Decorating from the Chair

I wasn’t really sure how it would work to put up my Christmas decorations this year, working from the chair and in a new place – and not remembering what things I actually brought with me in the first place. Many of my decorations were given away before I moved but I didn’t remember which ones went, which stayed – or really, which ones I had in the first place. I’ve always been surprised in opening my boxes at what was inside and this year was no different.

The decoration boxes were stowed away in the storage closet back in August when I could actually stand up and move them around myself; that’s not possible now, so it was a bit of a challenge to get them out. But with a few exceptions, I did get most of the boxes down and out of the closet, though putting things where I wanted them wasn’t quite as easy. I did manage to get my new cute gnome wreath on the door, and the shorty nutcracker out in the hallway outside my door, and the cats’ stockings, nativity, and all the elves. I have LOTS of elves, and in fact gave away my really big one to help decorate our common space downstairs.

My aide helped me with two boxes and moved around things that needed to be taller than I could place them, such as the metal gnome with a little planter; the cats tried to eat the fake greenery when it was closer to their level so it had to go high. We put out the Christmas pillows and the vintage Christmas card box I made for my parents 45 years ago and still love. Today we put up my metal tree in my bedroom and decorated a table top tree that runs the risk of cats batting around the Shiny Brite ornaments. Jamie had to do all of the work of setting up the wrought iron tree and placing ornaments while I unwrapped them and remembered their history – this one came from Harrods, this squirrel is from Boston to remind me of squirrels in the Public Garden, the flamingo represents Emerald Bay, the swan from my days going to the UVA Christmas concert and singing in the “seven swans” section for 12 days of Christmas. Most had a story; all had a memory.

Small things that decorate my space and remind me of places and people past. It’s not the same as last year, but it looks like home.

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