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Please note, this is a question, not a solution. I do know how to display cards to their best advantage but my question is, do I really want to?
For years I have stapled cards to wide red ribbons. These I hang over the cupboard doors in my hallway. The ribbon is firmly sellotaped to the doors and I add more cards as they arrive. The portrait style ones (the upright ones), that is, not the landscape.
The landscape ones were hung over strings. These were – still are – my favourite as putting them up takes but a second. Although the wide red ribbons looked lovely and very ‘saw it in a magazine’ stylish (although I didn’t see it in a magazine) they could be a bit of a faff.
Although those cards which are very low and wide but are still portrait are best stuck between books on the bookshelf. Luckily we have one of those in every room.
But nowadays far fewer people send cards, so I possibly don’t need so many ribbons and I could just have a couple of strings.
Which leads me to my dilemma – could I just put the portrait style cards over the strings as if they were landscape?
I’m not really a precise neat kind of person. In fact, not to put too fine a point on it, I am incredibly untidy. My office looks like a reality TV show involving rubber gloves and protective masks (ok, I am exaggerating a bit, the enormous heaps of clutter is at least fairly clean) but I fear I wouldn’t be able to manage having an upright sort of card hung over a string.
I do have some little clothes pegs designed for hanging up cards, it’s possible I could use those. Would that look very neurotic? I fear it would. Or can I overcome my feelings about Christmas cards?
On reflection I think it’s good that I have an anal streak and should keep my portrait cards the right way up. Then, when people are muttering about me they can say, she is awfully untidy but she’s very particular about her Christmas cards.
But what about other decorations? Am I as anal about them as I am about my Christmas cards?
We’re not actually having Christmas in my house this year and, for various reasons, I can’t put up my decorations until nearly Christmas Eve. Which means they won’t be up very long and I almost wonder if it’s worth the effort.
But when I think of those boxes of decorations in the loft, a whole chest of fairy lights, not to mention the decorations I’m bound to buy when I visit the German Christmas markets next week, I realise that decorations are one of my favourite parts of Christmas.
I think my favourite bit of decorating is the mantelpieces. I have leaves with berries (some fall off every year) several sets of fairy lights, including ‘mistletoe’ lights, I have fake amaryllis, tall candle sticks, low candles, greenery. I don’t even pretend to be subtle. I have a small, lit Christmas tree in the kitchen. I put the little, less showy decorations here. The cut paper ones from Denmark that came from a great aunt over fifty years ago, the ones made by my daughter in law when she first came to England, the ones made by my grandchildren. They keep me company while I’m cooking.
I’m also very fond of my downstairs loo decorations. I have some very flamboyant candle sticks in there. They’re made of metal and are painted, with flowers, fruit and birds. I think the technical term for them is kitsch. Naturally they need fairy lights.
In fact I think it’s true to say that no room in my house goes undecorated – my children even bought me lights that plug into my computer.
So, will I bother to decorate the house for just a few days? Of course I will! Inside and out!