It’s the little things you remember. The twinkling of lights, the smell of wood burning, the taste of hot chocolate and donuts. You remember tradition deeply rooted in family. Such a simple thing which takes on enormous meaning. It all started with an ornament…
The first Christmas our children were born they received a beautiful ornament commemorating the occasion. Each child received a different ornament: a rocking horse, a baby shoe, and a nutcracker; all sterling silver and engraved with their names. While most parents stop after the first Christmas, we kept going.
At the beginning of each Christmas season, our family begins the search for this year’s ornaments. Each of our children pick an ornament that is completely their own and unique to their personalities. No two ornaments are ever the same and no pressure is permitted; they are free to choose whichever ornament suits them.
Besides having a personalized and unique Christmas Tree, this helps our children feel included in all the decorating fun. My reasons are meaningful and steeped in family.
The goal is for each of our children to have a large collection of ornaments that have sentimental value. Each year we will keep adding to the collection until they are married. Their wedding present from us will be their large box of Christmas ornaments. (I can’t imagine a better way to start your first Christmas off right, than to open a large box of ornaments and to share with your new spouse all the wonderful memories that surround each one.)
Each ornament has a different story, prompts a new memory for them. Each decoration a reminder of family, tradition, and love. This is more than a collection of shiny balls, it is a remembrance of Christmas past and of blessings brought into our lives.
This has become a much-anticipated holiday tradition, one we celebrate fully. This year will be no different. Our family will excitedly pack into the car and head to some of our favorite shops. We will hem and haw, think and then think some more. (It takes us quite some time; this is no simple project to tackle.) Finally, all of our children will find ornaments that embody their own style and personality. We will rush home to put them on the tree and, once again, admire how each of our children are so different and yet complement each other beautifully.
With Christmas right around the corner, the kids are anxiously awaiting this year’s ornament expedition. It’s time to head out into the cold and buy yet another memory. One, prayerfully, our children will remember forever.
Time to Chime In: Is there a special ornament you remember from your childhood?