Our First Christmas in Our New Home

Jillian HarrisChristmas, Life, My Heart3 Comments

Jillian Harris Christmas 2017

Ok, raise your hand if you feel EXHAUSTED after the holidays!!! 🙋🏻This Christmas was a CRAZY one!! I decided to host it at our house this year as it was our very first Christmas in our new home and holy crap it was busy. I mean, aren’t you supposed to feel rested and relaxed and ready to take on a new year after the holidays?? Honestly, I feel like I’ve been put through the ringer!! So many people were sharing their lists and goals and ways they were going to tackle 2018 before NYE and I couldn’t even THINK about it … I feel so behind and like I have so much catching up to do!! Anyway, one thing at a time … here’s a little recap of how our Christmas went and WHY I feel so freakin exhausted!!

So I had an AMAZING Christmas (even though it was a little hectic!), as I mentioned above, it was our very first Christmas hosted in our new family home, it was decorated like I had always imagined it would be, it was filled with Christmas candles and scents and our home was filled with love, laughter, good food and of course, loads of wine!!

Jillian Harris Christmas 2017

A while back, Justin and I came up with a “Christmas Schedule” as most couples do for the holidays, we would alternate between spending time with my family and Justin’s family but this year we had EVERYONE here at our house … 23 people, to be exact!! I was a little bit stressed (ok, A LOT stressed) having everyone together as I know that every family has their own unique traditions on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day so I felt like I was trying to make sure everyone was happy and having a good time and trying to manage everyone’s expectations and while everyone was probably really happy with everything it was hard for me not to focus on it and feel nervous about everything and in the end I think I put a lot of unnecessary pressure on myself over it!!

So, the tradition that usually happens with my family is that the person who hosts Christmas has people over on Christmas Eve for appetizers and cocktails, this gives everyone a chance to bring all of the gifts over, finish up their wrapping and stuff the stockings. Generally, everyone would then spend the night but as all of our families grow only the kiddos sleepover. This year Tori, Charles, Max, Charlie and Matt (Justin’s brother) stayed the night. Later in the night (after the little ones hit the hay) the girls typically stay up and finish wrapping over some cocktails and the boys, well, the just sip on cocktails … LOL! This year Tori and I were having a LITTLE too much fun and we both indulged in a few too many glasses of wine and didn’t get to bed until around 3:30am which isn’t ideal when your little ones wake up around 5am. Needless to say after working my butt off on the days leading up to Christmas … I was a little sluggish running on two hours of sleep Christmas and a few too many glasses of  wine the night before. LOL.

That morning everyone came back to the house, including my Grandma who had never been to our house before, this was also a bit tricky as she is in a wheelchair and we have a split level house FILLED with stairs so we had to put a ramp at the front entrance to get her into our house. So, 23 people, in my living room, opening gifts on Christmas morning, everyone was tired and exhuasted and while my family typically blows through opening our gifts, the Pasutto’s (bless their hearts lol) like to take their time and really savor the moment so all of a sudden it was NOON and we hadn’t even opened 20% of our gifts yet and I had to get the turkey in!! Yes … you read that right, we had a turkey and a ham on Christmas Day, both of which I bought from little local farms. While I wanted a totally vegan Christmas dinner, my family, already let me do that for Thanksgiving so I kept it more traditional for them on Christmas Day. However, the rest of the meal WAS in fact vegan … I used vegan butter for everything, egg replacer when needed and I even busted out my vegan perogies!! I’ll be sharing that recipe with you in the cookbook … so stay tuned!! Anyway, while we did have meat it was only those two items that weren’t vegan so you don’t have to be all or nothing when it comes to vegan meals, you can still reduce your animal consumption but eliminating it in other areas.

Once all of the gifts have been opened, tradition has it that everyone leaves back to their house to relax for a bit and to get showered up and ready for Christmas dinner while the host cleans up and prepares dinner for everyone … so here I am, running on two hours of sleep, with wrapping paper and ribbons and leftover breakfast everywhere … LOL!! Thank god the Pasutto’s ended up staying behind and help me clean and prep and take Grandma out and around the house to get to the bathroom multiple times! They saved my butt!!!! Once 5:30 hit, everyone came back to the house (plus another additional 8 other family members!) and I still hadn’t slept and Paul, Justin’s dad, was feeding me cocktails … you probably think I have a problem now but drinking with your in-laws doesn’t count … ok?? LOL! Dinner was amazing and we had a ton of laughs and made some amazing memories and by 9pm everyone was out the door only to come back the next day, Boxing Day, for a round of leftovers! Needless to say, the house is still a disaster but thankfully I have someone here to help me clean while I continue to tidy up … and I gotta say, I’m happy Tori’s home is almost complete because she’s hosting next year!!! LOL!!!

Jillian Harris Christmas 2017Jillian Harris Christmas Decor

When it comes to gifts, I actually don’t necessarily like receiving gifts (I prefer GIVING over receiving) and I think it’s because I like to shop for myself and for the fact that I seem to get things sent to me throughout the year so I already feel so spoiled and blessed. The only thing I asked for this year were pots and pans and wine … LOL … so now I have about 4 boxes of pots and pans and two cases of wine and I couldn’t be happier!!! I bought my mom and Melissa (Justin’s mom) each an engraved necklace from Tiffany’s and my dad an engraved dog tag from Minichiello Jewellers and all of the guys in the home each got a Patagonia work jacket!! My mom and dad got Leo the most adorable little sleigh from Home Depot and at first, I didn’t think we would use it much but we have been using it EVERY DAY, we all absolutely love it!! It allows all of us to get outside and enjoy the winter and also gives me some exercise!! Justin’s parents got Leo the cutest little toddler Burton snowboard … I’m sure Justin is really counting down the days until they can both get up on the hill now!!!

Jillian Harris Christmas 2017Jillian Harris Christmas 2017 Jillian Harris Christmas 2017Jillian Harris Christmas 2017 Jillian Harris Christmas 2017Jillian Harris New Years Resolutions 2018

All and all it was a really busy Christmas but it was amazing to be surrounded by both of our families, in our new home, so the chaos and the mess was absolutely worth it and I wouldn’t have changed it for the world!!!

How was your Christmas this year?? Do you feel as exhausted as I do??





Share this post with your friends!
Share on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  • What a fabulous Christmas you, Justin and Leo had. Sleep is so overrated during the Christmas Holidays when you have that many people over. Who would want to miss one second of the madness?

  • I wanted so much to see Jillian and Justin’s ep but I’m from Brazil and it’s not available for me, unfortunately! I’m loving the blog and its instagram !!! I really wanted to see photos of your new home ready. I knew your work through “love it or leave it” and I am a super fan of the program! I’m still learning to speak English but I love your videos.

  • Brittany mitchell  • 

    Jillian! We have the same snowboard for our son. He’s 20 months and we have gone with him twice!! I would love to share pictures or video with you. He only goes like 15 feet before he rides into moms arms but he loves it and we love teaching him. My husband is a snowboard fanatic and bought him that bored before he could walk haha