It’s Not Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

Last year's tree... nothing like this around here this year!

Last year’s tree… nothing like this around here this year!

… and that’s OKAY!

It’s December 18th as I write this, aka t-7 days before Christmas and to stand inside the PoP home, you wouldn’t really know it.

For me, this is weird. You see, I LOVE a good Christmas tree (largely because I had pretty sucky Christmas decorations/trees growing up). I love sitting next to it and basking in the glow of the white lights as they reflect off of all the shiny ornaments that we’ve both inherited from our families and have collected together during our marriage, and inhaling the scent of the fir tree that I insist Mr PoP help me pick out and drag home from Home Depot during the first week of December each year.

It’s so nice, and calming.

But this year it’s not happening. Yes, I did get our outdoor lights on the house as part of my solitary Thanksgiving, but we’ve got enough chaos going on in the house at the moment that the idea of decorating beyond that felt not like a treat, but rather as an imposition – as a chore.

So in a moment of grand clarity in the first weekend of December, I asked Mr PoP what he thought of skipping the tree and interior decorations this year. “Really?” He asked. “I don’t care one way or another, but I’m surprised you’re considering going tree-less. You love them so much!”

And after the words came out of my mouth it just made so much more sense. I LOVE basking in the glow of the tree and I LOVE putting the tree up, but I didn’t want to turn something I LOVE into just another chore on the “To-Do” list.

I imagine we’ll have a tree again next year. But for this year, instead of putting up a tree, we’re putting up a wall. Literally.

See, we’ve got half of a wall put up right now that will widen our kitchen/dining area from 7.5 feet to 11 feet wide. 11 feet, people! Best Christmas present ever!



But sadly Mr PoP fell ill 80% through the project on Sunday and we’ve had to live with half of a wall all week. It’ll get done, but in the meantime, we’re getting rich by enduring chaos.


What’s your home looking like this holiday season?  It’s gotta be better than ours.  =)


30 comments to It’s Not Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

  • Your tree last year was gorgeous! I totally understand why you’re skipping this year though. If it ceases to be fun and becomes a chore, then it’s not worth it. And you can still enjoy a cozy and happy Christmas without it. Or you could use an odd-looking plant with a potholder like the 1500’s… ;).

    The point on enduring chaos (and your post on that) is so well said. We have a quasi hole in our floor right now, which we’re working on a solution for (it’s at the base of our newly drywalled kitchen wall). By biding our time, it’ll end up cheaper in the long run. Our current plan is to find an antique metal heating grate, which we can use purely decoratively, because there’s no way we can patch the wood floor without it looking janky. And we really don’t want to redo the entire first floor’s worth of wood.
    Mrs. Frugalwoods recently posted..Weekly Woot & Grumble: Mom’s On Email and My Hands Are DryMy Profile

  • Growing up as a kid, after ~10 years old, we never had a tree. It’s a lot of work, and a lot of money.
    No Nonsense Landlord recently posted..How to Get the Best Tenants into Your Rental PropertyMy Profile

    • Yeah, by the time I was in high school my parents basically said if you want the decorations, you put them up and take them down. So I did a few years by myself… =/

  • Throw the guilt out of the door. You can still have a wonderful Christmas without the tree. By the way your tree last year was beautiful.
    Petrish @ Debt Free Martini recently posted..Debt Sneaking Up Behind – HumorMy Profile

  • Our home looks good inside this year. No lights outside, but the tree is up and we even used the garlands a family member gave us a few years abck that hadn’t come out of the box.

    We do have a bathroom without a functioning sink and baseboard trim leaning against hte wall next to the tv. Always a little chaos at our place it seems.

    Merry Christmas!
    Emily @ Simple Cheap Mom recently posted..This is NOT Another Comparison of Budgeting AppsMy Profile

    • Oooh, garlands! Sounds lovely, so please don’t mind that I live vicariously through you for a moment. I will politely ignore the bathroom without a sink, though. =)

  • We’re going to the in-laws for Christmas proper and they go all out. So this year we put up the felt tree instead of our usual rosemary tree. The decorations are slightly different this year because DC1 is two years older and his cutting skillz have improved. DH’s seem to have improved as well. My favorite is a felt Totoro.
    nicoleandmaggie recently posted..Good Gosh Google!My Profile

  • What a gorgeous tree from last year! We just got our tree last weekend and have yet to decorate it. We’ll probably go with minimum decoration this year. With an active baby it’s tough to do too much decoration around the house.
    Tawcan recently posted..Boom ShakalakaMy Profile

  • No better! We’ve already left town for the holidays and didn’t do anything decoration-wise before we left. We don’t even own any decorations. To me it is a chore, as you said, and I probably don’t even like the outcome as much as you do.
    Emily @ evolvingPF recently posted..Living on Time with Your Credit CardsMy Profile

  • The sum total of our current Christmas decorations is a paper-plate wreath made at preschool by Big Brother, currently hanging on the fridge. We’re really busy this year and, well, it just fell through the cracks. Not something we actually DECIDED on. I was actually going to be a tabletop tree, but couldn’t find one in a store by the time I got around to it. Oh, well. Next year! We’re flying home Christmas Day to visit my parents, and they will have a tree.
    Frugal Paragon recently posted..7-minute Microwave Granola BarsMy Profile

  • Two years we felt conviction to not celebrate Christmas anymore (we are Christians and the story is long.) We were convicted during the Chritmas season and the hauling out of what we knew would be our last tree was strange. I actually felt a surge of guilt for not having a tree (a big reason we don’t do it now, our focus was wrong.) Now, the second year treeless, we LOVE it. It’s so much easier. Simpler. (Not to mention all the ornaments and trappings we no longer have to store throughout the year, yahoo!) We thought it would be hard. It’s been FREEING.
    Mrs. WW recently posted..How to declutter what you don’t even haveMy Profile

    • “We were convicted during the Chritmas season and the hauling out of what we knew would be our last tree was strange. ”

      Do you mean conflicted? Cause that could be a REALLY interesting story… =)

      I’m glad that being tree-less and other trapping-less has been freeing for you. It’s been a really pleasant way to spend this holiday season for us so far, too!

  • We’ve gone treeless before. I don’t think we could get away with it now because our daughter love decorating so much, but I would not put one up in your situation. A new wall is probably much more exciting anyway.

    • Oh my gosh, Kim. I am BEYOND excited about the new wall. My best friend is coming into town next week and I can’t wait to show it to her… and I think my coworkers are tired of hearing about it already. =)

  • Last year was the first time I had a home to put a tree in in years of traveling and short term rentals, but like yourselves with house works it didn’t feel right to get one. This year I got a fake plastic tree as no one sells the real stuff here, decorated it, but it seemed awkward in the middle of a tropical garden. So I got rid of it and gifted it to the girl who gives computer classes to the kids in my village, so the kids could enjoy it. No one could afford a tree here, so they were so happy it was really worth it. Merry Christmas!
    Pauline recently posted..A little life updateMy Profile

  • That was a nice thing to do with your fake tree. =) You could always try tossing some Christmas lights over some of the palms on your property. I love the way those look when decorated for the holidays and it’d be a very low maintenance and tropical Christmas tree experience.

  • The only reason we have a tree up is because of the kids. I would probably skip it otherwise. I have an illogical fear about ours catching on fire.
    Holly@ClubThrifty recently posted..We Believe! – Our Xmas Principles SpectacularMy Profile

  • since we moved the day after thanksgiving, I considered forgoing xmas decor this year, but it actually worked out that it made our house feel so much more homey with the decorations. I actually don’t know what I’m going to do when xmas is over and this means I have to actually find permanent house decor!!
    Newlyweds on a Budget recently posted..How Our New Mortgage Will Affect Our BudgetMy Profile

    • I do know people that kept some rooms of their homes permanently decorated with Christmas decor for years. Decades even? It’s been a while since I’ve been to the house, so tons of santas might still be sitting out… So it’s been done!

  • Ah. Peace and quiet.

    The best part of Christmas decorations is putting them up. The worst part is having to take them down and put them away. 😀
    Funny about Money recently posted..“Why Am I in the English Department?”My Profile

  • As we’re out of town for the holidays, we skipped getting a tree this year, too. We put some cotton fabric down over an end table to look like snow, and made a little Christmas themed town from our ornaments and the Christmas cards we got. Easy enough, and we kind of like it.
    Done by Forty recently posted..Gambling and Risk AversionMy Profile

  • A lot of Christmas felt like tasks this year instead of fun things I wanted to do. I did enjoy putting up my tree and decorations, but wrapping the presents and helping get my parents house and tree in order felt like an energy suck. I’m hoping we can do something differently in the future to avoid this feeling – like having a more minimalist Christmas when it comes to gifts.