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A House Filled With Christmas » Apart From My Art
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A House Filled With Christmas

When I think of Christmas, I think of my dear friend, Sharon’s home here in Idaho. The Christmas feeling in her home is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. I gasped the first time I saw it decorated for Christmas. The house is jolly, joyous, playful, artistic and utterly beautiful. You feel it the moment you walk through the front door.

Living room with Christmas tree


Sharon started collecting Sun Valley Christmas ornaments decades ago when she and her husband bought their lovely home. Her favorite resource was a local institution, Jane’s Christmas Store. It was jammed with every imaginable and unimaginable decorative surprise. Jane loved to find unique, one of a kind items for her customers. Sharon was right up there with the best of them.

Christmas-tree copy

Flying pig decoration

Santa ornament

Sun Valley sun ornament

Choo choo train around the base of the tree

Choo choo Train around the base of the tree


A Christmas arrangement

Santa and friends

Tabletop Christmas

Little Christmas House



Christmas epergne

As you can see, Sharon is an artist. An artist in every part of her life. From her home, to the special toys for her grandchildren, to the parties she gives for her husband and family. She’s just one of those special people.

How did we become friends?

Her husband collected my paintings prior to their marriage.  After they married, we’d all have dinner together and have a grand time, we just seemed to share the same vibe. She’s an artist, curator and art consultant, mother, grandmother, and a leader in her community. While our friendship started with art, it really developed over coffee.

One snowy day, Sharon asked me to join her for coffee at Tully’s, a favorite local hangout in Ketchum. In those days neither of us really new what a “tall, skinny latte’, or any kind of latte was. I just remembered my daughter ordering something like that once, so I followed her example and Sharon said, “Me, too!”

We found the perfect seats, leather-covered, by the window in the back, our own little alcove. There were lots of sunny windows and a patio for people to sit and point their faces towards the sun. Our first coffee together lasted for hours, four to be exact. Our husbands wondered what happened to us. But, we never stopped talking, laughing and sharing our lives together. We still do, although we only see each other a handful of times throughout the year. It mostly happens when the planets are aligned and we’re both in Sun Valley at the same time. But, we always make the most of it, and by now our husbands know that if we meet for coffee, it will be for most of the day. Now, we’re pros at ordering coffee. I’ve joined the Starbucks generation. To be honest, we both just have a latte and if I remember, I make it a “skinny.”


Christmas Snowman



All images appearing on A House Filled With Christmas are the expressed property of Sandra Sallin. All rights reserved. In other words, don’t steal it!

Facebook Comments
  • Sharon Twigg-Smith - Omigoodness! What beautiful pictures of our Christmas up here!! You are so funny! And I loved
    the perfect description of our friendship and it’s beginnings! Thank you for your kind words!
    Oh, and will you send me those pictures? They are wondrous!!!
    xx SharonReplyCancel

    • sandra - Thank you and I will. Merry Christmas to you one and all!ReplyCancel

  • Elsa Louise - That winged pig! So darling.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Yes, that one makes me smile. Too many to document them all. But all were chosen with care and fun.ReplyCancel

  • Mzjudi! - Oh my goodness!!! Beautiful house..beautiful friendship From your Texas friend in Carmel!ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Howdy Buddy, Looks like you’re having a great time in Carmel. It is a beautiful house isn’t it? Blows me away every time I’m there.ReplyCancel

  • Carolyn Milburn - Sharon was always an artist. even when we were little. she made me the best paper dolls! and clothes! you would not have believed them! and forts! thank you for sharing a side of my sister few people know. we are lucky to have her! she and twigg are so generous. they have our entire family up to sun valley for Christmas. it’s like going to Disneyland! sleigh rides, ice skating, decorating gingerbread houses! it is truly a magical time for all of us. thank you for the great article! that tree is a work of art!
    xo Carolyn.ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Thank you Carolyn. I didn’t know about the paper dolls. I LOVED paper dolls. You are lucky to have and appreciate each other. I do love hearing about her Sun Valley Disneyland plans. There is no one like her. How did the snow man competition go? Enough snow?ReplyCancel

  • Sandra Carpenter - Sandy, you are such an inspiration for me!
    I love how you describe your friends and your friendships!ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Thank you. I tell it as I see it. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Katia - Thank you for sharing these beautiful images and spreading the joy that is Sharon’s house and the story of your friendship. There is something very uplifting about reading about female friendship it always throws you emotionally into your own. 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Veronica - That is so beautiful! Love that tree!ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Dear Veronica, Truly Sharon creates a magical atmosphere.ReplyCancel

  • Jhanis - Oh my! That is one lovely Christmasy house! Love everything especially the pig with wings!
    My best friend and I only meet a few times each year too but when we do, we can spend hours upon hours talking! Only instead of coffee, we have beer 😉
    Thanks for sharing these beautiful photos!
    Happy Holidays!ReplyCancel

    • sandra - Thanks Jhanis, our friends are very presious aren’t they? Sharon is truly an artist in everything she touches. And lots of fun!ReplyCancel

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