I put up the Christmas tree this year. Most years we’ve celebrated Christmas at my sister and niece’s houses, so my ornaments stayed boxed away in the basement. This year, my son and I are hosting festivities. I can’t wait. This afternoon everyone will begin arriving and we’ll spend hours laughing, playing games, eating and opening gifts. I’d forgotten how fun it is to decorate the Christmas tree.
Each ornament tells a story. Baby’s First Christmas: My husband and I didn’t have much money, but we were excited about our new baby. The ornament was from Current. It was inexpensive and unbreakable. It’s now thirty-three years old, just like my incredible son.
Styrofoam Ball: My son laughed when he pulled it out of the box. This was the first ornament he made while in preschool. It’s painted gold and has a pipe cleaner hanger.
Bread Dough and Clothespin Reindeer Ornaments: I remember sitting down at my kitchen table with family and friends and all of our kids, making crafty Christmas decorations. This was after my divorce when finances were still tight. We had a wonderful time. Today some of the ornaments are unrecognizable blobs. They still hang proudly on my tree.
There are ornaments from Yellowstone National Park, Amsterdam and other fantastic places we’ve traveled. The tree is decorated with penguin ornaments, since Travis has always loved penguins. There are police officer ornaments representing my time in law enforcement. The journey of my life over the years is represented by ornaments on my Christmas tree.
Decorating the tree reminds me of how far I’ve come and how much joy is in my life. It will never grace the cover of a magazine or win any prizes, but to me, it is the most beautiful tree in the world.