Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Night Before Christmas and All Through the House

It's the night before Christmas

and the twinkle of the tiny white lights on our tree

set the mood for quiet, simple times

here at Hyacinths for the Soul

The stockings are hung with care,

but no chestnuts roasting on our cozy fire.

Though Chickadees scamper about the mantel among 

the pine cones and golden pears.

Each dressed for this special 

night in their finest attire.

Waiting patiently for our jolly

St. Nick to appear!

Bunnies in red tartan bows

know something special is on its way.

This sassy lady in her verdigris coat

is from the Bunny Williams Collection 

based on a copper antique from Williams' own garden

and a treasured Christmas present from a friend last year.

The German nutcracker was given to me

many years ago by my mother,

and the plump tartan velvet pumpkin 

was a recent gift from a friend.

Vignettes in the kitchen welcome

more Santa figures.

To give our home a gentle touch of holiday scent,

I filled a MacKenzie-Chids vase with

fresh Christmas greens and red berries.

The gift packages under our tree

have all been delivered to friends and family.

Our tree is small and not fancy, 

 but it is decorated with lots of love.

Ornaments that have been added through the years,

many special gifts from dear friends, hang from red satin, 

tartan, or ribbons of black and white check.

There is definitely a MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check 

theme woven through the branches.  

A few new ornaments were 

added this year.

A crowing rooster amongst curls of 

burlap ribbon roosts on the top.

The shelves of our bamboo bookcase next to our tree

are filled with special holiday touches.

Bottom shelves hold Christmas books ready

to enjoy with an evening cup of tea,

 or  to share with little ones who may stop by to visit.

More Christmas books are on the lower shelf of a

green wicker table at the side door entry.

As an elementary teacher, children's literature

is a passion not easily abandoned.

 One of Nancy Thomas' New York Santa figures

helps hold up favorite Christmas books.

Rudolph is snuggled into 

greens and pinecones near by.

I added something new to the tabletop this year.

It's been a long time since I've used

this metal tree in my Christmas decorations,

but when I spotted these cute black and white color block

gift toppers at Target, I knew just what I'd use them on.

They are by Sugar Paper and were sold in packages of four.

These darling ceramic balls are 

much like the Kate Spade color block ornaments

I've seen this year, but for a fraction of the price.

They add a little contemporary vibe to our sun porch

and are a great compliment to our Courtly Check inspired

Christmas tree.  Preserved boxwood balls by were also a

Target purchase.  They came three to a package.

This jolly man has a big open sack 

perfect for holding candy treats

or possibly some pretty flowers for the right occasion.

More Santa figures and tartan

touches await on the pine table nearby.

The bronze rooster was a souvenir from

my trip to Paris in 2014.  

I gave him a festive touch for Christmas,

and added a petite Barbara Olsen framed

watercolor to his tray.

Another Barbara Olsen petite Christmas

painting sits below the lamp on top of the same chest.

I've enjoyed the two little Olsen painting since the 1990s.

Joyuex Noel, to all!

Thank you for joining me this Christmas Eve.

I'd like to thank all my readers and blogging friends

who visit and leave thoughtful comments.

I appreciate each of you, and am grateful that many

of you have become dear friends through the years.

Merry Christmas to all,
and to all a good night!



The summer we married, my husband was in graduate school, and I was employed as a teacher. We took a portion of our savings that summer and purchased a sailboat. We christened our Catalina 22, “Hyacinths For The Soul” after Saadi’s poem. Our "Hyacinths" provided years of pleasure.


  1. Super Christmas ornaments Sarah, You have really gone to town with your decorating.
    Merry Christmas and I hope you have a very happy day.

  2. Super Christmas ornaments Sarah, You have really gone to town with your decorating.
    Merry Christmas and I hope you have a very happy day.

  3. Thank you for the "invitation" to stop by your house this Christmas Eve. :) I loved seeing your beautiful decorations. It's so nice when each piece has a special memory of a place or friend. I loved it all, especially the tartan and courtly check. Merry Christmas!

  4. Love all the ornaments and Christmas decor. Merry Christmas.

  5. Your home is so festive, Sarah. ♥ the rooster tree topper.
    Merry Christmas!

  6. What a fun little Christmas home tour Sarah, it all looks great! Wishing you and yours a blessed and happy Christmas!

  7. The home looks lovely Sarah...all of those pretty plaid nuances throughout! Love the pumpkin most of all and your beautiful tree!

  8. I enjoyed every detail, but that tartan plaid pumpkin became #1 on my "to make" list. Thanks so much for sharing, and Merry Christmas. Sally

  9. Sarah, you outdid yourself again this year, all looks to beautiful and your lovely home so cozy and welcoming.
    Thanks for sharing, and again, many wishes for a happy Christmas and a wonderful New Year.
    We've just cleaned up after having 22 for our open house tonight - and I must say it appeared to be a fabulous time for everyone, yeah!!!!

    Love - Mary

  10. Just beautiful!!! Wishing you a very Merry Christmas!

  11. I love the checked ribbon on the tree Sarah and see a great gift peeking out of a bag under the tree! Merry Christmas-enjoy:@)

  12. Sarah, you have the special touch to transform your home into a magical Christmas fairyland. I am sure making merry is a specialty of yours. I enjoyed seeing all your special ornaments in your collection, love the Joyeus Noel from Paris. Your collections are wonderful. Wish I could have dropped in to see your lovely home at Christmas and have a cup of tea. Sitting here enjoying the quiet of Christmas morning with the little lights twinkling thinking of my special friend across the miles. Merry Christmas Sarah…..

  13. Beautiful decorations & a beautiful sentiment as well, Sarah. Lots of love & care in your home.
    Merry Christmas!!!

  14. Everything is Merry and Bright in your home Sarah! I love your MacKenzie-Childs Courtly Check additions and I have metal tree envy with those cute Target ornaments! Wishing you, your hubby and Miss Sadie the Merriest of Christmases!

  15. Dear Sarah Your home looks so beautiful, right out of a magazine!! I always love to visit you. Merry Christmas sweet friend.

  16. Merry Christmas Sarah! I enjoyed the tour around hour home. I enjoyed seeing all your Christmas decorations. I really like the metal tree you brought back out and how you decorated it- perfect!
    Have a wonderful peaceful, enjoyable day!

  17. Everything is absolutely beautiful! I am totally in love with your bamboo bookcase. Have a wonderful Christmas!

  18. Everything is beautiful and I love the ceramic balls. Merry Christmas and Peace in the New Year!

  19. Dearest Sarah,
    Merry Christmas to you and yours.
    LOVE your cute chickadees! All of your Christmas decorations are precious.
    Since 5 days I'm having the problem you once had, that my blog is no longer showing on the side bar... It shows an old post of 5 days ago.
    Have no idea why and what caused it.
    Just wait and see, no use for posting now as very few come to my blog because of it.
    Enjoy this season of joy and family closeness.

  20. Sarah it is such a treat to tour your home at Christmastime! I love the Courtly Check theme of your tree. So wonderful! You have the prettiest home....and the little chickadees on your mantel are making me smile this afternoon.

    Merry Christmas!

    Ricki Jill

  21. Sarah,
    Touring your home for Christmas was truly delightful, dear friend!!!
    Adorable ornaments on your Courtly Check Themed Tree!!!
    I adore the use of red tartan plaid throughout your home!!!
    The chickadees are a whimsical touch to your beautifully decorated mantel.
    Merry Christmas to you and yours!!!

  22. Beautiful Christmas decor, Sarah! You sure have a beautiful home. Merry Christmas!....Christine

  23. How festive, magical and pretty! You have a talent for creating a warm and cozy feel in your home with all of the treasures you love!

    Merry Christmas, Sarah...I know, it's winding down very fast here!

    Love to you and yours,

    Jane x

  24. Your home looks warm and inviting, Sarah, and I love seeing gifts from friends and family and remembrances of your trips. The metal tree looks so whimsical and your big tree looks amazing with all the M-C touches. Of course, Sadie's sweet picture always brings a smile to my face. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas! Loving hugs are sent your way!

  25. Everything is perfect Sarah.
    I wish you both all the best in the New Year:)

  26. It is all so lovely. I hope it was a wonderful day!

  27. Oh my goodness! So many things to comment on here, Sarah! LOVE your tree and how the plaids and the MC check intermingle so perfectly! I spied a plaid rolling pin and love that Burberry gift bag. Your vignette in the bamboo piece is so lovely! Did you paint Sadie on the canvas?
    LOVE it all.
    Merry Christmas, sweet friend.
    Many blessings,

  28. Oh I do love your tree and all its decorations. Hoping everyone enjoyed all the fun.

  29. Happy Pink Saturday....your home is gorgeous! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!!


  30. Your home looks beautiful. I love those little birds and the fireside mantelpiece especially. Happy Boxing Day!

  31. Oh it is all just wonderful Sarah! Love those little chickadees, bunnies tied up in plaid, and your special ornaments! Hope your holiday was grand!

  32. Sarah, I love all the charming, festive touches you've added to your home- especially the chickadees and bunnies! Love the metal Chrisrmas tree too! I hope you had a wonderful Christmas.

  33. Hi Sarah,

    I do like the nutcracker your mother gave you. I'm fortunate yo have some Christmas items from my mom. I really love you metal tree. Thanks for playing today.

    Happy Blue Monday and a Happy New Year!

  34. How festive and beautiful everything looks with your wonderful collections! Shows off your beautiful house nicely! Our cold and snow makes it all feel festive too! Stay cozy and safe!

  35. How festive and beautiful everything looks with your wonderful collections! Shows off your beautiful house nicely! Our cold and snow makes it all feel festive too! Stay cozy and safe!

  36. Hello, I just love your tree and all the decorations are lovely. The birdies are cute and the lil dog is adorable too. I really like your metal tree and ornaments. Beautiful post and images. Happy Monday, enjoy your new week! I wish you all the best in 2016, Happy New Year!

  37. Your house is beautifully decorated for the holidays, Sarah. I especially liked the whimsical ornaments!

  38. What a stunning Christmas with all trimmings....beautiful! Happy New Year!


  39. Sarah,
    Your home is so lovely and I hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas!

  40. you have lovely decorations....and your tree is just perfect. I took apart my B&W kitchen tree tonight and plan to do my dining room tree in those colors next year....Wishing you a happy new year!!

  41. Every thing looks magazine festive and colorful.
    Glad you didn't have terrible will take many days to get Lubbock cleaned up...nothing like the tornadoes, tho. so so sorry for all the people...

  42. Your Christmas decorations are all beautiful and meaningful, Sarah! That is the very best kind of ornaments--the ones that bring back memories.I would love to peek at all your children's holiday books for ideas next year. My granddaughter enjoyed the "Frosty the Snowman" tale this year, and my grandsons liked the Polar Express.
    We are taking our tree and decorations down early as I will have my surgery in a couple days. I hope for a less stressful recovery for this eye--the prior one had some complications that will also need to be corrected during my surgery, so I will be hurting in both eyes for a few days. Thank goodness for talk radio and audio books to listen to as I recover and can't read or watch TV for 5 days.

    Wishing you and your husband a very Happy and Healthy New Year! [[[[ Hugs}}}

  43. What a beautiful and festive post, Sarah!
    Being a huge fan of Christmas trees, I loved especially your wonderful Christmas tree ornaments.
    Thank you for sharing and have a very Happy New Year!

  44. You have many unique Christmas pieces and I enjoyed a tour around your home from Christmas Eve.
    Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday this year, all the best for 2016!

  45. I've so enjoyed the Christmas tour of your elegant home. I see your signature on each special, very personal piece. The children's books are delightful. Makes me smile! I have a Fifi portrait of Dickens, too. I wish that Sadie and he could have a play date. He'll be fifteen on May 30, God willing...still a happy and sweet little guy, even if he's slowing down a bit. Thanks for inviting us for a peek. Happy New New Year! Cherry Kay

  46. Oh Sarah, what unique and beautiful Christmas decorations. I would not even be able to pick a favorite thing. I love every single thing and the way you have used each and every treasure.The Chickadees, the metal tree, the NY Santa - all are such unique and special items. I love the way you decorated that metal tree. The MC vase filled with Christmas greens looks so elegant. You have such style. I enjoyed this tour.

  47. Your home looks so gorgeous all decorated for Christmas. Your tree is beautiful....the ornaments are sooooo pretty! Wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year!!!!!

  48. I'm in love with it all, but I am wondering why this girl who loves black and white checks has only one MacKenzie Childs teakettle and how it is that I don't have a single black and white checked ornament. I need to start looking.

    I hope your Christmas was wonderful.

  49. WOW! Just WOW! I cannot believe how gorgeous every single thing in your home is! I love MacKenzie Childs too! My favorite is the metal tree holder. That is amazing. I wish I had one of those!

  50. Well, I may be late to the Christmas party, but still in time to wish you a very joyous season. This week following Christmas is one of my favorites, just for the contemplation and reflection. Even deconstructing Christmas brings a flood of memories, new and old. You have so many vignettes and baubles that I love, Sarah - from the main tree to the bookshelves to the new, smaller tree at your side entry - so clever! I love the toppers - thought they were MC knobs at first - and the boxwoods. Those chickadees, the Paris memento rooster, the NY Santa - just a few that really caught my eye. Enjoy your week leading to the new year, new subjects to explore!

  51. I just love your tree with the black and white! So pretty and creative, too! Wishing you the very best of everything in the new year!

  52. Sarah- you have created the warmest and fun whimsical holiday home this year. Everything is well appointed and looks amazing.

    it's taking me a while to catch up on aoll my missed reading in the busy Christmas season. But my wishes are sincere to you.

    May your new year be blessed with good health, laughter, love and peace.

  53. What a beautiful collection of ornaments you have. I love your MC's ornaments - they are all so beautiful and fun. Everything is perfect, and at a class I went to this year, they said the black check was THE way to decorate this year!!! Your gift bags look so beautiful. I am sure they were loved by all. Hope it was a wonderful day and everyone was healthy for Christmas!

  54. Beautiful Sarah. Loving your collection of ornaments. Your house is so lovely with all of your touches. I keep saying I need to buy something from MC. I so admire the tote too! Many blessings for a happy bright new year. P.S. I sent you an email about the salad plates. Cheers.

  55. Sarah,
    A beautiful Christmas in every single detail and moment. Thank you for sharing the joy and beauty of Christmas with us.
    I am always a little sad when Christmas is over, and this year was so busy with the move and sleepovers that I feel like I missed it.
    So, today I am stopping by to wish you a very lovely New Year and may all of your wishes for 2016 come true.

  56. Sarah, your tree is really beautiful and all of your Christmas collections. It certainly all looks merry and bright and full of love at your home this year. Love the pic of your sweet pup and his little snowman. I probably will have to look for one for Kai. I'm sure he would love it. I am so glad I made a new friend this year of you and hope that you have a wonderful new year..Judy

  57. Thanks so much for stopping by!
    Happy New Year to you and your family!!


  58. Merry Christmas and happy New Year! Everything is gorgeous but I particularly love what you did with the metal tree. So many details and so many keepsakes. Looking forward to keeping up with you in the coming year.

  59. OMG! Where do I start? Everything is gorgeous, each and everyone of your vignettes with lots of pretty things. Love that metal tree and the top of your tree, which I think is beautiful.
    Your house looks merry and bright and how sad and gloomy our homes look when everything is taken down.
    Wishing you and yours a very happy and very blessed new year sweet friend.

  60. Dear Sarah, thank you so much for bringing us all of this incredible beauty and I appreciate your visit so much! Happy New Year to you and yours!

    The Arts by Karena
    New Years Thoughts!

  61. You are a fantastic decorator, Sarah! I especially love your tree. It and the rooster on top are show-stoppers. Thanks for linking up with Vintage Charm :)

  62. Dear Sarah,
    Happy New Year! I'm just a little late. Your holiday home looked so festive and beautiful. The rooster tree topper is charming :) I hope your holidays were beautiful and bright.
    Cheers from very cold DC,

  63. Hi Sarah, Beautiful decor!! Wishing you a Happy New Year filled with many blessings and joys. Celeste xo

  64. Oh it is all magical perfection dear Sarah! I adore those little chickadees. Have a fabulous weekend! I am gearing up to start another semester of school on Monday. :)

  65. I'm so behind with my blog ready, but I finally arrived to wish you a happy 2016, Sarah. Hope it's a good one.

  66. What a lovely visit I've had to your Christmas house! It does my heart good to see the photos and hear the joy and love for your home behind your words. Like you, I have a collection of children's Christmas books available on a low shelf.....for me as well as for the children in my life!

  67. So beautiful..your home is a delight to tour. I love the black and white so much! So many beautiful things displayed. I hope you are having a great new year!

  68. Time flies, January is going to be over soon, and before we know, it will come spring. -- From Editors@Home Decor Daily


Thank you to each of you who take the time to leave a comment. I read and appreciate each and every one and will respond to any questions. Your notes are the only way I know who has stopped in for a visit.