Sunday, December 14, 2014

A Tree of Christmas Love

I recently heard two friends say they did something different this year with their Christmas trees. Instead of having a tree with matching colors, ornaments, or themed ornaments, they each decorated their tree with ornaments that brought back memories. I couldn't help thinking about our tree and the joy it brings me. 

I love my Christmas tree. It’s a memory in and of itself. My husband and I bought it the first year we were married, at a garage sale in August. He said it was too early to think of Christmas, but I knew that for a couple of newlyweds who needed to be frugal, a $3.00 Christmas tree, including the stand, was a good deal.

Believe it or not, almost every year since then, I have set up that tree, with its two, pole-like sticks as a trunk, and branches of varying lengths that slide into holes in the trunk, some of which don’t fit as snugly as before. Then I add small, almost bracelet-like greenery that fits around the trunk to hide the pole and make the tree look real. I think it’s beautiful, once it’s loaded with multicolored lights and lots of ornaments.

My kids still laugh and almost groan when they see the tree we still use, over three decades later. They comment about how spindly it looks and how they can see right through it, but I figure that it lets in more light from the window AND I can see the ornaments hanging all the way through to the back of the tree!! There are more ornaments to see!

Every year, I top the tree with the yellow, construction-paper star with gold glitter that my oldest child made in Sunday school when she was three. I lovingly hang up two, small wooden ornaments – two angels singing and a wooden, red cardinal – both gifts from my beloved grandmother who passed away, five days before Christmas, when I was twelve. There are other favorite ornaments such as the ones celebrating our older two children’s first Christmases, with fabric-covered bulbs showing pictures of snow and young children, or the ornament for our youngest son’s fifth Christmas, with a Teddy bear and two candy canes sticking out of a Christmas stocking.

My husband and I have special ornaments, too - a woman wearing a fancy dress and her motoring hat, sitting in a green, wooden car; a man with a mustache, suit, and his motoring cap, sitting in his red car; a round, wooden ornament with an old-fashioned car in the middle, with the year of our second Christmas, as husband and wife; and a Papa Bear and Mama Bear, hugging, as the Papa Bear kisses her cheek, with the words, "I Love My Honey!"

I enjoy placing several angels on our tree, including a few handmade by friends; a ceramic bell that actually rings; and a girl on a swing from a Hallmark employee  who enjoyed seeing me come to the store with my little, curly-headed daughter in a stroller, many times, and gave the ornament to my daughter, as a gift. There are also the first Christmas bulbs we bought for our tree – bright red, unbreakable, fabric-covered bulbs. When our first child helped us decorate the tree, she placed all four of her bulbs on one branch that she could easily reach. Oh, that tree is filled with so many memories!

Over the years, ornaments have been added that remind us of special memories of when our children were growing up at home. There are the ornaments the kids made at school, including: pictures of our third child and a classmate, framed with toothpicks; a candy cane made out of beads; and baked dough in cookie-cutter shapes. A friend gave me a handmade, triangular-shaped, yarn ornament of a knitted face that says, “Squeeze me.” When you squeeze the cheeks, you see a chocolate, candy kiss inside. My uncle made us three, beautiful wooden ornaments that he intricately cut with his a scroll saw in the shapes of a manger scene, a bell, and an ornate ornament. I treasure those ornaments made with love for us. I smile as I think of the many other special ornaments we hang on our tree each year.

Yes, that tree is filled with memories and I shall always enjoy seeing it, year after year. In fact, sometimes, I’ve left it up until Easter, or once, for an entire year. I enjoy remembering the love of God and others for me and for my family, and the love God gives us to share with others – a love so deep and wide that it fills us to overflowing with His Spirit of Love, through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ, who lived and died so that we may know that, together with Christ, we, too, will also rise again, from life on earth, through faith in the One who made this all possible – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit - one God, who calls us to be one in love with Him in spirit, and with one another, as well. I can’t think of any gift greater than that, except for His people sharing that amazing gift and spirit of love with others!

I wish you and your loved ones a very happy and blessed Christmas! Happy Holidays, too!! God bless you all!!

Precious Linda, c. 2014


  1. Hi, Linda!

    You are doing a great job with your blog. Keep up the good work! You inspire me to start my own.

    The Write Stuff

  2. Thank you, Carrie! I appreciate your encouraging comments. So, have you started your blog? :) Best wishes to you in your writing, too!!

    Precious Linda