Saturday, December 17, 2011

Favorite Things -Christmas Edition

Every year as we decorate the Christmas Tree, I enjoy reminiscing about where each decoration came from.  Some, we've bought over the years (mostly after Christmas because that's my favorite day of the year to shop) and others were bought by friends and family for special occasions.  I want my children to have those memories to pass on one day so where better to record them than here.

I've always had a thing for Lady and the Tramp and Jason bought this  hallmark ornament for me  the Christmas  that Jackson was born.  I have to admit it made me wonder if he really wanted 4 children, since there were 4 puppies there.  Then I think he decided that even the Lady and the Tramp looked overwhelmed with 4!

I've always loved nutcrackers.  I really regret that they are so closely assocated with Christmas and wish they could be up all year.  I try to get one every year for the boys.  One of my all time favorites is the Auburn nutcracker.  I had some friends from Alabama visit me and Jackson while Jason was deployed.  They spent Thanksgiving with us and it was so much fun.  I told them how I wanted one and what do you know but one arrived for me in the mail from them.  That is good friends!
I got this at my Christmas shower when I got married.  It was the most fun shower I  ever had.  I'm still talking about that shower.  I mean, how much fun is it to get all Christmas decorations for gifts.  Otherwise, our tree would have been pretty bare that first year!  Not only did I have lots of ornaments, I had amazingly beautiful ones that were given to me by the people who love us.  My mom and her good ideas wrote the name of the person who gave them to me on each ornament so every year when I unpack them, I can think of the people who gave them to me back then.
I got Jackson this Christmas Nativity after months of looking.  I got it off of Craigslist.  I drove across fayetteville, NC to get it.  It was July.  Yes, I bought a nativity in July.  I had been looking for it and for $10, he played with it until well after Christmas.  It may have been one of my favorite Craigslist purchases ever.  Now Lincoln plays with it nearly everyday.  I'm still undecided if it will go up with our Christmas stuff or stay out for a while.
When I was growing up, my Granny had an Auburn ornament that was always my favorite one on her tree. As kids, Tracie and I would "claim" a favorite ornament on her tree as "ours" and this was always my pick. If I picked it then of course she couldn't choose the same one so I won.  When I got married, I got this one to start my own tree.  It was originally planned to be an Auburn tree.  I had always wanted one.  Orange and Blue lights, orange garland and an orange and blue bow on top!  Well, that was until I married an Alabama fan.  The first few years, I had my wish because he was deployed our first few Christmases and I could do whatever I wanted but after that, I had Jackson and somehow he'd been brainwashed into being an Alabama fan and he had an opinion on the tree.  Well, my Auburn tree turned into an Alabama Auburn tree and that is where we stand for now.  Next year, we either need 2 trees or a bigger one for a bigger rivalry.

I actually registered for this ornament at my Christmas wedding shower.  I was so happy to get it and Jason was equally disgusted.  I'm secretly hoping it's a sign into my future of 1) a daughter and 2) an Auburn fan.

This one was purchased in answer to my Auburn one.  Jason came across it somewhere and it was decided that we would have both until our kids could decide for themselves.  I don't think he's playing fair!

This one goes a little farther back than our wedding shower.  This is the ornament I gave Jason our first Christmas we spent together.  He was home from West Point and I was totally in love!  We hadn't been officially dating a year yet but I had already given him my heart and this signified it.  I knew within a few weeks of us dating that I was going to marry him one day and by Christmas, I was a goner!  This ornament is very special to both of us.  I've never looked back and I'm still totally in love with him.

And yes, it's the Tin Man's heart from the Wizard of Oz.   Epic Movie.
You probably know that Jason was gone the year Lincoln was born.  He came home to meet Lincoln for the first time in October when Lincoln was 4 months old.  He was here for 2 weeks and we visited Walt Disney World.  Maybe the best Vacation ever to me, but not to him.  Jason is not a Disney fan.  Boo.  But we did take home this amazing little Mickey snowman to remember our trip.  He was gone that Christmas and I went to Alabama and didn't even put up a tree.  It was over a year later before this little guy ever got to hang on a tree but you can bet he'll live on ours from here on out.

The Christmas Pickle.  Oh what a pickle!  It was a little difficult to find the "Legend of the Christmas Pickle" because it is so overly debated about it's truth and origin.  I'm a true believer and this is what I found...

“A very old Christmas eve tradition in Germany was to hide a pickle [ornament] deep in the branches of the family Christmas Tree. The parents hung the pickle last after all the other ornaments were in place. In the morning they knew the most observant child would receive an extra gift from St. Nicholas. The first adult who finds the pickle traditionally gets good luck for the whole year.”

These were my BC ornaments.  That's "before children".  I had this made for Roxy that first Christmas when Jason was deployed.  Who doesn't need an ornament with their dog's name on it?  I found the cat one the year after we got Cotton.  I still love these guys, they have been through a lot with me.  Roxy was with me through all 3 deployements and she's still the most happy to see me every morning around 6 am!

I found Santa climbing this rope up the helicopter at the PX (yes, after Christmas!).  Since Daddy flew helicopters during his time in the Army, I got this one thinking he'd love it.  Well, this is a blackhawk.  Daddy flew Kiowas and they are not friends.  I got the wrong helicopter.  Santa could never ride in his helicopter because it is a 2 pilot aircraft.  FAIL.  Oops.  It still stays on the tree.

You can't hang this one on the tree but it was my 3rd time to see them preform this year.  When I was VERY pregnant with Jackson, mom took Tracie and I to see the Radio City Rockettes perform at the Grand Ol' Opry.  We had never been before and we came up early to spend the day shopping in Nashville.  By the time it started, I had never in my life been so tired.  I was seriously like 38 weeks and when it was time to walk back to the car, I said they would have to pick me up or my feet might explode.  
Nonetheless, it was an amazing performance and we talked all the way home  until just outside of Nashville about what parts we liked the best and how amazing the live Nativity scene was.  This year, living in Nashville, I knew we couldn't miss it.  It didn't disappoint.  It's truly an amazing display of talent and beauty.  If you've never been, it's a Christmas tradition worth starting!

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