My 3 Monsters: Indulge Me as I Walk Down Memory Lane

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Indulge Me as I Walk Down Memory Lane

{Before you skim over this probably long and dull-to-anyone-but-me post please go enter my $35 CSN Stores giveaway.  Pretty please.  I'm afraid I won't get to give you anymore cool stuff if the response is less than remarkable.  If you have already entered, thanks bunches!  If not, it's not too late.  I'm extending the entry deadline to SUNDAY, DEC. 12th @ MIDNIGHT and I will use to pick a winner first thing MONDAY MORNING.  If you have been hesitant to enter because you know me personally, please enter.  Being my friend is punishment enough, right? won't play favorites and neither will I.  Thanks guys!!}

And now, THE POST.  The one you all probably dread.  The sappy, sentimental post that always follows the raising of my Christmas tree.  You may remember last year's post with the accompanying how-to's.  But guys, come on!!!  I've put a little piece of myself into every single item on that tree.  For the past 15 years I have painstakingly created {or purchased when time was at a premium}little lovelies to display.  Every year I have scoured stores to find just the right ornaments to add to my children's collections.  I've agonized over the lights -- three different kinds of white lights because I wanted a variety of shapes and sizes and I wanted it to twinkle randomly, but not be too twinkly.  I've picked up things in July or had brilliant ideas in March and held on to them all year just waiting for Christmas tree time.  So I know you, me dear blog friends, will humor me as I blather on again.  Or at least just look at the pretty, pretty photo collage I made.
1. This is one of Sydney's personal ornaments.  It reminds me of when she was a little girl and I was a young mom who didn't know how to occupy a precocious child for hours on end while dad was at work.  I would take her outside and we would just wander around the grounds of our apartment complex.  She would pick up little leaves or rocks or pine cones and save them for her "collection".  There were days when I thought my head was going to implode from boredom or explode from sheer frustration.  But those walks were sweet salvation.

2.  This is one of the bells my kids received from Santa one of the times we rode the Polar Express up in Winslow, AZ.  It was so much fun riding the train in our pj's, drinking hot cocoa and eating cookies.  And playing in the snow.  Real snow.  Right here in Arizona. 

3.  I talked about these last year so I'll spare you, but there are about a hundred of those felt snowflakes in 20 different designs, all cut by hand.  See?  A little piece of me in everything on that tree.  Blood, sweat and tears, people!

4.  The beaded pipe cleaner snowflakes from Enrichment at church three years ago.  I didn't think I would like them.  I went just to socialize and paid the fifty cents each in advance just to give me a rock solid reason to go. But I LOVE the way they look on my tree, all sparkly amongst all the other more "shabby" stuff.  They look a lot classier on the tree than they do off.

5.  Riley's favorite little ornament from his personal collection.  I can't even remember what it signified.  Maybe nothing.  Who knows, but I love the way he lights up when he sees it every year.  It's like he's running into an old friend.  He plays with it for a bit -- it's mounted on a stick and it sinks in and pops out of a little cone -- and then carefully finds it a prominent place on the tree where it can be seen, but not get attacked by the dog.

6.  Who doesn't need a place to put their Santa letters?!  I's just a silly little thing I picked up at Target, but I'm gonna' be really sad when the day comes that no one wants to put anything inside there.

7.  Just another silly little ornament from Wal- Mart.  They only cost ninety-seven cents each, but my kids love them just as much as their other ornaments that cost (sometimes) much more.  They remind me that it's not how much you are able to spend, but how much you love the person that counts.  I really need that reminder this year.

8.  My glass snow balls.  My yearly reminder to go with the flow.  To let things be what they are and stop trying so hard.  This is one of those "brilliant ideas" that I waited all year to execute.  Only it was prettier in my head.  I bought those clear glass balls at the craft store, put a little thinned out Mod Podge inside and rolled it around til the whole inside was coated and then shook some clear glitter around in there.  It didn't come out looking as sparkly and pretty as I had hoped and the glue took forever to dry and the hangers at the top got kind of rusty because I put them back on too soon.  They almost didn't ever make it on the tree.  Brent talked me into putting them up and, would you believe, I loved them.  The lights on the tree light them up and make them all glowy inside.  Who knew?!

{Halfway done!  Thanks for hangin' in there, folks.}

9.  Baby sock snow men.  I wrote about those last year.  They always remind me of my kiddos when they were wee babes.  *sigh*

10.  Wrote about the scrap angels last year, too, I think.  They remind me of being a newlywed and having nothing but the clothes on our backs (almost).  When we lived in 1/3 of an old house on University Avenue in Provo.  Right across from the old Brigham Young Academy -- before the reno when it was really creepy. All we had were these little angels and some gold ribbon.  It was OK, though, because the only tree we could afford was only three feet tall so we didn't need much.  Those were good days.

11.  More jingle bells. OK, so not everything has significance.  Some things I bought just because they caught my eye at Target.  Or because I needed more red on the tree.  Whatever.

12.  I bought these cute little "Believe" stars at a craft shop in Layton, UT while shopping on Black Friday with Brent's mom and all my sister-in-laws.  They remind me how lucky I am to have two families who love me and to have a husband who is what he is because of those ladies.  {Thanks Ann!}

13.  My most recent addition to the tree -- book page ornaments.  Made from all the discarded pages of the books I used to make items for my Etsy shop.  Because one should never be wasteful.  I'm not kidding.  I've always been a repurpose-er, but I've really learned this year to make do on less.  To use everything and waste nothing.  Or something.  Whatever.

14.  Love these little candles I picked up years ago at Gardener's Village in Utah.  We had so much fun going to the annual Moonlight Madness sale with almost all of the Gregson family.  Shaunie won a quilt that night.  Someone should have told me that someday I would have a nine foot Christmas tree and I should buy more than six of those candles.

15.  These are the tin stars I bought in the BYU bookstore a couple of years ago in July.  They were on clearance from the 4th of July, but a red star is a red star.  They were cheap and I knew they would look fantastic.  It's always good to be thinking ahead!

16.  These little Santas were the bought in desperation one year when I had three toddlers (basically) and going to the store was a major trial.  I needed new ornaments.  I didn't have the energy to make them.  My kids were starting to freak out so I just grabbed three of whatever was close and made a run for the cash registers.  I hope these will always remind my children of how haggard I was when they were young.  And then when they're all grown and successful, they'll gift me generously to make up for it.  But the Santas are kind of cute anyway.  I got pretty lucky on that one.

Phew!  You made it.  I wish I could give you all $35 just for reading all of that sap.  Merry Christmas everyone!!


  1. It wasn't a trial at all. It was a pleasure...I love the little details that make up people's lives.

  2. I remember those shopping trips and I have several of those same ornaments! We use our letters to Santa tube every year. Santa's elves gather our kids' letters and leave Pixie Sticks for them to find the next morning. Traditions are awesome!

  3. We have a few of those angels you made back in the newlywed year. I remember being thrilled to receive some of our first "neighbor" gifts that Christmas. We put them up every year.

  4. I have that #14 candle... just one of them though - and every year I have to find just the right spot for it :)


  6. Lovely to "meet" you - merry Christmas to you and yours from N Ireland.

    I love how you have recorded your memories about each ornament - I can no longer remember where and when some of mine were purchased!


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