|image from my instagram|
It might be the New Zealand summer Christmas with the pohutakawa beauty all around.
It might be the gift-buying, wrapping and giving that creates excitement, anticipation and smiles.
It could be the great excuse for family to get together.
Or it could be decorating the tree.
Growing up, my Dad would always drive 'down the road' and spend about $10 on a pine tree that would be erected, tied up and decorated in our rumpus room. When I was old enough it morphed into my responsibility to decorate the Christmas tree. Mum had (in good ol' Virgo manner) packed the ornaments carefully away the previous year, and I'd carefully take them out of their box and space them evenly around the tree which had been adorned with coloured fairy lights and tinsel. It felt so special to be in charge of the Christmas tree, and every time I smell a radiata pine up close it takes me back to that place.
(There's another fabulous 'baby of the family', a dear friend of mine, who also does an amazing, uh-maaaazing job of decorating her tree and shares my affinity with fairy lights - check out her fabulous and inspirational design blog here!)
This year I have a 3 year old who is my special little helper - he has heped me decorate our family Christmas tree which has been carefully guarded behind half a playpen so that the resident tummy-kayaking, super-curious 1 year old doesn't attack it. The Husband has objected for the last 7 Christmases we have spent in the same house (holy moly we've been together a while!!) so we have an artificial tree... perhaps one year I'll just erect a real tree and tell him to get used to it... perhaps!! I did get in early and wind the fairy lights, twisted sparkly organza and tinsel around the tree, and put my special ornaments up high, then the rest of the baubles (side note - cutest thing ever to listen to a 3 year old trying to say baubles, we've had many variations on the word!!) were hung in concentration at toddler height, on one side of the tree. It warms my heart to see him enjoying it so much.
A week out from Christmas and I am so looking forward to having both sides of our family (minus my sister-in-law who has relocated to the UK) gathering at our house for dinner on Christmas Eve, with a few presents passed around and a few bottles of wine to be consumed.
What 'does it' for you at Christmas time?