Currently: December

It's the last month of the year, and definitely one of my favorite times of year. I want to savor it and enjoy all the big and small moments. At the same time, I am so glad this year is coming to an end. 2017 was a challenging one in many ways, and I'm ready for that fresh calendar page-turn.

Just like always, I'm linking up with Anne and this month's co-host Catherine, to share what I'm currently...

{lighting} our Christmas tree and mantle-top. I don't go crazy with Christmas decorations, but I do love decorating little areas in our home with lights and festive decor. I picked up some fun wooden trees at Target last year, and made a simple little display with some garland and string lights on our mantle.

{spending} intentional quality time as a family. Two things I've been doing this year to focus more on family time is the Live Your Best (Holiday) Life challenge I created with Alexandra, and the Advent calendar I created (mostly) for Jona. Both of those prompt me to do little activities that I may not take the time to do otherwise, like reading a Christmas book during a busy evening, or having a hot chocolate date at home. More importantly, they are small, simple things and not things that feel like major time commitments and obligations.

{choosing} what to prioritize this season. I went into the holiday season with the goal of enjoying it, and not letting it become stressful. There are plenty of things to stress about, but for me, I don't want the holidays to be one of them. I've mentioned it before, but listening to The Lazy Genius Podcast and reading her planning ideas helped me to make my own list of things that are important to me, and things to skip this holiday season. For example, traditions like baking Christmas cookies and having Christmas morning at home are priorities for me. On the other hand, taking professional photos for Christmas cards and having perfectly wrapped and decorated Christmas gifts are not. Taking the time to list those things out before December even started has really helped me to be more intentional with my time.

{sending} simple Christmas cards. While I think it would be nice, having professionally photographed, Pinterest-worthy Christmas cards isn't a priority for me. I would like to get some family photos taken, but there hasn't been a good time lately. However, I do love sending and receiving Christmas cards, so I just picked a few favorite pictures from the year, found a layout I liked on Shutterfly, and ordered them on a day they were having a good promotion. They're not perfect, but they're done.

{singing} Jona's favorite Christmas tunes. It used to be that Jona would just go along with whatever music we put on. He loves music and is pretty open to most kinds; he embraces my husband's country favorites (and LOVES Alan Jackson, so funny!) and also sings along with my alternative-ish tunes. However, this year he has his opinions about Christmas music, and he wants to hear Mr. Grinch, I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas, and Jingle Bell Rock on repeat.. Violet is less choosy and swings her arms side to side to "dance" to whatever we put on. :)

What are you up to so far this month? 

If you're planning to share a post (or have already shared one) about holiday traditions or an Advent calendar, be sure to come back and link-up on Wednesday, December 13th with Alexandra and I!

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