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We all have our family holiday traditions, and this Christmas will mark the very FIRST in my own home. So, it’s time to take a little of the OLD, mix it with a little NEW, and end up with something uniquely OURS.

First off, I’ve decided to follow with family tradition and put up the ol’ tree right after Thanksgiving. My sister is so into this part of our holiday traditions that she is pulling boxes out of the garage before we even begin to digest the turkey. Now that she’s engaged, she’s got both her fiance’s house and our parents’ house to decorate.

Some might think this sounds like work, but Emily is obsessed with the holidays. She even puts up a Halloween tree (and I encourage it – I bought her designer “spooky” ornaments last year).

Confession time (going with today’s earlier theme, I suppose):  I’ve never had a real Christmas tree. Scott thinks this is atrocious. I, however, like the complete lack of upkeep; and since I have a small number of antique hand-me-down ornaments, I’d prefer not to risk them on sagging, dried branches. But, in all likelihood, Scott will eventually get his way and we’ll go for the real deal next Christmas. This one’s mine!

Blending holiday traditions will be the key factor in our Christmas season this year. Scott’s grandmother collected Hallmark ornaments for him throughout his childhood and up to age 21. Each of them have the year marked on them and have been used on every tree we’ve shared since we started dating – even the tiny one we used in the apartment.

With the news that I was closing on the house shortly before New Years last year, my mom permitted me to raid her ornament collection. And by collection, I’m serious – most of her ornaments belong to certain brand groups:  Waterford (off-limits for me), Old World Christmas, and Christopher Radko. Add that to the mix of ones I’ve picked up here and there on my own, and we’ve got our personalized stamps right there on the tree.

Some that we have represent our newest milestone.


Some recognize our family members.


Some remind us of places we’ve been and things we’ve done together.


And some are just plain fun.

From my favorite holiday song as a kid.

What about you? What kind of holiday traditions are on your tree? Do you create special ornaments from photos or mementos? Do you have special collections like us? Spill.

Linking to:
Ornament Party

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  1. Maybe we can buy some fake “christmas tree smell”?

    That is the best part of a real tree.

  2. Your tree is gorgeous! And while I love real Christmas trees, I'm allergic. :( Soooo, there are no real Christmas trees in our future… but hey, Bath and Body Works does make a tree smell room spray that smells amazing! And we spritz it on the fake tree every now and then. Because we totally agree with Scott – the smell is definitely the best part of a live tree. :)


  3. Hello! I am visiting from “It's So Very Cheri”. Your ornaments are lovely. I'm like you…artificial trees are the way to go. There is little clean up, and they really do pay for themselves after a few years. Great job!

  4. I usually do 6 trees each year. I just did 5 this year. You could do the real tree with a theme and then put the treasures on the fake tree. I used to be in charge of decorating for our church and we did over 20 different trees, each with a different theme.

    PS–When we have real trees I wrap the wire hooks around the branch, they don't come off.


  5. Your tree is gorgeous!!! And now I'm singing the hippopotamus song…thank you very much! LOL