Tuesday, November 27

A Story to Tell

My Christmas tree has a story to tell.  If you are willing to look.

Tonight we decorated the tree before the boys went to bed.  Mind you, I am not that on the ball; we had spent a better part of the weekend just getting the tree up and the lights put on.

As we are unpacking the ornaments RR squeals in delight "Look, here are all the ornaments I made!"  After we peel through a layer of paper and glitter and glue and puzzle pieces we uncover our "family" ornaments.

You see we've been collecting new ornaments year after year.  Ornaments that mean something.

Ornaments that tell a story.  The story of us.

In 2004 I got RR his first ornaments - Baby's 1st Christmas.  I think he has 3 of them.

The following year he made some ornaments in day-care and I have a photo frame one of him.  This was my first Christmas as a single mom, and yet I kept my ex's family ornaments. As I didn't see them as items to be discarded and tossed out along with the relationship, but rather building blocks to the family we are now; which includes members of my ex's family (Nana).  These are items that will leave the house along with RR when he is grown and ready for them.

In the years that followed I gathered yearly ornaments for him. Ones he picked out; often in the image of his most current obsession (cats, trucks, trains and what have you); all marked with his name and date.

When Husband entered the picture we expanded our annual ornament collection; adding a couples ornament and a family ornament; many times getting multiples of a particular theme as gifts.

We have ornaments that mark our first Christmas together, one marking our engagement, one marking our pregnancy with TT, ones proclaiming our wedding and first anniversary.

With the birth of TT we added his First Christmas ornament and our family ornament expanded from 3 to 4 people.

But our tree is more than my recent past.  My tree includes ornaments of mine from my youth.  Ones friends gave me as gifts in college.  Ones passed on to me from my mom; from 1993 and 1986 to name a few... gifts made by friends of the family or bought by my parents; with my name and the year proudly displayed.

I have an ornament I bought to mark my brother's passing and another bought to commemorate the passing of my step-father.  Reminders of loved ones that are not with us, but are certainly not forgotten.

I have ornaments that were my Grandmothers.  Some of which are too fragile and delicate to display with a one year old around; others to bias to a bygone era that are also stowed away.  Yet, there are many still, from them, worth hanging.

That's my Christmas tree.  It's the story of me and of my family.  I do wish I had ones from Husband's youth to display on it as well, but regardless I am glad to work on this tradition with him creating memories of our times together to pass along to our children.


Sue said...

Ok, you made me cry. I love & hate this time of year,but I will always love you uncondisionally.

-C aka Mama Bird said...

I love that eclectic, family ornament look..

Amy said...

Beautiful. We collect yearly ornaments as well. We're just beginning our collection as my mom refused to part with the ones we got over the years before my life outside their house. But it's still a tradition I love. I can't wait to go do it again this year. :)

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