This Tree Is Filled With Love
A couple of weeks ago i fractured my ankle. As part of my recuperation, I lay on the couch with my foot on a pillow, an ice pack on my ankle. This couch is in the front room of the house and it’s where our Christmas tree stands. It’s a new tree, an artificial one that we purchased at the beginning of this year. It’s very life like. We keep the tree lit all day; it fills the house with light and joy.
I was staring at the tree a couple of days ago and I realized I know the origin of most of the ornaments. There’s the felt mouse, complete with a bow on its tail, sitting in a walnut shell that I bought at a Christmas fair back in the late 1970’s when I was in college. Three ornaments with a baby theme with given to me by my college roommate Claudia who died just 5 years after we graduated in anticipation of the birth of my son. Claudia had a talent for knitting and cross stitch. One year we decided to make cross stitch ornaments to sell at a craft fair. One of hers hangs on our tree along with some that I made.
Then there are the ornaments my first husband, Ian’s dad, Carl and I purchased on various trips to Maine and Vermont. They all are cat themed; he really loved cats. My favorite we call Fat Cat. He’s an oval shaped black cat dressed in a suit with a cigar in his mouth. Made of glass, he’s very fragile and we handle him with kid gloves.
Homemade ornaments adorn this tree. A tin Santa Ian made, a painted snowman from Dylan. A quilted fabric square from a former neighbor when we lived in Rhode Island. A few years ago, I received from a good friend, a small knitted basket ornament completed with tiny balls of yarn and toothpick needles .
I love the special ornament from my husband Bill. It’s a tiny blue teapot. He gave one to me, Monica, Darien and Lisa. “His Girls”. We are all linked.
It’s been fun to pick up ornaments while traveling. There is the tiny house from a trip to Bermuda that my mom and I took after my Dad died. Bill and I have traveled quite a bit over the years and brought back ornaments as mementos of those vacations. Crocodile ornament with Santa hat from Florida; Santa resting in a hammock from Cayman Islands. Beautiful handcrafted wooden cuckoo clock from Germany, Belleek bell from Ireland.
There is a story in every ornament, a memory of good times shared with a loved one or a fun moment with a caring friend. There is laughter, there are tears. In some way each ornament represents a unique moment in time but from each many stories can be told as that one memory opens the door to many more.
I know this year has taken its toll on everyone. My wish for you this holiday season, is that you find something that sparks a good memory for you. There may be tears too but those are born from the love that the memory holds for you.