I love Christmas! Although some people find the prepping of Christmas—decorating, baking, shopping, wrapping—stressful, I find it exhilarating. I especially enjoy decorating the tree. For several years we would head out to a local tree farm and trudge the many paths looking for the perfect tree. Ah, such fond memories. Now my oldest is married with a child of her own and creating her own traditions and my husband with his bad knees and hands, can’t cut down the tree anymore. For years I said I would never own an artificial tree. Well, now we do. And it’s not bad. It fits perfect in the corner of our small living room and is loaded with ornaments I’ve owned since before I was married.
The oldest ornament on my tree is this Santa made from a hollowed out egg with cotton balls for its beard and an old knitted strap from my brother’s baby hat—back in 1969. I was 12 at the time. I’ve never had a themed tree, although there have been years I’ve dreamed of one. And then it dawned on me—I have had a themed tree, every single year. A Memory Tree, if you will.
Every ornament on our tree tells a story from the old Santa made from an egg to elaborate paper ornaments made by my scrapbooking friends. Each year, as I pull out the boxes and unwrap each fragile ornament from the tissue paper, I remember with fondness and love how I came about that particular ornament. Our tree tells a story of our life from when my husband and I were engaged to when we had our first child.
Some ornaments are tarnished and worn, but I still hold them dear. Other ornaments tell a story of a place we’ve visited and yet another ornament—created with loving hands from my sister— shows an entire year in my family! Some ornaments make us smile, some make us laugh out loud and some make us remember others who have passed on.
I can’t imagine having a tree that is is perfect and looks like it belongs on the cover of a magazine. It wouldn’t be me. It wouldn’t be a Christmas tree that tells our life story as a family. So now as my family grows with grandchildren and my marriage grows in years, my tree grows fuller with ornaments of our life, our history, our love as a family.
Wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas!
Lori DiAnni is an aspiring romance author, writing time-travels and historical romance on the frontier. She has several manuscripts somewhat completed and just needs the extra motivation to finish them to The End!
When she isn’t writing, she loves scrapbooking, reading, journaling and spending time with her grandson, Cameron, and the rest of her family, not always in that order. She is expecting her first grand-daughter in January. Her husband, Michael, of 32 years, has supported her for two decades and hopes his wife is soon published so he can finally retire.