As I am sure that you have noticed the weather has changed and the holiday season is upon us. We see it in the stores that are sending us the gift catalogs and sales ads, along with all of the new displays trying to entice us to buy, buy, buy. But if you are anything like me when this season rolls around you want your home to feel warm and inviting with a bit of the season rolled in. I like to start the charges now with little accents that I can add to as the season changes from Thanksgiving to Christmas. One of my favorite ways to bring the feeling of the holidays into the home is with unique tablescapes that use the natural elements from the environment.

ImageImageImage Here are three starting points for your holiday decorating. Great candles and natural elements. All of these objects are the basis for any great tablescapes. They give you height, texture and color to work with. As the season goes on these basic starters can change into elegant or casual tablescapes for holiday dining. ImageImage Another way to change the starter elements is to place the candles inside glass vases. You can fill these glass vases with many different objects. It can be as simple as dried corn and berries to as elaborate as crystals and beads.ImageImage Another great place to make sure that you do not forget to decorate during the holiday season is the mantel (if you have one). This is a perfect place to display more than just stockings. You can run everything from pine branches and pine cones to candles and ornaments along your mantel. And even better as the season goes from oranges and browns to reds and greens you can just add additional elements. So if you started with candles and pine cones you can add holly and pine branches and change the candles from oranges and browns to reds, whites and golds.

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And the last thing to keep in mind when decorating for the holiday is what you smell when you walk in the door. One of the things that I love to create are simmer pots. You can use ceramic fondue pots or tea kettles or even just a pot on the stove. They give such a great sense of the holidays because they have you using all of your senses. My favorite recipes for a simmer pot is cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, and orange peels mixed with enough water to keep the pot going. I use my ceramic fondue pot with tea-light candles to keep the scent flowing throughout my home. It brings an instant smile to my face and reminds me of the snowy winters of my childhood.