I love Christmas trees with pretty lights all decked out! Now that people are posting their trees, most of them beautifully themed and stunning, I wanted to share a little about what is on our tree! We don’t have a theme, and I win the battle every year over colored vs. white lights, but the most important part of our tree is the ornaments that adorn it.
Since we were babies, my parents have purchased a new ornament for me and my siblings every year to open on Christmas Eve. I always looked forward to it, especially when the next Christmas season rolled around and we pulled each ornament out, one by one, claiming our own and putting them on the tree.
This little puppy in the tub was always my favorite to put on the tree; the bubbles are little glass balls, and the little bar of soap gets me every time. I’m not much of a dog person, but this little guy has a special place in my heart. 3 of the 4 bubbles remain in tact, which is better than the little gumball machine my sister received and then promptly bit into, destroying the ornament and cutting her mouth in the process. My parents picked the gumball machine because she loves candy, obviously a little too much! :)
Sometimes my parents would give the ornaments in a theme, like the year we all got a ballerina, though none of us were actually in dance lessons :). I think every girl wants to be a ballerina at one point! My little brother got a football player instead, if I remember right. Because he did NOT want to be a ballerina!
One of the purposes of getting our own individual ornament every year was for us to be able to have them on our own trees as we grew up and moved out. I remember my first Christmas as a married woman (girl? I was 20!) and pulling out my childhood ornaments to put on our tiny, pathetic tree that looked like a toilet brush. It made my first Christmas away from home that much easier because I had something familiar already in our tiny apartment.
You can imagine my surprise that first Christmas when my new husband started pulling his OWN ornaments from growing up out of a box! He had the same wonderful tradition at his house, so our first tree was decked out with at least 40 ornaments attached to memories. This salt dough one pictured above was made by a friend when he lived in France in the early 90’s.
We are carrying on the tradition, and ornaments are one of my favorite things to shop for during this holiday season. I love finding unique ones, but sometimes the mass-produced guys are too good to pass up, especially when you are pregnant for the first time and you see an expectant s’more snowmama!
My parents still give us an ornament every year, like this from my mom’s trip to Germany. Oberammergau is the BEST place to get Christmas anything, all year round!
And Mike’s parents still give us an ornament too, which usually are reminders of the real meaning of Christmas. They also write on the ornaments the accomplishments our family reached during the year.
Two years ago on Christmas Eve, I was wrapping the ornaments for our girls and Mike and I asked him if he had wrapped my ornament yet. He got this look on his face that was a dead giveaway that the man had forgotten my favorite Christmas tradition!! I laughed it off, but he didn’t buy into my forced joviality. He ordered me not to look at the craft table and started cutting, gluing, asking for thread, etc. and when the time came to exchange ornaments, I was impressed by this beauty:
He even wrote the date on it in Sharpie on the back. I started laughing and gave him the biggest hug ever. I think I was most impressed he knew how to do a blanket stitch, but really, I will be keeping this treasure forever! I love that man.
Someday I do want to have a themed tree in the more formal part of my home, and keep this tree in a different spot where the family mostly gathers. This is all on the condition I have a beautiful big home someday ;) What is your favorite Christmas or Holiday tradition? What does your tree look like?