Sunday, December 6, 2009

A Christmas tree of memories.....

A Christmas tree of memories......

"Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree,
with faithful leaves unchanging.
Each year you bring to me delight,
meaning in the Christmas night.
Oh Christmas tree, Oh Christmas tree,
of all the trees most lovely."

I love Christmas and especially all the beautiful Christmas
trees that everyone seems to have. Each one is so pretty, stylish, and special in it's own way. Here at our house we are especially grateful for
our Christmas tree this year, because
with my hubby so sick last year, for the very
first time in forty-three years, we didn't have one. That was a big mistake! We really missed not having a Christmas tree and
have vowed that no matter what happens we will always have one from here on end.
As you can see our tree is a hodge podge of tiny things with no particular style or order. Do you see that little styrofoam church? Well I made that church when I was five years old. I can still remember the trouble I got into when my mother found me in the utilitity room craving it out with one of her kitchen knives. All the while I was protested saying, "but mom I only wanted to make a church." Even though I had no artistic ability even way back then that little church hung on my mom's large tree, and then table top tree until the year she died in 1984. At that time I brought it home with me and it has been hanging on my tree ever since.
Up above is our grandson Ryan's ornament and underneath it a precious nurse Anne and Mike gave me years ago.
I have also collected dated Hallmark ornaments through the years that are scattered here and there on our tree.
This cute little santa was given to my hubby and I by our son Kurt when he was in first grade. I think it's so adorable! Kurt was so excited to give us this gift. It's hard to believe he is now thirty six years old!

The pretty green bulb above is one that was given to us by my hubby's mother the first year we were married.
There are our grandson's Michael and Tommy's special ornaments.
That little pink bird up above was given to me on a day spent shopping with my dear Aunt Rose in the mid sixties.
When our son Tom was in gradeschool he gave me a package of red bulbs one year for Christmas. He knew how special the Christmas tree has always been to me ♥
There seems to be a story associated with each and every bulb on our tree. When our children were younger, every year as I was decorating the tree, I would tell them the story of every bulb.
The little paper cut out Christmas tree was made by our grandson Michael one Sunday afternoon while he was visiting at our house. It's very special to me because I remember all of the fun we had drawing and just being together that day ♥

Isn't this the sweetest tree top? My cousin Pam took the time and had the talent to made my mother and I each one years ago. I always kept mine on the branches of my tree but when my mother died I brought her angel home and she has been our tree top ever since.

This colorful little snowman was given to me by our grandson Thomas when he was in the first grade. I imediately fell in love with it ♥ I asked him if he was sure he wanted to give it to me and not his parents but he said he made it special just for my tree. This grandma still gets tears in her eyes every time I hang it.
My mother gave me the little red elf mouse when I had admired it on a shopping trip one day. There is a set of them. One is green and the other one is red.

Our son Michael made us this sweet little santa when he was in first grade. It was our very first Christmas gift from one of our son's. We were so proud and happy to recieve it. Mike is forty-three years old today. Where has all of the time gone?

That little dough lady is a gift from my sister and the pretty bell is another ornament given to us by my hubby's mother the first year we were married.

Our son Tom made us this little angel in cub scouts. Isn't she just devine? I can still remember how excited he was as we were unwrapping the package. Tom is thirty-nine years old today but I can still picture him, as well as, our other two son's as little boys running around the house laughing, playing, and just being silly. My hubby and I eventually became den leaders ourselves and remained den leaders until our son Kurt no longer had interest in doing it.
The little closepin soldier was sent to me in a Christmas card by my cousin Florence years ago.

This beautiful angel was hand made especially for me by my Aunt Helen. I think it's so pretty ♥ She made one for each of her neices one year for Christmas. She was so thoughtful! I loved her dearly.

Here is our darling granddaughter Jessica's special ornament.
The little ornament that says merry Christmas was given to me by a co- worker, a wonderful girl named Kathy. We still send each other Christmas cards.

The yellow bulb is the oldest one on our tree. It hung on my mother's tree through out my childhood.

I wish I could show you all of the bulbs on my tree and tell you all of the stories behind them. I would like to show you the very last Christmas card my mother and father sent us. My father died in 1984, two days after Thanksgiving, and my mother was buried Christmas Eve the very same year. For some reason in my grief it helped to see that card hanging on our tree and it has hung there ever since. It is in the shape of a dove.
Then there is the bulb my dad pulled out of his pocket one warm summer day. He said he had gotten it at a garage sale, and knowing how I treasured these types of things, he bought it so I would always remember him :>)
There is also the covered wagon ornament given to me by one of my patients mothers. The patient was a sixteen year old boy who came to our unit with severe tramatic injuries and remained in a coma for six weeks. The neurologist didn't give the parents much hope that he would recover but his mother never lost hope or faith that he would. Guess what? He woke up on his his mother's birthday. That is a whole post in it's self, and yes, I do believe in miracles.

I never tire of looking at our tree and all the wonderful memories it holds. I think our family and friends enjoy it as much as we do. So often I will find my family standing around our tree smiling, laughing, and even teasing one another about certain ornaments.

My tree skirt was hand made and a gift to us from my sister Marie. It's just beautiful! It's reversable. The other side is done in a red material with a border of tiny red ribbons scattered here and there.
And if you look closely you will see why we can't seem to keep Charli out from under the tree.
Throughout the day we will find our very undisciplined schnauzer pulling our Christmas mouse across the room by his tail. She can be very exasperating at times :>)
I hope you have enjoyed seeing some of my Christmas ornaments and tree. I am looking forward to seeing your decorations.
With warmest regards, Carol


the voice of melody said...

What a beautiful Christmas tree you have! I especially enjoyed the stories that are behind so many of your ornaments. I was sorry to read about your dad and mom passing away within weeks of each other though, that had to be so difficult. Thanks again for sharing. Sending hugs your way. :)

Michael said...

Every tree should be so special and full of memories! It's really kind of part tree, part diary/album isn't it? Hope you are enjoying the Christmas season so far!

Eileen said...

A very beautiful post, Carol. I loved seeing all your ornaments and I loved reading all the stories behind them. Really so special.
Christmas trees and ornaments really are so much more than just decorations, they are a gathering of our lives, our family, our memories. No wonder you missed having it for Christmas, it's like an old friend was missing.

When I read your first lines to the song 'O Christmas Tree' I got such a longing for my own Mom, all of a sudden a memory of her singing that song to me in German while she was standing at the kitchen sink doing dishes so many, many years ago came to mind. She told me she had learned it in high school in her German class. My Mom had a beautiful voice. I had forgotten all about that memory, so thanks for bringing it to mind.

Love to you,

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning dear Carol! Lovely, lovely ornaments with such fond memories of loved ones!!! I love the slenderness of your tree and it seems like a happy tree! AND that Christmas mouse....Charli has every reason to want to snatch is so cute!!! Love to all of you, ANita

Just a little something from Judy said...

What a lovely tree you shared with us. I really appreciate your sentimentality and the thoughtfulness that goes with that. The way you shared the old ornaments and can remember the details of each one. Love seeps out in each of the stories you tell, and each of the memories you share, revealing the kind and caring person that you are. Thank you for sharing these memories with us.

Blessings each day said...

Just lovely, Carol...thank you for taking me down your lovely memory was very enjoyable and made your ornaments 'come to life' with their specialness.

How cute that Charli likes the little mouse and I can see why...the mouse is cute just like her and they seem to belong together!

blessings and hugs,


Madeline's Album said...

What a lovely tree. Enjoyed the stories of the different ornaments. Our memories of past Christmases are so wonderful. Have a blessed day. Madeline

sunshine said...

I loved walking down memory lane with you. :)
You are truly blessed with many wonderful ornaments.
I'm not sure if you read or not but all of our ornaments were lost this year due to a flood in the storage area of our basement. Many of them were homemade ones like yours from our oldest 2 children. They can never be replaced but we still have the 2 little ones that are thankfully still making them. :)
And as I read here.. in a few years we will have grandchildren that will hopefully provide us with some as well...

Love your tree!!


SmilingSally said...

Carol, that is exactly what my tree is like: full of memories. I have a person in the family who thinks it looks better when all ornaments are one color--red with silver, for instance. True, her tree is beautiful, but mine is far more precious! Just like yours.

Susie Q said...

Such a beautiful tree and it is filled with the loveliest treaures. It is always such a joy to open the boxes and take out each piece for the tree. The memories come floodng back...they are a part of us, not just decor.
Thank you for sharing all your memories!

Queenmothermamaw said...

I understand what you were saying about skipping the tree one year. I had stopped having a big tree about 5 years ago when I had bilateral knee replacements around Christmas time. Boy nobody let me forget that. We now have a potted pine that is small but real and although I can't get all the ornaments on it, I can get enough on to make everyone happy and not wear us out. I am going to show some of my decorating, but the batteries in my camera need recharging and it was be another day. So love visiting you.

Knitty said...

Your tree is wonderful! I admire themed trees that use just a few colors, or only type of ornament, but I could never have one unless it was a second or third tree (and doesn't that sound like work!). Our tree is like yours...full of history and very special to us.

Knitty said...

I forgot to ask about your falling snowflakes. Is that done with a widget or did you have to add code? Mine are so small they are barely noticeable. Yours are much nicer.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Dearest Carol,
I am so happy that you enjoyed my post...and that you understand where I am coming from! I firmly believe HE came to bring us together and that no matter HOW we celebrate, it is the LOVE and RECONCILIATION that He wants us to experience...and I know that if He was with us in flesh today, He would enjoy each and every tradition and cultural flavor that we have to liberating! Blessings, Anita

A Stitch In Thyme said...

Your tree is the best kind there is... it's a tree of love. Hugs. Tammy

Mary said...

Your tree is wonderful, not hodge podge at all! Its full of special, one of a kind items that have memories attached to them, and that makes them so special. And I think a Christmas tree is more than a decorating statement...its part of our tradition, like when we popped corn and strung it on the tree...wonderful days and memories. The tree skirt your sister made for you is beautiful..I'm impressed that its reversible!

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Carol, that's the best kind of tree... one with all sorts of delightful memories on it. I love the sentiment of ornaments and remembering where each came from and thinking about that person. And can you really blame Charli? I want to play with that mouse, too!


Sheila :-)

♥ Kathy said...

I think your tree is beautiful Carol! I have a hodgepodge of ornaments myself. They date back to my infancy. Each year I try to add a new one :)

Sue said...

We buy a special ornament each year. Sometimes we give each other ornament as gifts and since we were married, whenever we travel we buy an ornament that represents the place we visit. It's fun to see them on the tree and remember the trip.

packaging usa said...

The Christmas Tree is a beautiful tree for hanging all the beautiful ornaments and gifts on it.It is a beautiful moment on Christmas mornings to open up all the secret presents with blush of happiness on face.

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