06 December 2008

Christmas is here!

Originally I was going to title this post "O Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum! (insert other lyrics here)", but when I searched for the lyrics, I found out that the song was all about how pretty and "loyal" a fir tree is, and I was unimpressed. Christmas is better than that.

Here is my Christmas tree, in all its dwarfish glory. There is a star on top, but sadly I didn't realize I was leaving it out when I took the picture. Sorry, gold star!

If you click the picture, you can see a close-up version. I have collected these ornaments over the past 10+ years from various people and stores. It seems I have an affinity for stars, hm.
Purple star, top left (you can barely see it - it's setting sideways): this is from Melinda D, whom I have known for many years. I think this was a Christmas present a few years ago.
Silver bell with red gingham ribbon, top right: This was attached to the top of a canister of gingerbread pancake mix given to me at the V Family's house for correctly reciting the 12 days of Christmas.
Large silver sparkly stars, middle left and right: I bought these at Macy's Christmas store in the fall of 2002. I remember because I was at Master's College at the time and my friend Miriam K was in Costa Mesa for a work conference. I drove an hour and a half down to where she was staying, and we spent an evening shopping at South Coast Plaza - the biggest, most upscale mall I've ever been to, quite possibly. One visit was enough.
Gold pinecone, middle: I remember this one well. I was somewhere in my early teens (?) and my friend Elizabeth had invited me to stay with her family in Gualala Bay for Thanksgiving (or some weekend really close to Thanksgiving). Her mom gave us crafts to do with some of the other kids there, and we had a lot of fun with the glitter. I also had a huge crush on her brother at the time and he helped me build a sand castle at the little beach near our cabin, which you had to use a rope ladder to access. Good times. No, I never did date her brother. [Side note regarding Google maps: From the default overview of the US, I typed in "g bay, california" and was directed to California, Maryland. huh? So I typed in "california" and the same town appeared. Whaaaatt....? Third time's the charm, I guess...]
Red mitten, back right: You probably all remember these from Starbuck's last Christmas. I got two gift cards, and yes the mittens were cute, so I kept both of them. Too bad they don't have opposing thumbs.
Gold metal star with long red thread, center: Did I get this from you Mom? I've had it for a few years, and it's spent a lot of time out and about, free from the Christmas storage boxes.
Blue and white paper snowflake, center right: This is from my friend Sarah C, whom I met at Master's. I was too intimidated to talk to her in the beginning because she was tall and artistic and gorgeously Italian, but we became friends by ditching the second half of Systematic Theology together in favor of frozen yogurt in the caf at 8:30pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays... that was the only class in my entire school career that I ever ditched. She was from New Jersey and hating life in Southern California, and I was from Northern California and hating life in Southern California. She encouraged me to get out and explore LA instead of studying (Getty Center!) and I encouraged her to cut her long hair short the day before she went home for Christmas. Neither of us returned to Master's in the spring, and so I have never seen her again. Our lives have gone in very different directions but we still keep in touch through that great equalizer, Facebook.
Red and white cloth ball, back right: I have no idea. If you gave this to me, would you please let me know? :-) Ditto on the red star, lower right.
Crystal stars with gold tips, upper left far back, and lower left, center: I think I bought these, but I have no idea where or when I got them.
Green pear, lower left in the back: This was from an ornament exchange either at work or with a church group, I can't remember. At first I thought, "Oh! A.... pear.... ?" but since then it has grown on me and I will keep it for a very long time. Pears are at the top of my Most-Liked-Fruit list, in case you were wondering. And even if you weren't.
Smore girl, bottom center: Oh yes, the Smore girl... what would life be without smores?? I got this as a gift from someone in my family, it was either Bernice or Mom. It makes me laugh. It even has blonde wavy hair. Someone put in a very special order to the Christmas ornament factory that year.
Little silver stars, everywhere: I bought these, which came a dozen in a little silver bag, at... at... somewhere. I know they were on sale.
Also on the tree, behind and to the left, barely visible are two other ornaments. One is a tiny little snowman with wire loop angel wings, with my name printed on the front. That was from Mom (or course!). The other is one called "Tea for Two", given to my by Bernice I think, and it's two little people who have sugar cubes for feet, forks for arms, and teacups on their heads. Their bodies are made out of cupcakes and they both have a tea bag draped across their arm. The tea bags even have little tags that dangle.

The tree is pretty much the extent of my Christmas decorating, with the exception of little white lights around the windows and 2 electric candelabras that my mom gave me to put on my windowsills. I really like the way they look like candles sitting in your window at night. Last year I also added this arrangement to my collection, which was a gift from my boss Heather. It has little sparkly pine cones! :-)

I didn't intend to make this such a reminiscent post, but Christmas ornaments have memories built in, right? Especially ones gathered across many years. That's why I love decorating my tree - I'm reminded of God's many blessings.

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