Inspired by change, challenge and creativity

Creativity Sunday-Holiday Views


“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.”  

~Norman Vincent Peale



It has been almost 18 years since the passing of my father….40 years for my husband’s father, when he was just 15.  And 10 years ago, his mother died leaving a huge void in our lives.  Our traditional family gatherings were no more.  We seemed a bit lost trying to find our way.



We had just moved to our new house a few months earlier, but I just couldn’t open the boxes of decorations I had lovingly used in year’s past.  We didn’t cut down a tree.  Instead we put up a ceramic tree and a little faux tree, and lit them nightly. And I took whatever new decorations I was gifted, and scattered them about.



DSCN0983But this 10th year in our new house, I found a renewed energy…maybe because I was less stressed and had been retired now a year….maybe it was just time.  This past February, I went through all my Christmas decorations, and saved only those I cherished and might want to use this year.  And I promised myself to open those boxes, and put up some Christmas decorations.  Those I did not use this year would go in the pile to give away.



So in early December, the 4 boxes and our 2 little faux trees came out of the basement.  As I opened the boxes, a rush hit me, and I went about creating new scenes.  Three hours later, the house took on a holiday feeling, and the spirit of Christmas seemed to pour from every corner.  And you know what?  I used every single decoration….coincidence, I think not!



So I wanted to share some of our holiday scenes this year, that mean so very much to us!  With as few words as possible….




tree collage

Here’s one of our little faux trees.




ornament collage

With some of my favorite old decorations…..some as old or older than me.  The background is our ceramic tree that once belonged to my mother-in-law.





Sitting at the base of the tree, is this wonderful container of more old ornaments and garland.





This little tree graces our front hall.




garden tree ornament collage

It is also decorated with old ornaments, and my cherished garden tool ornaments given to me by a very dear, dear friend.





My favorite of these garden tool ornaments is the old-fashioned watering can.





And what better accompaniment for this tree, than my Christmas Garden Fairy.




mantel collage

The mantel was completely redone this year.  I brought out our wonderful Mr. and Mrs. Claus stocking holder and our stockings…..they were missed.  The wreath is one given to me by one of my thoughtful teachers when I first became a school administrator….I adore it.





Here’s another view of the mantel.



And a couple of more lovely scenes….












I leave you with a view from my front windows looking onto the porch…the glow of candlelight keeping the Christmas spirit bright!


I hope you enjoyed these holiday views.  I am linking in with Judith@Lavender Cottage who hosts Mosaic Monday, and with I Heart Macro hosted by Laura@Shine The Divine that happens every Saturday.




I leave you with a bit more sentiment about Christmas.   Feel free to download the photo and share.

christmas is

All original content is copyrighted and the sole property of Donna Donabella @ Living From Happiness, 2014-15.  Any reprints or use of content or photos is by permission only.

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  1. December 27, 2015    

    What a gorgeous collection of Christmas decorations.I must admit that I have cheated this year and skipped the Christmas tree 😉

    • December 27, 2015    

      Thanks so much Lotta…..we pared down our tree to make it so easy now….small, a few ornaments, lights already on the tree….otherwise we would probably only have the little lighted ceramic tree. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

  2. Christine Wood Christine Wood
    December 27, 2015    

    Beautiful decorations! Loved the little gardening tree. 🙂

    • December 27, 2015    

      It is a favorite of mine too! Merry Christmas Christie!

  3. December 27, 2015    

    Heartfelt hugs.
    Love that the time had come again. No decorations here this year. I was tired and overwhelmed, but am hoping that next year I too will bring out sparkling memories.

    • December 27, 2015    

      I think each year is different for me….glad you enjoyed these holiday views…..hope you are resting and restoring.

  4. December 27, 2015    

    I find my Christmas spirit ebbs and flows from year to year. I’m glad your Christmas spirit flamed into life. All the sweeter for having faded a little in times past I imagine. Everything looks lovely and I’m sure it is a pleasure to be surrounded by pretty, joyful things.

    • December 27, 2015    

      Yes Susan it is so nice to have memories surround me….wishing you a wonderful New Year!

  5. December 28, 2015    

    What a lovely collection of Christmas decorations. I am sure some brought back many happy memories. Beautiful images.
    Enjoy your day and the new week ahead! Happy New Year!

    • December 28, 2015    

      Happy you enjoyed these holiday memories Eileen….Have a wonderful New Year!

  6. December 28, 2015    

    I have read so many blog posts about how losing family members changes how we approach the holidays. Our family Christmas fell apart when my Mother died at 49 years young. That just goes to show that so much of what we celebrate during the holidays is each other.
    I thoroughly enjoyed all of your Christmas photos. I especially love your Santa snow globe.

    • December 28, 2015    

      I couldn’t agree more Andrea about our holiday celebrations tied to each other….so glad you enjoyed the decorations…i collect some Santas and that snow globe is a treasured gift.

  7. December 28, 2015    

    Like Susan’s comment…I find my spirit ebbs and flows too. The past few years I just can’t handle all the consumerism so I’ve found that traveling to other countries is suiting me for now…and this is my first Christmas in the US for a number of years. I didn’t decorate…but I spent time calling and chatting with loved ones and that made it just as special! Have a wonderful new year!

    • December 28, 2015    

      I have often wanted to celebrate the holidays in different spots…no decorations at home, but enjoying the place we happen to travel to…someday! Wishing you a wonderful New Year Robin!

  8. Beth Beth
    December 28, 2015    

    Your home looks beautiful, Donna! Hope you had a joyous Christmas and may your New Year be full of joy and good health!

    • December 29, 2015    

      Thank you Beth! Wishing you a very Happy and Healthy New Year Beth!

  9. Judith @ Lavender Cottage Judith @ Lavender Cottage
    December 28, 2015    

    Two nice quotes and happiness for you to have used all the Christmas decor you brought out. I was not as motivated and quite a bit stayed packed away – I really need snow to help set the mood, I’m sure there’ll be future years with lots of the white stuff.
    Happy New Year Donna.

    • December 29, 2015    

      I agree…snow makes the atmosphere Judith. A nasty winter mess today with ice and sleet, and snow predicted for New Year’s Eve. I think we will finally get some snow cover….Happy New Year!

  10. December 28, 2015    

    Your Christmas decorations are delightful 🙂 How lovely that this was the year you were able to unpack them after so many years and enjoy them again 🙂

    Our decorations are in need of refreshment, the seem a little tired after so many years. I haven’t taken a single photograph of them this year…

    • December 29, 2015    

      Thank you Cherie….I thought the same of many of my decorations…I think leaving them for a while made me appreciate them and decorate differently with them too. Happy New Year!

  11. December 29, 2015    

    Donna, I’m so glad that the Christmas spirit has returned. I love Christmas and make Christmas cards all year long so it’s never very far away for me. Sylvia D

    • December 29, 2015    

      Oh Sylvia what a wonderful thing to do all year…it must keep the spirit of the holiday going all year long. Happy New Year!

  12. December 29, 2015    

    What lovely seasonal decorations!

    • December 30, 2015    

      Thanks so much Betty! Happy New Year!

  13. December 29, 2015    

    I read you post with a lump in my throat because I know exactly where you are coming from. After my dad passed away (10 years ago now) I just couldn’t bring myself to do the whole Christmas thing and if it wasn’t for my daughter putting up and decorating the Christmas tree, it would not have happened. 3 years on, I finally got the courage to give it a go myself and since then I have gone nutty at Christmas. I enjoyed seeing your decorations!

    • December 30, 2015    

      Oh you do understand Cath! Your story inspires me to keep this going…thank you!

  14. December 30, 2015    

    Lovely scenes! I managed to give away a box of decorations before Christmas. I had watched my husband move all those boxes and vowed there would be less next year.

    • December 30, 2015    

      Thank you Linja! I loved giving away decorations….it made my Christmas more simple and meaningful!

  15. December 31, 2015    

    This is a beautiful post about how celebrating isn’t about how much stuff, but how loved each piece is. Beautiful… You and your husband are very lucky to have each other….. Happy New Year Donna… Michelle

    • December 31, 2015    

      Thanks so much Michelle…I feel lucky! Happy New Year to you and yours!

  16. December 31, 2015    

    I enjoyed this post very much ans especially the beginning share and the final one, so, so pretty! I wanted to wish you a Very Happy New Year~

    • December 31, 2015    

      Thanks so much Mary! I enjoyed capturing these images….wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year!

  17. December 31, 2015    

    A very colourful and lovely post. Happy New Year.

    • December 31, 2015    

      Wishing you a very Happy New Year!

  18. January 1, 2016    

    Your decorations all look beautiful. I’m happy to hear you got your Christmas mojo back.

    • January 2, 2016    

      It has been a great season Jean! Thanks…..

Favorite Quote This Week:

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.” ~ Aristotle


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