It's December and despite living in southern California, we live far enough inland and every winter we get frost and cold weather. Well, not cold by Minnesota standards, of course, but I consider waking up to 28 degree temps with ice and frost covering my car and lawn....cold. Don't get me wrong, I love it! Its a taste of winter for us. I love taking my 6:00 a.m. walk with Kona, bundled up with gloves and a warm jacket. Bruce and I can't wait to wake up to an overnight snowfall once we live in Tennessee.

Because our home is for sale and we want to keep it feeling open and uncluttered, we opted this year for a small artificial tree. After much searching and frustration for the perfect tree, we found a fiber-optic lit 4 foot tree at Home Depot. Its ornament free, but I draped strands of gold-bead and red-bead garland between the branches. It is perched prettily in the corner window on our hearth and is very beautiful. It's not the same as our traditional fresh tree which fills our house with the wonderful scent of pine, but we have a lot of delicious candles that burn every night and fill our home with yummy Christmas aromas.