My mom stopped by randomly the other day to bring us laundry soap and Christmas ornaments for our rather naked tree. I’ll admit, as money is tight and time is scarce, more fancy baubles for the tree are very low on our shopping list.
Suffice to say we have Mr. Hummer’s ornament collection from when he was a kid, a handful of “these are never going on the tree but in a curio cabinet lest they befall a terrible misfortune” ornaments, some very cool hand painted wooden ornaments we got from a bazarre at a Lutheran Church one year (most of which are still in hospital), and a small set of tiny nutcrackers we were gifted from a HUGE collection of nutcrackers that once belonged to a person I can only assume was very interesting in life.
The ornaments my mom brought over were the leftovers from my childhood; the hand made red wooden hearts that needed new strings, and tiny Christmas presents that my kids desperately wanted to “open”, tiny tinkling bells, one puzzle piece wreath with a tiny picture of 8 year old me, a really ugly felt teddy bear that the girls adore, and the cherry red Christmas bows from the late 80s. Useless to my mom, but treasures to me.
All these ornaments got me thinking about our traditions and symbols. The Christmas orange and green olives in the stockings. A brand new stocking for each new member of our family. A nativity play put on by the wee ones in our house. A reading of the Christmas story. A toast of gratitude with our homemade spiced apple kefir soda. And of course Christmas gifts on Christmas Day and with enough forethought a delicious Christmas breakfast casserole.
The magic of Christmas gets more meaningful to me every year from just the two of us to watching our kids turn from babies to wide eyed children.