Friday miscellany: The fancy tree, and the 2024 Patreon curriculum

I love looking at houses that are all decked out for Christmas. That’s one of the upsides of paging through all the old December magazines I’ve kept! (Or the randomness: I’m now obsessed with a feature called “Camp Christmas” from the December 2016 Better Homes & Gardens…).

Actually decorating my own house is a different matter, but this year things are happening. High on the list: getting what I have been calling “a fancy tree.” This is in addition to the regular (live) tree bedecked with ornaments collected and made through the ages. The (artificial) fancy tree has frosted needles and a matching collection of vintage-looking ornaments. It is spectacular. Even Sassy the Elf had to hide there the first morning it was up!

Speaking of frosted needles, I’ve been seeing the real thing out in the yard. Already this year there’s been more snow than basically all of last year, though none of it has stuck. The other morning I turned on the fire in my office fireplace while the snow was blowing outside and felt very content about this winter thing.

(I am sure I will be over it by mid-January.)

On the topic of January…Still need to set some goals for 2024? Next Tuesday, December 12th, my podcast co-host Sarah will be leading a goal setting workshop via Zoom for members of the Best of Both Worlds Patreon community. There is still time to join before that workshop!

Membership is $9/month. That gets you access to our active discussion forum, plus our monthly online meet-ups. Here’s the curriculum for what we’ll be covering in those meet-ups in 2024:

January: Habit symposium

February: Book club pick #1

March: Personal style

April: Career conundrums

May: Book club pick #2

June:  Division of labor

July: Off – instead of a Zoom, we’ll release a video with Ask Me Anything questions for members

August: Book club pick #3

September: Time blocking, task management, and email

October: All things meal-planning!

November: Book club pick #4

December: Annual goal setting workshop

It should be a fun year! I hope to see some new faces (+ the familiar ones I love) on the Zoom session on Tuesday (here’s the link to join).

In other news: I also discussed goals on the Before Breakfast podcast with episodes on how to “Make space for goal setting” and that “This is resolution preseason.” Treating December as a time to practice any New Year’s resolutions vastly increases the chances that they stick!

I also recorded an episode called “Someday you’ll be telling this story.” I am a big believer in what I call radical but rational optimism. When going through tough times, it might be possible to tell yourself that someday you’ll be telling this story, and these complications now are just making the plot better on the way to the triumphant conclusion.

8 thoughts on “Friday miscellany: The fancy tree, and the 2024 Patreon curriculum

    1. @Claire – it came with lights – I think a lot do. And then we bought ornaments. From Balsam Hill – they’ve got a lot of sets.

  1. If your house manager say ordered or participated in the tree being there and being so beautiful, I think it would be good for you to mention this bc women reading this might thing you did all this by yourself and then they might feel badly about themselves like you are bragging about it. Of course your tree is beautiful and if it makes you happy and your fireplace make you happy that is great and motivating to share maybe it could make someone else happy too or give someone else something to aspire to or make someone else feel ok about say enjoying Christmas or frankly the pagan symbol that is a Christmas tree etc. It is ok to appreciate beauty and be happy and peaceful. But if you don’t mention the house manager or that the tree fell down in other years(I saw this on the bottom of this post as a related post and I loved that bc it shows you sort of on this arc of self improvement of say taking things and making them better and learning and growing from them) maybe people will like hate you and feel badly about themselves when you are trying to be aspirational and helpful. Just mentioning this bc it is really important maybe for feminism and being pro women not to set unrealistic expectations for women @ happiness …

    1. Like basically say the tree cost Xxx with the ornaments.. this is how much time it took to pick up the ornaments… and the tree or did the house manager pick up the tree and have it delivered… the house manager costs $1000 a month and this took x amount of her time.. this way people can say wow that is amazing.. but I cannot do that or I can do that … so it is say reasonably factually aspirational the sharing… I thought it was really helpful when you shared that you have a house manager for holiday decor.

  2. The fireplace came with the house which cost xxxx and the property taxes on the house are xxx
    Is it a gas fireplace… so do you just flip a switch.. can you share a pic of it? How much did gas fireplace cost and how much energy does it use… say vs. heat provides.. who maintains it… can you get the fireplace vendors or folks who maintain it to sponsor this post ? like as a referral to them… and biz for you ?

  3. The tree is beautiful! I would love to have a fancy tree too. I was always considering it an either/or situation, but I guess we could have a second tree.

    I missed the memo on the goal setting session, and that’s my favorite one, so I’ll move things around and be there today for sure! Appreciate the reminder!

    1. @Lori C – yep, it doesn’t have to be either/or. We got a live tree from the fire house fundraiser and put the family ornaments on there. The fancy tree is artificial and will be brought back out every year…

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