Don’t Forget Dad!

He loved you first (along with Mom, of course), and he loves you best (along with Mom, of course) .. so be sure you show him your love this Father’s Day!

Here are a few suggestions from Christmas Place.  We have some great gifts in The Boutique – our newest hot spot on the property!

Father's Day gifts in The Boutique - selection.

From The Boutique - collection of Father's Day gifts.

From The Boutique, Father's Day gifts of mugs, pictures, and more.

Stop into Second Nature – so many great items from which to choose – here’s something sleek for the hunter – a ceramic mug with lid that keeps drinks hot or cold and fits in the car cupholder.

Ceramic cammo-patterned mugs for Dad and Grandad.

Personalization always makes a gift even more special!

World's Greatest Dad personalized ornament.

I Love Daddy personalized ornament, includes kids names.

We’re open until 10:00 p.m. tonight and Saturday…you have plenty of time to come on in!

~Janet @ Incredible Christmas Place

P.S. Be sure Dad comes with you to get his free box of hot, freshly-popped popcorn on us – Saturday and Sunday.

Summer Pastimes

Now that it is officially summer, and the weekend is coming up, and just maybe you’ve carved some time out of your busy schedule for a few days of vacation – what do you like to do with that time?  Since we live in the mountains here, many of us head to the beach for a few days of sand everywhere we don’t want it, sun burning in our eyes and heating up every un-shaded surface, and seafood hey it may be costing an arm and a leg but I don’t have to cook or clean up after.  Sure it’s just as humid as home, but the sunrises over the ocean….wait, I don’t do sunrises…

Yes, I guess I’ve let a little subtext show there … not a beach person myself, although I find I quite enjoy it when accidentally I find myself near extremely large bodies of water.  I think the largest bodies of water are best viewed from 35,000 feet – on your way to somewhere you may not be able to read the menus, but it’s definitely cool-ish and un-sandy.

Me, I’d rather stay home and read books .. every day.  That’s my vacation paradise.  Show me a book review, and chances are good there will be a slip of paper somewhere nearby with the title scribbled down, for further research and possible acquisition.  Is anyone surprised to hear that I still prefer paper?  Anyway, I especially love to grab titles suggested by people I know who read a lot – such as this selection of “under the radar” reads from Nancy Pearl.  Nancy has included a wide variety of genres, for readers of all ages, among her suggestions over the years; this list includes one that she says will appeal to Jane Austen fans as well – you know who you are.

I love to spend time lost in the words of a true storyteller, the kind of story where, when you have to interrupt your reading time, you must shake your head a little to bring yourself back to the present.  That’s just the best experience in the world to me, when I come across a good book.  Every day can be a vacation day, in a book.

Whether you prefer all the active stuff we have around here, like putt-putt, race cars, rides – did you know that we can now boast about our giant Ferris wheel here in Pigeon Forge? – or hiking in the Smokies, or you also appreciate the quieter pastimes as I do, I sure hope you save a little time each day to let your brain escape into imagination, history, biography – and if you come across something really good, don’t forget to send me the title.

I hope you have the vacation of your dreams this summer!

~Janet @ The Christmas Place

P.S.  If making it to the beach is just an unattainable dream for you this summer, I recommend that you make yourself a little living room beach escape – put up a mini palm tree, add some beach ornaments, string some summer lights, pour yourself a fruity beverage, and cover the couches with beach towels.  Put on your swim suits, dab a little coconut lotion behind your ears, and relax.  Just think, NO SAND!  NO BURNING!  NO hours in the car driving home, filled with regret for that last 3-scoop ice cream cone!

Y’all, it’s gonna be a hot one!

Hot, hot weekend .. hot, hot bargains at the tent sale!  I’ve just been down scoping out the sale setup, and the scoop is that we’ll have floral stems for as little as $1 each.  I saw a big box brimming with beautiful $2 stems, and lots more.  See anything here that catches your eye?  Our Elf Associates will have it all in order for opening at 9:00 AM on Friday.

After you shop, or before, or during .. cool cool it down with ice cream!  Delivery’s coming first thing on Friday, so we’ll have plenty on hand to help you chill .. choose your flavor – or go for a fudge puppy ~ Belgian waffle dipped in chocolate fudge and topped with whipped cream .. dreamy.

Pans of fresh fudge waiting to be cut & weighed for you.

We’re bringing the big chill inside the store, too – check out the new lights going onto the big tree.  Brrrrrrrr!

It’s a winter wonderland in May on the parkway.  However you choose to celebrate Memorial Day, make it a special time!

~Janet @ The Christmas Place

P.S. Remember, we can’t run the tent sale on line, but you’ll find plenty of sale bargains at


From the yard…

Just a little something I discovered in the back yard this summer (yes, that yard that is the object of my mowing woes and brings me closer to my lovely neighbors…) .. in spite of my less-than-gruntled attitude, it has rewarded me with a peck of blueberries this summer!  As there were no berries last summer, this bush was a wonderful surprise when I noticed the fruit at the end of June.  Enjoy a few pictures, and later I’ll describe the fresh blueberry ice cream and cobbler.  Feel free to share your recipe suggestions, too!

Blueberries 3

Blueberries 1

Blueberries 4

Blueberries 2

And, a blackberry bramble under the pine tree has served up one berry so far – there must be some competition for these in the yard.  I ate this one immediately after photography, and it was warm and juicy and sweet!

Blackberries 1

Finally (for today), a tree that brushes the eaves at the end of the house and is loaded with these hibiscus-like blooms.  There are always far more discarded on the ground than on the tree.  In my youth, the hibiscus around us were of a variety with stems long enough to place in a vase, but these are too short.  Hibiscus only bloom for a day, so you don’t have to place them in water, and it’s delightful to enjoy fresh blooms every day.  If only these were a winter-blooming variety, wouldn’t they make a wonderful Christmas arrangement?

Flowering tree 1

I have four glorious, blue hydrangea blooms brightening the kitchen counter right now.  Pictures to come!

~Janet @ The Christmas Place

P.S.  Look at me, rockin’ the Photoshop special effects!  Ha!