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“Moving” into the Holidays!

by | Nov 3, 2008 | Seasonal Decorating & Entertaining

"Moving" into the Holidays!


Can you believe it? November has arrived. And with it, all the holiday goodness! I am so excited! I will be kicking off this season with enthusiasm, it spite of the fact that instead of spending every waking moment decorating my house and baking cookies, I’ll probably be spending considerable amounts of time decluttering, packing boxes and fixing stuff so we can put a “house for sale sign” out in the yard. Yes, we are moving.


We are moving to three hours away to a new state to start a church and a new life. We are really excited about this, in spite of the fact that you all know I hate moving. And could we be picking a worse time to sell a house? The middle of winter when the economy is not exactly ripe for house selling? Not to mention we will be trying to sell a house that still has 20 years worth of projects left to do? {faints}. We need a miracle.


Moving to a new state is a big deal for us, too, after living in Portland most of our lives. And while I love my kitchen in this house because it is the only kitchen I have ever designed for myself, I am really looking forward to downsizing this big household and further simplifying our life. It will be fun to share this adventure of downsizing and starting over in a new place with all of you.


I told some of my Twitter friends this yesterday, but this weekend I decided to do some pre-holiday/moving cleaning. I ventured down to our living room with my vacuum and dust rag. While I was cleaning, I found Christmas tree pine needles behind the chair and a plastic Easter egg still hidden behind a stack of books (and yes, I ate the jelly beans out of it)! Wow! Yes. Clearly it was time for some heavy cleaning. And for me, this is the first step to being ready for the holidays. I cannot bear to decorate anything when my house is not a least somewhat clean and tidy!


So, hang on friends! Even though I am getting the moving boxes out, I will be doing my best to create a memorable holiday season for my family. We don’t always have “the perfect circumstances” in life for creating the “ideal holiday.” But I am not going to let that stop me! I’ve got lots of simple & creative ideas I’m planning on doing even though time and money are short.

In spite of the economy, in spite of all the unknowns and transitions in our life right now, in spite of whatever obstacles any of us have to overcome, we can still create beauty in the season. Things don’t have to be perfect to be memorable. Our holiday will be simple, creative & authentic!

"Moving" into the Holidays!

I’m working on holiday ideas right now at my kitchen table — I’m ready to dive into the festivities! Are you ready to get going?

Let the holidays begin!

"Moving" into the Holidays!

NEW FOR THE HOLIDAYS! Starting this week, I’ll have a special personally picked HOLIDAY LINKY LOVE post every Friday! So, all of you who do a fabulous holiday post during the week just might see your links featured! I will be scouring blogland each week for the best inspiration! If you think your post (or see a post) is worthy and should be mentioned, feel free to email a link to me by Thursday night, just in case I have room to use it. Please put HOLIDAY LINKY LOVE in the subject line.

"Moving" into the Holidays!


ANNOUNCING A GREAT GIVEAWAY TOMORROW…come back Tuesday for all the details!

I am excited to be starting a new adventure in blogging! I am joining up with various sites & businesses on some exciting projects and partnerships! More info to come! Welcome to my partners this month: Homegoods, DaySpring, Urban Botanic, and The Jewel Box Home!

"Moving" into the Holidays!

  • Speaking of exciting partnerships, don’t forget to visit the lovely ladies of Moms Unite! I’m honored to be teamed up with them for the holidays, so thank you all for your support and encouragement!
  • We are also thrilled to unveil the HOLIDAY SHOPPING GUIDE, so please check it out!

"Moving" into the Holidays!


  1. Katie

    So many plans! I cannot wait to see how things progress for you. We were a little worried about making 480 square feet our home. I mean, where would we put the STUFF? Turns out we’re learning a lot of that stuff doesn’t really matter. I hope you can find similar experiences as you prepare for a smaller home.

    Looking forward to your Christmas projects…

    Katies inspiring blog post..Giving the Kitchen a Little Facelift

  2. vivy

    For several days I am taking your website and I want you to know that I find it a haven of peace. Always come back even if no new post, I need to see beautiful things and find them here. Greetings and congratulations from Buenos Aires Argentina. ♥♥♥

  3. Kristen

    Moving is such an adventure, but it’s hard at the same time. My thoughts and prayers are with you! And I am so looking forward to seeing what you do for your simple, creative and authentic holiday season. I’m so excited this time of year is finally here!

    Kristens inspiring blog post..It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

  4. Liz

    congratulations and good luck in the move! I moved several years ago from one county to another here in the UK. I’d never really lived outside of London and I was (and sometimes still am!) surprised at the differences a 100 miles can make to the language and attitudes. So I can only imagine the differnces a State makes in the US?

    I look forward to reading your holiday and househunting posts :) x

  5. Jinx

    Oh, I SO know how you feel about having a clean house before you begin decorating. Last year, while I was at an odd weekend meeting, I came home to find the 8 foot tree up. Problem was, I was going to be ready for it for at least 2 weeks! I ended up dragging it out (yep, all 5’2″ of me), cleaning & dragging it back in!

    Not this year! I started the heavy duty cleaning 3 weeks ago & we are good to go! And I have some interesting ideas!

    Jinxs inspiring blog post..Spiced Cafe Mocha Cookies & Dragonlings

  6. Kathy

    Yikes Melissa! Sounds like you have a plate full this season:>) I’ll be praying for you that the house sells and the move isn’t too tough. Looks like lots of great things happening over here at the Inspired Room. I’ll be watching to see it all:>)

    Kathys inspiring blog post..300th Post Give-Away

  7. Vee~A Haven for Vee

    Wow…it sounds frenetic in here…you’re going in so many new directions! If I didn’t know that you are a student of authenticity, I’d be urging you to take good care of yourself. Oh nuts, I will anyway. In the meantime, we’ll all enjoy the excitement!

    Vee~A Haven for Vees inspiring blog post..Giving Thanks Challenge

  8. Adrienne

    Good morning, Melissa –
    I’m thrilled to hear how God is leading you. I don’t envy you the job of moving but I know everything will fall into place as you follow Him. Please keep us informed as things progress. I’d love to hear more – like where you are going and more about the church you will be starting. You and your family will be in my prayers as you go.

    Adriennes inspiring blog post..Trust In The Lord

  9. Maureen

    Miracles do happen as you know, and it only takes one buyer to make a sale if it’s meant to happen. If it doesn’t, then perhaps the message is stay put ….

    You will have a wonderful Christmas because you know what it’s really about. Decorating is the icing; the “cake” has the substance.

    Maureens inspiring blog post..NO to slots!

  10. Nancy

    Best of luck to you on your upcoming move. We have been there before and know how stressful it can be. We moved in 2006 on Dec. 27th twelve hours away for a new job opportunity. We still had an awesome holiday despite the boxes. You sound like you have such a positive attitude about all this and I think that is just great. Best wishes to you and your family.

  11. We are THAT family

    Oh, bless your heart! You are going to be so busy! But, Wow! We’ve found that whenever we follow God, HE always comes thru! I’m doing Homespun Holiday gifts every Tuesday and Christmas decor on my DIYP in December, so I’ll send them your way!

    We are THAT familys inspiring blog post..THAT Family Tree Society-Issue 16

  12. Becky K.

    I am so excited for you! Having just begun a new phase in our church life and all the fun and stress that goes with it…you’ll be in my prayers.

    Love that you will share your adventure with your readers!

    Thanks so much!

    Becky K.

    Becky K.s inspiring blog post..A Week of Significance

  13. Jen

    I’m addicted to Christmas and I’m passing that addiction to my children. My daughter who turns three a couple of days prior to the big day has being clasping her hands together and in a perfect imitation of me saying “Ooooh I can’t wait until Christmas!”

    The morning following my Halloween party I was searching the net for Christmas decorating ideas. It makes me giddy!

    Jens inspiring blog post..Spooky Graveyard

  14. Wendy

    Good luck with selling the house and the move! You will surely inspire us all with your simple ideas…those are the best kinds anyway!

    Wendys inspiring blog post..The Library~

  15. Kacey

    Oh I am SO EXCITED about this season too! Congratulations on the move – what a wonderful adventure it will be! I have something for you over at my place. Hope you have an awesome day!

    Kaceys inspiring blog post..{Blog Awardathon Part One}

  16. Rhoda

    Melissa, congrats on the big move and I’m sure it was a huge decision. I loved your old house, but I’m sure you’ll find another very neat house that you can work on too. Now, we wonder which state you’ll be moving to….WA or CA or perhaps another state closeby. You’ll have to give a hint on that one. Sounds like a great adventure for your whole family.

    Rhodas inspiring blog post..It’s a Giveaway!!

  17. Coco

    It all sounds very exciting…remember, Christmas is a time of miracles!

    Cocos inspiring blog post..the race is on…

  18. Miss Mari-Nanci

    WOW! What a ‘Full Of News’ entry this is!!!!!!! I need time to absorb it all. :-)

    Best of luck to you, with all your plans. I so look forward to taking this journey with you, via Cyber. {Especially the downsizing part. Who doesn’t need suggestions for that?!?}

    And your Holiday Ideas coming! Super! You my Dear, always have the *super-est* ideas! So these will be no less, I’m sure.

    And if I may, I’ll be asking you a blogging question, backchannel {private e-mail}. :-)

    Coming Holiday hugs,
    Miss Mari-Nanci

    Miss Mari-Nancis inspiring blog post..Of Cranberry/Nut Bread, & gathering leaves, & evenings…

  19. janet

    Congratulations; that is quite a big announcement. I remember back in the summer you told me you had been on the K.P. in Washington. If that is where you are headed you will love it I think. It is so stunningly beautiful.

    Best of luck and please let us know as soon as you can.


    janets inspiring blog post..OAKS

  20. Denise

    Hi Melissa!

    I’m praying for you and your new God adventure! He will give you the miracle you need in selling the house. We know His timing is perfect, but I pray He will sell that lovely house for you very quickly!

    I hope you’ll be able to keep up the blog. I so enjoy it! But, it sounds like you are going to be very busy!

  21. Françoise

    That’s a big change Melissa!
    I went to your essay on Authentic Change and some of it left me pondering.
    In the end , as usual, W.S. said it best and most succintly :
    “And one thing above all: to thy own self be true.”
    It is that simple, and that difficult.

    Good luck in you new endeavour!

    Françoises inspiring blog post..ONE DAY MORE

  22. Terri

    Good luck with the move! What an adventure you’re beginning! I hope it all turns out even better then you hoped!

    Terris inspiring blog post..The weekend and it’s treasures

  23. cara

    Whew.. what an informative post! Best of luck to you on your moving adventure.. I hope that you are heading up my way.. it would be so much fun to have a blog meet-up here in the PacNW!

    caras inspiring blog post..Finito!

  24. Violet Skiles

    Hi Melissa,
    What a big adventure you are on! I know what you mean about cleaning and organizing, I have to do it before I start any new project or painting, or decorating for the holidays. It’s like starting with a fresh canvas! It sets my mind free of clutter so I can be energized for the next project. We moved a year ago, just 3 miles from where we were, but still a big job, but it feels so good to organize the ‘stuff’ and get rid of things I no longer need. Hey, I’m going to send you a link to my Fall Decorating ideas on my “Create Beauty” blog.

    “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path.”

  25. katiedid

    Melissa! You are a brave woman, but then we all knew that already! I have no doubt you will be able to create and enjoy a wonderful Holiday season because you carry the spirit with you. What State are you moving to?!? Three hours from Portland? You must be excited and nervous all at once. Sending good wishes your way.

    katiedids inspiring blog post..Fall Color

  26. Melissa

    Hey all your sweet friends! We are moving to Washington! Up near Seattle. If any of you live near by, I’m your new neighbor! :-)

    Thanks for all the encouragement and support! I am energized by all of you, so thanks!

  27. Debbie

    Wow Melissa, congratulations on your new direction and new move. When it is God inspired, things do seem to fall into place. We are your support group and we will enjoy walking with you through this. God is good all the time…expect wonderful things from this new path you are taking…even during the packing, cleaning, packing, cleaning….etc. (Big smile)

    Debbie @ ribbonwoods inspiring blog post..Yippeee A winner, a winner!

  28. Tara

    Hi Melissa,

    Congratulations on your decision and your new direction! I love where i live too, but sometimes change is good and it sounds like you have a positive outlook. Good luck..and I can’t wait to see what you have in store for the holidays! I am soo excited to decorate this year. It sounds like you have a lot up your sleeve!

    Thanks for always being so inspirational~
    ~ Tara ~

  29. Julianna

    God’s timing is amazing and perfect. Let me give you some encouragement: we put our house on the market in July and had a contract in six days for above appraised value. I’m so grateful you’re doing this segment right now because we’re in a temporary place while we build; therefore, all of our stuff is in storage. Like you, I still want the holidays to memorable and special. Thanks for all your hard work and wonderful ideas!

    Juliannas inspiring blog post..E-I-E-I-O!

  30. anne

    Wow Melissa…so much to do. You must be excited and nervous all in one about your move. Good Luck sending best wishes to you and your family.

    annes inspiring blog post..Favourite Biscuits….

  31. Debbie

    Gosh, to add more stress to this time of year; you’re moving! But good for you since you’re choosing to be excited and challenged to still have a great holiday season. The Lord will provide all you need during this time, especially since He called you guys to a new ministry. Blessings to you.

    Debbies inspiring blog post..Tips For Reducing Holiday Stress

  32. Darlene

    I just heard of a lady that heard from God that she was to sell her home & all her belongings to become a missionary in some 3rd world country. At that time she was 65 yrs old. She told GOD that if this was indeed from him, then he would have to have the buyer come knock on her door to buy the house and that she would not put a for sale sign in the yard nor tell anyone she was selling. Guess what happened??? A buyer knocked on her door, bought her house with furnishings, and she is now running several orphanages in Haiti and she is 80 yrs old. She says God always provides for her needs!

    Darlenes inspiring blog post..You Can Add Architectural Interest…Inexpensively!

  33. Pat

    I am excited for you and wish you the very best in this next stage of your life, Melissa.

    We moved, 5 years ago, during the holidays. Even though things were packed away and there were workmen in the new house, I put up a tree! They were all flabbergasted!!LOL

    As a matter of fact, today, I posted a Christmas shop we visited in Branson, last week! If you’d like to have a look come on over. I’m going to begin decorating soon, so I should have a Friday post or two.

    Have a wonderful week!

    Pats inspiring blog post..~Fifty One Days~

  34. Shane

    I certainly don’t envy you……moving and all. My family and I moved 5 hours away last December. We moved into our new home on Dec. 18th. Needless to say, no Christmas tree last year. We still own our house in our old town too. Luckily we’ve got great renters in it. Best of luck and try not to go crazy! I look forward to reading all about your new adventure.

    Shanes inspiring blog post..Want to have a Celebrity Read to Your LD Child?

  35. Alana

    You have a lot of wonderful and exciting things to look forward to. I’m looking forward to all your holiday wonderfulness!

    Alana @ Gray Matterss inspiring blog post..Sew Much Fun – Drawstring Gift Bags

  36. Pam

    good luck with it all and I hope your home sells quickly for you, being a retired military wife I remember those joyful moves.

    Pams inspiring blog post..Novembers Sounds of Music

  37. shelbi

    i am so inspired by your awesome outlook melissa. i have been in your shoes, just very recently – so i know how stressful can be! but i sense that God has given you a peace about this move….allow Him to show you just how faithful He truly is. all the details will take care of themselves. keep your eyes on Him and your focus on your family as you always do! :)

    prayers for you today and always my bff!


    shelbis inspiring blog post..TAGGED!

  38. Lisa

    Wow – so many new things happening! I will be praying that all goes well for you with the move and the transition. And I’ll be enjoying all kinds of holiday posts.

    Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolatess inspiring blog post..Bloggy Giveaway Winners!

  39. Brandie

    Oh my gosh girl! I’m so sad you’re moving out of the area. *sigh* Your new city will be lucky have you all. :)

  40. Laura Ingalls Gunn

    I love to move. No, I am not insane. The thrill of discovering new things and meeting new people and seeing where the furniture will end up in a new floorplan. Oh happy sigh! Redecorating at its cheapest.
    I keep asking my now USAF retired husband, “Any chance your company will be moving us soon? We’ve been here for over 3 years. ” :)

    I too save my spring cleaning for the holidays. I cannot bear to decorate on a dirty surface, but even more so in my mind I am cleaning to prepare for the arrival of the most important guest I will ever have in my life, let alone my home. This mind set makes the dusting almost joyful.

    Laura Ingalls Gunns inspiring blog post..For me? You shouldn’t have!

  41. Becky

    Well, I don’t blame you feeling the stress of it all (maybe you need some more stale jelly beans)! But it sounds like God has called on you to do just that. He knows what the economy is like and what the housing market is like and what season it is, so rest in the trust that He is in charge. I will pray for you. Are you off to Washington (I am guessing 3 hours from Portland)?

    Beckys inspiring blog post..Happy Novemeber

  42. Maggie

    After moving 8 times in the last 10 years, I understand all too well what you are and will be faced with. It seems it was always due to pending economic changes in the US and the companies we worked for. What an exciting time, to be starting a new church, something I wish would come here. Though we have many churches here, we still haven’t found a church to call home. Maybe the new year will bring this blessing to us as it will for you. Thank you for all you do and may you find peace during and through it all, you’re not alone. My thoughts and best wishes go with you.

  43. laurie miller

    Isn’t it great that God is big enough… Embrace all of the changes and purpose to enjoy every minute of every event that comes your way in the next few months. You are making lifetime memories and your positive and joyful response to these will serve you well as you serve God and others!

    laurie millers inspiring blog post..Treasure Hunting

  44. Girly Stuff

    You’ve got me all excited about Christmas! Let the games begin!

    I will be praying for your move. Exciting and scary! Just how God works in our lives!

    Girly Stuffs inspiring blog post..The Study…Again

  45. Deb

    Just think of the relief you’ll have in decorating with things you can just toss. Do you ever feel guilty about throwing away holiday items and end up keeping really ugly things? Lol.

    Hope your house sells quickly and for your asking price.

    Debs inspiring blog post..Sonflower Sisters: Holiday Recipes

  46. avtcoach

    Hi Melissa,
    I feature “Three Sites To See” on my blog each Monday. Your site was featured today. Come on over to my place and read the lovey comments that my readers shared!

    avtcoachs inspiring blog post..Tuesday Tales – Thanksgiving Is Here!

  47. tamara

    Oh, I’m feeling a lot of sympathy for you to have to move during the christmas season. I hope it all works out fine :) I’m feeling a bit of dread myself……we start shipping poinsettias next monday to the stores. I am hoping that people still have a little cash left to buy a flower after all this nasty recession talk!

    tamaras inspiring blog post..My Little Angel’s Wedding

  48. Penny

    Wow!! I am excited for you and your move. It sounds like a great adventure. I wish you all the best with the sale of your home.

    And…I am looking forward to your joining our group on Home Goods!

  49. Jan

    Good Morning Melissa…

    I haven’t been around much the past couple of weeks…after being attacked and injured by a crazed neighbor on the 20th of October.

    However, I just saw that you’re going to be putting your house up for sale and moving to start a Church. I added you to our Prayer List on our weekly post, Come to Jesus and Pray on TUESDAYS. We will be praying for all the energy you need to de-clutter, pack and clean AND for a speedy sale.


    Jans inspiring blog post..Come to Jesus and Pray

  50. Gina

    Wow, such exciting things for you-we just recently moved and relocated to partner with some dear friends in a new church plant. It’s truly been an adventure and God has been so faithful to us-even with a job loss because of the crazy economy! (We’re in Central Oregon where things are so, so slow right now.) We’ve learned to simply obey, even when things don’t make sense.

    Incidently, we listed and sold our home in the valley during the holidays-I think a beautifully decorated home shows really well!
    Blessings and prayers to you for favor and success!

    Ginas inspiring blog post..Happy Dress Up

  51. Sweet Cottage Dreams

    Melissa, how do you do all of this amazing blog work and find the time to pack and do all of the domestic things you do? I am so impressed ~ beyond words!! How wonderful to be able to have such a blessing to start a new church and to move from one wonderful city to another. You will love it there. We have some distant relatives in Seattle and Everett and my SIL lives near Spokane. Washington state is as breathtaking as Oregon. At least you will be used to all of the rain.

    Blessings to you and yours! I’d come help you pack and clean if I could!!!


  52. Melissa Lewis - Off The Wall

    Oh wow! Big news!!!! This is so exciting. Starting a church… wow, lots of work, but can be fun. I can’t wait to hear more updates on this:)

  53. Darla

    You’re MOVING? I am so loopless.

    Remember to pack the grape jelly. ;)

  54. Southern Fried Gal

    Wow! Good luck on everything! I will pray for you and your family every time I visit your blog – so lots of prayers going up for you – ha!

    I’m also doing some heavy cleaning today. I’m currently working in the hall closet and needed a quick break. I’m excited about all the items I’ve found to donate already!

    Excited about the Holiday Linky Love, too!

    Southern Fried Gals inspiring blog post..Out of the Mouths of Babes

  55. laney

    …oh what an adventure ahead of you!! is there any place we can go to learn about the church and your participation in its start…and what a perfect…yes perfect …time to do this…Christmas….when a new world and Hope came to us! sending you out with love and blessings as you go forth….it will be wonderful…i cannot wait to see what He will do with you and for you…now THIS is authentic living….

  56. Melissa

    Thanks everyone!

    Laney, I tried to email you back but the address didn’t work. We will definitely have some sort of blog for the church .. but we don’t yet! I might also start a more personal blog that I can update from time to time and maybe link to from here for anyone who is interested. I’ll give it some thought and let you all know! Keep asking though, I get busy and put things off, but it is nice to know you are interested! It really means a lot!

    Happy day!


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