Monday, December 13, 2010

All We Lack Is Snow

The jollying-up of the QueenBee home for Christmas is divided along gender lines, with duties  separated by the front door. I do the inside stuff, which includes a tree, stockings, multiple nativity sets, and customary knick-knackery replaced by more festive whatnots. Husband does the outside stuff, which consists of a single string of lights.

Fortunately, we're both happy with this arrangement.

I secretly like the uneven division of labor because I'm a sentimental sap and if there's ever a holiday simply screaming for sentimentality, it's Christmas. One of the smartest traditions we ever stumbled into came about because we got married during the Yuletide season. A dear friend gave us a basket of mostly homemade decorations for our first tree, so we bought a few more ornaments on our honeymoon to round out the goodies.

This was in the basket.
This simple act started a tradition, which is how traditions seem to start in our family, and since then we've marked special occasions and vacations with Christmas ornaments. We have ornaments to remind us of the wonderful places we've been:
New England during blueberry season     
Costa Rica!

 And ornaments to remind us of what we've done, such as sending our children away to college:
Power Santa   
Ornaments congratulating the survival of parents who sent two Boys off to study abroad:
In Hong Kong, no less.
Plus ornaments that speak to our roles in life, such as this portrayal of me:
(Oh, all right. It's the actual queen.)
And a couple of ornaments that aren't put on the tree until all the Boys are home, because they always hang these ornaments.
Toy soldier and pop-up bear. Sniff.
Boy#1 knows how much I love our Christmas ornaments. He also knows his mother's tendency to turn this season into one of lists and to-do's and tension. This addition, one he brought back from his gap years in the nation's capital, now goes near the top of the tree to remind me to take a deep breath.
In a couple of days the countdown will begin and the lists will start clamoring for more attention. But for today, I'm stepping back and savoring the memories.

More sentimentality, anyone?

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