Thursday, December 15, 2011

Our tree

Our tree won't win any design awards this year, it's true, but it is a reflection of our little family, and I love it.  Growing up, I thought the tree in my family's house was the most beautiful tree in the world.  It was full of little red bows and gorgeous ornaments my mom had made by hand.  Looking back at pictures of our tree now, it's nowhere near as showy or "designed" as the ones you see in magazines.  That sort of surprises me, because I told everyone that my mom was a decorating genius and that our tree was so beautiful.  And it was.  But as I've grown older and wiser, I've realized that a large part of what made it beautiful was that it was full of us.  There were special ornaments given to or made by my brother and me.  And there were scores of gingerbread houses and handmade ornaments.  My mom was a Christmas-crafting genius.  I guess that's where I get the crafting bug, now that I think of it.

Without realizing it, I'm creating just that type of tree for my own little family.  Our tree has ornaments given to Patrick and I (and now Claire) throughout the years.  There are important "memory" ornaments, like the one we got on our Alaskan honeymoon, and now there is a growing collection of handmade ornaments that I've made during my 25 Days of Christmas crafting.  I think our tree is beautiful, in large part because it is absolutely us: a little fun, a little kooky, and full of happy memories.

So what is on our tree?  Let's take a closer look.

Each night, after we read our Jesse tree scripture passage, Claire hangs an ornament that she colored on the tree.  She's very proud that she can hang them all by herself.  (Note to self: Leave the bottom branches empty next year, because we're getting a mighty big cluster of Jesse tree ornaments down there...):
Each member of Patrick's family receives an ornament for Christmas every year.  When Patrick and his siblings grew up and moved out, they took a box of all their ornaments with them.  As you can imagine, Patrick has quite a collection of ornaments on our tree, including some that are very special to him:
Claire has a few on the tree now, too, including this year's ornament from Gramms and Pap:
There are a few very sentimental ornaments for Patrick and I as a couple on the tree, including the topper from our wedding cake:
And, an ornament we picked up on our first trip to Disney World together.  I think it represents us.  Not because I think we are like Mickey & Minnie, but because we first bonded over ballroom dancing and having fun together, and on our first date we went ice skating.  Patrick brought me socks in case I wasn't wearing any. :)  Love that man.
Since joining Patrick's family, I receive ornaments every year, too.  I love this tradition, and now Patrick and I buy one for each other and one for Claire, too.  The beautiful teal glass ornament is mine from a couple of years ago.
In the shot above there is also an ornament given to us for our first Christmas together (on the right), and one given to us to celebrate buying our first home (on the far left).  In the middle of the shot is a gorgeous pewter ornament of the Holy Family I bought years and years ago when I was decorating my first Christmas tree.  It's there, in the middle, right at eye level to remind me of the reason for the season every day.

And here's our whole tree, in all it's glory:
This year we added the popcorn garland I made for Day 4 of Christmas Crafting, and the ornaments I made on Days 2, 3, 11, 13, and 14.  Then, to top it all off, I changed out our bow topper.  Before it was gold, which fit our old color scheme perfectly, but it didn't pop enough for the bright and cheery look I'm going for this year.  So instead, I tied a bow with 3-inch red wired ribbon.  It has white snowflakes embossed on it, and I think it ties in nicely with the cranberry beads on the popcorn garland.

1 comment:

  1. Very beautiful your blog many congratulations for your work I leave an embrace of friendship you