Monday, December 15, 2008

Hold on! I think there's still some tree showing...

Amanda and I spent Saturday, from late afternoon to late evening, decorating our tree -finally!! (Court is still at college and said she's looking forward to coming home to a fully decorated tree!) So here's how the evening went down...


(FROM THIS...)
First we got out all the special ornaments (photos, handmade, memory items). Most of our Christmas decor gets stored in the basement, but these sentimental favorites go in the top of my bedroom closet.


Next we put in our Little Women video to watch/listen to while we decorated.


(TO THIS...)
Hubby likes it with just the lights on it... Are you kidding? We've only just begun! Ribbons and bead garland were put on first...


(TO THIS...)
Then Amanda and I spent lots of time carefully putting all the photo, handmade, and sentimental ornaments on the tree. Now to most people, this would look done (dare I say even over done??)... But we forged ahead and put lots more on the tree...


... until it looked like this! We're done now, but only because there isn't a single branch left to hang anything from! (Did I mention I have a hard time coming to terms with Christmas minimalism??) Now to most people this probably looks way over the top (which it is!), but I can't help myself! I figure there's no right or wrong way to decorate a tree as long as we love the end result, right? When the girls eventually have their own places, Amanda says she will also have a tree with lots of special ornaments whereas Courtney says she will definitely opt for a decorator/themed tree. And I'm sure they will both be BEAUTIFUL!!


This is one of the photo ornament boxes. Every year I add a new photo ornament of each of the girls to the tree (that's over 40 ornaments alone between both of them!!)...


Add to that our loved ones and our sweet furry family members... And before you know it, the tree is full!


I have these two vintage tree toppers...


We decided to go with the white one for the tree this year.
Here are a few close up shots of the various items that go on our tree...


There are lots of handmade ornaments from Amanda's and Courtney's nursery school and kindergarten years, as well as some they made at home...
Here are some of Amanda's...

A sweet little crayon-colored bird (who never got his wings apparently!)...

A scotch-taped fabric holly and berry ornament...
A glittery little egg carton bell...

A hapy little gingerbread man...

...and a colorful stocking....
And here are some of Courtney's...

A sweet painted kitty..

A marker colored Christmas tree with pinking shear edges...

A glittery sandpaper gingerbread man...

A reindeer with antlers made from the traced outline of her hands...

... and a beautiful sequined Christmas tree...
There are also lots of personal ornaments on the tree. Here are just a few...

A duck for hubby because he loves ducks (his love for ducks is so cute!)

A pink flamingo for Courtney to remember her trip to Florida...

An Empire State Building ornament for Amanda to remember her trip to New York City.

A loon ornament to remember a 1999 family vacation on a lake in New Hampshire (our first time seeing and hearing loons - so magical!!)

My mom bought this ornament for me when the girls were little. I had seen it in a store and loved it, but thought it was too expensive. Mom surprised me with it later (she'd been with me when I originally saw it and knew how much I loved it!)...

And then there are the store bought ornaments that always appeal to Amanda because she's certain no one will ever buy them since they're broken (so she wants to give them a good home on our tree)... A few examples...
The soaring bird without a beak...

...and the one antlered reindeer...

And finally, our tree just wouldn't be complete if it didn't have....

... Fred Savage (Kevin, The Wonder Years) hanging from a branch. We met him on the Cape back in 1998 and he was such a sweetheart, talking to the girls and posing for pictures with them... (Needless to say, they weren't wearing Santa hats - that was my little photoshop job!)... This photo serves as a reminder of that fun time on the Cape...

So I hope you all are enjoying your Christmas trees as much as we are enjoying ours... Whether your tree holds family photos or shiny new baubles, whether it's green or silver, pink or white, whether it's real or fake, tall or short, skinny or fat... Enjoy!!

Merry Christmas!
Donna

24 comments:

TattingChic said...

Thank you for the lovely, sentimental tree "tour". Everything looks so lovely! The mantle on your header looks spectacular!

Calamity Jane's Cottage, Bonnie said...

Hi Donna,
Love your tree with all the memories trimmed on the tree, you can just sit back and reminisce.
Have a Merry Christmas to you and your family,
Bonnie

Lady of the Mote said...

Lovely tree!

suzeeez said...

Your tree is beautiful ....
I love all of the children's homemade ornaments ....reminds me of my childhood trees from long ago .
Happy Holidays , Sue

Claudia said...

Beautiful.What a wonderful tree full of memories!

Cami @ Creating Myself said...

Your tree is fabulous! Don't change a thing!

Is it over the top? Yes! Is it perfect? Yes! Do I love it? Heck yeah!!!!

Sweet Cottage Dreams said...

I just adore your tree and all of the sweet and cherished ornaments that fill it up just perfectly!

Thank you for sharing!

Becky
:)

Cynthia's Cottage Design said...

Hi Donna!

First I have to say, I think that is the most beautiful tree I have ever seen! o m gosh! you certainly have a million ornaments and each one is so precious!! they look absolutely stunning together and create this huge GLOW of beauty!! what a fabulous job you did!

and second, you were watching my favorite movie too! My daughter and I love that one!

Happy Holidays! Hugs, Cynthia

Joanne Kennedy said...

I'm with you...the more the better. One year I had so many ornaments on my tree that I had to tie it to the wall as it was heavy it kept falling over.

Love how everything has memories attached to your tree.

Hugs,
Joanne

Stephanie said...

I truly enjoyed the "tour" of your Christmas tree. I like it best when it is PACKED with ornaments! So many memories!!

Your fireplace over the years was so great! I am going to have to look through old pics too!

Stephanie

Envoy-ette said...

I've always believed that "too much is not enough"! LOL! I love your tree! I'll have to show my husband because he is a single ornament type of guy...
(all red & round)

laurie said...

Donna, I LOVE your tree. You can never have too much Chritmas decor!I loved seeing pictures of all of your special ornaments. Those are what make your Christmas tree so wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing all of this beauty. laurie

ksarra said...

I sooooo enjoyed seeing your tree and getting a close up of those special ornaments. Overdone??? NO WAY!!!!

Brenda@View From The Pines said...

Well, it's absolutely gorgeous! We women are nothing if not sentimental, huh?
Brenda

Victoria Lynn said...

Donna,
It's lovely that one of your girls was able to decorate the tree with you. It turned out pretty! It's funny, I just painted my deer white! I like them much better that color. Yours look great pink and glittery. Hope you're having a wonderful week.
Hugs,
Victoria Lynn

Rhondi said...

Donna
Your tree is awesome!! I am going to copy your idea and start to put new photos of the kids and grandkids every year. I love that personal touch.
Hugs, Rhondi

Rue said...

Hi Donna :)

Your tree is absolutely beautiful and one of best that I've seen.

I love the post with all your fireplace changes! Amazing transformation :)

Thank you for the sweet comment about our new house. I can't wait!!

hugs,
rue

Deb said...

So many wonderful memory filled ornaments covering your tree - just beautiful! My children made little egg carton ornaments too when they were little :-) These are all the little treasures that make our trees so special!

Esther said...

My tree is looking pretty bare and pathetic this year. I think it might be time for a new tree. We have arguments over the tree, I want all handmade and vintage decorations, the girls want tinsel and shiny stuff. Also Ella (the hopelessly sentimental one- she would be like your daughter buying the broken decorations) wants all the old decorations whereas Rosie wants new and co-ordinated. We usually have a tree each to solve the problem but not this year. I just let the girls have their way this year.

And I love Little Women!!!

A New England Life said...

Donna,
Your tree is beautiful!!! I love the individuality, as well as the color. So many precious memories. I need to find one of those flamingos!

Sharon

Plum Bush Cottage said...

I love your tree...so full of loving memories. I agree, there is no right way or wrong way to decorate the tree. It matters only that you love it.

Debby said...

Hi Donna!
I love your tree! I think I have met my match when it comes to seeing how much of the Christmas tree can be covered! lol I invite you to visit my blog and view my tree and site.
Here's wishing you a very Happy Holiday Season!
Take care,
Debby

Vintagesquirrel said...

I loved hearing the stories behind some of your ornaments (especially the broken ones -how sweet!) I like your 'overdecorated' tree. Guess I'll be shopping for more ornies at the post-Christmas sales.

Heidi Colton said...

Donna, I love your tree. I don't think it's overdone at all. As a matter of fact mine is full like that. Can't picture it as sparse. Wouldn't have the same feel.