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Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A Tree Full of Memories

We have made it to the middle of the week my friends!  Friday is insight!  I have a special treat for you today.  Hannah From Culture Connoisseur is here to share some holiday spirit, by sharing  a few her favorite ornaments with you, and the wonderful stories and memories behind them!  I think the stories/memories that a single ornament can conjure up is just one of the many things I love about this Holiday Season.  If you have not checked out Hannah's blog I encourage you to do so after reading her lovely post.  You will love her down to Earth personality, stories of traveling the globe, and yummy recipes!  So at this time I am going to hand the floor er blog over to Hannah!

Hello Happily Ever Healthy readers! I'm tickled pink (red and green?) to be guest posting here today. Thank you, Hilliary, for having me! My name is Hannah and I blog over at Culture Connoisseur. If you've ever read my blog you know I love an object with a story behind it. I collect things throughout my travels and from my friends around the world and there's nothing that I love more than sharing those stories with my readers. 
Today I'm here to share some stories from our Christmas tree. This is our second Christmas together as man and wife and John and I always have a great time re-telling our ornament stories to one another on the night we deck the halls. I'll introduce you to some of my favorites...the ones nearest and dearest to my heart.
This little beauty may not look like much, but they are antiques from my mother. They are blown glass with little angels on them. We used to have a set of 9 or 10, but over the years they have gone broken or missing and I cherish the few I have left in my possession. I love the way they come together at the top like a little tear drop. 
This is the very first ornament I bought on my own. Every year my mom would buy me a new ornament growing up. The idea was, I would get a new one each year, so that by the time I moved out I had enough collected to decorate a small Christmas tree of my own. One year, when I was 16, I took my very first trip Europe! I bought this ornament when I visited the Neuschwanstein castle in Germany. Every time I hang it I think back to the person I was then and the way that trip opened my eyes to the world.
This little sheep has to be one of my favorites. He's such a loner, poor thing. When I was an infant an old lady at my church growing up sewed together an entire nativity scene for my first birthday. This little sheep is all that remains of the set. Sometimes, when I put him back in his box come New Year's, I imagine he "baa's" for his other friends that were no doubt torn to shreds by the family cat or ingested by a greedy dog. 
This little cherub is actually my mother's. She gave it to me when I moved away. It has a lot of sentimental value as it's an ornament my grandpa bought for my mom when we all visited the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina when I was just a little thing. It's the only thing I have from my dear grandpa, who passed away on my ninth birthday. 
While all these other ornaments do hold a special, specific memory for me, none remind me of my past Christmases growing up like this ballerina. When I was young I could think of nothing I would rather be than a prima ballerina (original, I know...) I remember sitting by the tree long after everyone else had gone twirling her around and winding up the string and letting her whip around in pirouettes. Sitting there, caught in the twinkle lights gave me the tingles and chills of Christmas, the joy of the peace and quiet of winter, and the simple solitude of a little kid and their dreams. 
Now that you've seen all my favorites, tell me all about your favorite ornament! What memories come back when you hang it? 
Thank you for having me here! Please stop by and say hello at my blog (Culture Connoisseur) and from my blog to yours, Merry Christmas!!