|2016 Christmas Tree|
Today, I decorated the Christmas tree. It is a pre-lit artificial tree that I have had for at least 15 years, if not more. I used to buy a fresh tree every year, and loved the smell of a fresh tree, but the artificial one works out well enough for me, these days.
There is no theme to my tree, no color scheme. Just an assortment of ornaments I've accumulated over the years. For my daughter's first Christmas, however, I decorated the tree with baby shoes. Another year, when she was about three and was learning her alphabet, I bought several sets of alphabet blocks and attached them with gold cord I hot glued to the tops to make loops. I still have those alphabet block ornaments, but don't use them, any more. The tree skirt isn't a really a skirt, either; just a rectangular piece of fabric printed with a Christmas tree design which my mother hemmed and which we first used as a table cloth!
Growing up in Sri Lanka, I had a Christmas tree as a child. My mother's side of the family were/are all Catholic and they celebrated Christmas in a big way. According to my cousin, I had wanted a Christmas tree of my own after I had seen the one they had. I suppose my parents found it difficult to explain to a 3-year old why her cousins had Christmas trees and she didn't. I don't quite remember exactly when I was allowed to have a Christmas tree, but I remember going with my father to a neighbor's house, one year when I was about 6 or 7 (my father died when I was 7+, so it was before that), and asking for a branch of one of the pine trees growing in her garden. Looking back, I am sure my father compensated her for the tree, but I wasn't to know that. I continued to have a tree until I was 11 and then, I didn't have another tree until I was in my 20s.
Live and Learn had a post where she shared the stories behind some of her Christmas ornaments and I enjoyed reading it so much, I decided to do a similar post about some of my ornaments, as well!
|Handmade by Daughter|
My daughter made this salt dough ornament when she was 3 years old and in the child care center. It was her Christmas gift to me, that year.
One of three porcelain angels my mother bought for me, one year. She gave me two brass angels another year, and the angel on top of the tree is also what she bought for me.
The very first year my parents and I came to California, my mother was given an artificial Christmas tree by the parent of one of her students, but she gave the tree to her sister. I helped my aunt decorate her tree and then, came home and decorated a potted pothos plant with with paper ornaments I cut out from some Christmas cards we had received and some red yarn I had on hand. My mother asked me why I hadn't told her I wanted a tree of my own, but I knew it was important to her to give the tree to her sister. The next year, my mother managed to obtain another artificial tree (the school in which she taught had bought a new tree and was getting rid of their old tree) and she brought that home for me and a box of red, silk covered plastic ornaments. I decorated the ornaments with bits and pieces of trim we had on hand. I still have about six of those ornaments and this is one of them:
|Decorated Silk Wrapped Ornaments|
A couple of years later, I bought some glass baubles during an after-Christmas sale. Two boxes each of plain gold, red, blue, and green baubles at $1 per box (12 per box). Then, I drew designs on some with glue and added glitter to them:
|Glittery Glass Baubles|
I left the gold baubles plain, but attached felt bows to the top of them. A few of them have fallen and broken over the years, but I still have quite a few remaining and I hang them on the tree, every year I put up one.
I didn't put up a tree the year my mother died. Another year, when my daughter was in high school, I didn't put up a Christmas tree because I was waiting for her to help and she wasn't interested! That year, I decorated an avocado seedling that I was growing from a seed! I had to use the smallest of papier mache apples and some strands of tinsel because the poor seedling couldn't bear the weight of anything heavy! But most years, I do put up a tree and decorate it.
Those are the stories behind some of my Christmas tree ornaments. Each one brings memories of Christmases past as we celebrate Christmas present and look forward to future Christmases.
Do you have stories and memories behind your Christmas ornaments?