A Haven for Vee

Monday, January 3, 2011

Dismantling Christmas...Slowly

It is always difficult for me to put away Christmas. This is a discussion I've had before at Haven so I know that some of us struggle with it. We are divided between those who can not wait to get things back to order and those who want to hang on a bit longer. I'm one of the hangers on who keeps decorations up until Epiphany on January 6. Neighbors drive by slowly and ask themselves if it is Christmas lights they are still seeing here. Guilty as charged.

This year, I've decided to take a slightly different path. Each day I am taking down a little bit more of Christmas until Friday morning when the tree itself will come down. Since Christmas is stored upstairs, this gradual dismantling will help my knees, my back, and ohhhh my aching behind. (I fell down icy steps Christmas Eve and haven't been the same since.) So far, all poinsettias are put away, many bulbs, and assorted decorations. The wreath made of springs has become a train wreath for the grands, the candy canes are saved in a pitcher for hot chocolate this winter and peppermint milkshakes. And, as always, some Christmas things remain out all year long. The kitchen night light is a case in point.

Taking things slowly and steadily makes a lot of sense with other things as well. It's when impatience sets in that situations begin to nosedive. Benjamin Franklin had it right when he said that haste makes waste. The older I become, the more sense taking things a bit slower makes. It's not necessary to do it all in one day.

We are facing a number of challenges in this new year. Most are ones that we dragged along with us from last year, but somehow a bright, new year looks more hopeful than a tired, old one. You may wish to read "Behind the Scenes" in the coming days as I'll be adding more information there. Perhaps I need a "Behind the Scenes II and III" as well. Pacing myself is going to be an important part of my year.

Looking forward to doing some catching up in Blogdom today. I really do miss you when I'm away from the computer.

A blessed day to you...
Photo taken January 2010. This year the ground is almost bare. I like this year.


  1. Vee, I know what you mean. Slower than I use to be! But, I cannot bear to put up the snowmen - they stay out the whole month of January! So, it makes it easier taking it down ~ not so drastic if you know what I mean. Have a wonderful day and I hope you can overcome the fall soon.

  2. mr comforts of home dismantled christmas for me this year since i am all tied up it this silly shoulder harness....

    i thought i would like to slow down, but i am already going stir crazy, not being able to do stuff...

    happy new year vee...

  3. Vee,
    I love the decorations. However,
    they are all away. For some reason this year i needed to put things back in order. I truly enjoyed this season and am looking forward to a year of reasonable expectations.

    I wish you and yours a happy 2011.


  4. I must admit to being guilty of getting all the Christmas decor packed up on New Year's Day...as much as I love it I like to start January with a clean slate and so just like a bandaid I yank it off quickly so as to not prolong the discomfort. May God bless you and yours in 2011 with good health and may the year find you surrounded by loving family and friends.

  5. Oh Vee, I am sorry to hear of your fall. But I surely can relate to those aches and pains that I know for me come with the years creeping up on me. In my little oceanside 'cottage' (not really a cottage but I love the word...anyway...it qualifies as it is so small AND it is, afterall, at my vacation place)...where was I? Oh yes....in my oceanside cottage I have to go outside and down the stairs to get to my downstairs suite where my laundry room is. AND my storage area. So yesterday, with my boys gone back to the mainland, I had to go up and down up and down to bring Christmas into storage; bits and bobs of carrying size at a time. I too have an achy back today. But all is done. This year...I put the decorations away early. Normally I try to wait as long as I can...until the boys say....really? Isn't it Easter already? Smile. Now with them gone, I actually put them away sooner. Must be getting older!

  6. I love the icicles in your banner...BBRRRR!!!! And I'm a 'can't wait to get it ALL put away' kind of person! I think I will leave some up to enjoy a little longer but then when I start I get crazy! lol Enjoy your week! ♥♥♥

  7. -sigh- Icy steps... -sigh-

    Didn't I tell you not to walk on any form of ice?


    Now I remind you, hu?



  8. Putting things away slowly. Brilliant. Must say I've even reached such brilliance, myself, in the past. But!!!

    With me, I tend to leave some things, longer than planned. Think I'm all done and..... Oooops, there is the hanging ding-dangle-thing on that knob! ,-)

    So perhaps, I ought to wait till we are totally sick & tired of just about all the decorations, and we do a full sweep in one day? Perhaps...

    But truly, getting over our colds-from-hell, will dictate everything around here!!!!!!!!!!! No *work* till we feel super-fine again.

    -chuckle- As if at this age, we ever feel totally super-fine but... Over these colds will be super-fine-enough for me. :-)

    We have lost our snow cover too. But... The roses have thus, lost their protection. Ya' win some and ya' lose some.

    Gentle Winter hugs...

  9. Oh, I absolutely agree! Hang on to Christmas as long as you can! My decorations are still up too. Many memories from this year to pack away which I know I'll keep in my heart. This morning my first words to my husband were,"Happy New Year," and he replied, "That was a few days ago." But my response surprised even me. "This year we are going to celebrate every day." Him -"how?' Me - "There'll always be something to celebrate!"

    I'm going to be visiting your "behind the scenes" and be sure of my prayers for you dear friend!

  10. As Bob and I like to say, we keep things up until the Wise Men come! I will gradually take down Christmas... starting with the family room and the upstairs. Then the main level, after the Wise Men come! Do it gradually and our houses don't seem so bare!

  11. oH, Vee, I hope your little aching backside is feeling much better. I am afraid if I should fall like that, at my olden age, I would break my little butt bone (now that is to say the BONE is little...not the butt):))

    I am a "hurry and take it down" kind of girl. We DID live our outside lights up for our New Year's party and will take them down sometime this week.

    I am straightening the house today..putting up games and food and etc. from the party. Gotta hurry so I'll be thru right after lunch..so I can take my nap. :)
    xo bj

  12. Wow .. how I love that photo. So pretty.

    I don't waste time in getting decorations down. After Christmas I just want it all gone even though it was so pretty and fun to put up. I'm weird but you may realize that by now. :)

  13. I like your new approach to the new year, as a matter of fact I was given this same advice from dh this morning! I have the tendency to try and get it all done at one time , which I haven't yet learned that it is impossible. LOL
    Beautiful photo!!!
    I am looking forward to traveling with you on this new journey this new year!
    Praying God's continued blessings for you and your family this year,

  14. I have some blog reading catching up to do too. I plan to take my decorations down today. I should be doing it right now!! :-)

  15. I am one of those take all down as soon as the last celebration is over. Maybe it's because deep down inside I am exhausted with it all (& I don't want to admit it out loud) , but honestly it's because I love the clean slate of a New Year and want the house to be in the same organized order that my life seems to be on that one day!

    A icy bounce is not fun and I have never understood why they hurt more than any other fall. But they do! I hope you will be feeling more like yourself soon.

    Know as this New year has started that I am saying a little prayer for you and your mother. Seasons of life bring much joy, but the heartaches are often keep our attention. Thinking of you today.


  16. Oh I just love what the Diva said about jerking the bandaid off quickly so it won't hurt so bad! That's ME exactly. I love to ring in the New Year with a clean slate and clean house and get back to our regularly scheduled program. Actually, Princess is still home for 2 more weeks, so the real schedule will have to wait awhile. But, everything's up and away and I've cleaned out some tired old stuff and Princess is making a trip to Goodwill sometime this week. I've got to empty this house of mine so we can put it on the market! We have alot on our plate this spring and I'm anxious to get started!!!

    I DO so love your neighborhood, Vee - it's so picturesque with the snow. But if you're glad there is bare ground, then I'm glad, too!

    Sorry to hear about your "buns" ;)

  17. I usually like to linger over the decor after the holidays too but this year it came down the day after. I needed to get ready for a little remodel we are doing although if I had left it up I could have claimed that the sheet rock dust was faux snow ;c)

    Praying that beauty will brighten your day and that a special blessing will brighten your heart!

  18. you are so right. slow is almost always
    better. today is the beginning of my
    take down, too. i have a lovely helper,
    which makes everything so much easier.

    as i use so much red, i frequently leave
    that in place through valentine's day,
    which is my sneaky extension of Christmas.

    i pray your sore backside heals soon.


    ps. i am doing some e. e. cummings
    'time' and wanted to thank you for the

  19. Our decorations came down quickly this year, as we are being blessed to have some work done in our kitchen. I did decide to leave up the snow village and a lighted garland over our living room window, as they look more like winter than Christmas!
    Wishing you a lovely day Vee!


  20. Oh Vee,
    I'm like you ..a little down each day. I looked this morning and wondered aloud what needed to come down today. I love my Winter decorations and will leave up the few things a bit longer that don't really represent Christmas as much as winter.
    My nativity stays up until the end. First up. .last down.

    I also know that between the lines we all have things we might like to say. .( I surely do ) but can't. I pray you have a much nicer 2011 than you had last year!

  21. Hi Vee, sorry you had a nasty fall on icy steps, but glad you didn't break anything. I know only too well how a fall on ice and broken bones can change your life!

    I'm one for prolonging Christmas, too. I've yet to put anything away, although the kitty has begun taking ornaments off the tree for me. :D

    I pray that this will be a healthy, peaceful new year for all of us.


  22. I would love to dismantle slowly, but there are three of us who have birthdays, in five days, the first of January, so I dismantle so each feels that their birthdays aren't connected to Christmas. I set a birthday table and rearrange the house for our new year.
    Now for the Christmas lights outside...well it maybe March before those come down, but we aren't turning them on!!!

    I too am learning to go slower and not rush life...I think that is something we learn with age and it is a good lesson.

    I will stop by your other post soon, after all our birthday celebrations.

    Wonderful post, enjoyed the message and beautiful pictures.

  23. G'day, Vee ~ So glad you are ok, Janet. Hope the boo-boo heals quickly.

    I put up my decorations & take them down with speed ...

    Pop over for our lovely CSN GIVEAWAY!

    Have a beautiful New Year ~
    TTFN ~
    Hugs, Marydon

  24. I never take down the Christmas decor before New Year's Day. I love to have some days after Christmas to simply sit and enjoy the beauty and the lights once the rushing is over. Once the routine of work and school returns I like things back in order.
    With everything you have been going through, I think you're wise to pace yourself. I'm sorry to hear about your fall. I have just visited "behind the scenes" and won't comment except to offer a virtual hug and continued prayers.

  25. Sorry to hear you had a fall at Christmas, I hope you are not suffering.
    I like the slow idea, something I should have included in my blog today as everything can be so rushed these days.
    Happy New Year Vee and thanks for your support and kind comments.

    I shall visit your behind the scenes now.

  26. Pacing yourself. Right. Thank heavens. Maybe I can learn how if there are 2 of us trying. Believe me, it is harder than it sounds, and I have failed miserably. But now I have you to chat to as I try. We can do this, Vee!

  27. Hi Vee!
    I put my tree up late so I may leave it a few more days this year. It has kept it's needles remarkably well .. a wonderful tree that I, and my cat who has been sleeping under it every day, will miss!

    I hope you recover quickly .. I had a similar accident once and I know it's unbelievably painful.

  28. We keep it all up until Epiphany too. I thought about taking down a little at a time but I'd rather wait to bring up the boxes all at once. This year I'm anxious to get it down and put away! xo

  29. I like having the house decorated until after the New Year. But once I begin un-decorating, I like to get it done quickly. Today was the day. Everything is put away, sheets and towels washed, everyone has gone home. The house looks and feels a little empty. But my husband says his decorator will soon make things pretty again.

  30. Slower is better, I agree! I like to say that experiences need to be savored, and that sure applies to undecorating! LOL, we all have to remind ourselves that the days's tasks to not comprise a race. Most things will do just fine if you put them off just a day longer or too.

    I haven't read your behind the scenes commentary lately, so I'll have to skip over there. Thanks for letting us know. And thank you for entering my little giveaway! You are a special friend and it is always a pleasure when I see a comment from you. Wish you could see the smile that's on my face right now...

  31. Oh no, I'm so sorry to read of your fall, Vee! Such a dangerous time of year! I fell two years ago on ice that was hidden by a dusting of snow. I was lucky I didn't break anything.

    Our neighborhood does the dismantle right after New Years' Day. I am sad to see the lights and decorations leave but happy to have everything back to 'normal' if there is such a thing.

  32. Hi Vee! I'm BACK! All of my decorations have migrated to the diningroom table. Hopefully they will find their way into storage bins and to the basement sometime this week. Here's hoping 2011 is one big blessing for you! ~Kathy

  33. I love the way you are handling this..little by little. What's the big thing about doing everything quickly? Is life a race? Do we have to hurt ourselves {and our knees!} just to be done with it? Nah.

    Take your time..love that. This is going to be my year to really stop, to enjoy, to focus.

    Take care my sweet friend..and take your time ;-D

  34. I am a hanger and a slow dismantler too...hehe...I have even gone so far as to decorate mostly with a winter theme, then I can defiantly keep the ambiance up for a bit longer...like I am talking February, especially if it stays dark and cold.

    The tree I will try to tackle on Saturday...

    Sorry about all the tough challenges Vee. Our prayers are with you.

  35. Oh Vee! So sorry to hear of your fall - hope you'll feel better soon! I absolutely hate putting away the Christmas decorations, so the Monday after Christmas, while I was at work, my kids took down the tree and put everything back in the attic for me! Of course, me being me, I didn't notice for about 10 minutes... ;o)
    Here's to the New Year!!

  36. Our focus this year is to make sure that everything we want put away with the Christmas things makes it in one trip. This translates to it all sitting on the dining room table while we gather from all over the house...in between the illness and Mikey's move and other responsibilities.

    Hope your "bum" feels better soon!
    Falls are terrible things.

  37. I've done that - fell on my tailbone - and hope never to do it again. I really can empathize with your discomfort.

    This photo is beautiful. Is this your home? It's such a lovely place.

  38. No, Diane, it's not my home; it's the view I see from my portal to this place called Blogdom.

  39. Vee,
    Sounds like a good solution. I am always torn about putting Christmas away, and then I impulsively went and did it all in one fell swoop this weekend.
    I think it was an Empty Nest reaction. And after I felt a twinge of regret.

  40. What a beautiful, inspiring view!

  41. I can relate to the keeping the decorations up as long as possible. Winter can be so bleak and dreary and Christmas is such a lovely season of light and joy that I hate to see it go.
    Hope you are recovering from the fall--we haven't had ice yet, but January isn't over yet! V

  42. Love the photo of your street, gorgeous!!! And I like your idea of taking down Christmas slowly. :)

    I finished up this afternoon, I just hated taking down our lovely trees, they are still fresh and smell good, so instead of taking them to the dump, we stuck them in our snow bank outside the garage and driveway...lol...they look like they belong there.

    Thanks for your visit the other day!

  43. I definitely keep Christmas up as long as possible. I love it and I can't let go of the light and sparkle, so I do keep lights and snowflakes, icicles, etc. up until March usually. The tree may come down mid-January. This year our two teen grandgirls who usually come Christmas Eve were hindered by illness, so they are coming on the 12th. The tree will still be up and their gifts still under it.

    I tend to put Christmas things out a little at a time (that may change when it's not just me doing it) so they get put away in the same fashion. Works for me.