The Old Tattered Flag

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Ornaments and memories

Ahhh, we had our Christmas Open House yesterday and it went fantastically well.....beyond my expectations.  I will post more about that tomorrow, I took quite a few pictures, but today I wanted to write about something different.
We put our tree up the Saturday after Thanksgiving....always.  Because my son is home from college and we have to all be home to put the tree in......and it has to be in before the open house, that is when we do it.  We always get a live tree and yes, pine needles fall by the bucket full by the time we pull it out.  But, it is how we do it.
I love when the tree is in.....there is nothing better than sitting in the living room with only the Christmas tree lights on.  I turn on the tree from the moment I get up to the moment we go to bed.  I just love it.  Some trees are better than others but most years we always say, "this is the best tree ever".....I do think though, that this years takes the cake.  It has to be tall and skinny to fit in the corner without sticking out too much and what would any year be without having to trim a little off after it scratches the ceiling?....ahhh tradition.
As a Mom I always get nostalgic when the ornaments come out.  It is like taking a walk down memory lane....

Like the three years we lived in Lansing, Kansas and tolerated the Kansas City chiefs....

..or the smile on my face when I see the beautiful little hand stitched stocking that our good friend Nancy Marler from Rolla, Missouri gave us.

 ....or the Polar Express bell that my Mother in Law gave the boys after they watched the movie.  

...or the MP ornament from one of the many Army bases....

Or the many ornaments that as I Mom I purchases for the boys over the years.  The musical ornaments as both my boys were in the school bands.  And do you label and date your ornaments?  We do.  I have ornaments from my childhood that my Mother passed on to me.  Every year we pull out the ornaments and that person has to hang their own ornament up.

Then their are the ornaments to remember pets who are no longer with us.  I must find two puggle ornaments for Baxter and Max!

Then there are our beloved Patriots! 

..and the gorgeous handmade ornament I found at an art gallery in San Antonio, Texas when my husband and I were visiting wounded soldiers.

...or the college ornaments our children bring home to add to the tree.....

....or the cute ornament that Mrs. Upperman gave to all of us wives in the Battalion when we were stationed at West Point.....

 ...then there are the ornaments that a crafty mom sticks in an ornament not knowing that years later you will look upon it with tears in your eyes and a smile on your face....oh the memories......

 ....then the family ornaments....

I get a lump in my throat when these ornaments come out every year.  I'm not sad, just nostalgic thinking of the homes and locations we've lived in, the good times, the traditions, the locations the ornaments were purchased at and why we may have been there.  All good memories.  I'm thankful that we all still gather to hang these ornaments.  I look back at those good times with longing, but also so grateful for present day and the closeness of our family and know that may good times and ornaments still lay ahead.  I hope you've enjoyed my trip down ornament memory lane.

Until next time.....


  1. My favorite kind of tree, a memory tree! That's how I am with my ornaments. My mother as well. She has a 40 yr old snowman made out of marshmallows that my youngest brother made in kindergarten! It has seen better days! Theme trees are beautiful, but have no memories on them. I was thrilled to see a KC Chiefs ornament on your tree as I live just north of Kansas City. And, I spent 30 yrs in Leavenworth KS! Small world! I love your work and enjoy your blog! Merry Christmas!

    1. Thank you Kelly! We loved the Leavenworth area! I agree with you about the themed memories!

  2. What a lovely post....I was at the open house and saw that gorgeous tree first hand!! Beautiful! The whole event was fabulous and your house a Christmas dream!! Thanks again for sharing!!!! Lisa from Verona!

    1. Thank you Lisa and thank you for trekking all the way up here for our Christmas Open house!

  3. Wonderful post. I'm an ornament junkie, too.
    My boys are in their mid-thirties, but they still get an ornament every year, and yes, I do date them.


About Me

Thank you very much for taking the time to read my blog. I am married and just entering the second phase of my life as a Army retiree's wife. My husband and I did 25+ years in the Army. He is now officially a retired Colonel and has just entered the civilian workforce and I am happily settled in our 1830 Stone house. I (along with my Mom) operate www.theoldtatteredflag and currently we are building a small shop in the back part of the house. We live in Northern NY, right near the Canadian border. I have two handsome sons and 2 puggles. Life is busy for us, but I wouldn't have it any other way.