I recently celebrated my birthday (again), and a very good friend gave me a book that I will treasure for years. It’s filled with inspiration, beautiful photography of homes, but most importantly it candidly points out the importance of including one’s personal history into the design of their individual home.

The Things That Matter is written by one of my favorite designers, Nate Berkus. For those who don’t know of Nate, think back to the Oprah Winfrey Show. He’s the guy responsible for all those wonderful home makeovers for deserving people.

In his book, Nate takes on his own personal journey in life and introduces twelve other people. Each chapter reveals a new person and the people, places, and things that have influenced them along the way. Their individual homes reflect not only the great design, but tell a beautiful story of what has molded them into who they are today.

As I read this book, I looked around my home and realized that where I live represents who I am as well. I thought about why decorating for the holiday season is one of my favorite things to do. I have had my “Treasure Tree” for several years now.

Treasure Christmas Tree - Joel Lilliquist
Adorned to the max, it represents my own personal journey in life, much like Nate’s. I have ornaments that I have collected from my travels, ones that have been in my family for years and those that have been given to me by family and friends. Each one represents a memory.

Treasure Tree by Joel Lilliquist

The holidays bring traditions back into our fast-paced world. They remind us to slow down and to appreciate the things that matter.


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