For most of my twenties, the holiday season had minimal impact on my home. Sure, I love spending Christmas with my family, but the pragmatist in me didn’t see the need for a single guy to be decorating his apartment for the holidays.
These days, life is a little different. I married someone who sets the tuner to Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving, for starters. And all kidding aside, Marc’s excitement for the holidays is contagious in a good way.
It’s also way more fun to decorate your home for the holidays when you have people to share it with, which makes the effort of putting up a tree more worth it. Marc and I able to enjoy the Christmas decorations together at home as a festive backdrop while sitting on the sofa watching TV on the iPad (less common) or doing some work at the dining room table (more common). We also love to have our friends over, and entertaining is always great reason to refresh your home with a little bit of holiday cheer.
(On a quick related note: for chic holiday decorating tips that are more on the stress-free, tree-free side, check out my post on MyDomaine here.)
For us, the holiday season really kicks off with the annual German Village Lights. We use the luminaries set up around the neighborhood and the walkabout to enjoy everyone’s Christmas lights as a thinly-veiled excuse for a wine-fueled house crawl among our friends’ homes, ours included.
I’ve always enjoyed picking out the perfect present for family and friends at Christmas. I’ve never been a great wrapper (this is where Marc’s skills are a perfect complement to my lack thereof), but I’ve grown to appreciate the way that wrapped gifts underneath the tree can be the perfect finishing touch for a Christmas home.
This year, we tried keeping a focused color palette for our decorations. We already had a lot going on in our living room with all our eclectic décor, so we opted for mixed metallic neutrals for our tree and our gift wrap. I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below!
And speaking of the holiday spirit(s), I’m always down to try a new cocktail during Christmas party season. And since I don’t drink eggnog (creamy drinks just aren’t my thing), Marc and I took a stab at making hot spiked cider using Rekorderlig Cider's recipe for "The Hot Swede”. It’s a little bit on the sweeter side, but I’d recommend it as a fun holiday warm-up while you decorate, wrap, and of course, listen to Christmas music.
The Hot Swede
7 oz Rekorderlig Spiced Apple Hard Cider
1 oz spiced rum
1 tbsp honey
1/4 lemon, squeezed
1 cinnamon stick, to garnish
1 orange wheel, to garnish
Heat the cider to your preferred temperature using your stovetop
Mix the rum, honey and lemon together
Combine the ingredients
Serve with a cinnamon stick and orange wheel garnish in a festive glass of your choosing
Photos by Jonathan Steinitz