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40 Christmas Decorating Ideas That Will Bring Joy To Your Home

40 Christmas Decorating Ideas That Will Bring Joy To Your Home

Christmas is right around the corner and with it come trees and ribbons and ornaments and lights and … oh goodness, what are you supposed to do with it all? Don’t let stress over Christmas decorating make you lose the Christmas spirit. Here are 40 Christmas decorating ideas that will bring joy to your home this holiday season.

1. Incorporate lanterns into your design.

You can use put candles inside or (as shown below) fill them with ornaments and lights for extra holiday spirit.

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    2. Embrace different color schemes.

    Holiday decorating isn’t restricted to just red and green. Try out different color schemes that are still festive but refreshingly unique.

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      3. Make a banner for your fireplace.

      You can use paper or fabric, but making a simple banner to hang over your mantel adds a special homemade touch.

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        4. Add natural elements to your design.

        Incorporating pine cones and other rustic elements into holiday décor make for a homey, wholesome feeling.

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          5. Get crafty with the kids.

          The holidays are about family and what better way to emphasize that than having your little ones help out with decorating? This reindeer craft is an adorable example.

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            6. Make an ornament wall.

            Talk about a conversation piece! And all you need is ribbon, ornaments, and a staple gun. It’s a bit time-consuming, but the result is a contemporary holiday piece.

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              7. Use old Christmas cards.

              Not sure what to do with all of those old Christmas cards? Make yourself an adorable holiday collage.

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                8. Use pictures instead of name tags on your presents.

                This is a small, personal addition that will make your presents a design element and touch your loved ones this holiday season.

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                  9. Fill your apothecary jars with Christmas goodies.

                  A simple and affordable way to put a “holiday spin” on items that are already sitting around your home.

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                    10. Put your stockings in different places.

                    For Christmas dinner, you can put your family members’ stockings on their respective chairs. Or, consider putting them on your entryway staircase. The options are endless!

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                      11. Try an alternative Christmas tree.

                      If you are in a smaller space, allergic to pine, or just want to try something different, consider a modern take (like this driftwood option) on your holiday tree.

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                        12. Add subtle holiday elements that match your room’s preexisting color scheme.

                        For a more understated (but still festive) design, use colors already found in your space.

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                          13. Make ornaments from your favorite holiday book or sheet music.

                          Use papier-mâché and a little bit of glitter to create a truly unique ornament for your tree.

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                            14. Use mason jars for a rustic holiday theme.

                            Mason jars are an adorable and cheap addition to your design. You can fill the bottom with Epsom salt to look like snow, like in this example.

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                              15. Make your fridge a snowman.

                              Super easy and super cute—this little addition will make both kids and adults smile.

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                                16. Use Christmas music as design inspiration.

                                What are the holidays without some Christmas carols? If you are a musically-inclined family, use your instruments to create a beautiful metallic mantel display.

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                                  17. Turn your stockings into silverware holders.

                                  You can either knit some up on your own or purchase pre-made mini ones. Either way, you have a creative addition to your Christmas table.

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                                    18. Fill your wreath with pine cones.

                                    Green wreaths aren’t the only way to go. Shake things up (in a good way!) by adding more natural elements, like pine cones and berries, into your wreath.

                                    Source--Originally found on Etsy from user BarefootPearl
                                      Source–Originally found on Etsy from Barefoot Pearl

                                      19. Put your candy canes to use!

                                      The candy cane has become an instantly recognizable symbol of Christmastime. Hang them above your windows for a quirky, sweet holiday design.

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                                        20. Use extra ornaments for a modern take on wreaths.

                                        You can use whatever color or size of ornaments match your design.

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                                          21. Make your own Advent wreath.

                                          While there is nothing wrong with the traditional design, incorporating your personal design to the wreath can make it extra special. This one made from pottery candle holders is lovely.

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                                            22. Find inspiration from your location.

                                            Whether you are from the outback of Australia or the beaches of Florida, use your surroundings in your design. For example, this beautiful tree was inspired by the coast.

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                                              23. Scatter “presents” around your home.

                                              A super easy and cost-friendly option to spread a little Christmas cheer. You can use leftover boxes from your Christmas shopping.

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                                                24. Decorate white ornaments as “snowmen” and use as a cute centerpiece.

                                                Another easy craft that your kids will also enjoy.

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                                                  25. Birch wood is a beautiful design element.

                                                  Touches of birch wood, like in this example, bring a woodsy, cabin-like feel to your Christmas decorations. Don’t you just want to curl up around the fireplace?

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                                                    26. Pair vibrant wreaths with graphic pieces for a contemporary mantel.

                                                    Limit your color scheme to two or three colors and choose elements with clean lines to create a truly unique holiday display.

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                                                      27. Make a “hot cocoa bar.”

                                                      There’s nothing like a delicious, warm cup of hot chocolate around Christmastime. Find inspiration from this absolutely beautiful setup.

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                                                        28. If you have shutters, fill the slits with garland.

                                                        Use the architectural elements of your home to your decorating advantage.

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                                                          29. Create a life-size, interactive Christmas calendar.

                                                          As much as I like those pop-out chocolate cardboard calendars, there’s something fun about this display. Fill each bag with a special Christmas treat—your kids will love it!

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                                                            30. Use your holiday cards to make a Christmas tree.

                                                            Another easy way to display this year’s Christmas cards. All you have to do is tape them to the wall!

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                                                              31. Turn pine cones into mini trees.

                                                              Stick a star on top and place the pine cone into candle holders to create a lovely table centerpiece.

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                                                                32. Decorate your piano.

                                                                Drape some garland over the top of your piano or set up a Christmas village display and you have a Christmas-carol-ready instrument!

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                                                                  33. Hang ornaments from your windows with matching ribbons.

                                                                  A simple way to add a bit of holiday whimsy to your window treatments.

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                                                                    34. Add holiday-inspired pillows to your home’s seating areas.

                                                                    Whip up a few slipcovers to throw on pillows for your couches, chairs, etc. You can even add some to your mudroom like in the adorable example below!

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                                                                      35. Don’t forget to decorate the inside of your front door!

                                                                      Many people put garland around the outside, but why not add a bit of zest to the inside as well? Now you can remind people of the holiday spirit as they come and go!

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                                                                        36. Surprise your guests with a decorated headboard.

                                                                        Put your visitors in the Christmas mood by adding a bit of garland or Christmas lights to the headboard. You can even throw on a personalized stocking to make them feel right at home.

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                                                                          37. Bring Christmas to the kitchen.

                                                                          I don’t know about your family, but mine spends a lot of time in the kitchen during the holidays. Buy a small Christmas tree for your kitchen island or hang wreaths from your cabinets.

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                                                                            38. There is such a thing as elegant cut-out snowflakes.

                                                                            Cutting out snowflakes is no longer just for kids. Dangling a few large snowflakes above your table can be a chic and beautiful option.

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                                                                              39. Use your leftover wrapping paper to create a wreath.

                                                                              Follow the instructions at the source to create a truly unique and striking holiday piece.

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                                                                                40. Put presents in your unused fireplace.

                                                                                Even if you won’t be roasting chestnuts over an open fire, it doesn’t mean the space has to be neglected. Place some wrapped boxes (or suitcases, like in the picture) for a wonderfully festive display.

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                                                                                  40 Christmas Decorating Ideas That Will Bring Joy To Your Home

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                                                                                  Last Updated on May 22, 2019

                                                                                  10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

                                                                                  10 Simple Morning Exercises That Will Make You Feel Great All Day

                                                                                  There are lots of studies that show if you do some exercise in the morning, you will be in a better mood all day long. You will have more energy and you will certainly be a better colleague, friend or partner.

                                                                                  One psychologist at Duke University has researched the effects of exercise on depressed patients and he has come to the conclusion that exercise has a definite role in treating this condition and has an important role in preventing people from relapsing.[1] According to the New York Times, scientists have now established that exercise also boosts your brain power.[2]

                                                                                  In addition, there are studies from the Appalachian State University which show that blood pressure can be reduced by doing regular morning exercise.[3]

                                                                                  Here are 10 simple morning exercises that will help you feel great the whole day long. You can include some of them in your morning exercise routine or do them all at home without having to enrol in a gym. Consult your doctor before starting any form of exercise routine if you are new to this.

                                                                                  1. Cat Camel Stretch

                                                                                  Stretching exercises are useful for muscle toning and also preventing arthritis. They can either be dynamic or static.

                                                                                  Dynamic ones such as the cat camel stretch, are particularly useful for doing other exercises in the morning. They are also beneficial at other times of the day, especially after long periods of sedentary work. This one is great for spinal flexibility and is a good warm up exercise.

                                                                                  Kneel down on all fours. Start by rounding your back just like a camel so that your head will try to meet your pelvis. This is the camel position. Then lower and lift your head so that your lower back is arched. This is the cat position. Do these movements slowly and smoothly. About 4 or 5 times.

                                                                                  Here’s a video to guide you through:

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                                                                                  2. Go for a Walk or a Run

                                                                                  This is better done outside so that you can connect with nature but running inside on a treadmill is almost as good. You can time yourself and increase length and time according to your fitness program.

                                                                                  Always have new goals to reach. Start with brisk walking and work up to running. At my age, I am still walking!

                                                                                  The health benefits are considerable. You can build stronger bones and you can help to maintain your weight.

                                                                                  Also, you are helping your heart to stay healthy and keeping your blood pressure low.

                                                                                  Learn more about the benefits of running here: 8 Benefits of Running 5 Minutes Every Day You Didn’t Know

                                                                                  3. Jumping Jacks

                                                                                  Michelle Obama is a great fan of this exercise and has become “Jumper in Chief.”[4] They are great for cardiovascular health and also for toning muscles especially the calves and the deltoids.

                                                                                  Stand with feet together. Jump while spreading your arms and legs. Return to first position and keep going! You can start with doing these for 1 minute and then gradually build up to the number you are comfortable with. Here’s how:

                                                                                  4. Abductor Side Lifts

                                                                                  Watch the video below to see how to do this exercise. These muscles are important because you use them everyday to run, get into the car or onto and off a bicycle. They are very important also for your core stability and prevent the pelvis from tilting.[5]

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                                                                                  Do about 10 to 15 raises for each side like this:

                                                                                  5. Balancing Table Pose

                                                                                  This is a classic yoga pose. It benefits the spine, balance, memory and concentration.

                                                                                  Start with the table pose (hands and knees). Breathe in before starting each movement. As you exhale, raise your left leg parallel to the floor as you raise the right arm, also parallel to the floor. Breathe in as you lower arm and leg. Repeat for the other side. 10 repetitions on each side is a good starting point.

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                                                                                    6. Leg Squats

                                                                                    Not just legs are involved but also hips and knees.

                                                                                    Stand with your feet a bit further out from your hips. Arms are out in front of you. Then lower yourself as if you wanted to sit down until you reach a 90 degree angle. You can go down further if you want to. Then return to the starting position. Repeat 15 times for 2 sets for beginners.

                                                                                    The benefits are that these exercises help with knee stability and can benefit the leg muscles such as quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.[6]

                                                                                    7. Push Ups

                                                                                    You start lying down (face down) but with your body held up at arm’s length. Your hands should be in line with your shoulders. Breathe in as you lower your body. That is fairly easy. Now, as you exhale, you have to get back up to the starting position.

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                                                                                    An easier version to start with is to bend your legs at the knees so you do not have to lift your whole body.

                                                                                    Beginners may take up to a month to be able to do 100 push ups so you will have to start with a very small number and gradually increase it.

                                                                                    This exercise is great for strengthening the chest, shoulders and the triceps. It is a great strengthening exercise for many muscle groups. In fact, most muscles from the toes to the shoulders are being used.

                                                                                    8. Bicycle Crunches

                                                                                    There are numerous crunch exercises targeting the abs. The bicycle crunch is a variation where you work more muscle groups. Aim for 15 to 20 reps to start off with.

                                                                                    Watch the video to see how this is done correctly:

                                                                                    9. Lunges

                                                                                    Stand with feet shoulder width apart. Place your hand on your hips. Take one giant step forward with the right leg. Make sure the knee does not go too far forward, that is, past your toes. The left knee will go down to almost floor level. Alternate the legs as you go on.

                                                                                    Try to do a set of between 8 and 12 reps for each leg. It is important to allow for a day of rest, so this exercise should be done on alternate days, especially if you are using weights.

                                                                                    This exercise is great for strengthening and toning the quadriceps, glutes and hamstrings.

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                                                                                    10. Bicep Curls

                                                                                    You can do this sitting down so if you spend a lot of time on the phone, this is a great exercise to do.

                                                                                    Choose suitable dumbbells or another household object that you can easily hold. Sit down with the dumbbell in your hand. You need to sit forward a bit so that your triceps can lean on your thigh to give you support.

                                                                                    Then bring the weighted arm up to shoulder length and then down again. Exhale as you lift the weight and inhale as you lower it.

                                                                                    Here’re some important notes before you start doing this exercise:

                                                                                    Try to do one or two sets of about ten repetitions for each arm and then switch arms.

                                                                                    These exercises are really useful for toning the arm muscles.[7] In addition, they can strengthen and tone the brachioradialis muscle located in the forearm. These are the muscles we use to pick up things when we flex the arm at the elbow so we use these muscles countless times a day.

                                                                                    You may have to build in a rest day for the heavier exercises, numbers 6–10. On the rest days, you can do gentler stretching exercises and also some walking or running.

                                                                                    Morning exercise is not only a great mood booster, but will help you keep your weight down and also sleep better![8] Start including one or some of these exercises in your morning routine!

                                                                                    More Articles About Exercises for Beginners

                                                                                    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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