Our Family Christmas Tree – Perfectly Imperfect!


This Fraser Fir Christmas tree from Balsam Hill looks so life like! kellyelko.com

12 Bloggers of Christmas - see 12 gorgeous Christmas trees decked out kellyelko.com

I do, I do, I do believe in Christmas.

Balsam Hill made me a believer.

I never would have believed (until I saw it with my own eyes) how real my new tree looks!

Gather around to hear my Christmas tale below and stay tuned for a special discount just for you!

Love this festive family Christmas tree - and the angel tree topper! kellyelko.com

Once upon a time, there was a girl …

a young, wrinkle free, non-gray roots, newlywed.

She rushed to an after Christmas clearance sale to snag an artificial Christmas tree.

Every year, that girl would drag the tree out of the basement, individually attach each branch (over the years, the letter coding system wore off and the girl would spew a few profanities when she couldn’t figure out which branch went where), spend hours stringing hundreds of lights, then adorn that tree with ornaments (she would often need a stiff drink when she was finished).

Let’s take a moment to remember that old Christmas tree that we happily hauled off to the thrift store so another family could enjoy it.

Moment over – I’ve moved on to the new love in my life …

my Fraser Fir Balsam Hill Christmas tree!

Glowing Christmas Tree kellyelko.com

It positively glows.

Love the jute used as Christmas tree garland - what a gorgeous tree kellyelko.com

I swear this tree looks like I just went deep into the woods with an ax, cut down the perfect specimen then hopped on a horse drawn sleigh and hauled my tree home.

The best part – it’s pre lit and I didn’t even have to attach any cords – I just inserted the three pieces together, plugged it into the wall and voila – a lit tree ready for Santa.

This is the most realistic Christmas tree I've ever seen kellyelko.com

I have trees in other rooms that I decorate to my hearts content but this is our classic family tree filled with sentimental ornaments we’ve collected over the years.  Every year, I give my girls a special ornament that symbolizes something special that happened during the year – I write the year and their names on the ornaments.

This year, they each got a cute little Boston Terrier ornament in honor of our new puppy Sushi.  When they leave the nest (sob!), they can take their ornaments and hang them on their own tree.

Such a cute Boston Terrier Christmas ornament kellyelko.com

Decorating for Christmas isn’t about perfection for us – it’s about creating memories and I don’t want their memories to be of their crazy mom rearranging ornaments as soon as they turn their backs!

Love this family Christmas tree and the photo ornament! kellyelko.com

My girls love hanging the ornaments that hung on my hubby’s Christmas tree when he was a boy.

Vintage Peanuts Christmas ornaments kellyelko.com

I guess I did go a little crazy with my new puppy theme!  I turned her into a Boston Terrier Rudolph pillow and also made custom gift wrap.

My girls love the personalized grain sack Santa sacks that we made.

Did you know you can make your own customized pillow and gift wrap! Love the cute little Boston Terrier kellyelko.com

Who needs a tree skirt when you can wrap a furry white blanket around the tree?

Love the furry white blanket as a Christmas tree skirt - and the adorable custom Boston Terrier wrapping paper! kellyelko.com

This tree truly brings joy to the world …

or at least to my family.

Joy to the World - fun Christmas decorations kellyelko.com

Check out my mantel …

Love this festive Christmas mantel and the mini trees kellyelko.com

This fabulous wreath …

Love this gorgeous Christmas wreath - it's so unique! kellyelko.com

and my Fraser Fir garland.

Love the cotton tucked into the Christmas garland kellyelko.com

Head over to see how Courtney of French Country Cottage decorated her tree – it’s a beauty.

Visit all of my friends to see all of the different trees they chose and how they decked them out!

12 Bloggers of Christmas - see how they each decorated a gorgeous Christmas tree! kellyelko.com

Four Generations One Roof | Craftberry Bush

Ella Claire | Dear Lillie

My Sweet Savannah | Liz Marie Blog

The Yellow Cape Cod | So Much Better With Age

Eclectically Vintage (me!) | French Country Cottage

At The Picket Fence | Jennifer Rizzo


Thanks Balsam Hill for such a life like tree and for making my Christmas that much merrier.

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  1. hello + good morning!

    i enjoy following your blog, especially combined with my morning coffee 🙂 your holiday decorations are breathtaking! i always look forward to your unique designs! thanks so much!



  2. Everything is so gorgeous and I love your tree. The puppy theme is too cute and I want that Snoopy ornament! He’s my favorite character from my childhood. I have more snoopy ornaments on my tree than any other kind! Happy holidays and thanks for the lovely inspiration!

  3. After almost 30 years of being the one that goes and gets the tree, drags it home, cuts off the end, drags it into the house, struggles with the stand… I have come to believe it is time for an artificial tree, but only because as you say Kelly, they are finally believable! Your tree IS beautiful! Love all of your ornaments and house decor! Thanks for all of your inspiration!

  4. Beautiful tree and your decorations are to die for! Thanks for sharing your ornament tradition. When my husband and I got married almost 49 yrs ago we would always go to the after Christmas sale at Hallmark and buy an ornament for that year. We couldn’t afford to buy them before Christmas! Over the years this collection has grown to a huge collection that I love! Treasured ornaments make the tree so unique and special.

  5. Your tree is lovely! I too invested in a new tree from Balsam Hill! I went with the flocked tree and it is beautiful. I was born and raised in MA, in the northeast corner of the state, on the NH border. I have lived in Fl in the Tampa Bay Area on the Gulf of Mexico for the last forty-two years. As I have gotten older (heck, I am old), I have experienced a longing to go home! I made three visits this year! So, when I saw that flocked tree it just called to me! I’m enjoying a “White Christmas” in my living room!

  6. Your tree is beautiful, and the wrapping paper is really cute. It all looks just great , know you’ll make memories this year ,Merry Christmas.

  7. Kelly,

    I think my favorite thing about your room is the custom burlap grain sacks! . What a wonderful idea to pick up the theme of burlap in the ribbon in your tree and you deserve a metal for just the right amount of red in your tree. What amazes me about the trees in the 12 bloggers is how unique each one is . You have a wonderful way of mixing things of the past with things that bring a sense of home in everyday and yet create such harmony and beauty and it is a wonderful idea always to make memories with your family. I’m sure this year will be marked by the new puppy. Many happy times ahead and a blessed new year for you.

  8. BRILLIANT idea re the ornaments (we do that too!! With the SAME idea that when they leave the nest they’ll have a unique collection or ornaments truly theirs). Every year we go to Macy’s downtown Chicago and the kids each choose an ornament. I HEART your style!!

  9. I am considering a BH Fraser Fir so was drawn to your blog post can you tell me what kind of lights you ordered on your tree?

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