As a kid, growing up in Columbus, Georgia. I remember buying a Christmas Tree each year and decorating it together. We have continued that tradition in our own family. It brings back warm memories. I even flashback to visiting a friend’s house. They had this silver monstrosity that was lit up by a color wheel. I’m sure it would be a collector’s item today.
We have decorated our Christmas Tree together since we got married in 1984. We pick up each ornament and say where it was we had bought it or who gave it to us. There was baby’s first Christmas, the first Christmas together, a set of beautiful alabaster angels, and the 12 days of Christmas. It usually amounts to an hour’s long process but one we really enjoy doing together. On a side-note, this will be the first year we have not decorated the tree together as a family due to COVID-19.
One particular year, we had a bear of a time wrestling the tree into the stand. We discovered that the problem was in the trunk, it was crooked. Now, there are a million messages I can carve out from that story. If your base is uneven, you will not be able to stand. We proved it that night!
Once the tree was fully decorated with our unique ornaments including one I received as a kindergartener. It was a manger scene, and none of the cast was there. They had broken off after many, many years. The kids looked up as we turned on the lights and stood adoringly. Both simultaneously said, this is the best Christmas tree ever! We went to bed satisfied that night. Every year we still look for the biggest tree in the lot. It is a tradition!
We like to sleep in on Saturday mornings. We heard the kids as they were admiring our work of art with, when suddenly, there was a loud crash. Our beautiful 11-foot tree fell to the ground. Many of our unique ornaments were destroyed. The kids then proclaimed, “This is the worst Christmas ever!” Out of that experience, we created a special ornament. A clear plastic sphere that we placed all of the broken pieces into. Now, every year we say, “this was the year the Christmas tree fell.”
We bought an industrial type of stand that we could have the tree on it and it would not fall no matter how hard it was shaken. And every year we look very carefully at the base of our tree to make sure we don’t repeat the same problem. This year the tree we chose seems to be crooked. We looked at the base, and all seemed well. When we got home and began to put the lights on, we realized the tree was crooked. We pushed and pulled to no avail. Right now, our tree looks a bit like the leaning Tower of Pisa.
We all have broken pieces of our lives. I am going to sound like a preacher for a moment. What if we collectively put them together in one special decoration that reminds us that we have been healed? That would be a great start to 2021. Merry Christmas from the Hamilton household.
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