Decorating Your Home for the Holidays

It may seem early to our readers around the world, but in Canada the day after Halloween marks the unofficial start of the holiday season. Gift guides and wish-books from retailers arrive in the mailbox, and the windows of shops are decorated with garland, glitter and the occasional tree. Even Starbucks has replaced their white cups with their traditional, red holiday ones.

We’ve barely put away the ghoulish masks and spooky ghosts and my boys are asking when we’re going to put up the Christmas tree. I try to be all zen about it and remind them that the holidays are weeks away but there is no denying that those weeks are going to pass in the blink of an eye and the bulk of holiday happiness resides squarely upon my shoulders.

So whether you celebrate Christmas or just like to create a cozy home for winter, here is a round up of my favourite items from Indigo, President Choice Home and The Home Depot.


I love these copper mule mugs. They add sparkle and shine to the table and can be used at any festive meal.

Mule mug

These Woodland Cabin napkins are reminiscent of Kurt Cobain and the grunge era, but there is something undeniably Canadian about this print.



Cake plates are my new favourite tabletop accessories. Last month we did a post on DIY flower arrangements and used this wooden pedestal as the focus point. Additionally they are a great way to display ornaments, treasures and of course desserts.

medium pedestal

medium marble and wood pedestal Dessert plates are an inexpensive way to add whimsy to a table. These ribbon plates are less than $35 but if you wanted to choose something with more longevity, consider the New Year’s Eve Countdown plates that could do double-duty for a birthday celebration.

ribbon plates

Snow globes have come a long way from tacky tourist souvenirs. These globes would standout on any mantle or atop a stack of books arranged on the coffee table.

2014_HOL_OL_882709173854_17708 copy



Last year I bought some festive pillows on a whim, successfully transforming my living room into a Christmas-y nook. Santa is not for everyone, but these current designs have staying power and will last long past his visit.





PC Home

I was amazed to learn how much of the PC Home line is designed in Toronto. The creative minds behind the 2014 Holiday collection were on hand to answer questions at the holiday preview and to be honest, I was impressed by both their ingenuity and their desire to create products for every day life. They get that people are clumsy and Waterford crystal chips. They understand that Santa mugs are irresistible to little hands. Above all, they understand that we want beautiful, functional design for our home at a reasonable price.  All the items here are available at Real Canadian Superstore and select Loblaw banner stores.


My sister-in-law does a cookie exchange with her friends every year and this tin would be ideal as the chalkboard surface allows for the giver to write a message on the lid.


My most favourite holiday accessory is this faux crystal glassware set. The bowls and the glassware are so well crafted you’ll be amazed when you discover it’s plastic! So stop worrying about chipping your finery, lay this out for Christmas dinner and pull it out again come patio season.



PC Home outdid themselves when it comes to ornaments.   Beautiful colour palates from muted pastels, to icy jewel tones and classic holiday. For the price, I’ve seen nothing comparable. IMG_1296 IMG_1310

Home Depot

Usually I am opposed to chotchkies but the holidays are the time to bring them all out! Go hog-wild! Clutter-up them surfaces! These are a few that I am clearing space for this year.




But it’s this tree that has me trying to reconfigure my living room.  Imagine two of these book-ending a sleek, modern fireplace. . . .hmmmm, maybe it’s time for a new fireplace.


Sadly, I am not on the payroll so I didn’t receive a penny for these recommendations. However, I was invited to their holiday preview events and they were a lot of fun! For more images of what’s new and in stores, follow 4Mothers on Instagram.


Far To Go

I consider myself an avid reader.  I read about thirty books per year, which isn’t a staggering number, but between three kids (four and under), running a house and trying to have a life, I’d say it’s a decent number.

I’m no Oprah but I feel like have it on good authority to recommend a good read and Far To Go is one of the best books that I have read in a long time.

Far To Go, by local Toronto author, Alison Pick is guaranteed to make you cry, question your beliefs, challenge your thinking and leave you breathless.  I promise!

Set in 1939 Czechoslovakia, wealthy textile merchants, Pavel and Annelise are faced with increasing anti-Semitism, as the political climate grows hostile for Jewish nationals.  Realizing their options for escape are limited they must decide whether to separate the family and place their young son on the kindertransport.  Their nightmare is made complicated by a twisted web of deceit, confliction and unconditional love.

It may sound like a familiar story but Pick’s characters are rich in complexity and achingly human.  Her writing left me feeling gutted by the painful loss that was a reality for many Jewish families during the Holocaust.

I had the opportunity to meet Pick when she attended our book club’s review of her novel, Far To Go. I gushed just like a schoolgirl meeting Justin Beiber.  But really, how could I not.  Just read this novel and this author’s raw talent will mesmerize you.

Why more people don’t know about this book saddens me.  It should be soaring bestsellers.  It should be sitting on Heather’s table of picks.  Oprah should be emphatically hollering, “You get a copy and you get a copy and you get a copy!”

As I often write, I am not a reviewer but merely a suggester.  Should you want to read a review of this book by some savvy book bloggers may I suggest Kerry Clare of Pickle Me This, Bibliomama, and Kevin From Canada.  If you prefer print media reviews, take a look at what The National Post and Globe and Mail have to say about this special book.

If you only read one book this year, make it this one!  Have you read Far To Go?  If so, what did you think?