Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Oh Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree!

christmas tree 002In years past I've sometimes put up a themed Christmas tree—all white one year, a pig tree complete with pig lights for several years, and a French country tree.  But I've always had a traditional tree with an assortment of ornaments for my main tree.

When we were newly married, one of our first trees was a live tree that some early departing students had left behind.  For years I said that I would never have an artificial tree, but I finally gave in—first a "bottle brush" variety, then a more realistic tree, and finally a pre-lit tree a couple of years ago.  Life is certainly easier now that I don't have to wind all those lights in and out among the branches.

My ornaments have been collected over the years.  Some I've purchased at craft shows or in stores just because I liked them.  Others have been given to me by friends, and some I've made.  Some of my favorites are the ones the kids made when they were young, like this elf that Ben made in first grade.

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My friend Kathy Olson painted this family ornament for us in 1986 when we lived in Texarkana.

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And I painted a whole set of these Christmas "cookies."

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When we travel, I'm not big on buying souvenirs, but I usually try to find a Christmas ornament or two.  I bought this one when we went to Bainbridge Island for Brent's and Katie's wedding in 2005.

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One of my newest ornaments is this beautiful paper cone that my sister-in-law Susie made for me this year.

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And finally, my tree would not be complete without a few ornaments from the University of Arkansas.

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So the tree is all decorated, and most of the presents are wrapped.  This kids start arriving tomorrow.  We are celebrating Christmas early this year, because they will all be elsewhere on the day.  But the important thing is that LBeau and I will get to spend time with them during this special season.

320597529_6c21476212_m-1 Now be sure to visit Susan at Thoughts from Over the Rainbow where she's hosting Deck the Halls.  I'm sure everyone else is way ahead of me on their decorating.


Sarah said...

Kathy, it was such a treat to see some of your special ornaments. I have two favorites: your son, the elf and the cone that Susie made. Both are dear! I'm not big on themed trees because I love to use my ornaments that we've gathered through the years. That said, I love the idea of a "pig tree". Do you have photos to share. Please!!! I showed my rooster tree on today's post. Have a few pig ornaments as well. Sometimes I add them to the rooster tree, but this year I ran out of room. Guess I've been adding a few more roosters of late. LOL
Thanks for sharing. ~ Sarah

Jeanette said...

Kathy such a lovely tree! Those cookies you painted are precious. I have done different themed trees in each room for years but stopped a couple of years ago. My husband was really missing them this year so I might have to start putting them back up next year.
Merry Christmas.

Kathy said...

Hi Kathy... Love a tree packed with MEMORIES...Fun to just look at each ornament and remember where it came from and the stories behind them. Have the Merriest Christmas ever, xoxo~Kathy @ Sweet Up-North Mornings...

Joyce said...

I may be ahead on the decorating but am behind on the shopping and wrapping...Strasbourg was fantastic...got home yesterday. I'm going to a taping of Martha Stewart show today...I hope she doesn't scold me : ) Love your tree...the homemade ornaments are my favorites.

Kammy said...

Hi Kathy !
What great shots you captured of your pretty ornaments ! I love to look at the trees as it really shows personality !

susan said...

Kathy-You are quite the painter--love the cookie ornaments! I knew I could count on you to have Arkansas ornamnents to offset my Ole Miss ones :). I love Ben's ornament! I just finished the last of my daughter's snowmen ornaments for her kindergarten class---whewww! Take care and thanks for joining the party!

tale of many cities said...

really lovely. :D

Just Breathe said...

So I clicked to blow it up, wow it looks so beautiful. Love the different ornaments you have.
Have a beautiful Christmas.

Tonja said...

I think the best part of decorating the tree is unwrapping the ornaments and unwrapping the memories they hold once more!

Karen at Nittany Inspirations said...

I love how everything is so personalized. You have really created some lovely heirlooms.

nanny said...

Have a great time with your family....beautiful tree!!!

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Kathy, your tree looks so pretty. I have some similar ornaments on my tree. The elf ornament is so cute! Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas. laurie

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Kathy, I love your tree! And that elf ornament that you said Ben made is the cutest thing I've ever seen. I love handmade ornaments, especially ones that children make. So cute!


Sheila :-)

Duchess of Tea said...

My darling I wish you and yours all the joy, love, hope, blessings, peace, laughter, miracles, good health and boundless wealth during this holiday season and always.

Love & Hugs

Sue said...

That little elf orni of your son is just too adorable. And your painted cookies must all be so fun, because the one you showed is cute. Our first tree was a real one that we stole off the TKE House on campus. The guys had gone home for the holidays and left it on the porch. We were newlyweds with no money, so my girlfriend went with me to snatch it. It was her idea and I went right along with it. That tree would've ended up in the trash- instead it got a loving home with Mr. S and me in our little apt. Too funny.
Have a Merry Christmas with your family, Kathy! hugs, Sue

Janean said...

you'd lose the bet at my home as in the finished decorating...lol. your home is lovely and the special ornaments are great! Merry Christmas!

Robin said...

Such wonderful ornaments with wonderful stories and memories!


Robin :o)