Houzz Logo Print

Share your holiday story

10 years ago

I started decorating for Christmas the week of Thanksgiving. Early, I know, but I wanted to get a jump on things. It was nice to have time for tweaks (usually I decorate in a weekend just to get through it).

Anyway, yesterday morning my darling 4-year-old son was checking out the ornaments on the tree, then crash! The whole thing came down. He is fine, but the tree is another story.

The tree is back up now but I haven't re-decorated it yet. After cleaning up pine needles, water and broken glass, I think it may take a few days before I will have the patience to re-do it.

In the big scheme of things I know it isn't a big deal. I feel lucky to have a tree and the means to put presents under it for my family. Everyone says I'll look back on it a laugh. Um, I'm not quite there yet. :)

Can you share a holiday horror story with me? Misery loves company. LOL

Comments (14)

  • polly929
    10 years ago

    It's not related to decorating, but it happened at Christmastime, so here it goes.
    We listed our first home 5 years ago the week of Halloween. In order to stage the house, instead of renting a storage unit, we stored boxes and photos at DH's office which was local right in town. He had started his own business that Spring. The week of Christmas we FINALLY got an offer on our house, and were set to close the end of January. We were so happy to start a new chapter in our next home. The same week the stomach bug ran rampant through our house, yuck. DH was finally feeling better and he drove to the pharmacy to pick up pedialyte, but the road was closed. Traffic was being diverted, he asked the officer what was going on, only to look past him and see firetrucks, and a raging fire in his office building. Everything we stored there was destroyed, our HS yearbooks, wedding photos, the baby albums, photos upon photos. Thank goodness I decided not to store the Christmas presents there. The only comfort was the fact that since we were all sick, DH wasn't there, had he been, I shudder to think what may have happened. It was a fast moving fire, and the building burned within minutes. Luckily I was able to replace many of the photos. We lost most of the books, but our priceless memories were replaced....thanks to online photo storage!

  • polly929
    10 years ago

    PS- The sale of the house was doomed. Those buyers backed out at the 11th hour and found a legal loophole, forcing us to relist the house AFTER we were all packed and ready to load the moving truck.

  • Related Discussions

    Please Share Pics of Your Holiday Decorating


    Comments (9)
    Christmas is my favorite holiday. This year my DH put the tree up and decorated it by himself. I think he did a terrific job! I finished the fireplace mantle today. "Our stockings are hung by the chimney with care..." Happy Holidays to all ... CC
    ...See More

    please share your holiday decorations made with items from nature


    Comments (3)
    I have not decorated this year yet( gasp!) but in years past I have made cranberry garlands out of fresh cranberries and red- cinnamon dental floss. I cut fresh holly and use pinecones and sweetgum pods sometimes painted gold. magnolia leaves when I can get them. I also like to use boxwood cuttings and princess pine to put in a fresh balsam wreath. This year though I am not buying anything decorative and will limit myself to cut holly and found items. I may make some applesauce and cinnamon ornaments too depends if I have time. I also like to make orange pomander balls out of cloves and cinnamon and ginger. No pics of anything though. In any case the bulk of my decorating is with natural elements. I would do williamsburg outdoor decor too if we didn't have squirrels that climb up the sidelights of our front door.( the one problem with muntins -aka a squirrel ladder) I can just see those oranges and pineapples being dragged away by Rocky the Squirrel.
    ...See More

    What's your Thanksgiving holiday horror story?


    Comments (100)
    Shawlin, That happened to us, except it was on a 10 hour trip and we were about halfway there before it started, and it was during a Christmas holiday. We had to stop at a gas station after our toddler had thrown up yet again, but this time it was on her pillow... she was trying to keep the puke from dropping off the pillow, but then we hit a bump and SPLAT! Now she was covered in puke, it was dripping off her hair. Hubby asked the gas station attendants to bring out the hose and while he sprayed down her car seat, I took her into the bathroom and tried to wash her hair in a gas station bathroom sink... you know the kind where the faucet is really short and the sink is small? By the time I came out of the restroom the nice gas station employees had coned off the area with yellow caution tape. I felt SO BAD for the mess, I was apologizing profusely, and they were SO NICE. I can't even recall what state we were in by then... it was a nightmare. During the family reunion, there were about 20 of us, and only me and one of my sister in laws stayed healthy through the whole reunion (we weren't the only family who came in sick) and we spent the every day cleaning with bleach. LOL! We actually all have a lot of great memories from that trip though... we can all laugh about it now.
    ...See More

    A sweet story for this Holiday Season


    Comments (7)
    This story really choked me up. Absolutely beautiful, and truly a sign of intervention from above. Something to remember, share and a message to mimic. Thank you for sharing this.
    ...See More
  • patty_cakes
    10 years ago

    Same story, different mischief maker~~a (((Siamese cat))) named Buddha. He's been gone for many years, but every Christmas I can't help but remember this little guy. He never went outside, so it was the only tree he ever got to climb. ;o)

  • runninginplace
    10 years ago

    OK, I'll tell this story on myself.

    Just after my daughter was born in October 1991 my FIL was hospitalized for cardiac problems. After having a stent inserted he suffered a stroke in the hospital and was very ill. We didn't think he would make it for awhile. He went in just before Thanksgiving and was still hospitalized when Christmas rolled around.

    Clearly my MIL wasn't able to host her usual Christmas Eve gathering. So in what I now regard as a fit of postpartum hormonal insanity *I* volunteered to have the family gathering at my home. Keep in mind I had a newborn, another child who was just shy of 3 YO at the time and in the throes of first-child-jealous-upheaval, and that I am, um, high strung and somewhat house proud and OCD about my space at best. Right, recipe for disaster.

    So Christmas Eve comes along. I'd cooked up a storm, cleaned the house within an inch of my life, and did I mention that neither of my kids slept through the night for literally years? So I was also ravingly sleep deprived by the time everyone got there-my MIL actually came straight from the hospital to my house. One can imagine what a festive mood she was in herself.

    Things rolled along, although much of the evening is still a blur. What I do recall clearly is hitting the wall at around 8:30 pm. The baby was crying, the house was a shambles and I just Could Not Take It Anymore. So I walked into the living room and kicked my entire extended family out into the night. Yes, on Christmas Eve. I vaguely remember telling them that it was just too much, that it was time for them to leave and I was sorry but the party was over.

    Oh lord, I still alternatively cringe and laugh thinking about that night. In retrospect as noted I was nuts to even think of trying to host it. Then again my husband, MIL, SIL were probably equally as crazy to let me!

    A couple of funny moments were preserved for posterity from that evening on an old home video we still have. At one point my BIL came into the kitchen, where my husband was warming a bottle for the baby who was snuggled on his shoulder. On the tape my BIL wanders over to the kitchen counter and picks up a bottle of bourbon. He can be heard clearly saying "Hey you should give everyone a little bit of this bottle, then nobody would be crying!". And, the last clip of the video is a shot of my foyer with the door open to the dark Christmas night. Nobody is there, I've thrown them all out on Christmas Eve.

    And that's my story.

  • kiki_thinking
    10 years ago

    I was a part-time grad student/part-time university employee. ÃÂ Hubs was a grad student. ÃÂ It was our first married Christmas and we were oh so strapped for cash! ÃÂ We were mostly glad when we managed grocery money. We handmade almost all family gifts andÃÂ wrapped them in newsprint. (stamped with a snowflake stamp in white paint and glittered which seemed like a good idea at the time but shed glitter copiously over every house we visited)ÃÂ
    Hubs had $50 from his mom for his birthday. ÃÂ He spent $25 to surprise me with a Christmas tree and we split the other half, $12.50 each, to buy one gift for each other. ÃÂ
    ÃÂ He lucked into two gallons of oops paint - nice paint in the exact color of pale creamy butter yellow i had longed for, for $5 each. ÃÂ He wanted a good snow shovel, and I found a great ergonomic heavy duty craftsman snow shovel on super clearance for $9.99 It was a beautiful shovel and the handle was even Xmas red! ÃÂ We woke up on Xmas morning and were mutually delighted with our gifts and proud of how well we had managed on very little.ÃÂ

    Hubs went out in the early morning cold to dig our car out of the big snow to show off how well the shovel worked. ÃÂ A guy stopped and asked for help digging out his pickup truck which was parked near a 7-11 nearby, so hubs cheerfully shouldered his new shovel, went to dig him out, leaned his shovel against a pay phone and went inside to buy them both a cup of coffee with what was probably the last of the change we had. ÃÂ
    He came out of the store with two cups of coffee in time to see that guy throw the new Christmas shovel into the back of his truck, jump in, and drive off!ÃÂ

    You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch!


  • patty_cakes
    10 years ago

    Runninginplace, for REAL? I know in the past when the kids were little that could easily have been me! But you actually DID it! Wow, you have chutzpah! ;o)

  • trailrunner
    10 years ago

    Gosh RIP you are in the running for most funny writer of a should send it to Ms Blogess....she would have a time with it ! You made me laugh so hard.

    At least there is documentation....I would give a lot to see that tape:)

    It wasDecember 1990 and we were doing a major paint/paper reno of our previous house. We had lived in it since 1979 without doing very much to it. I had never done anything like this before and had hired a very nice man to do the work. We set up our tree and they promised to be so careful while they were working.

    I came home from the hospital where I worked and when I walked in the tree didn't look right. I asked the painter and he said that they had knocked it over and that only 1 ornament had been broken ....he was so proud of the fact and handed it to me. Hmmm...we had lived in Holland from 1989-1990 and had gotten home in late August. The ornament he had broken was irreplaceable glass from Holland. Could have been worse . I still think of it every Christmas. c

  • newbuyer2007
    10 years ago

    kiki_thinking, what a terrible story! I can't believe the guy did that. I hope you guys are able to laugh about it now.

  • lynninnewmexico
    10 years ago

    OMG, those are really sad stories! RIP, as awful as yours was, it honestly is pretty darn funny now (LOL!).

    Mine deals with my pregnancy, as well. We had our "dream " home here in the mountains built the year of 1992-3. It was a long process and DH's staff at his clinic was there cheering us on throughout it all. We promised them we'd have a big Christmas party here once we moved in to celebrate and for them to see it in person at last. Well, I got pregnant that August right after we moved in and was still having 24/7 morning sickness in December. The last thing in the world I wanted to do was think about food, let alone cook any!
    But, I love Christmas and was so excited about the new house (and anxious to show everyone our baby's nursery) that I decided to go through with the party anyway.
    We hired our favorite restaurant to cater the sit down dinner for everyone and their spouse or S/O. I hired my neighbor's housekeeper to clean for me and figured all was good. Wrong! The housekeeper couldn't come until the day of the party. She brought her adult daughter to help her. The daughter tripped over our vacuum, breaking it, a 3-ft tall vase and put a 14" round, deep, brown dirt hole in our foyer's cream colored adobe wall. That really started my pregnancy hormones raging ;^D. Thankfully the daughter wasn't injured.
    It took them until just before the guests were to arrive to finish cleaning, as they were sweeping instead of vacuuming by then. More hormones going nuts! DH arrived home and started patching the hole in the wall just as the caters arrived.
    I was under the impression they were bringing all the food already done, but instead, they needed to cook and finish much of it here . . . with the housekeepers still cleaning around them! I was running around trying to show the caters where everything was, while hurrying DH along. 20 minutes before all the guests were due to arrive, I was still in my sweats and feeling like you-know-what . . . and then I realized that with all the chaos, I'd forgotten to set the table!!! Our 9 y/o son volunteered to set it for me while I changed for the party. Thankfully, the guests were a good 15 minutes late, giving me time to rescue the table from my 9 y/o's vision of a great dinner party table (LOL!).

    Our first dinner party here was a hit that evening despite all the disasters, my all-day morning sickness . . . and the fact that, although my dress was a maternity one, I'd never considered the need for pregnancy nylons. They kept slipping down over my stomach and threatening to shoot to the floor like an over-stretched rubber band throughout the evening! I think I spent the majority of the evening with one fist desperately clutching them to my belly!

  • Oakley
    10 years ago

    RIP, that was great!!!

    Here's mine and it was really really embarrassing. My mom and stepdad spent the night with us on Christmas Eve.

    We had a new video camera, one of those huge things all set up on the tripod to record the opening of presents on Christmas morning.

    We all got up and our present opening was being recorded. Then my stepdad had to go do his morning constitution. I had forgotten the camera was still rolling. He was taking forever! My mom started calling out for him, "Stephen! Get out of the bathroom and come open presents! Stephen, what's taking you so long in the bathroom?" lol.

    She was hollering this FROM the living room all the way to the bathroom which was down the hall.

    Let's just say, thank God for editing!

  • yborgal
    10 years ago

    We had moved into our new home late in November and agreed to host a welcoming reception on Dec. 23, for a new professor at the medical school here. I must have been nuts to think we'd be ready to host a crowd of about 60 people.

    The furniture we ordered hadn't arrived but we were assured it would be here before the date of the party. Meanwhile we were using folding chairs & tables in the LR and in the family room.

    The day before the party, it was obvious that the real furniture wouldn't be arriving in time, so the furniture store let me come and pick out anything I wanted/needed to furnish the house and make it look lived in.

    The morning of the party (Dec 23), a huge van arrived and all of the furniture was unloaded along with lamps, artwork, etc. Men were still hanging pictures and putting the furniture in place 4 hours before the guests were to arrive when a bookcase came into contact with our Christmas tree and knocked it over.

    It was disheveled and not destroyed, but it was listing terribly to one side. My husband never blinked an eye..he nailed some hooks into the wall behind the tree, looped some heavy fishing line around the tree; pulled until the tree stood proud and straight and moved the unbroken ornaments to the front of the tree. It was a fun topic of conversation during the party.

    The next morning at 10:00 AM, the van came back and loaded up everything they had delivered the day before.

    I didn't realize the neighbors were all watching and wondering about what was going on.

    It wasn't until we became good friends that they admitted they were apprehensive about us, figuring we were some sort of criminals pulling off a scam.

    BTW, we never got our Thomasville furniture and had to start from scratch with another company. We ended up renting furniture for 3 months before ours was delivered.

  • Fun2BHere
    10 years ago

    Well, there was the year that we forgot to put water in the chafing dish holding the cheese dip in a glass bowl which proceeded to explode and rain gooey cheese all over the cut velvet covered sofa, the appetizer plates and the wine glasses. Luckily, all of the small children were outside because quite a few curse words were spoken.

    Then there was the year that the turkey didn't cook. I still don't know why. We sliced the breast off the bone and brought the slices to temp in a pan on the cook top.

    We've never had a tree fall over, but one year we couldn't get the darn thing to stand up straight, so I wrapped bricks in Christmas paper and we tied gold wire from the tree trunk to the bricks. I lived in fear that someone would move a brick and the tree would topple over. I feel like I spent most of every gathering that year guarding those bricks...LOL!

  • runninginplace
    10 years ago

    Glad folks appreciated my holiday misadventure tale. My SIL and I were laughing about it a couple of months she said, 'honey we were ALL talking about you after that night!"

    Then again, there's your holiday blessing--that it has become part of family lore, and that years later there are two middle aged women who reminisce and get a chuckle out of a debacle of a gathering like that Christmas.

    Postscript: my FIL did recover from his medical problems. He lived almost another ten years, long enough to dote on that newborn little girl. He had to endure months of grueling physical therapy after he was released from the hospital and he told me not long before he died that my daughter was always extra special to him because 'we learned how to walk together'. He was a dear, dear man and I miss him very much, especially at this time of year


  • kasman
    10 years ago

    Not really decorating related, but the story of the Grinch was one of many stories in a collected volume of Doctor Seuss my son received for his third birthday. Even though we are Jewish and I'm a rabbi, I did not think twice about sharing the charming tale of the wicked villain and the innocent Whos. I think he didn't really know that there were real peoploe who practiced Christmas. He thought of the trees and stockings as part of the story, something the fictional fantasy characters did. But when Christmas season came, he put the TV commercials and mall decorations together with the book. He asked whether the Grinch had anything to do with Jews. Together, father and son, we put together that the original hanukkah story was very much like his favorite grinch tale. We put together a version for hanukkah. He's seventeen now, really into video, and he put together a cartoon of me telling our iteration of the story to which I have included the link.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Greek Who Stole Oil

Pristine Acres
Average rating: 5 out of 5 stars36 Reviews
Leading Northern Virginia Custom Outdoor Specialist- 10x Best of Houzz