Thursday, December 3, 2009
Of Lemons and Cow Bells
I have some of the best family ever! Every year a waxy, fresh scented box arrives from the great state of Maine right after Thanksgiving. In it lies Sigrid and Rick's holiday gift - a beautiful fresh spray of ceder, balsam and fir. It's the first thing to go up and immediately puts us in the holiday spirit. The only problem is, it doesn't look like this when we get it....it looks like this....
God bless plastic bells and acetate ribbon, it's not really the look I was going for...and so the doctoring begins. I like to do a little of the unexpected in my holiday decorations. One thing that I've found works well is using citrus fruits. They're inexpensive this time of year, look good with greenery and hold up well. A quick rummage through the kitchen, the backyard and a couple of Christmas boxes and I have everything I need: a few glass Christmas ornaments and some old cow bells (don't ask), a handful of lemons, a few pine cones, floral wire and picks (if you don't have these, you can use a wire hangar cut into pieces instead - just don't tell Joan Crawford), and a decent piece of ribbon (I channel my grandmother and keep every piece of ribbon that comes into the house in a grocery bag in the basement).
Now, take the floral picks and insert them into your lemons, attach the wire to the ornaments and bells and bundle together a few of the pine cones.
Next step, strip the spray of all the old stuff - if there are any decent pieces (like pine cones), hold on to them to add back in later, and then wire in the new pieces. Start with the biggest and keep filling in empty spots with the smaller pieces.
I finish it off with the ribbon and a cluster of pine cones to hide my laziness when it comes to bow making. And we're finished.
Don't forget to spritz any kind of greenery you have with some water every few days - I know that sounds really up tight, but it makes a huge difference to keeping everything from drying up before the big day. Another life saver is the over the door wreath holder, makes hanging things a snap, I always make sure it's on the top of the Christmas box since it's the first thing I look for. And we're finished. Now, we're off to cut down a Christmas tree. That will be an adventure, I'll let you know how it goes.
Posted by Kenneth Wingard at 12:42 PM