When I read the topic for this week's Ellipsis Monday Photo Shoot #153: Here Come The Holidays, I immediately took two non-flash photos of the only Christmas item on hand that wasn't buried in a storage bin or closet somewhere:
This fresh wreath is from a St. Michael's Day School fundraiser, and a gift from Father Smith and the church. A week later, it's still on my kitchen table. I thought John was going to put it up. He thought I was. I'll take care of it tomorrow.
I've got more interesting shots now, though, and certainly less grainy ones. Yesterday (Saturday), John took a rare day off to get work done at home. We had lunch together, went browsing at our local Ace Hardware, and spent the afternoon going through our Christmas stuff - most of it, anyway.
We had two huge plastic storage bins and five of the big cardboard ones. To free up storage space for other things, we managed to empty four of the cardboard ones.
We also made a bit of a mess, at least temporarily. It didn't make sense to put away everything we're actually going to use this year! But we did fill our big fallout shelter barrel (once used to store potable water) with trash, twice. We threw out melted candles, old Christmas cards, crumpled paper and broken boxes, among other things. We also filled one of the emptied boxes with stuff to donate to a rummage sale, a gift bag with stocking stuffers for the children of John's co-workers, and a small grocery bag with selected ornaments for a friend. Even after all that, we probably still have enough ornaments left to fill three Christmas trees. Come to think of it, I'm pretty sure we did have three trees up one year: the vintage silver one with the color wheel, a big pink one, and a small live tree that was my small rebellion that year. I've since learned to live without live Christmas trees, albeit reluctantly!
We ended up with two very full plastic bins plus a cardboard one. One problem: John's pretty sure the bins are now too heavy to lift back onto the top shelf in the laundry room!