Sunday, December 9, 2012

Festive Decorations for the Season

   I decorated the tree today while I listened to Christmas music.  I've cut back over the years, and only put out my favorite things when we are not hosting the dinner.  Even so, every room is decorated downstairs, and there are lights outside and wreaths on the doors.  My tree is beautiful, even though I'm no longer determined to put an ornament on every branch.  This year, less is more, and if I'm smart, I'll pack things together to make things even easier next year.
   I never trim the entire tree without shedding both tears of joy and sadness.  A lifetime of memories are found in my ornament totes. There are souvenirs from vacations, and dated ornaments since 1976. There are snowmen, reindeer, flowers, sleighs, red hats, snow globes, golfers. My oldest figurine was a gift for my first communion, and it is more than fifty years old.  Many signify important events and happy times . I light a candle that smells like Christmas and begin unwrapping the ornaments.  I burn the candle in memory of those friends and relatives who died during the past year. Each year I will buy an ornament to remind me of that person. Sadly, this year I will need to buy several.
   All the special decorations are in the box they came in,  or are carefully wrapped in tissue paper.  The totes have separate sections to keep them safe. Matt won't get home this year, but I still smile as I hang the ornaments that have his baby pictures.  I tear up when I find the ornaments he made for us decades ago. I cherish those cardboard ornaments as much as my hand blown crystal figurines.  They all have a special place on the tree, and in my heart.
   This year, we lost our boxer, Vito, and I cried when I came across his stocking.  The ornaments for our pets, or "four legged kids" are on the tree surrounded by angels.  We've had four dogs so far during our marriage, and we have begun to talk about adopting another.  That will mean lots of changes for next year!  It does not seem possible that twelve months have passed since we last decorated for the season.  I'm grateful for my family and friends, and think about all the good things that happened in 2012.  Let's all  vow to focus only on positive things this holiday season,  and we should all look forward to many blessings in the coming year.....and the beat goes on.....the beat goes on........

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