DECKING THE HALLS: This is a job for Starbucks

The holidays are here, and boy have I been busy. First I hosted Thanksgiving, then I had to de-Thanksgiving-ise my house (goodness, were there dishes to clean!). By Saturday of Thanksgiving weekend I was plum exhausted, and had to muster the energy to decorate for the holidays. It's a tradition to do it that weekend. My daughter enjoys it with me and we usually put on music or a Christmas movie while we sip hot cocoa and put up all the family's ornaments.

To add to my exhaustion, all my holiday bins are in the third-floor attic. That's a lot of stairs to climb and large bins to drag up and down. There was only one way to get in the mood-and muster the energy-to get this giant job done.


I love coffee. It's the only way this urban domestic diva stays a diva and not a car wreck every day. But when it comes to the holidays, only one coffee purveyor knows how to do it up right, and that's Starbucks. From the cozy experience in their stores to their Peppermint Mocha Vias at home, to their always new hot cocoa flavors for your little elves they know how to get into the holiday spirit as much as we do. I ask for no other partner for my holiday crazy than Starbucks.

So I brewed myself a Peppermint Mocha Via and got to work.


My tree has a long history of family ornaments. My mom gives one to my daughter every year, and with every trip we take I try to get a souvenir ornament. We try to keep things all the right color but as ornaments are gifted to us, they sometimes deviate from the color scheme. I am a creative director by day, so I like things to be matchy-matchy (it's in my blood). I do it by including a healthy amount of filler glass balls in the right colors, and use fabric ribbon and bows to also tie the tree together color-wise. It becomes the base of the tree, so all the special ornaments can be everywhere and the off-color ones don't clash as much.

Peppermint mocha was key here. It's wafting, soothing peppermint calmed my nerves as I tried to figure out why my pre-lit tree's lights were not working. I used that fancy gadget to fix broken string lights too, and figure out which lights were causing the problems. Not so much. In the end, I just strung lights on the tree the old fashioned way. Annoying. I thank that VIA for not throwing the whole tree out the window. We just bought it a couple of years ago!
Prelit tree?

Olive green, antique gold and brick red are the main colors of the tree. The gold and green are in the ribbon I lay and twirled around the lit tree. Then I have brick red fabric bows I put on here and there, followed by some brick red and gold filler balls.


The last step are all our heirloom ornaments.

Then I sit on my chair, sip the rest of my peppermint mocha and enjoy my tree before going to...


The stairs and foyer of our home was one of the reasons we bought our house. It has a lovely presence about it, and I love welcoming guests with decor on the banister (garland, lights, and ribbon in the same color as the tree). We don't have a fire place, so I use the stairs as a way to hang our stockings. At this point I was fading a little but mustered enough energy to quickly decorate my favorite little room in the house.


My house has a little awkward room off the dining room which my husband told me after we bought our house, "I always saw that room as a little library for you, to hold all your immense amount of books you never get rid of." 

Cha ching! 

This has quickly become my favorite room in the house, small as it is. I even made a small little holiday tree for it, complete with upcycled book ornaments (for a how-to on these ornaments, here is a previous post and videos)  with a book holding Santa watching over it. Once this room was done, I sat in my reading chair and finished my coffee, content in our hard work for the night. But I wasn't done.


Like I said, Starbucks loves the holidays. You can see it in their product lines, their stores and their social engagement. Every year, they release a holiday blend that is smooth yet spicy and rich. This year's bag did not disappoint. I brewed a pot while I unloaded my Christmas town which takes over my dining room buffet. I bought these on sale at JoAnne fabrics for 70% off, on the urging from my then 8 year old. Now she's 13 and where was she this early morning to help with this? 

In bed.

The wafting aroma coming from the coffee pot kept me going as I put the houses in their spots, pieced together my home-made brick paths I drew and cut out of grey construction paper and laid the pillowy pretend snow around everything. This part is tricky, the snow needs to be tugged and thinned out, then pushed and set into places so it looks real.

Sipping my Holiday blend, I placed my little people where they made sense, and even made a skating pond behind the house on the end, mounding the fiber-fill around a small mirror, then placing some ice skaters right on top.

The final step of decorating is finding a spot for our nutcracker collection, which ended up being on my piano. Holiday decorating is tricky. I love putting it all up, but it is a lot of clutter. By the time we ring in the new year, I am ready to take it all down!

When decorating, I urge you to take things down and store it away for the month to not only make room for some of the decorations, but keep the clutter down. My piano and buffet is a perfect example, usually filled with family pictures. I put it all in the holiday bins for the month, then when it's time to put the holiday stuff back in the bins, the stuff that belongs out normally is right there waiting for you.

Holiday decorating at our house is a big job. To make it as enjoyable as it should be and less grueling, get in the holiday spirit with some holiday flavors from Starbucks. Their warm cozy deliciousness turns tasks into spirit-lifting traditions.

Happy decorating!

And next holiday installments, Holiday Gifting Ideas and Greeting Card Sending Tips!

Please note: Starbucks Holiday blend and the fabulous Peppermint Mocha Via and hot cocoas were provided by Starbucks. All thoughts, opinions and obsessions about Starbucks coffee are completely my own. Thanks! #starbucks #starbucksholidayblend @starbucks #peppermintmocha #via



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