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The Clouse Family Christmas at the Cabin

The Clouse Christmas gathering is always a sight to behold, but a new setting at the family’s former cabin made this past year’s celebration even more special.

By Tessa Cooper

Nov 2020

The family in the living room
Photos by Lindsey Key-ClouseThe Clouse family gathers in the living room to open Christmas presents
Kitchen sign "Jolly"
Photos by Lindsey Key-ClouseA "Jolly" balloon sign hung in the cabin's kitchen
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Table setting
Photos by Lindsey Key-ClouseBeautiful dinner table setting
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
Photos by Lindsey Key-Clouse
The Clouse Family
Photos by Lindsey Key-ClouseThe Clouse family in the their matching Christmas pajamas

Like the Clauses, you could consider the Clouses Christmas experts of sorts. “It’s a joke in our family that we decorate like a Hallmark Christmas movie set,” Lindsey Clouse says. “Everything has to be covered, and we go overboard. We love Christmas, and so we’re one of those annoying families that decorates really early.”

This past Christmas, Lindsey and her husband Keith had an extra cozy backdrop to deck out. As a 40th anniversary gift to Keith’s parents, the extended Clouse family gathered at their mom and dad’s recreational cabin for a festive weekend. The result was eight adults and seven kids cozied up in a four-bed 1,600-square-foot home.

Lindsey and Keith arrived at the cabin early to start decorating, although, with the paneled walls and retro stove, the first floor was already overflowing with hygge. They set up a hot chocolate bar with every topping imaginable and customizable mugs, strung popcorn to hang and found a place for everyone’s stocking. “We put Christmas in every corner that we could, so I think that had a lot to do with the coziness of it,” Lindsey says. 

But the main reason they put so much effort into the ambiance was they wanted to create a space where the family felt peaceful, joyful and thankful. “The objective of the gathering was really to spend time slowing down and be able to have those conversations that you don’t normally get time to have. Family is really a gift from the Lord,” Keith says. “Traditional Christmas trees and Santas aside, we gather and we celebrate because to us the true meaning of Christmas is Jesus’s birth.”