The Tree Is Up!

The outside deck lights add to the ambience

Big smiles....the tree is up.

We have reduced the plastic content by 50% on the tree this year by using paper decorations made from old books.  We also have brought out our non-plastic traditional ornaments that we now use every year (pics below).  We are using the left over baubles from last year....and now the challenge of how to keep Toshi the cat away from the tree. She hates Christmas trees.

Hanukkah falls on the 24th this year, so that will make things 'interesting' this year.  Normally there is some breathing space between each celebration, but this year Hanukkah overlaps with Christmas.  It gets a little tricky with those in the family with Jewish heritage (dear wife and five daughters) and me, the good ol' fashioned British/Irish bloodline with Christian roots. Luckily we all totally enjoy both types of festivals from each heritage - it is just tricky when the dates line up.  And...then there is daughter number five with her birthday two days before Christmas....who planned that?!

Anyway - enough yakking.  Here are the pics.

I have pine needles to vacuum up by
the looks.  The house smells
amazing with a real pine tree.
Carbon neutral, non plastic and
can be used in the chiminea
once dried.

Some prezzies under the tree.
Brown paper and string wrapping.

Porcelain bauble with nativity
scene - by Wedgwood.

Mamma HM reaches up
with the star........

....can't quite reach!

We placed it in front of the window
that looks out onto the deck
so we can enjoy it from both
inside and outside.

Papier mache bauble from

Three wise men looking rather lost.
They should have asked for directions!

Painted metal cow bell from Austria

Mr Squirrel.

Paper book baubles

Do you think it will reign deer?

Paper snowflake to counter-act
the Aussie summer.

Aaaaw - pretty. It is starting to
look a lot like Christmas.

Sleigh bell on a satin ribbon

Christmas doll from Austria

Wooden rocking horse.

Apparently there will be some red and gold material bows to be added yet.

Take care and stay nice folks.



  1. Love that squirrel Mr H. Have a great weekend.

  2. What a happy sight, and all while reducing the use of plastic. Well Done Mr HM and family. :)

    Our Christmas tree went up on the 1st of December, which is a family tradition from my husband's family. It goes up on the first of December, and comes down again, on the first of January. Or at least, that's how I remember it goes, lol.

    1. That is our ideal dates too Chris....somehow it does not quite stack up and I lag a few days either way each year.

  3. Looks beautiful Mr HM, I especially like mr squirrel I myself am trying to get in the Xmas mood, I think I need to put a bit of effort in. Sharlene

    1. Mr S is a bit of a favourite with us too Sharlene. We did have a white dove ornament with feathers....but our Toshi cat got rid of that last year!

  4. Your decorated tree is very beautiful.

  5. Your decorated tree is very beautiful!

  6. Merry Christmas Mr HM and family!
    Very soon I hope to go to brown paper and string wrapping, but master 9 still believes,(although I'm sure he suspects) so I don't want to rid us of traditional wrapping just yet, he will think it strange I think. One more Christmas of innocence for him, then I might shake things up a bit. I love what you've done.

    1. Well enjoy the last year of innocence - it evaporates so soon.

  7. Hello Mr HM, I'm loving your blog, first time I've made a comment but I've been meaning to do this. Your tree is gorgeous and the added bonus a real tree♥ I love all the special tree decorations, like your tree I have a memory tree full of decorations going back so many years. Lovely photo of Mamma HM:) Greetings Linda living in a very hot and very humid Gold Coast!

    1. Hi Linda - thanks so much for dropping by and commenting!

  8. your tree looks wonderful! all those beautiful baubles!
    i used to keep a hoop pine in a pot (repotting as it grew) & it was our Xmas tree every year for quite a few years, it's now happily growing out in the garden & roughly 8ft high!
    thanx for sharing

  9. Looking beautiful! I would love a real tree! But poor Will has terrible allergies and pines have caused him asthma attacks in the past. :(


  10. I have removed all plastic from our tree this year, our local charity shop has loads for sale now. I like a simple tree, no tinsel, loads of glass baubles which shine beautifully.

  11. Isn't it wonderful taking out the decorations and being surprised by the beautiful things that have been stored away all year. Your tree is lovely, I especially like the paper chain, it looks very striking.

  12. Dear MrHM,

    Doesn't a real tree look so much better than the artificial type? The tree in our lounge room was put up by my sons girlfriend. She has done a lovely job, but the tree is not what I would have. It is huge! I will be an empty nester soon (sad face after 35.5years). My house will be a lot quieter and my Christmas tree will be a lot simpler. I am thinking branch from a tree with handmade decorations.

    I love the brown paper and string look. I have used it from time to time when caught short of wrapping paper. You can get really pretty string these days to add that special touch.

    Your tree looks beautiful!


    1. Actually a decorated bough is a more ancient tradition than a tree. The boughs were usually placed across the top of a mantle piece or similar and the heat of the fire would release the oils of the pine - lovely smell but a little bit of a fire hazard.


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