Christmas Means to Me....

Christmas means transforming my home for the holidays by bringing out some sparkle and shimmer.....

Christmas means beautiful simplicity.....

Christmas means getting creative.....

Christmas means enjoying the creative talent of others and supporting local boutiques and shops ....Gorgeous as always Blushshop!

Christmas means traditions and making memories with friends....

Christmas means bringing the beauty of Mother Nature into your home....

Christmas means sitting back and enjoying the view.......

Christmas means snowflakes, red, white and family.......

Christmas means smiles, memories and Ho Ho Ho.......

As beautiful and happy as this time of year is.......It is also a time that can be not so happy. We do our best to focus on the good times.....the great times.....especially when we're surrounded by such joy and cheer....but we also tend to be reminded of those times that involved loss into our lives....that brought sadness. 

Christmas means two more things...and these are so very key! Christmas means to be grateful for who and what we have in our lives and it also means to reflect on and remember who and what we DID have. I find myself looking at pictures more often this time of year....seeing the smiling faces of moments that have passed by can be bittersweet. For that moment captured on film, life was just that....smiles and laughter...something to be so grateful for. But those smiling and happy people may no longer be with us...and while their smile makes you smile, your eyes fill with tears as you reflect and remember.

The holiday season can really be an emotional roller coaster for a number of reasons. When I find myself in a bit of a low spot on the holiday ride, I remember what Christmas means to me and I act on it. Whether I head downtown to admire the store windows or I curl up on the couch with a warm beverage, light all the Christmas lights and become enveloped with their glow...that low spot quickly starts moving up hill and smiles return.

A while back, I blogged about holiday stressors and ways to ensure you take care of you this Christmas. I hope you're doing that..taking care of you! Enjoying the season, just how you want to...remembering what Christmas means to you...

My wish and hope for you this holiday season is that it brings you a thousand reasons to smile.....and adds even more items/moments/memories to your list of what Christmas means to you...




Davishill = Christmasville

With all the snow we've had, it was time to put the snow tires on my car, which meant a trip to Walkerton. I can't go to Walkerton this time of year without popping into Davishill of my absolute favourite places to shop during the holiday season (and really any time of year)!  

You pull up to the greenhouse and cabin and all you see is Christmas! Urns, wreaths, swags, greenery, branches etc etc etc....

But walk through the door of the little cabin, and you're greeted with a Christmas Wonderland.... Every inch is covered in Holiday wonderfulness! Trees adorned in every ornament and bauble imaginable, in every colour scheme possible for every design and decor taste and style. 

I couldn't leave without a few new pieces for my Christmas collection.... a 'birch bark' table runner and a 'birch bark' tree (to add to my Christmas Forest on my sideboard...see my Instagram for pics!) along with  a few gifts too! There were so many things that I absolutely the burlap poinsettias, the leather leaves with a sprinkle of glitter, music note paper 'swirls', wooden sleds, the fur wreath (*drool*)...the list goes on and on.

I will let the photos speak for themselves....and if you're in the Walkerton/Hanover area this Christmas season, be SURE to drop in!

I'm making it my goal to support as many local and small businesses as I can this Christmas and I challenge you to do the same! As you can see, they have so many unique and one-of-a-kind pieces....Let's support our friends and neighbours and give thoughtful gifts that truly have meaning!


It's OK!!

It's that time of year that 'To-Do' Lists grow to epic proportions; our calendars overflow with parties, events and get together's; budgets get thrown out the window and literally every waking hour is filled with some sort of holiday preparation.

Just writing this is making me nervous in anticipation of the upcoming Holiday Season. I have lists upon lists, shopping to do, wreaths to create, gifts to wrap, cookies to bake, a house to decorate, gifts to make, cards to write and mail, parties to attend, workouts to fit in, a 9-5 job to focus on......I`m sure this list of tasks is similar to yours and as overwhelming as it can be, I enjoy every second of these activities. reality.....can I really do this all on my own? ...And even more so.....Is there a reason why I need to try to do this all on my own?

A gal pal and I were out for dinner the other night and got talking about the pressures that come along this year. We came to the realization that a lot of these pressures are purely self inflicted....We can be so hard on ourselves during the holiday season and this must stop!

We feel that everything must be perfect (we see everyone's "perfect" lives on social media and forget that no one's life is really THAT perfect), that we must do/create everything ourselves (heaven forbid you ask for help) and that it all must be done in a way that looks effortless (if only we had staff to help us)!


IT'S OK to not be everything, to everyone, at all times! Especially this time of year.

This is a time of year that flies by in a blur, when we really should be spending time enjoying it with family and friends, immersing ourselves in the beauty and magic of the season. How many of us can actually say that we've really been able to do this in the last decade?

When you're making your list for all of your Holiday Tasks....why not make 2 columns? One for "Made by Me" and the second being "Made by Others". This is the time of year to prioritize, prioritize, prioritize and be sure to truly put value in your personal time as every minute counts.

Ask yourself, what are the Top 6 Holiday Tasks that I would "like to create myself" but that you know wholeheartedly that someone else could do for you. For instance, something like Holiday Baking...sure, you can head to the grocery store, buy all the supplies you need, get home, do all the prep, bake, cool and package the cookies, cupcakes, tarts, squares......I'm exhausted just thinking about all of this. Even though it's something you enjoy doing, maybe this year it's time to contact a wonderful local bakery and ask them to do your baking for you. Sure, on paper the direct monetary cost may seem to be a bit more (or it may not be), but remember what your time is worth. Your baking marathon may take an entire weekend, whereas you can pick up a phone and place an order for Christmas Goodies in less than 10 minutes. When you pick up the Goodies (or maybe they even deliver), you can still package them up in your own unique way, or maybe the bakery could even do that for you too. 

Take those 6 Tasks and put 3 into the "Made by Me" column and 3 into the "Made by Others"column.

Believe me....I understand how difficult it is to 'give up' part of your Holiday Ritual(s) that you enjoy doing, but what you gain back in time and decreased stress levels lets you truly focus on those 3 tasks you're going to do yourself. It also gives you the opportunity to find or return to great local resources to use again in the future, let alone how important it is to support local small businesses!

Remember, IT'S OK to prioritize to allow you more time for you and your loved ones this Holiday Season. No one will remember whether or not you baked them a cookie, but they will remember the afternoon on the outdoor rink, with huge fluffy snowflakes falling that you were able to spend with them because you weren't holed up in your kitchen all day.........


"That" Time of Year....

It's that time of year when we head to our basements in search of the boxes labelled "Christmas" and begin rummaging through decorations full of memories. Some of us start decorating immediately after Halloween while others wait until closer to December.

Even if you aren't starting your decorating now, I'm willing to bet you are starting to think about your holiday decor, dinners, entertaining, gifts, shopping etc etc.... Did you feel your pulse race a bit, either in happy anticipation or with a tad bit of anxiety for all that lies ahead over the next 2 months? I'm a fan of decorating for Christmas earlier than later for many reasons. It allows me time to truly enjoy the festive atmosphere in my home for a longer period of time; I can host family and friends through the entire holiday season with my home 'ready to go'; and decorating early takes one item off the longggggg Christmas/Holiday "To Do" List which for me, helps lower my pulse rate and stress levels. 

I definitely have my decor plans in place and will be implementing them sooner than later.....Do you? 

Wreaths, Urns, Swags, Garland, Decorations, Greenery, Sparkle.....Where to start?

Whether your holiday decor equals a wreath on your door or adorning every room in your home, Rustic Retrievals can assist you with pulling ideas together, implementing them and making them a reality...

I am taking orders for wreaths, urns, swags and centerpieces for both indoors and outdoors. You choose either live greens or artificial greens; you choose your colour scheme (I can also assist with this); and then the creative process begins!

Pricing varies depending on the materials used and the size of the piece(s), but they start at:

  • Wreaths - $45
  • Urns - $45 (per insert)
  • Swags - $30
  • Centerpieces - $30 

       ***discounts for multi-item purchases*** 

I also offer Decor Services....whether it's one hour in your home to help pull your ideas together or full decor services (ie. consult, plan, implementation of the plan), I can assist in making your home a holiday space to welcome your family & friends and for you to enjoy well into the New Year! Pricing starts at $45.00/hr for Decor Services. 

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Cheers to the Christmas and Holiday Season! December 25th will be here before we know it!

If you have any questions or would like more information, please feel free to email me at or follow along with my holiday projects on Facebook and Instagram......