A Tale Of Two Christmas Trees

A Tale Of Two Christmas Trees began as I looked around our sunny Florida home with its open concept design and I realized it was going to be a challenge to decorate for Christmas. The warm December weather, windows looking out at towering oleanders and palm trees, tropical fabric on the throw pillows…no nothing made me want to sing “it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas“.

Open Concept Home In Florida

Tropical Designed Open Concept Home In Florida

If you have followed my blog over the years, you know that Christmas is my favorite time of the year and that I decorated almost every room in our former 1730’s farm house in New Hampshire for this lovely season. Knowing we were downsizing, I sold all of my Christmas trees and decorations to a dealer the week before we moved to Florida. I only kept one special tree that has a real cedar tree trunk and is flocked with snow. I thought that it would remind us of our wonderful years in New England. You might remember that it was the tree we had in our kitchen that was featured in Country Woman magazine last year, you can read the article here if you haven’t seen it before.

Knowing that the tree would now take center stage in our great room, I took a good look around to figure out if I wanted the tree to have a Florida or beach theme. No, I totally rejected the thought of seashells, starfish and sea turtle ornaments which are very popular in our little beach town. I also felt we needed a different look from the reds and burgundies that I’ve used in the past but I didn’t want the tree covered in varying shades of sea foam blue that I’m seeing everywhere here in Vero Beach. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen gorgeous trees decorated that way but I believed the look wouldn’t have worked with our color scheme that uses green as an accent color.

Decorating An Open Concept Home For Christmas

Decorating An Open Concept Home In Florida For Christmas

Instead of the simply decorated traditional tree that I’ve done in the past, I decided on a more contemporary look. I wrapped the Christmas tree in chartreuse green ribbon and then draped it in bronze and gold beads. I used ornaments in various shades of green, gold and silver which picked up the colors in the carpets that lie on either side of the tree and the accessories throughout the room.

While the top of the tree had to be bent down to fit in our New Hampshire kitchen with its low ceiling, our eleven foot ceilings presented no such problem. I was able to use a star made of beautiful gold paper that I have had for years as a tree topper. To keep the tree from looking too dinky in our large room with its tall ceilings, we place the tree on a wooden box for additional height. I covered the box with a skirt made from a new round tablecloth that bends with our tile floors.

My husband and I found two wonderful light boxes wrapped as Christmas presents when we were out Christmas shopping recently. Their bows match the chartreuse ribbon I had used to wrap the tree….needless to say we had to have them. They look so pretty sitting under the tree, especially at night when the Christmas tree is lit.

This is the same tree that once stood in our New England country kitchen but it now has a very different look. By simply changing the ornaments, I believe that this year’s tree fits in well with our new Florida decor. Would a taller, fuller tree be better suited to our great room? Definitely but I’m very happy with it because the tree comes with memories of Christmases past that will always be with us no matter where we live.

Our Christmas Tree

Our Decorated Christmas Tree

Yes, you do see a palm tree in the corner of the room. I guess that is just part of living in Florida that I’m going to have to get used to…palm trees and Christmas trees together.

Tell me my dear friends, have you ever given your Christmas tree a totally new look, a makeover of sorts? Have you started from scratch like I did this year out of necessity? Perhaps you are like I was in the past, keeping your treasured ornaments for years. I do hope you enjoyed my tale of two Christmas trees, the same special little tree but with two totally different looks.

 

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About Karen

I travel the back roads of New England and beyond, sharing great food and interesting places.
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189 Responses to A Tale Of Two Christmas Trees

  1. Beth says:

    What a stunning tree, and home!
    We have a pretty traditional tree, decorated with ornaments that we buy on every holiday, and that our kids made when they were small. Every year it’s a joy to pull out the box and take out each ornament, remembering its special story.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Beth, for your lovely compliment. I do enjoy a traditional tree with ornaments that children have made over the years. So many memories to look back on as each year passes…treasure them. 🙂

  2. Madonna says:

    Karen, you really have a talent for decorating. I have learned that when you live in a warm climate the holidays can sneak up on you. 🙂

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your kind words, Madonna…thank you. You are right, when you have warm weather you think of spending your days outside and before you know it the holidays are here.

  3. Angie@Angie's Recipes says:

    That’s a very beautifully decorated Xmas tree, Karen.

  4. Karen says:

    I’m glad you like the tree Angie, thank you for your compliment.

  5. Mad Dog says:

    It’s tricky in hotter climes to make things feel Christmassy, but I think you’ve got it right and complimented the colours in your room 😉

    • Karen says:

      Hi Mad Dog, We used to live in Florida years ago but I forgot how hard it is to get in the Christmas spirit when the weather is warm. I’m glad you like how the tree turner out, thanks.

  6. Your tree decorating skills are showing, and I can’t believe you found those matching light boxes – what a find. Beautiful tree for your new space and lifestyle. A couple of years ago, we bought a taller, thinner tree that would fit better in a downsized space and have been happy with it, but it’s still the traditional red/green with some ornaments older than I am and each with its own story. Merry Christmas. 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Judy, I appreciate your nice compliment and wish. We really were lucky with the light boxes as they went perfectly under the tree. I can imagine how special your ornaments are. I have a box of ornaments that I’ve had forever that I brought to Florida but they really didn’t go with our decor. I’m going to make a gift of them to our son as he is having us stay with him for a few days this Christmas.

  7. Oh Karen how beautiful your tree looks, so fitting for your open modern house. It must be so different for you this Christmas, knowing that your weather will be warm & sunny, no mountains of snow to clear. Have a wonderful time with your family & friends.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Barbara, for your lovely compliment and wish. As much as I have loved our traditional trees in the past, I believe the look of the tree this year fits well in our new home. Knowing that there will be no snow to deal with this year certainly does add to our enjoyment of living in our new home town. 🙂

  8. Eva Taylor says:

    What a beautiful tree Karen, the greens and golds are indeed perfect for Florida life. Is an artificial tree common in those parts? We always have a real tree and this year we chopped it ourselves, it has an incredible aroma, like a giant room freshener! Our tree has been predominantly white and silver but I’m thinking of adding blues to it next year, I’ll have to keep my eyes open for sales on the decorations. I also have a small artificial tree in the basement, it’s decorated with the beautiful multicoloured German glass ornaments of my childhood.

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your compliment Eva, I’m glad that you like my color choices. Even though real trees are sold in Florida, many people prefer an artificial one. With temps in the 80’s at the Christmas tree lots, fresh cut trees start loosing the needles pretty fast. What I do like to have in the house are fresh greens that can be bought at the florists and displayed in vases around the house. Blue would a wonderful color to add to your tree.

  9. It all looks lovely in your new home, Karen. I buy a ‘real’ tree but have ornaments that go back years and carry special memories and it’s always so nice to use them again and again each Christmas. I wish you a very happy Christmas and all good wishes for 2016!! 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Kay, I’m glad you like the look I’ve gone with in our new home. I love the smell of fresh greens so I know your tree is not only lovely with your special ornaments but gives your house a wonderful woodsy fragrance.

  10. coarol says:

    We, too, moved this year. From a 1921 Arts and Crafts home to a modern open design. Most of our treasured decorations came with us. The twenty-seven pieces of Christmas in the City didn’t. Our old home had a twenty-two foot mantle that held all the pieces. Here, it would have had to be split up. Storage would have been a problem too. So, we donated it to an auction for a local historic home/museum. Decorating here has been fun and easier than I thought it would be. Of course, we don’t have to consider palm trees or the ocean. Lake Michigan is our guide!! Your tree is beautiful and fits right in.

    Best,
    Bonnie

    • Karen says:

      Hi Bonnie, We both have had to give up a lot of our Christmas treasures because of our moves and the lack of storage. Yes, it will take getting used to having both a palm and Christmas tree in the same room. 🙂 I’m glad you think the new look goes well, thank you.

  11. Good for you Karen! Sister, you really scaled down! In time you will imprint your style on this FLA home, with accent walls of rich hues.
    Here in VA, we are having blissful days in the high 60’s and even one day at 75! Surely to change to colder temps of zone 6, yet yard clean up is so enjoyable! And the wild birds are happily bathing this morning in the birdbath. I fear they think it is spring…;-)
    Happy Holidays, Diane

    • Karen says:

      You are so right Diane, we really did scale down. I’m sure you are right, it took years to make our New Hampshire home feel perfect and it will take time to get the exact look we want here in Florida. I can’t believe how warm the entire east coast is, its been about 10 degrees above normal here as well. Thank you for your nice comment and wish.

      • And FYI Karen, I stopped with live Christmas trees back in 2001. I searched and finally found a 48″ wrought iron tree (with sculptural limbs) that happily sits in my bay window during the holidays…decorated with a few of my much loved ornaments from years past. This “tree” stacks and packs flat if I ever find that new home to move to. Diane

  12. Penny says:

    I know the feeling of trying to make Florida decor fit with a New England Christmas theme. I have left all of my wintery themed decorations in NC and bought new green, silver and red ornaments for here. But sometimes it is hard to get in the spirit here in Florida. Your house is beautiful and I love your wrapped gifts.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Penny, for your nice compliment. At first I said my house wasn’t compatible with Christmas decor but I have made my New England tree fit in with a total makeover. 🙂 I’m sure your decorations will look lovely in your Florida home. Will you take them to North Carolina when you sell your Florida home later this year?

  13. Your tree is so beautiful. I do not think Christmas trees are all that easy to decorate- well done! I am still in shock that you have sold that house which sounded like such a huge part of your personal life. I have tried to downsize (successfully) Christmas decoration without moving. The idea of decorating year after year- the clutter and the mess was just getting to me. I sold a lot of stuff, and once everything was up this year I felt more zen than stressed. I like how minimal everything is where you are!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Diane, for your lovely compliment. We indeed made a huge lifestyle change and leaving our New Hampshire home was very hard to do. The nice part of downsizing is how it has freed up your life. It is nice that Christmas will be less stressful for you this year, enjoy. 🙂

  14. Dawn says:

    Your Christmas tree looks so pretty in your new home! I’m so happy that this special tree moved to Florida with you, Karen. It must have been fun giving it a whole new look this year. Our Christmas tree always holds our treasured ornaments, collected through the years. Each ornament is a gift from someone special and holds stories that are close to our hearts. Wishing you a wonderful first Christmas in your new home! ♡

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your sweet compliment Dawn and yes it was fun giving it a modern makeover that would make it work in our new home. My husband was afraid that there would be tears because I would think the tree looked dinky in the great room…perhaps it does but it makes me happy. I know your tree has to be beautiful decorated with ornaments that mean so much to you.

      • Dawn says:

        It’s just lovely to bring a special part of your traditional New England home to your exciting, new life in Florida! Making new Christmas memories will make your new home feel like ‘Home Sweet Home.’ There might even be a new tradition or two! So happy for you, Karen!! ♡

  15. You always provide delight in all you do. I miss your New England home but your Florida digs are stunning.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your very kind words Tin Man, they are much appreciated. I miss my New England home too as it was so special but we are enjoying each day in our new house. It is starting to feel like home but there is still more to be done…it just takes time.

  16. Your living room looks lovely with the palm tree and the Christmas tree and well done for adapting to your new surroundings and culture so quickly.
    We keep our Christmas decorations from year to year, but try to buy something new every year too. This year, we are away and we’ll be celebrating the festivities in our motorhome for the fist tiime, so we’ve bought a new artificial tree to sit on our dining table. The motorhome is all decorated now for our departure on Friday 18th. I’ll be sharing that soon.

    Merry Christmas in Florida! 😇

    • Karen says:

      Hi Fatima, I’m glad that you like how I’ve decorated our new home and appreciate your nice compliment. I think the two of you will have fun having a Christmas adventure in your new motorhome. I’m looking forward to following along. Have safe travels dear friend.

  17. Darlene says:

    Your new-old tree looks perfect in your lovely new home. I went through the same thing here in Spain. We bought a small artificial tree as our place is much smaller than the apartment in BC. I left all my ornaments with my daughter so picked up a few here and there. Hubby decorated the palm tree in our yard with electric lights and I feel all Christmassy again. Like you, I love decorating for Christmas. Some pictures on my little tree here https://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2015/12/13/its-beginning-to-look-a-lot-like-christmas/

    All the best for a fabulous Christmas in your new place!! ❤

    • Karen says:

      I’m glad you like my Christmas tree makeover Darlene, thank you. Your tree and palm tree look perfect for your Spanish home. Our lives have both changed with our moves and downsizing but I know we both are enjoying our decisions. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas as well.

  18. Ingrid says:

    It’s beautiful and seems to fit your room perfectly. When we moved from the Chicago area to Las Vegas NV, the first Christmas took a little getting used to but over time the desert landscape/weather became home/normal. Wishing you a wonderful (snowless) Christmas 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Ingrid for your nice compliment and wish. Your move was definitely a lifestyle change. It does take a while to get used to the changes but that is what makes life a real adventure.

  19. Your Christmas tree looks lovely, you are such a talented decorator. We buy a real tree and our ornaments carry memories of past Christmasses . I love the lights on a tree . I remember using real candles when living in Germany. Have a wonderful warm and sunny Christmas and a happy New Year,

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your lovely compliment and wish, Gerlinde. I love the smell of a fresh Christmas tree and I’m sure your ornaments make your tree very special.

  20. Sissi says:

    Beautiful Christmas tree, Karen! You are really talented and it’s so obvious how important Christmas time is for you! I sometimes don’t have even a tiniest tree for Christmas even when having guests… this year I’m going to have one and hope it will create a more festive mood.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Sissi, for your kind words, they are much appreciated. I do hope you get a little tree and that it puts you in a festive spirit…I’m sure it will. 🙂

  21. What a warm hug your post brings! Your tree is gorgeous, modern and embraces your new home. Our tree is loaded with old ornaments from near and far, filled with memories of years past. I’m also doing something new. I kept a small metal, wood land styled tree from my mom’s estate and set it up in my studio. I’ve kept the woodland theme with owls and birds. There are snow flakes and stars too.

    • Karen says:

      Thank you so much Deb, I’m so happy that you enjoyed the post and I appreciate your nice compliment. I’ve seen woodland themed Christmas trees and they as so cute…I know I would love yours.

  22. A Christmas tree tells a story of family and friends over time, it’s steeped in history; I understand the necessity of starting over from time to time in life, but that move would have been really hard for me.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Charlie, The move was hard as I left so much behind in New Hampshire. Treasures that I had collected for years…hopefully someone else will enjoy them as much as I have. My life has started anew and I’m making new memories. 🙂

  23. ladyfi says:

    Love the pastel green of the Christmas tree!

  24. Kiki says:

    Beautiful, Karen! Love the colour theme and am glad to see you didn’t choose a beach theme 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kiki, I think a beach theme tree is cute if you have a little cottage at the edge of the ocean but I couldn’t see it in our house. I’m glad to know you like the colors I decided on, thank you.

  25. kitchenriffs says:

    Your tree looks great! Superb decorating job.

    When we lived in Florida, it definitely took us a few years to appreciate Florida Christmas. We really grew to love the palm trees wrapped in lights — not at all a traditional look, but one we really liked. We assumed when we moved there that we’d be using an artificial tree, and did so at first. But we discovered Florida is a wonderful climate for real trees — we didn’t use our heat that much in December, so the tree didn’t dry out as much as we find it does in the north.

    Anyway, fun post — thanks.

    • Karen says:

      Hi John, I’m glad you enjoyed the post and like the tree, thank you. It has been in the 80’s this month so I don’t know how fresh the trees are this year at the Christmas tree lot but I might consider a real tree one year…I do love the wonderful smell they give a room.

  26. It tastes a bit of getting used to when you move to the south after having lived most of your life in the north. The Christmas tree is up and it is 80 degrees outside. You have a created a beautiful look in your new home. When I moved here, I had to change trees because up north I had a 9 ft tree but that would never fit her. so we downsized trees but I kept many of the ornaments I have had for a long time. Merry Christmas to you Karen.

    • Karen says:

      Merry Christmas to you too, Jovina and thank you for your nice compliment. Yes, it will take a bit of getting used to living in the south again. We are having the same warm temps, it is supposed to cool down from the 80s to the 70’s over the weekend. I don’t think I’ll be wearing a Christmas sweater this year. 😀

  27. Monique says:

    Well guess what Karen?
    Oyoyoy..not even a whisper of a snowflake..we will probably have a green Christmas..
    The tree..fairy lights and decorations add so much ambiance. and many love this unusual now snow QC..but I miss it for Christmas..all this to say you are missing nothing..enjoy your Fl decor:) At least it’s sunny!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Monique, We moved to Florida because my husband said he didn’t want to deal with another terrible winter like last year and now the weather in New Hampshire is just like yours…warm and not a speck of snow. My husband couldn’t be happier with the sun and warm weather here in Florida but I’d like to at least wear a sweater on Christmas day…we’ll just have to turn the A/C down. 😀

  28. lulu says:

    What an incredibly different feeling from your home in New Hampshire, but then you are in a very different place. I hope you are feeling settled in and excited about your new environs.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Linda, Yes our new home is totally different. Since you have two homes in different parts of the country, I know that you can understand that where you live does change how you decorate your home. Thank you for your wish, we are getting settled in and are enjoying life in Vero. 🙂

  29. You’ve made your new house your new home. Nice!

  30. I love the way you mix your old life and your new life – what fantastic taste you have! I’ve had trees in Spain (when I couldn’t get hold of a tree) made from olive braches, pine tree branches and once a small lemon tree! Hey, it’s the lvoe that goes into it that’s important 🙂

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your kind words Tanya, thank you. I totally agree with you that the love will always show through. We were living in a hotel in Santo Domingo one Christmas and my husband bought me a tree made from bare tree branches that was painted white, I decorated it with paper ornaments and it was lovely. 🙂

  31. What a beautiful job you did with your new surroundings! New house needs a new tree and just the right look. You nailed it. Very pretty!

  32. A_Boleyn says:

    It’s hard to get into the Xmas spirit when you’re surrounded by sun and sand but I think you’ve done a lovely job with your tree. Happy holidays.

    • Karen says:

      When I first started thinking about how I would decorate for Christmas I was a little worried but I’m happy with the way it came out. I’m glad you like it Boleyn and appreciate your compliment and wish…thank you.

  33. I know you’re having so much fun reinventing things in your new home. It looks so light and pretty!

  34. What a beautiful looking tree, you have definitely got me into the Christmas mood!

  35. Eha says:

    I may not ‘do’ Christmas and have not had a tree in the house for many years but very much appreciate the elegant beauty of yours and the way you have changed the past patterns to your new way of life. The tree looks lovely . . . besides this, to the best of my recollection, is the first time we have had a chance to see the inside of your new home: again a very stylish blending of a modern building with a classical feeling-world . . . hope you have a very happy holiday!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Eha, yes this is a peek into our new home and I’m glad to know that you like the way I’ve decorated. I very much appreciate your lovely compliment and wish, thank you.

  36. yumgoggle1 says:

    Oh goodness yes! We have 3 or 4 completely different trees – we have my grandmother’s aluminum one we put up sometimes for a retro look. A completely white tree we adorn with burgundy round ornaments for an OU Crimson and Cream look, we have one pre-lit tree when we run out of time to put it up and finally, we have an 8 ft. tall green tree – the one we have up this year – that we decorate in blue and silver – to match our furnishings. Except this year, we put up no ornaments, only lights and my grandson is making all the garlands and decorations with a little help from me and his PaPa. It’s been great fun for him to make the chains and paint the “stained glass” looking dogs, cats, and other characters………..I think this will be my favorite! 🙂

    As usual, yours is stunning – I love the green, gold, and silver – I really like that table cloth!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kelli, I like your idea of having different trees for different moods. I’m sure your grandson is very happy being able to help decorate your tree. I’m glad you like this year’s tree, thank you.

  37. Your tree looks absolutely stunning. Love the colourways. And it seems to be perfectly balanced – must’ve taken you ages!

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your kind words Johnny, I’m glad you like our Christmas tree. It took two days to decorate…not bad considering I was starting from scratch this year.

  38. Looks absolutely beautiful Karen! Love the look!
    I have to put up mine. Hope soon. xoxo

    • Karen says:

      Hi Gloria, I’m glad you like the new look of my tree this year. Thank you for your nice compliment. I’m sure your tree is decorated now and looking pretty. 🙂

  39. Your tree look absolutely beauty Karen!
    Love so much !
    xoxo

  40. When I moved from Maine to Tennessee for college, it wasn’t so bad because Knoxville does get snow. When I moved to Florida, Christmas wasn’t the same, however it did get dark at 5pm.

    I still struggle with summertime Christmas. We still decorate and put the lights out back for the boat parade but it should be cold with luminaria everywhere. 🙂

    Your tree is gorgeous and I knew it would be. You have a true decorator’s touch. Love the new home.

    • Karen says:

      You know what I’m going through Maureen, yes cold weather makes it feel more like Christmas but we both are now living where it is warm. 🙂 I’m glad you like the tree and appreciate your lovely compliment, thank you very much.

  41. Debra says:

    You really take the time to create a beautiful tree, Karen, and it is clear you’ve given a lot of thought to what would best fit in with your new home and lifestyle. It’s really quite gorgeous! I haven’t ever really changed our tree. I have the same bubble lights I’ve had since our children were very young, and the tree is covered with a variety of bulbs, baubles and handmade children’s ornaments. I guess you’d say it’s heavily decorated in sentimentality. LOL! On the other hand, some of those original ornaments are practically antiques at this point. 🙂 And I have never in my life had a white Christmas. Some years it’s 80 degrees and the trick is keeping the tree alive until New Year’s when I like to take it down. So funny! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas in your beautiful new home. And that you have a healthy, “accident-free” new year, my friend. ox

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Debra for your sweet compliment and wish. Yes, I definitely want the new year to be “accident free”…no more broken bones. 😀 I know I would love your tree with the bubble lights and the handmade ornaments…it is decorated with love and memories.

  42. Jane says:

    I think you did a wonderful job making your tree adapt to your current home, Karen…I love the bright colors and what a novel idea in making it taller. Our home is so small we always have to cut off a good half foot!

    Your home is lovely. How about wrapping a few white lights around your palm? I’m not a huge fan of decorating to suit the climate or locale (we have the home on the lake and I only recently, after 25 years, allowed a few nautical themed ideas indoors!). But a few lights couldn’t hurt, maybe a tongue in cheek sort of play on your farmhouse roots!

    Happy Holidays!

    Jane x

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your wish and compliment Jane. You made me smile when you told me about cutting the top off a tree…yes, I have done that but you get a really full tree that way. 🙂 I joked about adding lights to the palm, perhaps next year.

  43. Sophie33 says:

    Celebrating Christmas in the sun, that is something different, hey? Your house is looking more & more Christmassy! Lovely too! xxxx

    • Karen says:

      Hi Sophie, You are right, this will be a very different Christmas…warm and sunny but still Christmassy. 🙂 I’m glad you like the look, thank you.

  44. Your tree is beautiful Karen and I have one of these wrapped gifts under the tree myself only in red haha! China has conquered the world. I think that your tree put you to the festive mood!

  45. wow, it looks amazing! We don’t ever do a Christmas tree – I have a mini one we have used for years, made from our local tradesman from steel and marbles 🙂

  46. Barbara says:

    Lovely, Karen! I’ve lived in Florida for 45 years now, transplanted from Michigan. So, our first years here in a house, we still had a standing tree on the floor (two actually) and pretty much used colors and ornaments from our old house. Once I moved to a condo, though, there was less space. I had seen a photo in a decorating magazine of a tree on a round table. I tried it and we loved it! It goes nearly to the ceiling. Gradually over the years, we have changed out our ornaments and now they are all sea-life oriented. Lovely glass fish, octopi, jelly fish, sharks, divers, whales, mermaids and even some seals. But one thing the kids still insist upon: a live tree,
    (I make them take it down!)
    Happy Christmas, Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Barbara, Another Floridian who has moved from up north…you know exactly what I’m going through adjusting to our new lifestyle. One of the trees I did in New Hampshire was on a table. It works well, you have the feel of a tall tree and if it sits in front of a window it looks like a regular tree from outside. Thank you for your wish, I hope you have a nice Christmas as well.

  47. niasunset says:

    I know your Christmas decorations in the past years dear Karen, always fascinated me. Wherever you go, you are YOU dear Karen and I can see how amazing, I loved the new home and your Christmas tree…. Colours are so nice. Happy Holidays, Thank you, love, nia

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your nice thoughts and wish Nia, yes wherever I go I’m still the same person. 🙂 I’m happy to know that you like our new home and this year’s Christmas tree, thank you.

  48. My Kitchen Stories says:

    I remember your love of Christmas very well. i cant believe that is the same tree. It looks so beautiful. the new house looks gorgeous and light and very new compared to your beauty in new England. hope you have a great Christmas in your new digs Karen

    • Karen says:

      Hi Tania, It really doesn’t look like the same tree…I was surprised when I pulled up photos of it decorated in past years. Thank you for your nice compliment and wish. We are going to get to spend time with our children and grandchildren this year so I know it will be nice.

  49. megtraveling says:

    Your display of the tree is simply delightful Karen! There’s something about Christmas that makes us want to create and preserve traditions and memories of the past, which you have done beautifully… 🙂

  50. Cathy says:

    It looks beautiful Karen. The colours go so well in your new living room, and I think anything larger really isn’t necessary. I love unwrapping my little decorations – many with special memories – every year. We don’t have a tree, but a freshly cut ‘branch’ in a very large vase, so it looks a bit different every year!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Cathy, for your compliment… I was pleased with the new colors. I’m happy knowing you thought the size worked well. I know your talent when it comes to making pretty arrangements in vases so your freshly cut branch has to be lovely.

  51. plumdirt says:

    It looks lovely. Our tree changes slightly each year only because of new ornament additions gifted the year before. We have used a lime tree in years past as the Christmas tree simply because it already had to be brought inside and our home was too small for both the lime tree and a Christmas tree.

  52. Your new approach to decorating your tree is beautiful, Karen, and if fit into your Florida decor so nicely. I can’t imagine warm weather on Christmas. I’m a died in the wool Pacific NW girl. Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to you and yours.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Cathy, Thank you for your nice compliment. I did like being able to wear a sweater at Christmas so It will take some time to get used to warm weather in December. Now warm weather and no snow will be most welcomed come January and February. 🙂

  53. I believe you transformed the tree perfectly, Karen! It fits in just right into your new Florida home. Love the lighted gifts and the base of the tree. I think we would enjoy something similar to bring light into our dark days. Happy Holidays!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Laila, for your nice compliment. I agree with you about the lighted gifts, they would be perfect for your dark days. I bet your husband could make you some, I’ve seen DIY posts on the internet about them.

  54. Your tree looks lovely. It must be strange getting used to celebrating Christmas in a tropical climate!

    • Karen says:

      It is very different Grace…both the weather and the look of everything. A lot of the palm trees in our community have been lit for Christmas. Thank you for your compliment about our tree.

  55. So elegant and perfect for your new Florida home! Wishing you and yours a most merry Christmas!!! xo

  56. It’s beautiful. What a change that must be to go from an old NH farmhouse to a Florida home. I hope you are enjoying it very much.

  57. I absolutely LOVE your tree’s new look! The only thing different I did this year (at my daughter’s insistence) was to change from colored blinking lights to all white non-blinking lights and use only silver tinsel garland instead of both gold and silver. Otherwise I put all my nostalgic ornaments of all different shapes, colors and sizes on it. Have a most wonderful very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Kathryn, for your nice compliment and wish. I like the solid white lights…the blinking ones always gave me trouble. I’m sure your tree is lovely with its new look and nostalgic ornaments. I hope your Christmas is wonderful as well.

  58. What a difference a year makes! You have such exquisite taste, Karen. I love the contemporary look of the tree and how it picks up on the color scheme of your new Florida home.

  59. Both are gorgeous, well-decorated trees. Glad to find out you have already settled at your new Florida home. Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a marvelous New Year.

  60. Actually, we do the tree the same way every year. Judy is a strong traditionalist.

  61. Karen, You have class and you have talent. I loved your former 1730’s farm house and I love your beach front Florida home. Each stunning in a different way. These Christmas trees and the foot decorations are just beautiful and brought festivities to your home. Merry Christmas, dear Karen and I wish you and yours the Happiest of Holiday Season! xx 🙂

    • Karen says:

      I appreciate your kind words and wish Fae, thank you very much for the lovely compliment. The two homes are very different and since we sold the farm house furnished, it meant starting all over when decorating our new one.

  62. ramblingtart says:

    Good for you making such beautiful trees in your new home. 🙂 I know the strangeness of heat and humidity at Christmas. It’s part of my new life in Australia. 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Krista, We are both having to adapt to Christmastime where its warm and humid. Not what we may be used to but the holiday will be enjoyable nonetheless. Thank you for your lovely compliment.

  63. Karen, you have such a flair for decorating. I am impressed by your eye for color and space — both settings look exquisite, yet unique and comfortable. We have had a naked tree in our living room for more than a week now. One thing or another has interrupted our decorating this year. Hopefully, we’ll get it done before Christmas eve! Merry Christmas, Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your sweet comment and wish Judy…I appreciate your lovely compliment. I’m sure that by now your naked tree is cloaked in beautiful ornaments. 🙂 Merry Christmas to you too.

  64. A beautiful tree and a beautifully decorated home. Merry Christmas, Karen!

  65. Karen, a beautiful post… thank you for sharing. I have popped a link to this on my festive round up. Wishing you and yours the compliments of the season xx

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Liz, I’m happy to know that you enjoyed the post. I appreciate your link, that was very kind of you. Wishing you all the best during this wonderful Christmas season.

  66. So glad you are out and about my sweet friend!! I am even happier you are loving FL and your tree as usual, looks spectacular!! Taste and elegance never go out of style, and you wear them both with amazing flair!! ♥

    • Karen says:

      Hi Didi, yes I’m doing well health wise and getting happily settled in our new home. I appreciate your very lovely compliment, thank you so much.

  67. Yes when we moved here we had to start over as a big tree wouldn’t fit…and I barely decorated….long story that I am blogging about after Christmas at my other blog…..but this year we started over and decorated from scratch! Love your ‘new’ tree.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Donna, I was a little worried about decorating the tree in our new home, especially when the realized that the few ornaments I’d kept from New England just didn’t go. But once I found new colors that would work starting over didn’t seem so bad after all. I’m glad you like what I did, thank you.

  68. twbarritt says:

    What a lovely tree to symbolize a fresh, new start! Merry Christmas!

  69. Francesca says:

    I can tell it is a big adjustment for you and that you are trying to make the best of it. Changes take a toll on us one way or another and it takes time for us to adjust and get comfortable to new situations. I can see why you miss your New England vibe – it’s exactly what Christams decorations should look like. But you did a great job and your “tropical” version is really, really pretty!
    Wishing you and your family a very Happy Holiday Season!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Francesca, Our move was a big adjustment. The two parts of the country are different in so many ways and starting over in a place where you don’t know anyone is a challenge. We lived in south Florida 20 years ago but Vero is totally new to us. I’m glad you like my contemporary tropical looking tree. Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas as well, thank you.

  70. Lea Ann says:

    We downsized last year to a town home and I don’t even have a tree. I have a little stick light up tree in the corner that I love dearly and will look for something more green-tree like after Christmas. Something on sale, something tall and skinny. Yes, I’m starting from scratch. Your photos are beautiful. Merry Christmas!

  71. Karen says:

    Hi Lea Ann, Downsizing has its pros and cons…storage being one of the challenges when it comes to holiday decorations. I bet you end up finding the perfect tree during the after Christmas sales. Thank you for your compliment and wish…Merry Christmas to you too.

  72. chef mimi says:

    Beautiful!!! I had to make a major change this year because I have a crazy, maniacal 15 month old grand daughter who will be around, so I had to put everything up. She’s already undecorated the tree partially. So it’s not as pretty as it typically is in my house but it will be an exciting Christmas!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Mimi, I’m glad you like our tree. It will definitely be a special Christmas with your little granddaughter…well worth a change in how your tree is decorated this year. Enjoy! 😀

  73. hotlyspiced says:

    Thank you for showing us your beautiful tree set in your great room. I like how you brought it all the way from New England and how it is a little reminder of the Christmases you enjoyed in your antique home. The colour scheme is gorgeous and it looks absolutely perfect. We have gone away for Christmas this year and are now a 13-hour drive north of Sydney on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast. I normally get an 11-foot real tree but the owners of the holiday house provided us with a tree. It’s about five feet tall, fake and practically bald. While I appreciate the gesture, it’s the saddest most depressing tree I’ve ever seen. Fortunately I packed my Christmas lights and all my decorations so I’ve given it a bit of a make-over – nothing to match your efforts but once the lights go down and the lights are sparking, it doesn’t look too bad xx

    • Karen says:

      Hi Charlie, I’m glad you like my tree. I’m sorry that the tree left for you at the holiday house was almost bare but lights always help. I’m sure your holiday away will be a memorable Christmas no matter how the tree looks. Enjoy and Merry Christmas.

  74. mjskit says:

    What fun to take something from the past and totally reinvent it. Love what you’ve done with it. No, I’ve never reinvented my Christmas tree. Still using the same lights, same ornaments that I’ve been using for years. After seeing this, I think it’s time for a change. 🙂
    Hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas and New Years in your new home. See you in 2016!

  75. Misky says:

    Happy Christmas, Karen!

  76. i think it’s great that you saved one of your trees from your New England home. Memories are so important and no matter how you decorate it you will always have fond memories of the past. Happy Holidays to you Karen.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Judi, Yes I thought this tree would always remind me of our Christmases spent in New England. Thank you for your wish, I hope your holidays are wonderful.

  77. Such a beautiful tree! I, too, gave up a Christmas tree in the stress of moving, and I regret it now. It was 7-feet tall and fairly narrow and my recently acquired collection of large mercury glass ornaments looked stunning on it. However, my daughter game me her old 4-foot tree, which I’ve set on a table in the great room. It accommodates all my ornaments — both the new, stylish mercury glass plus my old cherished family ornaments — and looks lovely. I love your idea of festooning the tree with ribbon; I may try that next year!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Marlene, I’m glad you like our Christmas tree. It is hard leaving things behind in a move but storage can become an issue. Your tree sounds lovely with the mercury glass ornaments. Merry Christmas.

  78. fuzziepotato says:

    What beautiful decorations! Even though you’re in sunny Florida now the new tree still gives that holiday warmth –Heh just looking at your photos makes me inspired. Happy holidays!

  79. I think you did a great job of making your Christmas tree blend in with its new home, Karen! I would have a hard time giving up the ornaments that I’ve spent years collecting, which are mostly Santas. I might try a ribbon garland, though! Very pretty. Merry Christmas to you and your family, Karen!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Susan, Thank you for your compliment. I know I would love your Santa tree, I had one too. I sold all the santa ornaments to a woman that was going to give them as gifts to her grandchildren for their tree and that made me happy. 🙂 Merry Christmas.

  80. Ruth says:

    Oh, Karen, how lovely! I’m glad you didn’t go with sea shells (though I know it still would have turned out great with your elegant touch). Today’s my last day in Orlando with my family and I completely understand when you say it doesn’t “feel” Christmasy even with Bing Crosby’s crooning…it’s 85 degrees! Lol

    • Karen says:

      Hi Ruth, I hope you made it back safely. Yes…the warm weather in Florida isn’t too Christmasy but it is even warmer than usual up in New England. I’m glad you like my tree even though there are no shells. 😀 Too much of a traditionalist for that. Thank you for your lovely compliment. Merry Christmas.

  81. Cocoa & Lavender says:

    I have always insisted on live candles on our Christmas tree, ever since I spent a Christmas in Germany. That was great when we lived in Maine, and could cut a tree so fresh that there was no danger. However, after moving to Tucson, we knew there would be no freshly-cut trees in our future Christmas, yet I still wanted candles. So we bought a wrought-iron tree shaped quite like your tree (tall and narrow) and it works beautifully! In fact, we can see the ornaments even better! I do, however, miss the smell of fresh pine in the house…

  82. restlessjo says:

    I was wondering about your Christmas decor and here I have all the answers. I kept being distracted by Snowman and the Snowdog on TV in the background 🙂 but my son’s in the kitchen, treating me to a Christmas Eve chicken cacciatore so I’ve just a little free time. (it’s never happened before so I’m making the most of it, Karen 🙂 ). I love the way you twine your tree in ribbon. I must try that next year. Sending Christmas love 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jo, I just discovered a couple of your comments in my spam file. I thought it would be a challenge decorating our tree this year but was happy with the end result. I’m glad that you like the ribbon…it is woven green on one side and satin gold on the other. How nice that you son treated you to such a nice meal for Christmas Eve, I’m sure it was delicious.

  83. Daphne says:

    Good Afternoon Karen, I am a creature of habit I’m afraid and although I have moved quite a few times, also living in warmer climes, I still decorate my tree as I have for many years.
    Maybe I should take a leaf out of your book and begin again, because I really do love how you have decorated your tree. Each year I ask my daughters which Christmas decorations they would like to add to their own collection, so over time my decorations will dwindle….if I let them (haha) because I always replace them with new ones.
    Have a wonderful Christmas in your new home, which I have to tell you looks lovely.
    Best Wishes to you.
    Daphne

    • Karen says:

      Hi Daphne, I’m sorry to be so late in replying to your lovely comment and wish…I just discovered it in my spam file. I like how you are giving some of your ornaments to you daughters but you gave me a chuckle that you are replacing them with new ones. 😀

  84. Karen, somehow I knew you’d find the perfect solution…and you did – it is gorgeous! Wishing you a Merry Christmas and happy and healthy New Year.
    Pssst….New England is getting it’s first winter storm next Tuesday.

  85. Karen says:

    Hi Diane, I’m glad that you like our Christmas tree. Thank you for your wish, I hope you and your family enjoy the day and all the best in the new year. Hopefully, it won’t be filled with too much snow. 🙂

  86. Cecile says:

    As always – your sense of style and good taste Won the Day… Christmas Day, to be exact. Great job Karen!! And how cool is it that you and your husband found those gorgeous lit ‘Christmas Boxes’ with the same color ribbons!! As I had mentioned to you before, I’m planning to sell my beloved farmhouse, putting it on the market Feb. 2017. And the thing I’m dreading most is having to get rid of a lot of the Christmas ‘stuff’ I’ve gathered over the years. My mantra will be, “Karen managed….. Karen managed…. Karen managed…. and I can too!” ; o ) (Thanks for your sweet comments about my Christmas decorating this year!!)

    • Karen says:

      Hi Cecile, Sorry to have taken so long to reply to your comment…life has been hectic. Thank you very much for your lovely compliment, it is very much appreciated. I’m happy that I’ll be inspiring you as you prepare for the sale of your home next year. It is daunting to get rid of many of your loved possessions. I’ve passed on and sold my things to others…they told me how much they like them and that helps.

      • Cecile says:

        I’m doing the same thing. My friend took six mahogany chairs and some side tables, and I’ve given various trays away to family. Plus I have two boxes of Christmas things to give to Sal. Army. And one to give to my friend to use during the holidays to decorate the country club she owns here in Western Mass. It was easier than I thought to go through my Christmas things. I just think I was in the mood to just ‘whittle down’ all those Christmas things. You know, just like you did!! ; o )

  87. Gallivanta says:

    Your special tree looks so at home in its new surroundings. What a joy to have the beloved tree to decorate anew. I am also smiling to read the word ‘dinky’. I used to use it such a lot but haven’t done so, or heard it in years.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Gallivanta, I’m sorry to have taken so long to reply to your lovely compliment…it was very much appreciated. Yes, I was worried about the size of my tree being too small with our high ceiling and “dinky” was the perfect word. Actually if was just fine. 😀

  88. I always use the same ornaments and add one or two a year. I love seeing them as I pull them out of their boxes. I don’t know if I could part with them!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Elizabeth, I’m sorry to have taken so long to reply. It is hard to part with Christmas ornaments that you have collected over the years…they hold so many memories.

  89. Just lovely. The trees are gorgeous, no matter what house they are in. I hope your new place is all that you imagined.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Donna, I’m sorry it has taken so long to reply…I’m glad you liked our tree. Yes, we are happy in our new house, it is starting to look like home. Today we are meeting with a landscaper to add more plants to the front of our home as much that was provided by the builder hasn’t done well.

  90. I am completely bowled over by your trees – both of them! But most of all hats off to you for adapting so well to your new surroundings. That tree (and those great light-up presents) really brought an air of the holidays to sunny Florida!

    • Karen says:

      Thank you for your lovely comment Siobhan, I really appreciate your kind words. I’m sorry to have taken so long to reply, life has been a little hectic lately.

  91. Amy says:

    Love your new tree and style, Karen. What a difference from your New England house though! I’m glad you didnt’ go with a beachy theme, this is much more classic Christmas. I remember it always felt strange visiting my grandparents in FL at xmas time and seeing christmas lights strung on the palm trees 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Amy, Our new house couldn’t be more different from the one in New England. Yes, we live near the beach but I just couldn’t go with that typical look. I’m glad you like how I decorated the tree…thanks. 🙂

  92. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Oh Karen, it’s lovely. Beauty is as beauty does and, my friend, you are truly beautiful. I’ve seen quite a few gorgeous beached themed trees in shops but they just don’t sing Christmas to me. It’s so inspiring that you got rid of all but one special part of your Christmas decor knowing that the memories are the precious thing and those will always be with you! I’m still thinking about the sale of your lake place, and you’ve already sold the farmhouse as well and moved to what must seem like a different country in many ways. So much change in such a short period of time.

    I used to do a total makeover of our main tree each year, sometimes based on a certain text or piece of music, each year, a few special ornaments remained. For ten years after my mother’s death, I didn’t decorate at all but for the last couple of years, I’ve begun again and have used mostly gold and red with some other jewel tones. The ornaments are selected for their symbolism – various allegories of the story of the annunciation, birth and life of Christ. On the surface, it’s beautiful but closer inspection tells a story. In some ways, it’s easier to decorate an old house like our Victorian as the style lends itself to heavy ornament.

  93. Karen says:

    You are very kind Peter and I truly appreciate your lovely comment. It’s true about life being so different here in Florida. It was hard for me to commit to this move as I loved New England so much but as each day passes I know it was the right decision and we are happy. I’m glad that you are decorating your home again at Christmas. You are right, a Victorian home is so pretty decorated for the season…especially yours as you have so many beautiful collections.

  94. Sartenada says:

    Sigh, so beautiful. It is habit in Finland on countryside to fetch a Christamas tree from the forest. Those living in towns, they have to buy one from the market.

  95. Hi Karen, I lost touch there for a while, but I’m so glad to have gone back to see how your move went. Your place in Florida looks lovely! I also adore that color of green for your Christmas tree. I think I would have had a hard time getting rid of the Christmas items but I suppose when you are ready for a change it comes easier. Congratulations on your new home (a bit late)! 🙂 Dana

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