As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

A Favorite Tradition

There are lots of traditions in our house! We have predictable menus for tree trimming night, Christmas Eve, Christmas breakfast, and Christmas dinner. We have an advent calendar. We make far too many cookies. And there’s the annual mother/daughter Christmas shopping trip.

But one of our favorite traditions is the gifting of special ornaments.

Each year, on the night that we put up the Christmas tree, we present each of our children (and now our children-in-law and our grandchildren!) with their own Christmas tree ornaments. Often, the ornament has some special meaning to its recipient. Kristin used to be the one to walk our long driveway to the mailbox (after all, she corresponded with seven pen pals!), so one year she received a mailbox ornament. And, believe it or not, the year she became engaged to Brian, Ron found an ornament of a “diamond” ring in a red velvet box!

The year that Ryan studied in Ireland, I found an Irish snowman with a shamrock on his hat. (Yes, the search can sometimes be challenging!) Ryan also has several black Lab ornaments in honor of his faithful pal, Buster. And last year, I was thrilled to find that Hallmark made an ornament of the Fisher Price barn—a tiny replica of the very barn that Ryan had played with through his childhood, the very barn that we had just given to him for his own daughter, Eve! (What perfect timing!)

Kati treasures her “bookworm” ornament, given to her the year that she began to read for pleasure, and as a nod to her bird watching hobby, she has several birds and nests in her collection. This year's cupcake ornament represents her year of learning to decorate cakes.

One year, Bekah’s ornament had a baby Jesus and was inscribed with John 3:16, a Bible verse she had had me read to her over and over. Both of my piano-playing girls (Kristin and Bekah) have tiny pianos in their collections. And there are a few frou-frou ornaments in Bekah's too. ;-)

I also have made hearts embroidered with each child’s name.

The ornaments are kept in each child’s special box and they put their own ornaments on our Christmas tree every year, often with much reminiscing.

But, this collection of Christmas ornaments is “for keeps.” When each child starts his/her own home, they receive their box of ornaments to decorate their own Christmas tree. We have (a bit tearfully) sent two boxes of Christmas ornaments on their way to new homes.

We continue to have fun with it though...because now, not only do we search for special treasures for each of our four children, we have six grandchildren for whom we carry on the tradition!

1 comment:

  1. Loved reading this and seeing the ornaments! I must say I've never called my piano ornament tiny, especially as I search the branches to find one sturdy enought to hold it! Though compared to a real piano, I guess that word is appropriate. My favorite ornament is still my engagement ring one. So unique and it shines if you hand it beside a light. :-)


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