Tis the season! The season for baking and shopping, wrapping and gifting, a cutting down the most perfect Balsam Christmas tree for the house. We like Balsams. Their branches are sort of in layers which makes it easier for all of our tons of ornaments to be hung and seen perfectly throughout the day. We've been going to the same guys to get our tree for fours years now and the trees are fabulous and FRESH. Our tree was cut on Monday and it was in our house by Wednesday afternoon. I love to go tree shopping with my folks. Its been my selection for the past couple years now that end up in the house. I knew I wanted a TALL tree. We have the ceiling for a tall tree. Last year had been the tallest we had in the house since I'd been around and this year we went even bigger. 11 1/2 feet this year! Its gorgeous...
Still in the tree farm
Sitting in its corner ready for decorating
This year the base the tree sits in cracked so the screws that hold it in place weren't doing anything to hold it very well. It didn't owe us anything at all, it was 14 years old. Mom and I patiently waited while Pop went out to pick up a knew one along with a tree bag for afterwards. Isn't she beautiful!? And TALL, just like I wanted! I thought her shape was absolutely perfect.
All the lights are on but we still needed the extension cord
Dad had to get on the ladder and put the top lights on because even with the ladder, I couldn't reach it! As Dad climbed the ladder, I held onto it to steady him (its an old ladder) and fed him the lights to put on...
One of the things that we weren't sure about was how Miss Audrey Grace would react to all of this. This is her first Christmas with us and although she is declawed in the front, we weren't sure if she would try to climb the tree, bat at all the ornaments, eat the tree needles, or drink the tree water. We had no idea. Well...
...this was her reaction to us putting on all the lights and ornaments. She could've cared less. She was just happy to be sleeping in the midst of all of it! We were very pleasantly surprised. Since then, the most she has done is walk very gently around all the presents under the tree investigating. She hasn't even messed with, played with or chewed on any of the ribbons! We have friend who has 2 cats and at Christmastime they can put up a tree but that's about it. Their cats have leapt from the ground or wherever onto the tree to play with shiny things! I think they put lights on their tree but that's it, no ornaments. Can you imagine?! No ornaments. I don't know if you remember last year when we had Kona, but all he wanted to do was sleep underneath the tree. As soon as we got it up, he curled up underneath the tree and went to sleep. I cannot seem to immediately locate a picture of that but believe me....it was absolutely adorable.
Once we got the tree finished (and believe me, that's hard work! I had a friend this year say that next year she want to go someplace during the Holidays, somewhere in Europe, so she doesn't have to mess with the tree, the decorating, and oh Lord the baking!) it was stunning. Every year we say "its the best tree we've ever had!" And it is. They somehow just continue to get better and better each year. I don't know how it happens but it does. When Dad got on the ladder to put the angel on top, he had to trim about 6 inches off so we now have an 11 ft tree. Here she is during the day without the lights on, you can see all the ornaments....
And at night all lit up...
Each one of the ornaments are special. Not unlike everyone else, I'm sure. We remember and reminisce when we pull out each ornament. That's why its takes such a long time to decorate our tree. And we have tons of them too. Here are some of the special ones...
This is a silver snowflake ornament from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Aunt Betty has been gifting them to my Mom for years now so we have several of them. They are all gorgeous and each one is distinctively different than the others, just like real snowflakes.
This quilled ornament, made by my friend Sidney, is very delicate & made of tiny pieces of paper curled into decorative designs and glued together. I couldn't imagine doing it myself but Sidney is so talented its crazy. She made two of them and along with 2 other ornaments, gifted them to me when my ex-hubby Dave and I got married on December 22nd, 2006, just before Christmas. Even though Dave and I divorced, these ornaments remain very special to me.
This is another one of the silver ornaments from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This one was gifted to me by Aunt Betty. She has also been giving them to me for years. We have many of these beautiful silver snowflake ornaments on the tree.We love the way they catch the light in both daylight and at night with the lights shining on them!
This is a beautifully beaded ornament made for Dave and I by Sidney when we got married. It is quite heavy with the amount of beads that are in it. It is so spectacular, this picture doesn't do her any justice. To see it up close and personal you would be stunned at the details. It is one of my favorites.
A few years ago Sidney taught me how to make beaded ornaments. That year for Christmas people got beaded ornaments for Christmas! I made this Ohio State Buckeye ornaments for my folks, complete with little footballs hanging from the longest 4 dangles. I was so proud of this one. I made a Bronco one just like this one for my ex-hubby Dave who is the biggest Bronco fan I know. Pretty cool, huh?! We love this ornament! We hung it in the front of the tree this year hoping that Santa will bring us victory in the Sugar Bowl, which my Dad is going to in New Orleans.
I caught this the other night and grabbed my phone super quick to get a pic of it....so cute!
Awww....!!!!! She was admiring the tree as much as we do!
Audrey Grace seems to approve and be very content with this huge thing in the corner of her house. On today's agenda...baking. I think. Its also Stitch Group night tonight. I don't know how much baking we'll actually get done today. Its almost 12:45pm and we start getting ready for stitch group around 4pm. You guys wont see this until tonight because it seems to be better when I actually post these at night when people are not at work and can actually read this. If you weren't in the Christmas spirit before you read this, hopefully you will be now! Even Audrey Grace is in the Christmas spirit. She got new food and water dishes that are all Christmasy!!
I would love to hear about any traditions that you all have in your family at this time of the year. I'll be writing more about what we are doing in a later post, but I would love to hear what you are doing this year! Drop me some comments my friends! I hope you had a wonderful day today and are also knitting. We cant forget that even in all the madness that is The Holiday Season, we cannot forget to calm ourselves with our knitting. Or maybe you are knitting madly to meet the deadlines of the Holiday gift giving traditions. Either way, until tomorrow...Knit On!!!
Tomorrow: Something Beautiful This Way Comes!