Veronika Miller

Veronika Miller

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Cheryl Kees Clendenon's Holiday Decor

  • cheryl holiday decor collage
Can you share with us your fondest holiday memory? It can be anything from your childhood or
from last year, what is the one holiday event or moment that stands out for you?

For me as a child my favorite memory is one year when I was 11 or 12 and my mom surprised me with
an entire collection of Holly Hobbie STUFF. I mean the whole enchilada. Am I dating myself?? And
she could ill afford this at this time in our lives but there it was ….Holly Hobbie dishes, glasses,
candles…you name it. I don’t think I want to know what mom did to score all that Holly Hobbie, some things are better kept secret! But I remember seeing it all under the tree and thinking I was the
luckiest little girl in the world!
Last Christmas, my husband and girls and I met my dad and his girlfriend in New Orleans and that was
very special too. A magical city especially in the twinkling Christmas lights. (Always better to see
NOLA in the dimmer lights, you know!) It was several days of fab food and special family memories.

What are your typical family traditions for the holidays?

One of the things we do every year is to open presents on Christmas Eve from out of town
family. The first gift to be opened, which is always from momma (me), is always fun pajamas and my girls get dressed in their new PJ’s and then get to open the gifts from family. I always felt like these gifts would get lost in the hoopla on Christmas morning and not seem important. Now, it's a tradition the girls look forward to and I have to confess, so do I! And, my gift to myself on Christmas Eve has always been a primo bottle of wine. I even wrap it up so can savor the excitement of a bottle of the finest wine I can afford to gift myself that particular year! Some years it was whatever was on sale at the market:)
I also have bought the girls an ornament each year that was somewhat special and wrote the year on it
so they have their own set of ornaments one day when they move into their own permanent homes. It's
fun to unpack those each year!

Now let's talk about holiday décor. What does your home look like during the holidays? And is there a style you've always coveted but haven't managed to create for your own home? 

I am definitely not a big decorating diva during the holidays. My house is so small that it's always a major rework of furniture to even fit the tree! I have always felt like less is more in this arena and try to not get sucked into the holiday hoopla surrounding the commercial aspect of the holidays. I will usually do a family tree with all the fun ornaments from the kids growing up. Yep. Every construction paper
garland, every footprint in paint, and all the homemade “pretties” they made for mom.

Last year I did create a second small tree with lots of coastal handmade items which was lots of fun to do but where I got the time is still a mystery. This year we will be in Key West with my family so I will
probably forgo most of the decorations!

Big secret? I ditch the tree on December 26th EVERY year. All those dropped needles drive me
INSANE. I get a huge amount of grief from everyone I know about this!
I will say I enjoy some decorations but overall just am not a fan of the excess. (except when it comes
to presents…see below)

We won't judge if you've been naughty or nice, so tell us, what's on your wishlist this year?

OK now we all know Cheryl loves presents! This year I want Santa to bring me an ipad mini, at least 5
books, some new techno thingy that I do not even know exists yet but will love because I am at heart a
technogeek and maybe a super good bottle of wine!

We're definitely with you on the wine, Cheryl! Happy Holidays!