Seasonal Decorating

I'm feeling rather blunt today, and wordy.

It seems that the more blogs I read (and there are an endless amount available, and increasing daily), the more perplexed I get about seasonal decorating.  Posts usually written by stay-at-home moms who talk about how busy and crazy their lives are, how they do such-and-such to get it all done, and oh yeah, here is a picture of my mantel...in every season, AND Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, July 4th, Columbus Day (really?), Autumn, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years.  Are they really too busy?  I'm being a little extreme (just a little), and I do realize that these women are scouring them homes looking for ideas of what to write their next blog post about.

Side Note:
I'm also dying to know where all these crafty ladies store all the items they are constantly making.  Do they have 2nd homes where they put it all?  Take Centsational Girl, for example.  I am in awe of her decorating style, she has some mad skills!  But take a look at this (gorgeous) room:
Isn't it amazing!?  But look closer, I think the only things that aren't Christmas decorations are the furniture, table, rug, mirror, and obviously the fireplace (she probably also reuses the glass vases on the mantel for other seasons).  All that other stuff: where's it go the other 11 months of the year?  Then multiply that times the other seasonal decor she switches out in this same spot.  I'm sure she has a system, like I said, she has mad skills.

End side note.

Before I go too far, I should define "seasonal decorating" in my terms.  Seasonal decorating would include changes to decor in and out of your home at nearly every opportunity.  This would include porch redo's, any blow-up yard ornaments, new paper garlands strewn around the home each month, etc.  This would not include bringing flowers from outside and putting them in a vase on your table during spring, setting pumpkins or gourds on your front porch in the fall, using pink napkins on Valentine's Day, etc.  Neither list is exhaustive by any means, but the blog world also does not need to see every little seasonal change either.  

Now, my only exception to seasonal decorating that I like and will do is Christmas, within limits.  Things can be tacky.  Very tacky...
I'm a fan of simple and timeless Christmas decor.  Things from nature.  White lights.

Moving on.

This has led me to the conclusion that I am generally not a fan of seasonal decorating.  Why?
1- It costs money.  You buy things to decorate your house, then you need to buy bins to store them in.  In our situation in life (and maybe yours), we are looking for ways to save every last penny and apply it to loans, retirement, kid's college, and vacation.  If you are in a similar stage of life, consider cutting back on your seasonal decorating.  
2- It takes up space...visually and when you store them.  If you remember a while back I shared the blog Becoming Minimalist with you.  From my own experience of moving several times and having to get rid of accumulated possessions, I'm a huge fan of clearing out the spaces in our lives, seen and unseen.  
3-  Your tastes change from one year to the next, and something you spent money on last year may not be your style this year.  You'll either throw it back in your storage closet (taking up more space), or donate it.
4- Does it really affect your overall happiness?  In trying to think of why people decorate at every season, the only 2 reasons I can come up with are that 1). it may make them happier when they see them, and 2). it allows them to have a creative outlet.  For all the crafters out there, it gives us things to make to get our "crafties" out, right?  I can understand the 2nd reason and I do think it is valid, although I don't know if it refers to the majority of people out there.
I truly believe your (and my) crafting abilities can be applied to items and areas in our lives that will serve more function.  I'm huge on function.  But that's another post.  

Now recently, my biggest peeve is Halloween.  Aaaghh.  I don't know who decided that putting cob webs, ghosts, spiders, freaky things, etc. etc. was tasteful.  I found one quirky article about decorating for Halloween.  I thought something they said was interesting and gave some insight into where these sort of decorations originated,
"It’s really hard to overdo Halloween – one could argue that the more decorations you have, the more protection from evil spirits or tricksters – on All Hallows Eve."
Article and Source
Not to mention, when you have a young child, you are constantly trying to avert their eyes from the scary images while driving down the street or going to Walmart or Lowe's (Christian is now afraid of the "tool store where the scary men are").

I would be happy with the following:
This entire post has ideas for fall decorating that are right up my alley.
(and where can I get GREEN pumpkins??!)
Maybe I've said too much.  I definitely don't mean to offend anyone, and many seasonal decorating ideas are very pretty, just not my thing I guess.  And I suppose some people may enjoy being full-on tacky!  So if you have the time, money, and space,  by all means, decorate away!  And who knows, maybe I'm just in a phase.  (If I change my mind, I'll let you know).  But if you feel like the pressure of changing your decor every month (or more!) is wearing on you, it's okay to let it go... one at a time even, and free up some time and money.  

I don't even know what is happening here!  Source
I'm curious to know some of your thoughts.  :)
Happy Decorating!


Mom Potteiger said...

I think your blog was good and challenging for the culture that we live in. Most often less is more. I prefer clutter free. It feels cleaner and more fresh. I know I have some Christmas stuff to get rid of. Taking too much storage space.

Anonymous said...

I found your post fun and entertaining to read. I love the pics you chose of examples of decorating that you like. I like them too. We have good taste, girl! I love to decorate and change things out, but seasonal...not so much. I keep that pretty simple, mainly because it's a lot of work and it is easy to accumulate too much. There is refreshment and beauty in simplicity. I remind myself of this a lot! Joyce

Anonymous said...

Jess Ankney---- agree with the entire post! =)

Anonymous said...

Judith Cook---- Love this! Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Erin Lehman--- I know a wonderful lady who goes "all out" for every season/holiday. I have loved spending time in her home for years and years...it is a reflection of who she is as a person, and her heart of celebration. She's a blessing!!! And yes, she has the time, energy, space, and $. Me personally? I like simplicity and predictability...a change in candles or a simple throw blanket is enough for me to mark the change in seasons. I do want to teach my kiddos to appreciate the different blessings each season brings, so who knows what my home will be like in a few years?! :-)

Anonymous said...

Vicki Jane Crider ---- Me personally I LoVE to decorate for the seasons, but keep in mind I've been married for 23 yrs! I didn't have all this when we started out. We've also moved lots in our married life....9 times in all but moving a couple totes is worth it! My kids love seeing the house transform!

Rachel said...

Thanks for your insight! I guess I do appreciate going to other places that are nicely decorated for the seasons. Give me 23 years to catch up...haha! For now, I'll keep it simple. Miss you all!

Anonymous said...

Tara Myers Henry ---- I agree and disagree with you, Rachel. I am not much on lots of decorations b/c I have to drag them out, dust them, then put them back away a couple weeks later, but maybe that is someone's passion. Just to play devil's advocate, some people might look at your blog and think "why would she take the time to hand paint swiggles all over her kitchen when she could be using that time with her kids or doing something else?" well, probably b/c they made you happy. Painting,sewing, and diy projects are your passions. So in my opinion, you are neither right or wrong if you enjoy decorating for every holiday. If it makes you happy, then decorate. If it makes your blood pressure go up, leave the decorations at home depot. :)

Rachel said...

YES TARA! i totally get your point. :) only difference: my squiggles get to stay up ALL year long. I totally agree with you...it's not right or wrong, it's whatever floats your boat!

Anonymous said...

Tara Myers Henry ---- I should also add that I totally understand about kids being scared to go into a store b/c of the scary decorations. Last year, mom and I walked into party city and there was a huge demon/monster thing hanging in the entrance. My mom DEMANDED it be moved away from the entrance b/c it was "scaring her grandbabies". lol.

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