If you stop to think about it, so many of our Christmas memories involve more than just decorations. Yes, we love the ornaments and the santa collection but we also love the smells, the sounds and the tastes of the holiday. Christmas decorating using all five senses, takes decorating to a whole new level and will fully immerse you with the holiday spirit.
This is the most obvious one. The more you decorate with lights, ornaments and Christmas decor the more you engage with sight. Below is my Christmas tree. I call it the memory tree because every single ornament on it was either hand made by one of my sons, gifted by a friend, or purchased on a trip.
Christmas music is probably what gets me in the holiday spirit the most. I have a collection of old school Christmas CD’s that I absolutely love. My tastes run the gamut and I have everything from Bing Crosby’s White Christmas to Michael Buble, Mariah Carey and Trans-Siberian Orchestra. I probably own 25-30 different ones and they get played almost non-stop for about three weeks.
Unfortunately, my husband does not share my love of Christmas music. Because of that, I’ve always played them during the day when he was at work. Now that he is working at home I don’t have that option. Instead I have to deal with his eye rolls and feigned suffering. He is a die hard Grateful Dead fan so I can understand how Michael and Mariah are not his cup of tea.
For many of us, the taste of our traditional Christmas treats brings back happy memories of Christmas pasts. My Mom made butter cookies every year from a Betty Crocker cookbook passed down from my grandmother. Looking back, they were so unhealthy, full of animal shortening and tons of sugar but boy were they good.
I make a slightly different recipe now but Christmas is not complete without a day of cookie baking. Besides the cookies, I have been baking “Gail’s oatmeal cranberry squares” for over thirty years. The tradition is very important to me and you can get the recipe and read the story about Gail, HERE
If ever there was a good time to layer in soft cozy fabrics, pillows and throws it’s at Christmas time. A chunky throw, a wool blanket, or some soft pillows create that warm, cozy, safe feeling.
Here’s a chunky knit throw my client recently bought from Amazon. She said she loves curling up in it for movie night.
Christmas is also a good time to swap out your light weight throw pillows for some heavier weight ones. Velvet, wool, or nubby textured pillows will give a cozy feeling to the room and indulge your sense of touch.
Don’t feel like you have to stick to the traditional red and green christmas colors. A jewel tone will be beautiful such as deep plum, gold or even teal. This collection from West Elm is on sale for only $21.00 each and there are some beautiful colors to choose from.
Christmas decorating using all five senses would not be complete without incorporating the sense of smell. Cinnamon, nutmeg, pine, etc. adds so much to the holiday experience.
Baking family favorite Christmas cookies and treats is a sure way to fill your home with the smells of Christmas. Another way is to bring in fresh greens. Balsam pine is so fragrant as is the traditional Christmas plant paperwhites.
Scented candles can also be a good stand in when you want to quickly fill your house with the smells of Christmas. If you choose to go that route, think about investing in a high quality, all natural scented candle. The $4.99 drug store variety are filled with artificial toxic chemicals and although they might smell wonderful, they are not good for your home or your lungs.
One of my favorite ways to fill the house with Christmas is to simmer a pot of Christmas potpourri. You can buy a ready made bag of Christmas scents but it’s really easy to make your own. My recipe changes depending on what I have on hand but it generally looks like this. I simmer on low heat, 3-4 whole cinnamon sticks, 6 whole nutmeg, a capful of vanilla, some citrus slices such as oranges or lemons, a handful of cranberries, and sometimes I even throw in a snip of pine from the Christmas tree. It smells heavenly and is all natural.
There you have it! To fully embrace the holiday be sure to pay attention to Christmas decorating using all five senses. You can click on the pin below if you want to save these ideas for later.
Wishing you all a wonderful holiday, a Merry Christmas and a HEALTHY and virus free New Year.