Home & Design

Green Acre #175: ‘Tis the Season to Be Glittery

 

DECORATING THE HOUSE for the holidays was a debate this year, as Baby and her Personal Prince Pete are cooking my grandbaby, a boy they say, though they haven’t divulged the name—leave them one surprise, they say. Rocky, as we’re temporarily calling him, is due December 28, which is rather disruptive, and may mean a premature dash to Raleigh, North Carolina, where they live—just out of the immediate clutches of family. 

—-

But doing without seasonal trimmings seemed too dismal, and so we forged forth.

—-

The day after Thanksgiving, My Prince levitated to the attic, which is reached via a hatch in the bathroom closet and involves climbing the shelves and stepping on the towels. From there he dropped box after box of ornaments down to my eager hands. 

—-

I am thankful, in particular, for the abundance of glitter stems, feathers, bird, and butterfly ornaments we’ve managed to amass over the years. There are silvery stems that resemble feathers, coils that look like sea urchins, strands that fan out and others that spring about like curly noodles. Some are silver, some are gold. 

—-

Last year Baby added an 8-foot boa of ostrich and peacock feathers to top the mantel—we’d seen one on a trip to New Orleans and she managed to find the maker. Birds with dazzling plumage perch here and there, glittery butterflies flit about, and tea lights hide in small lanterns. Tiny white lights, the size of mouse droppings, flicker amid the feathers. 

—-

In this house, the Christmas tree, which must graze the nine-foot ceiling, does double duty as a Hanukkah bush and so is topped with a red-and-gold jester waving a marotte*. This is a 37-year bone of contention between my goy-toy and me, as he insists a star should top the tree, but that is neither here nor there. 

—-

We also employ mountains of greenery and lights for tabletops, vases, the banister and the window boxes, for which the Prince is trundled off to the local hardware emporium and seasonal Christmas tree purveyor. There he scavenges cut branches that were trimmed from the bottoms of the fir and pine trees being bound up for buyers. Such places are happy to load you down with them—free—as I discovered some years ago, considering it all trash.

—-

But floral wire, ribbons and secateurs are all that are needed to turn those branches into swags and wreaths and such—have you priced a garland recently?

—-

Anyway, he hauled home enormous fans of greenery, which are particularly fabulous in the window boxes, nearly spanning the width of the five boxes that fill our front windows, three upstairs and two down. 

—-

Just one fan was needed to dangle down the front of each box and a second to stand in the rear, creating a dramatic backdrop for glittering stems popped here and there among the existing ornamental cabbages and pansies. Wired to each is a big purple satin bow to match the front door.

—-

(There is no reason to abandon window boxes for the winter; there’s always something jolly you can plonk in to fill the dirt).

—- 

It cost not a dime to deck the house for the holiday season. Well, I take that back. As always, there were several sets of tasteful white lights that mysteriously died in their cartons in the attic and needed replacement. I do not know why this happens. 

—-

And there was a 50-yard roll of glittery turquoise ribbon stamped with a pattern of gilded peacock feathers that I just had to have.

—-

And, oh, never mind. Really. Is there ever too much of a good thing?

—Stephanie Cavanaugh

Says Wikipedia, a marotte, a fine word I’ve just learned, “is a prop stick or scepter with a carved head on it. Jesters usually used a marotte. The word is borrowed from the French, where it signifies either a fool’s (literal) “bauble,” or a fad/craze.”

——

LittleBird “Stephanie Gardens” will use any excuse to scatter glittery stuff around. And who can blame her?

 



One thought on “Green Acre #175: ‘Tis the Season to Be Glittery

  1. Baby says:

    Baby here. My Personal Prince Pete is also a fan of the star, and I am acquiescing. So duddy will be able to enjoy ours…sometime.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.