With all of the start-up business expenses piling up, we decided to conserve funds (& energy) by forgoing holiday travel this year. We are thrilled to report that our first Christmas Day at the Griffeth Tiny House was calm, serene, and revitalizing. That, in and of itself, is a bit of a Christmas MIRACLE! Holidays are often high stress events spent running from one house to another, packing up the car with gifts and rushing to get food in and out of the oven. Obviously, any time spent with our families is a gift, and it seemed a bit strange to be on our own this year, but we had a wonderful day of gratitude and reflection nonetheless.
As part of our journey to become a more intentional family, we decided to commit our Christmas Day to Zero-Waste, and the art of Slow Living. And man, I gotta tell ya - Slow Living is the life for me! (cue “Green Acres” theme song). We had the BEST day - just chillin’, slow livin’, and soaking up every moment of loveliness that the day had to offer.
Slow Living, by the way, doesn’t mean being lazy and doing nothing. It’s about being mindful and present in everything you do - and taking things slow, rather than rushing to just get things done. Looking back on the day, we got a whole list of things done - but because we were mindful of the moments, they felt relaxing and peaceful rather than like a hustle & bustle hassle.
We started our Christmas Day with a steaming cup of Mexican Hot Cocoa and a family foraging hike with Luna and our Christmas guest, Atlas the Marrema. The hills of Topanga were generous as always, and we came home with tons of flora with which to deck the halls.
I should mention that we’ve been so busy with the start-up business, we hadn’t had a moment to decorate the tree or put up any decorations before Christmas Day. So most of our morning was dedicated to creating a festive environment. The zero-waste wrapping I had posted about a few weeks ago turned out to be one of my favorite experiences of the day. It was a truly zen experience that I highly recommend for anyone else who is crazy about wrapping & bows. Wrapping has always been super fun for me, I have LOVED it ever since I was a kid because it gives you that opportunity to make a gift truly special for someone you love - but this new method really took it next level. I found incredible quality scraps of raw silk in the $1 bin at our local fabric store Fabric World in Venice. The frayed edges introduced the perfect amount of organic texture, and coupled with the earthy feel of the raw silk… it couldn’t have been more perfect. I got so lucky! Add to that, our foraging bounty from the morning as trimming… and a picture perfect zero-waste gift wrap for $1 was born!
The morning’s foraging was brought to even greater use when I mixed the wild flora with flowers from a $15 Trader Joe’s holiday bouquet. By mixing up store-bought blooms with wild harvested flora, I was able to transform one bouquet into four! Also in the spirit of zero-waste, we repurposed one of our moscow mule mugs into a copper vase. Just because we have to be frugal in these start-up years doesn’t mean we can’t have beautiful things - we just have to be a little more creative!
With the take-it-slow attitude of the day, we decided to make our Christmas lunch a little late… pair it with our favorite Justin Isosceles cab & make it a “dunch” of sorts. Daane whipped up an incredible pasta dish inspired by our friend Joy Wilson of Joy the Baker. He made the meal his own by cooking the sausage separately to make my half vegetarian-friendly, and added some sun-dried tomatoes for a little bit of red Christmas cheer. He’s a genius in the kitchen - I really am a lucky gal!
Our alfresco "dunch" was followed by a sweet combo of “Tina’s Toffee” made from a recipe posted by our friend Claire of Kitchy Kitchen, and a round of Old Fashioned cocktails made in Whitney A. “Lazy Bitch” style with an Amarena Cherry garnish for holiday flair. If you haven’t heard of Whitney A yet - you really must check out her YouTube vids - she’s not only hilarious, but also gives some incredible tips on creating truly fabulous cocktails with the least amount of effort and ingredients.
It was our first foray into toffee making - so the dessert didn't quite turn out like Claire's pretty pictures. Oh well! Slow Living is all about embracing life's imperfections, so we laughed it off and poured ourselves another Old Fashioned.
At this point in the late afternoon, we slowly got around to decorating the tree with wild berries and remnants of past year’s ornaments, took a delightful moment to hang our artisan stockings, & found the perfect place to hang our handmade mini wreath from a tree branch with care…
And what would Christmas be without some cute portraits of the kids?!
Around sunset, we finally cozied up by the fire and opened all of our gifts - our hearts filled with gratitude and all the warm fuzzies of the season. All in all, it was a peaceful, fun-filled day of family, nature, and lots of puppy love. We couldn’t be happier or more grateful.
Next Up: A New Year’s camping trip to Big Sur, and a VERY exciting announcement to come in the weeks ahead. We cannot wait to share the exciting news!
Thank you for joining us this Very Tiny Christmas - here’s wishing holiday blessings and cheer to all!
Daane, Marisa, Chloe, Luna & (honorary Christmas Griffeth) Atlas