts, then cover in sprinkles. I must have 20 different kinds for Christmas. I put them in cute holiday treat bags and give with cookie gifts. If I have any melts leftover, I will buy some pretzel rods. I dip those, then coat in sprinkles, coconut, crushed nuts, crushed peppermint candy… Then I put each rod in a clear pretzel bag, tie with a ribbon and place 6 in a tall jar. I bought some tall jars at the Dollar Tree. 

  • LK

    Me, too!  Those pretzel rods are so versatile.  Haven't done them for years to that'll be a nice surprise for people!  Thanks for reminding me!

  • K8sMom2002

    Oh, my goodness, what beautiful decorations, Marie! And Shea, I love your Norfolk Pine! I don't think it looks like the Charlie Brown Christmas tree at ALL!

    My decorations are still not up … I usually put my Christmas tree up the first Saturday or Sunday of December, since we keep it up until New Year's Day. 

    Let's see … things that I do to keep our house allergy and asthma friendly: 

    • we use an artificial tree, since a real one sets off DD's allergies.
    • my DH dusts off the boxes of decorations before he brings them in for us.
    • I do an in-depth cleaning before we set up the tree, and I vacuum and dust afterwards.
    • I turn on my central air unit's fan while I'm decorating. I keep this , and keeping the unit running while the dust is flying seems to help.
    • I store my tabletop decorations boxed up in their original containers so that they don't have dust on them when we pull them out.
  • Melissa G

    Cynthia, we store as much as we can in original packaging too. It makes it soo much easier to put them away.

  • Deborah Bartlett

    My Mom has arthritis so her hands and fingers are getting sore. They had a mini food chopper on sale at the grocery store for 5.00. I bought it for her. It's a Proctor Silex. I have one and it comes in handy at times. That will be an extra gift that will be appreciated. 

  • Deborah Bartlett
    Melissa G posted:

    Cynthia, we store as much as we can in original packaging too. It makes it soo much easier to put them away.

    And so much easier to find!!!!!

  • K8sMom2002

    Absolutely! And to recognize as well … but sometimes the packaging falls apart on me. I literally duct-taped my old Christmas tree box together for years … and then I realized dust was getting into the box and causing me trouble. So I got a tree bag to store it in.

    Raise your hand if you use an artificial tree AND a tree bag. It makes it a bit hard to get it out of my storage area in my utility room. But at least it keeps the dust out. 

    I need to buy me some new ornament decoration storage boxes … I noticed my old ones were getting frail last year. 

    I know Melissa said she decorates the whole first floor of her house … but what about the rest of you? Do you concentrate mainly on the living room/family room, or do you decorate the whole house? Some years ago, my DD drafted my sister into decorating everything in our house … my sister is the Martha Stewart type who would put decorations on bedroom doors and at least two trees up. I'm doing good if I get the tree up and remember to hang the wreath on the front door. 

  • Marie E Natzke

    We have an artificial trees and put them back in the original box and what doesn't have a box goes into a bag. As far as the houses and all the other figures they go back into the original box or those new plastic containers they have for ornament storage. You can get them at JoAnn Fabric store Target or Michaels.

    some of the figures we have are from my Moms grandfather. He made houses out of cigar boxes with his brother in law for a train set. When he passed away the houses were divided between all his children and grandkids. Some of the figures are the lead figurines are from the 40 's -50's…

    putting up a village under the tree is a long tradition in my family.

  • LK

    {hand raised} for tree and tree bag!      

    I decorate the tree and a few small spots around the house like the front hall and the mantel over the fireplace.  Some years it gets a little more attention and some years a little less!  

  • LK

    Marie,  Those handmade houses and things sound awesome!  What a wonderful treasure to have!

  • K8sMom2002

    Oh, my goodness, Marie, those houses sound like your great-grandfather really poured a lot of heart and soul into them! No wonder you treasure them! What a feeling you must get putting them out on display!

    Lisa, I know what you mean about some years things getting a little more attention and some years, a little less. I hate to say it, but I think this year, what with DD's finals and college scholarship applications, I think it may be one of those "a little less."

    But hey … less to put away, right? 

  • Pljohns

    I have an aunt that could beat anyone-she decorates every room in the house.  I’ll never forget when I was in high school, went to her house during the holidays and she had tinsel around the toilet and lights around the mirrors.  That was it for me-

  • Deborah Bartlett

    Hand raised here for artificial tree and the tree bag!!!! I decorate the whole house. I have so many decorations to put out!!!! I have a 2 foot tree I put on a plant stand next to the front door where you walk in. It's a cute extra tree. I have alot of things that I gave had forever that I will always keep. I have Hallmark ornaments that my sister has given me as gifts over the years. Those are special. I put candy canes on the tree as the last thing put on. I have tons of stockings…each one different. How did I end up with all this stuff? 😆

  • Marie E Natzke

    My Mom was like that she had decorations up in every room. I noticed this year she didn't even start to put anything up until I started with the village in the front room. It's hard as we get older we do less…

  • Pljohns

    I mainly do the living room only and the railing going up the stairs with garland and red bows.  The living room gets it pretty good most years-I add a new Santa every year for the hearth and DS#2 loves to decorate outside-that’s his jobs if he wants it.  We do an artificial tree in a bag too

  • LK
    K8sMom2002 posted:

    Lisa, I know what you mean about some years things getting a little more attention and some years, a little less. I hate to say it, but I think this year, what with DD's finals and college scholarship applications, I think it may be one of those "a little less."

    But hey … less to put away, right? 

    Cynthia,  Yep!!  Less to put away!  The years when I don't get many decorations out are usually the years when I don't have the time nor energy to put many decorations away so it works out just fine.  When our kids were little I did do a lot more.

  • Deborah Bartlett

    Due to illness, my thinking has changed to this: Will I be able to take it down, dust it and put it away? It's almost like a punishment. I love to decorate, but what if I am too sick to put it away? We all have to realize that we shouldn't overdo it. But we do love our decorations!!!

  • LK

    It is so hard to keep reminding ourselves of our limitations, Deborah, but that is a wise outlook on decorating.  There have been times when I have regretted having so many decorations to put back away.  One year I wasn't able to put the Christmas ones away until late in January.  

    I have this (see attachment)  in our house.  It is more the atmosphere and love in our houses that has an impact on our families and friends than any decoration or lack thereof.  

  • Deborah Bartlett

    People come to our homes to visit with us, not our stuff. It's nice that our decorations add to the atmosphere and spirit, but I say if you can't do something, then don't do it!! I am posting a photo of something that I thought was funny. I picked it up at an estate sale for 25 cents…

  • Melissa G

    If we had a bigger home, we have a townhouse, we would decorate every room! We decorate our foyer, dining room and living room. The girls also has a very small tree in there room and Grace likes to hang some Christmas lights in their room. I love this time of year. 

  • Shea

    Melissa that is cute that the girls each have a little tree in their rooms, and I agree that I enjoy decorating and live everyones pics for inspiration. I also make sure not to get overwhelmed and just do it as I am deelin it– usually while listening to Christmas music, and then as I realize I am getting tired I just kinda put stuff aside or away until the next time Im feeling inspired. I start early decorating and then move to baking. (Those pretzel sticks sound good Deborah– I love salty and sweet , but we cant do nuts but I like the idea of chocolate and pretzels mmmm). 

    Thank you all on the Christmas tree compliments– it is not as big and grand as artifucial trees but it seems to work well– I also think if I do ever decide to get artificial tree I will definitely get a bag to store it. Even my little decorations collected some dust so I also had my HYLA purifier on high and did some dusting as I put them out. 

    Deborah, I love those signs– so cute and ole-timey decorations from estate sakes do have a cozy appeal that fits in well with the holidays. I realize I have a bit of a mix of older and more modern things around. Last year I ordered a Mrs Santa off ebay to go with my Mr Santa out front.

     

     

  • Pljohns

    Shea-COOL wagon!  I would have never thought of that.  I'm going to do my best to get the tree up and the living room done this weekend since we are not going to GA.  At least I can then check that off my list.  Hopefully i can talk the guys into getting stuff out of the attic for me. I just don't have the air right now to drag it down a flight of stairs out of the attic

  • Wheezy Me
    Deborah Bartlett posted:

    Due to illness, my thinking has changed to this: Will I be able to take it down, dust it and put it away? It's almost like a punishment. I love to decorate, but what if I am too sick to put it away? We all have to realize that we shouldn't overdo it. But we do love our decorations!!!

    Deborah, I can hear you- there are times we all feel we can't do things the way we wanted. Remember your health is the top priority, and you shouldn't feel bad for decorating less- you do the best you can. I'm sure your home will look pretty, even if you choose easier decoration options

  • Wheezy Me
    LK posted:

     I have this (see attachment)  in our house.  It is more the atmosphere and love in our houses that has an impact on our families and friends than any decoration or lack thereof.  

    How beautiful, Lisa! I really like the message!

    And your welcome sign too, Deborah!

  • LK

    Thanks, Wheezy Me!  

    Especially when our kids were young I would have to remind myself of this daily!  

  • Melissa G

    Dh finished decorating with lights outside. So we are now officially finished decorating. 

    Anyone else have any decorating left to do for the holidays?

  • Pljohns

    I still have some to do and looked at the calendar and realized my parents will be in next Friday ACK!  Let the "Christmas Vacation" type of Christmas begin

  • LK

    Hey,  Lynn,  I am sure you are far ahead of me!  DGS came over yesterday and asked me when I am putting the ornaments on our tree.  It just has the lights and they are the kind that are part of the tree.  I told him maybe he can come over and help.  He wasn't too impressed!    Still more fun to play at that age!  

  • Deborah Bartlett

    Oh my!!!! Reality check!!! Only two weeks to Christmas! It's the official countdown. Anyone biting their nails yet?

  • LK

    Hard to believe it's in two weeks!!  I am way behind but for some reason it really isn't bothering me this year.  Probably will soon though!!