Our Christmas Tree – not really fancy, but festive…

I love a live Christmas tree.  It’s always a fun outing to find the perfect tree whether it is in the forest or an urban tree lot.  Our tree came from an urban tree lot this year.  We tend to search for a “Charlie Brown” kind of tree – a little imperfect and needing some love.  The smell of a live tree is my all time favorite.  A little freshness in the middle of winter is nice – especially for those of us that live in a cold climate – and don’t keep indoor plants. I could go on and on about the merits of a real tree – you get the picture – I like real trees.  Our Christmas tree of choice is usually the Colorado White Pine because it is a bit imperfect – not grown on a tree farm, has wide spacing between the branches – so there is a lot of room to line up ornaments, and the branches are strong – so they don’t droop when a bunch of ornaments are hung on one branch.  We brought home our prize tree on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  We immediately put in the stand, gave it some water, put the lights up, strung the garland, and placed the angel at the top.  Then, it sat for a week or so while I tried to get in the Christmas spirit.

DSCN2833

Finally, it snowed and Christmas Spirit arrived at our house!  I was ready to do a little tree trimming.

DSCN2839

Tree trimming is probably my favorite part of the Christmas season.  It is a very sentimental time for me.  I have hundreds of ornaments, collected over my lifetime.  It is a trip down memory lane every year.  I remember every ornament and where I got it.  For me, my ornaments are a better documentaion of my history than a photo album.  My grandmother started my ornament collection when I was a mere baby.  She collected an ornament a year for me until I was 18 years old. The ornaments were then handed over to me for my own tree.

This is my first ornament.  I was 5 month olds old.

DSCN3004

As a child I made ornaments – for entertainment during summer breaks.

DSCN2879

DSCN2978

As an adult I make a few ornaments here and there – see the post about my gourd ornament making.  I don’t keep many for myself.  However, this red bird was one I just had to keep for myself because the gourd was such a funny shape with the odd elongated top.

DSCN2949

My mom is pretty crafty and I have inherited a number of her handmade ornaments over the years.  These clothespin guys are probably my favorite.

DSCN3025

We loved this little plastic mouse as kids.  We thought he was so funny – a mouse playing a drum.

Mouse

I also have ornaments from all over the world.  A kiwi bird from New Zealand.

DSCN2950

Moccasins from the Artic Circle.

DSCN2959

A strawberry (it’s a painted egg) from England.

DSCN2917

Most of my ornaments have been gifts.  This one was a gift from Tad.

DSCN2916

The purple elephant was a gift from my sister…

DSCN2915

Over the last few years I have been grouping similar ornaments together.   I think I enjoy my ornaments more that they are a bit “organized” on the tree.  I feel like the groupings make the ornaments more noticeable.

I have a lot of bird ornaments.  This year the birds are hanging towards the top. Here is a small sampling of the flock.

DSCN2872

DSCN2970

DSCN2990

Stars – a few from my constellation.

DSCN2992

Behind the stars are the penguins.  Penguins are popular at our house.

DSCN3036

The odd fish, sparkly seahorse and mermaid are a small sampling of my sea creatures.

Sea Creatures

As you can imagine, angels occupy an entire branch of our tree.  The blurry one in the front is made from a cotton ball – unprocessed – right off the cotton plant – it is one of the cutest things I have ever seen!

DSCN2894

Our cat section features a gourd ornament that I made for Tad – a replica of our cat, Hanna.

DSCN2967

It’s Christmas – so, of course, Santas make an appearance on our tree.  This Santa was painted by my mom.

DSCN2962

It’s not a Christmas tree without some sort of bread dough ornament.  I spent a good portion of my childhood allowance on bread dough ornaments.

DSCN2999

Tad’s ornaments are mostly sports oriented.

DSCN2865

This pewter bear has quite the story at our house.  A few years ago, I found him laying in a flower bed of our backyard in the spring.  We aren’t sure how he got out there.  We think we forgot to take him off the tree that year – then maybe a squirrel rescued him off the tree in the alley – and carried him back into the yard.  The next year Tad noticed him still hanging on while he carried the tree out to the alley – crazy!  The third year we searched the tree in depth to make sure we removed everything, the pewter bear was found hiding out again – after all the other ornaments were packed away.  It is almost like he is looking for an after Christmas adventure…

DSCN2993

 Our tree isn’t fancy, but we think it is festive – and fun…

DSCN3024