My Messy Christmas {Three Word Wednesday}

sharing glimpses of His love & sprinkles of His grace
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My Messy Christmas {Three Word Wednesday}

By Barbie   /     Dec 18, 2013  /     family  /     


*Disclaimer:  This post is not intended to put myself down or to make you feel sorry for me.  This is my reality and I don’t care to hide it any longer.  I’ve been wallowing in all sorts of “why not me” and coveting the beauty of others that I’ve decided being real with my life, messy and all, speaks more of the beauty of Christmas, at least for me.

I had started a post entitled, “Awaiting His Arrival” and thought I would write about Mary,  how she pondered in her heart the arrival of the Son of God.  What were the questions she had of God about His son?  What did God share with her about Him?

But then it all sort of dissolved into nothing. You see, that is the post I wanted to write.  I wanted my voice to be heard for Advent.  My heart wanted to be taken down this path, to chime in with my thoughts on this beautiful season, to “fit in” with the rest for what the blogging world has been doing over the last couple of weeks.  God didn’t allow it.

Honestly, I’ve been all sorts of overwhelmed lately, for a couple of months now.  I can’t really blame it on the book, although getting a book published and getting a launch team together with reviews & giveaways can be exhausting.  Somewhere along the way I lost my voice, or so it seems. I long for the deeper revelation of God’s heart.  I’ve sat, prayed, cried, tried in my own strength.  But I’m not hearing.  At least nothing that I can put together in pretty little paragraphs for you all to read.

I’ve been a little down over the beautiful pictures I’ve been seeing on Facebook, Instagram and blogs over the Christmas grandeur of others.  Pretty packages, white Christmas, beautifully decked halls.  A  beautiful home is something I’ve always wanted.  But then I am reminded that any home can be beautiful, because it’s about the people who live there, not about the stuff. If I’m not careful I can find myself being sucked into the woes of “why not me”.  It’s not a place I want to linger for too long.

So, I thought I’d be real tonight and share my Messy Christmas Home Tour.  Because it really doesn’t have to be beautiful.  Jesus is here, in the mess, the dust, the chaos, and He loves me all the same.  I think it will free my heart from a place I’ve been sitting far too long.

In the spirit of The Nester, I give you my reality.  And if you haven’t checked out the Christmas Tour of Homes at the Nester’s, you really should. I am too embarrassed to link up even though I believe her when she says it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.

Here is my 2013 Messy Christmas Home Tour, or a peak into my beautiful chaos!

The Tree


At first glance, it doesn’t look too bad.  My presents are wrapped in traditional wrapping paper, unlike the brown paper packages tied up with all sorts of lovely like some of my friends.  Pay particular attention to the dog toy, wires and unvacuumed carpet.  And did you see I forgot to remove the family photos from behind the tree so that they would not be photographed.

The Nativity


This is real life, my friends.  Our nativity shares space with the DVDs the children forget to put away. Gasp! Jesus and The Lord of the Rings in the same place.  And my lovely daughter’s wedding photo.  What does that have to do with Christmas and why on earth is it there?

The other Nativity


This one is in the den, where youngest son spends time with Nintendo DS and Legos.  And rocks!

The Mantle


Father Christmas surrounded by Joy and Noel, together with battery operated candles share space with books, kleenex, nail clippers and other random items that I was too lazy to remove from said mantle, not to mention the fact that I do not have much Christmas decor to display so said shelves would have been empty if everything was removed. Wow, that was a long sentence!

The Centerpiece







The beautiful scent of cinnamon in my lovely Mary and Martha pillar, surrounded by salt and pepper shakers and homeschool bookcase in the background.  I don’t think I even own a table cloth.

The Kitchen Counter


We try to have some sort of Christmas decor in our living room, den and kitchen.  This poor fellow is surrounded by all sorts of nonsense.  Although, I will say the dark chocolate sea salt caramels are amazing!

The Stockings


Our stockings are not hung by the chimney with care.  We have a fireplace, but we never use it and it’s been taken over by the tv and other audio visual things.  So, we hang our stockings on the stair case, with messy wiring and a pile of teenage daughter’s clothes which have been there for a month which I refuse to pick up for her. The life of a mom.

Well friends, there you have it. My messy Christmas home tour!  And again, this is not meant to put myself down or to make you have pity on me.  I am taking a step to be even more real with my life.  I refuse to post only prefect photos.  Most of  my photos are stock photos anyways. Please don’t judge.  I have no eye for photography.  I pay to make my blog look beautiful. I’m such a fraud!

Now, let’s hope and pray I can get this place cleaned up before 16 family members embark here for Christmas dinner!

Linking up with my dear friend Beth for Three Word Wednesday, on a Thursday, because sometimes life gets in the way.  Also linking up with Crystal for Behind The Scenes where we share the real story behind the photos.

About Barbie

I am wife and mom to four beautiful children. I have been marked by the love of a relentless God who never stops pursuing me. My desire is to encourage you on your own journey, giving you glimpses of His love and sprinkles of His grace along the way.


  1. ~Karrilee~ Says: December 18, 2013 11:26 pm

    I love this, Barbie! I have been scrolling through The Nesters lovely link up and I kept thinking – but is this real life? Like – does EVERYBODY have that much open space and gorgeous natural lighting and antlers? Like… everyone? I appreciate your realness here… and the boldness it took to not pretty it up and photoshop it out… praying your holidays – whether ‘messy’ or ‘clean’ – are blessed beyond measure, my friend!
    ~Karrilee~ recently posted..When You Brave the Cold and Show Up!

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  2. Jodie Says: December 19, 2013 1:02 am

    Wow! I have just found my twin in Christmas home decorating. I stumbled across your post from Raising Arrows and was intrigued at the intro. As I watched your photos and words unfold, I felt kinship. Every year I aspire to have uncluttered Christmas ornaments/tree/stockings displayed nicely…and every year they share space with the usual evidence of a messy-ish large family. Here’s one for me though – I’ve managed to have an uncluttered space for our Nativity…if only I could stop the children from rearranging the scene all the time! I love your candidness and will now think of your sweet photos every year when I swipe aside “things” to put up Christmas ornaments. Merry Christmas Barbie and God Bless.

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  3. Beth @ My Destiny Says: December 19, 2013 3:12 am

    Thanks for sharing your decorations Barbie. I think they are just fine! I live in a 100+ year old farm house and it is NOTHING fancy. But I decorate it as much as I can and I like it. Who needs grandeur? Your nativity scenes are sweet and your counter made me smile. Who doesn’t have counters that catch everything? I have one right now covered in mail and Christmas cards. Ugh.

    Love ya!
    Beth @ My Destiny recently posted..What You See

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  4. Rosann Says: December 19, 2013 3:15 am

    I LOVE your real! Would you believe I don’t even own a nativity set? My Christmas tree lights on my prelit tree stopped working yesterday, so now are tree is just boring and dark. The ornaments are all pop culture picks from the Hallmark store. Instead of pretty balls and crosses and birds or bows, my tree is covered in Disney princesses and superheroes, and every day I find another broken ornament hidden on the floor behind the tree. My five year old seems to think the tree and ornaments are there to enter into her imagination and play time. My outside lights still won’t work. I’m pretty sure we are the only house in the neighborhood without Christmas lights (and now not even a pretty tree shines bright through the window.) on any given day, there are papers of art projects and art supplies strewn about, boxes of who knows what laying “temporarily” on my countertops until my husband decides he has time to deal with whatever is inside (we are at six weeks now!) and usually several piles of little girl socks, robes, slippers, fluffy bears, and other miscellaneous belongings sitting at the foot of our staircase. As I look around, God reminds me our home is filled with life, laughter, brokenness, and love. All of the stuff – it’s all meaningless in the kingdom of heaven. But these people He has placed in this home with me are His gift and they are priceless. Thank you for being real. I’m pretty sure many of your readers can relate. :) (((hugs)))
    Rosann recently posted..Just an update…

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  5. Chris Malkemes Says: December 19, 2013 4:39 am

    I just LOVED LOVED LOVED entering your home and seeing the realness and beauty you are sounded by. I was there with you. Thank you. I value our virtual relationship. You are special in a very special sort of way and I am richer for knowing you. (ummm sorry for keeping this short but have to golf right now under the palms, lights and gators….haaaaa….lol)
    Chris Malkemes recently posted..Weather Prayer – Part 3 (Christian History)

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  6. Jennifer peterson Says: December 19, 2013 4:44 am

    Oh I love this, to be honest I didn’t even think your house was bad, I didn’t notice the pictures behind the tree, or the dog toy. I hardly decorated our house this year, simply because I don’t want to put it all away! Haaa. AND your not a fraud. Isn’t it wonderful that guest hardly ever notice what we notice, they are just excited to see us!! Love you, and thank you for sharing, I might do this, then you’ll feel much better about your house after seeing mine, haaaa.
    Jennifer peterson recently posted..When it’s hard to sing carols this year {giveaway}

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    • Barbie Says: December 19, 2013 2:24 pm

      Oh Jennifer, yes please do! I almost made it a link up, but then it was like, “come on friends, I know your house is a mess, let’s show it to the world”! Love you!

      Reply this comment
  7. Beth Says: December 19, 2013 4:55 am

    I love this, Barbie, because THIS is real!!! Because this is so true…”Jesus is here, in the mess, the dust, the chaos, and He loves me all the same.” He just wants us! Your home is beautiful and I pray for the day when I can join you in your home for a cup of coffee. I love you sweet friend.
    Sending love and hugs your way.
    Beth recently posted..Three Word Wednesday: Community Heals Us

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  8. Joan Says: December 19, 2013 5:54 am

    Oh Barbie! You’ve made me smile this morning – thank you! Your Christmas home tour was wonderful…it was real, it was lived in, not sterile…it was home! Thank you for sharing! I’d love to sit in your home with a cup of coffee and take it all in! You are so right…a home isn’t beautiful because of the house itself. It is beautiful because of who lives in it. And I think your home is beautiful!!

    Blessings for a merry Christmas!

    Love, Joan
    Joan recently posted..Before You, Lord

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  9. Rachel Rusticus Says: December 19, 2013 10:00 am

    Merry Christmas Barbie! I think it’s lovely you made all these efforts to bring Christmas cheer & hope into everyday life…that’s where Jesus meets us always. It’s always about the real, and by his grace, never about the flaws.
    Rachel Rusticus recently posted..For You, A Long Way Off

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  10. Jennifer Says: December 19, 2013 10:20 am

    You are beautiful, friend. The last thing you are is a fraud. There is amazing life in your house! And I am so grateful for your open heart and willingness to be real. You bless, tremendously. Love you. Merry Christmas!
    Jennifer recently posted..the masterpiece once collecting dust on the floor

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  11. Dayle Says: December 19, 2013 11:00 am

    I loved this, Barbie. I’m a big believer in real. Speaking of real, is your tree real? It’s is really beautiful. I love the shape.
    Dayle recently posted..When You Don’t Feel Like Smiling ~ There’s still a Reason to Rejoice

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  12. Wanda Says: December 19, 2013 5:03 pm

    Can’t tell you just how much I love you sharing the real behind the scene look. And it goes so well with a post I read recently that I’m featuring tomorrow. What we see in our social media streams are little glimpses of the highlights of the best of others. And know I didn’t notice all the little things you pointed out in the pictures. But reading your words may be think of the many things I fuss over during the holiday time with wanting everything to be just right. This year I have taken a much more laid back approach and praying that when my family arrives I can be fully present enjoying the moment. Thanks for such an awesome tour.
    Wanda recently posted..Gift Ideas for the Blogger on Your Christmas List

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  13. Charis Says: December 19, 2013 7:40 pm

    I love this- I think it is wonderful and very normal for home a family actually lives in! We have beautiful nativies, the nices up high, but my little people one and little wood one that are low enough for the kids to touch have been lost all over the house- I think we are down to a palm tree, 2 wise men, and Mary at one… Not even baby Jesus! We will probably find pieces in different rooms for months! Oh dear! And we have tons of homeschool books around our living room. Anyways, just want to say I love it and your home is filled with life and love and lived in!

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  14. Michele-Lyn Ault Says: December 20, 2013 11:18 am

    You’re house is beautiful on all its realness, and your heart and Christ in you, even more so. I love this post and I love you.
    Michele-Lyn Ault recently posted..Cultivating a Giving Culture in our Home #GiftsofHope

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  15. Carrie Says: December 20, 2013 12:32 pm

    I love this post, Barbie! I love how raw and honest you are. And I appreciate it! I’ve been sick – unable to do anything. My three girls decorated – in another lifetime I would’ve cringed because I had zero control – and I was blessed by their excitement. Even my son joined in. Now the house feels like Christmas…and yes, I’m ignoring the mess that comes from a house neglected :)
    Carrie recently posted..Winter Branch

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  16. Elizabeth@BeautyObserved Says: December 20, 2013 9:05 pm

    I love all of these Messy Christmas tours. I followed from your comment on Christina’s Adventures. As a home school mom and someone whose family is in my house 24/7, my house rarely looks like my pictures. Framing is a beautiful thing. lol In fact, I seem to have similar DVD visitors to my nativity scene. Have a Merry Christmas!
    Elizabeth@BeautyObserved recently posted..Houligan, Dutch Baby, German Pancake- I Call It Delicious!

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  17. Dalia Says: January 9, 2014 10:00 am

    I’m very late in catching up with posts, I tried my best to avoid cyber space during the Christmas time, but I’m making my rounds now. What I love most about Christmas decor is the Nativity. How better to embrace this season than with a Nativity! Love the real and love that you shared it too! Blessings my friend for this New Year!

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