I got my real tree. The one that so many of you warned me against. This is the first real tree that I have had since my parents got divorced when I was twelve years old. The smell alone brings back a lot of happy memories. And isn't that what Christmas is all about? Memories and traditions?
It becomes obvious that my tree is a link to my past as I look over the ornaments. Of course, there are two very precious baby's first Christmas ornaments and the ones that Super Z has made in preschool over the years, but there are also some not so obvious pieces of memorabilia.
There is the giant red ball that I got last year when ball was one of Princess H's only words. Everyday she would point and stare and say ball a million times. Every time I see that ball I will see my baby with only those four teeth in the front. I will see her smiling and pointing and discovering the joy of Christmas. Oh man, you can't beat that.
There is the car that Randy and I bought together on our first Christmas. We were broke, so we had a hideously small fake tree and about ten ornaments, mostly hand me downs. I remember sitting there for hours, in the dark, admiring the magic of our first tree. I remember thinking that it was the prettiest tree I'd ever seen. I still think that every single year. I remember Randy's joy over the car that I had picked out in honor of his love of all things automobile. I remember still being amazed that I was his wife. It was all so new. It was all too perfect.
There are the hand painted wooded ornaments of my childhood. These were painted by my Mom sometime before my memory begins. They have been a part of my Christmas tree tradition my entire life. They bring back everything from the Christmas that I learned to ride a bike to the Christmas that I had my first job at McDonald's. I can't imagine Christmas without these old guys. They are the Hallmark of my Christmas tree, the gaurdians of the magic.
There is also the silver glitter apple. I was a 6th grade teacher the Christmas that Super Z was born. The day that I was induced, December 20, also happened to be the last day of school before Christmas break. One of my students came to the hospital to see the baby (the CLASS baby) and brought me this apple. I remember being so happy that her Mom had gone to the effort to bring her. I remember being so proud to introduce my baby to one of my first kids. When I see this apple, I am flooded with love for all of my first kids. I miss them all so much at this time of year.