Our life on the farm can be pretty routine and certainly can mean putting up with the elements more often than a suburban family. But we still make Christmas a festive time, and this year we put a little bit more into decorating the farm.
While I have not made as many presents at home this year as I'd like, I try to get as many gifts as I can from farms and craftspeople that I know. I was a little bit disappointed when our countertop oven in our tiny kitchen gave up in late November, before I was able to bake any Christmas goodies and leaving me with our hot plate cooktop for all recipes that required any cooking. But we've made due, still supplementing the holiday food with some tasty mulled cider and salads with seasonal greens.
I normally do not go in for a lot of holiday decorations. With family in other parts of the state that we go to for the holidays, we rarely host any holiday events. No one really sees anything I put up except what I take pictures of, and our few neighbors. Spending a lot of time on lights and trees seemed almost wasteful to me, time that could be spent on more 'productive' work. But this year I wondered if decorations would make themselves worthwhile in terms of cheer, even if they didn't serve a concrete purpose.
Our decorations are still much more tame than many folks', but we added to our usual couple of wreaths this year. We foraged out on the woods that line our fields and found a tall, slender pine tree to place next to the barn door. Lit up with lights and covered in baubles it brings a welcoming warmth to the barnyard. With garlands and lights up in the kitchen and house, it is certain that we've got some festive cheer going on.
And you cannot forget about the goats! I found a little Santa costume intended for dogs and dressed Lucky up for a few holiday photo shoots. He loves the little hat and is proud to be the most festive goat in the herd.
It is wonderful to be able to relax and enjoy the festive cheer, and hopefully the next week will be full of family and fun, without any added stress. We'll take a little break from both projects and planning and enjoy the atmosphere for a few days, then it will be back to the labor of love that is our little farm.
Merry Christmas, Happy Solstice, Season's Greetings, and Happy New Year to you all!
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