It's been a time for reflection, because the family traditions we've built will NOT be happening next year. Not a bad thing, but it starts you thinking about what other changes will happen for 2015.
The White house (ours) is decorated in a mixture of old and new. There are "rules" about what goes where and when. I still remember smiling when Kati explained the lengths she had to go to when she was living in residence to get her ornaments on the Advent Calendar put up "right" because everybody was getting into the process. Or Kyle's first Christmas away where there was a debate of what should be counted down - to Christmas or to first day of leave.
I remember making this Advent Calendar in 1984. Through out December, I was actually finishing the ornaments in time to put them up that night. It's been fixed on numerous occasions and is much the worse for wear. I remember that the three children took turns putting up the ornaments - so Kier put up Santa on December 1 (to watch for who was naughty and who was nice) and Kyle put up the star on December 24. It took a few years for me to understand that the reason why Kati insisted on putting the ornaments away was so she could make sure that she got the Angel. The mouse at the top is also part of the tradition.
The tree skirt is actually older. I started it one Christmas and it sat out all year getting sequins attached to be ready for the next. Left over sequins were used in the Advent Calendar and many other projects over the years.
Here's the snowmen that decorate our front lawn from Advent one (another rule) to New Year's day.
Then there's the assorted scenes that have their place around the living room.
|Nativity scene I found in Manning|
(with a few added visitors to see Baby Jesus)
|Log cabin school house from Fort Vermilion (1976) and cabin, |
complete with outhouse and assorted residents
|Santa and Rudolf hang from the mantel with care|
Then there's the tree. It has to be real and almost always it is cut at the gravel pit. I can't imagine getting all the ornaments on a store bought tree. It's great fun sitting and checking out the ornaments and remembering their stories.
The first year Kier helped with decorating the tree, he spent ages carefully putting all these little guys on the same branch while his older siblings worked to decorate the rest of the tree. I make a point of repeating this every year.
And our newest ornamants. Elk? or reindeer? You can also see the donkeys from Mexico, and a pack of Root Bears.
I started out this post with a picture of next year's tree/quilt/advent calendar that marks the end of this Christmas season. So, here's the quilt I made to start the season off. It's title is "Holy Mackerel" and I love puffins. It was totally a fun time creating it earlier this year.