O Christmas Tree – 2013 Virtual Advent Tour

Posted 8 December, 2013 by Trish in Life / 38 Comments


Once again, Kelly and Marg are hosting the annual Virtual Advent Tour for bloggers. There’s still time to sign up for the month, so if you have something holiday-inspired that you’d like to share, go sign up!!

This is my fourth year participating and I wasn’t sure what to post about until I was hanging ornaments and decided that would be a perfect place to start. In the past I’ve told you about my Annual Family Bake Day, Making new traditions and my Christmas Quilt, and showed you pictures of my Christmas Village. This year I’m excited to give you a glimpse of our Christmas tree.

Eight years ago when Scott and I bought our first Christmas tree, I knew I wanted my Christmas tree to feel like the one that I grew up with–with lots of unique ornaments that represent our lives and that conjure up memories. Since these types of ornaments take time to collect, we headed to Target and bought the giant bin of red ornaments as filler. It was a pretty pitiful tree that year, but nine seasons later our tree definitely feels like home.

There are ornaments that show where we are from

There are the ornaments that show our school allegiances

And those that celebrate our wedding and togetherness

There are many ornaments that show our journeys around the world

Some of my favorites are the homemade gems, especially this ornament from Grandma

And ornaments that show whimsy and fun

Some show the things that we love

Some represent the important parts of our life

And some show the new arrivals and life changes

I wish I could show you so many more and of course there are still many many empty branches for the years to come. I have a feeling that we’ll be making room for some of those inevitable handmade ornaments from the little hands in our family.

I love the look of elegant and beautiful Christmas trees, but I love that ours reflects little pieces of who we are.

Do you have any favorite Christmas ornaments on your tree?

Happy Holidays!

38 Responses to “O Christmas Tree – 2013 Virtual Advent Tour”

  1. It’s nice that you’ve started your own tree together as a family. Most of our ornaments are childhood ones of mine mixed in with a few newer additions. And we never have room to put them all because Christmas trees here are typically very small (think Charlie Brown-size).

  2. We need to buy more on trips. We aren’t the kind of people who just buy new ones each year, but we could definitely use more non-red balls. Our tree looks lovely and full this year until you realize we did not decorate the back.

  3. Your tree is so pretty. You are like me with making the tree unique and different. Adding meaningful decorations. Each year the three of us pick up a new ornament that we really like to add to our collection. I started doing this when my son was born so that when he moved away he would have decorations to start his tree (so all the ones he has picked for himself go into a bin)… okay how did i not know you were a fellow Canadain? Ya for Canadians

  4. Our first few trees were pitiful too – I even strung popcorn and cranberries to fill it. Now our tree is overloaded but I just love pulling out the ornaments and remember what they represent, who made them, who gave them to us, etc. I, too, love the handmade ones. I have many that Vance made, some that our nephew made, and several from some aunts who have since passed away. I would fight someone for those!

  5. Loved this post, Trish! We collect ornaments the same way and now, after 28 years of marriage, the tree is definitely overdecorated. Last year our tree was a little smaller and we couldn’t even put up all the ornaments (not a problem this year!), but we took them all out and re-lived the memories. Merry Christmas!

  6. Oh wow, what a beautiful tree! It looks picture-perfect, like something from a TV ad or a Christmas card. I love that all your ornaments are individual and unique. Hopefully I can build up a collection with a similar personal meaning over time.

  7. I like it. Very eclectic, not that I wouldn’t expect that from you. :) My favorites are the ones from my sister and me on our family tree. I look forward to seeing them every year.

  8. I love your tree, I too love the elegance of a designer tree, but this is so much more Christmas. I need to do some hexis for a little Christmas quilt. Thank you so much for sharing such a special part of your life.

  9. One of my favorite memories as a child was pulling out the ornaments each year and seeing the old favorites even though my parents didn’t have too many. I started collecting them when I traveled and love to relive the journeys when I put my own tree up. Thanks for sharing your ornaments and a tree with a lot of love very evident.

  10. That’s fabulous, Trish! Lorrie and I have been together almost as long as you and Scott’s tree and this is the first time we have put one up. I wish I had been collecting ornaments for it. My mother gave me a bunch of homemade ones and I had a few I had bought years ago. Now I will try harder to collect some because I have always had the same idea for my tree simply because that was what I grew up with, too. :) Funny enough, one of the ornaments in the box my mother gave me was one of my ‘Babies First Christmas’ ornaments.

    Thanks for joining in!!

  11. Every year I think I’m going to get all new ornaments and do one of those beautiful trees. But then I can’t imagine having that tree that represents our lives like yours. We have an ornament my parents made for their first Christmas together 55 years ago and the first one they bought, the kids’ homemade ornaments, ornaments celebrating our wedding, and the ones that marking the arrival of our kids – how could a person not put those up? Don’t you just get a little emotional as you take those ornaments out?!

  12. We have a similar collection of ornaments. They are personal to us. I have Tim Hortons ornaments on my tree instead of Starbucks because my Mom works there!

  13. I love ornaments that have such stories/meanings behind them. Thank you for sharing these! I haven’t put up our Christmas tree yet. Hopefully soon!

  14. I love your tree and ornaments! My mom had a tradition that every year, she gave my brother & I ornaments in our stocking so when we moved out and had our own trees, we had a box of ornaments for our own trees. Most of the ornaments on mine and Shawn’s trees are the ones that I had gotten through the years, or a few that I have that I made with my grandma and we’re slowly starting to accumulate ornaments from where we travel (Just got back from NYC and bought one at FAO Schwartz) and who we are as a couple. I love our tree! Maybe I’ll have to do a tree tour myself. :)

  15. I love your Advent post. It brought back so many memories. After 49 years of marriage we have way too many ornaments. The ones we love the most are those made by small hands. Thanks for sharing your memories. Merry Christmas.

  16. I love looking at other peoples trees. Thank you so much for sharing. Our tree (when we finally get it up) is an eclectic mix of our childhoods and new ornaments are added each year as we build a collection for each of our boys to take with them when they leave.

  17. I adore your tree. I have a “collection” tree myself–full of a mish-mash of ornaments that mean something to us. Greyson has some dinosaurs and we added candy ornaments this year to mimic is tree at pre-school…which he loves. Which he’s hugged on several occasions. There are tons of angels from my childhood as well as the first letters of our names. So much fun to collect and remember.

  18. I LOVE your tree! So pretty and homey. How do you keep the little hands away? Gage likes to put his advent ornaments on and then take them off 10 minutes later to play with them!

  19. What a lovely tree and ornaments :) I’m with you, I like unique personalized ornaments that outline my life with my guy. We just finished our tree over the weekend, and I can’t help but coo when I see all of our ornaments every year.

    Thank you for sharing your tree… it’s lovely!

  20. Oh, I love this! Your tree is gorgeous, and I definitely relate. Our tree is also a collection of personal ornaments that have significance to us through the years, and it was so fun to put up our first “married” tree this year. :) We actually have quite a few, even though we’ve been married a month! I brought lots of my childhood favorites from home, and Spence bought a bunch of “filler” gold and red ones to pick up the slack as we amass more through our travels and family changes. So nice!

  21. Gorgeous tree!
    In many ways, it reminds me of our tree; we too bought a filler of red and gold decorations, and every year since we have been adding new ones we carefully select. There are many memories linked with it and its both a pleasure and a trip down memory lane to put the tree together every year.
    Also, I didn’t know you were a fellow Canadian! :)

  22. Your tree is beautiful! I’m always impressed with folks who can decorate fancy pantsy color coordinated trees, but for me, like you, I’d rather our tree be a Christmas-y homage to our lives and good memories. :)

  23. There’s nothing as wonderful as pulling out that box of ornaments from thirty-five years of marriage and putting them on the tree. So many of them make me smile; so many of them make me cry. Enjoy.

  24. cat

    I love, love, LOVE this post! Call me crazy, but I just love seeing other people’s Christmas trees and knowing the stories behind ornaments. So many people have such personal story-type ornaments on their trees and I just love the stories. And your tree is gorgeous. (And your lights are so well placed, so I have to ask – are you extremely good at lighting your tree, or is this one of those pre-lit ones? Because as much as I love my real tree, I fight trying to get the lights JUST RIGHT every year. heh :))

  25. Les

    Being a December baby, I received a lot of ornaments over the years from my godmother and mom so that when I moved out, I could easily decorate my own tree. After being married for 25 years now, my collection has grown considerably and, like you, my ornaments all reflect what we love to do, where we’ve traveled, as well as the little silly ones that make us smile. However, Christmas has become a difficult holiday for us (particularly this year), and we haven’t put a tree up in a few years. I miss unwrapping all my ornaments, revisiting all those memories, but working retail and the lingering sadness of missing R during the holidays, gives me an out to skip the whole thing. Maybe next year…

  26. Ti

    I see a lot of trees that have color themes and look perfect but I always appreciate the ones that have a variety of ornaments for the reasons you stated. My tree is such a hodge-podge of stuff but every single one means something to me.

  27. Loved getting a peak of your Gorgeous and unique tree- I so LOVE reading post like these!! I am sure next year, you will have some ornaments made by the little hands too :) and I am sure that would be priceless, years later :)