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Christmas Comes Alive

The true spirit of Christmas comes alive in her rustic antique-filled kitchen.

By Lee Nichols, Boyce, Louisiana

Kitchen Photo

Kitchen Photo

On Christmas Eve, we celebrate over a decade in our country home. My husband, Joe, and I were able to design and build our house with the help of family and some precious friends. I am particularly pleased with the spaciousness of our kitchen and adjoining living room.

We often have our friends and family over, especially during the holidays…and the living room acts as an extension of the kitchen. It allows me to visit with guests while I prepare the meal and clean up.

The roomy island provides extra seating when company comes…as well as work space for baking, sewing and art projects. The kids can hop on the sturdy high-back stools to help me decorate holiday cookies, too. Joe, who works for the local power company, and I have three children, James, Mary Lee and Bethany.

Counter Photo

Our kitchen is wrapped in warm rich shades of brown. We chose light oak cabinets that blend in well with our knotty pine ceiling. Three walls have cedar paneling…and to complement the rustic decor, we used pine molding. The floor, which looks like oak, is often mistaken for real wood, but it's actually 3-inch by 36-inch vinyl strips.

To complement the wood hues, we installed forest-green countertops and added antique-patterned wallpaper in green, blue, rose and cream. The sheer lacy curtains on the window add yet another old-time touch.

With recessed lighting and a light fixture on the ceiling fan, we have plenty of light for cooking, baking and doing schoolwork. (I'm a former teacher and home-school our children.) When we want a cozier atmosphere, we rely on the glow from the living-room fireplace. It keeps the kitchen warm all winter long.