What kid doesn't love Christmas? I have so many wonderful memories of the holiday growing up. The only person that enjoyed it as much as I did was my grandmother. She had more decorations than any normal person could comprehend. She even put up two trees. One was big and full, decorated with red, traditional ornaments. The other was tall and thin, decorated Victorian style, with pink ribbons and angels. It looked like it came straight out of a Martha Stewart magazine.
My grandmother passed away a few years ago, and it seems our holiday traditions died along with her. My family didn't seem to care as much about the holidays, and now everyone has (pretty much) moved away. So I felt it was my job to keep some tradition alive. I inherited my grandmother's Victorian tree and ornaments, and for the last three Christmas's, I decorated it exactly as I remember. The same each year. But this year I wanted to try something different. I thought it might be nice to modernize it. Add my own flair. So I bought a crap-load of ornaments from IKEA and Target and went to town.
After I finished, I was so upset. It wasn't the same. These ornaments were meaningless! The tree looked like any other tree, not my grandmother's tree. Then I started thinking about how Christmas hasn't been the same since I lost my grandmother. Gone are the days of buying a fancy new dress for Christmas dinner, licking the whipped cream off of the egg beaters, playing games while waiting to open gifts, and sitting, talking, and laughing around the big old table like a Norman Rockwell painting. No one cares like she did.
Well, I do! I care! And even though things might be different, I have to remain filled with the holiday spirit, hoping it's as contagious as my grandmother's was! Like Rob said to me yesterday while comforting me, "Just because it's different doesn't mean it can't be great!" He's right. I don't have to have everything the same exact way to honor her and her traditions. I can add my own style to it.
So, after all that blubbering, here's my tree.