The Tree

I absolutely adore this commercial. This is me-- every year-- and I'm 31.
Growing up we got to pick a new ornament every year that we added to the tree. The idea of a 'themed tree' was completely new to me until a few years ago. I thought everyone was like me and loved getting the decorations together, putting the lights up outside as soon as Thanksgiving ( and basketball practice on Friday) was over , pulling out their ornaments from the past, and sitting by the fireplace basking in the twinkles of the lights on the tree. And then I got married =) When you get married you realize that everyone doesn't share the same traditions. We did decide to keep the ornament tradition going, I'm still working on getting Luke excited about pulling down the totes of lights and trees.
My kids are getting old enough to understand Christmas traditions. Well, Landon is. Lucy doesn't really remember Christmas, but she can sing  Baby Jesus We Love You and ring a hand bell pretty good ;)   And Ella has no clue. Once we finally got it all down, decided which tree to put up, and rearranged the living room, we told the kids they could put their own ornaments on the tree.
They also got to help put the tree together this year. Lucy absolutely loved watching Elf, especially when Buddy eats the gum off the railing.
 As we handed them their ornaments 1 by 1 ,this caused Landon to 'remember' every one that he had gotten. Of course he has no recollection of the Elmo ornament that he got in Gatlinburg with Nana & Poppy right before he turned 2. He had the cutest little voice and would sing 'na na na na THAAAAATTTSSSS ELMO'S WOILD', and that is what I think of every time we pull it out.  But I'm sure after 12 more year of this, he will have memorized what they are all from.
I have some random ornaments for sure! One year we had waited really late, or we even went after Christmas, and my sister and dad and I  headed to K-mart. It was right behind our neighborhood, and this was before Wal-mart was the place to go. There was literally NOTHING left. They had Looney-Tunes ornaments though. And I have a bugs bunny sitting on a TV from that year. 1993--we had a magazine full of Christmas items to sell for a fundraiser at school. I used my saved up money and bought a big round tin tray and an ornament. Don't ask. I was odd. Most of mine had the years written on the box or on the actual ornament. I have several extras that my dad got me when I was in college--you know Barbie and Disney Princess ones. Now since we have the kids, Luke & I still get one every year and we also let them pick one. Some years theirs have been made as well. So we are getting a full tree! That just means when we get a bigger house, we will need a much bigger tree! =)
After the kids went to bed tonight,

Landon has had the same silver tree we had out at his 1st birthday 'snowman' party, and it was DONE! So I got him a new one today 50% off at Target! He loves it.

I was looking at our tree. We have so many memories on that thing!
We haven't put up our star yet. It might make it by Christmas ;)
Not only do I think about where I got all these ornaments from, but I remember the people who gave them to us as well.
My basketball coach from college gave Luke & I the prettiest set of ornaments for our wedding. There are a few different ones, but they all glitter and sparkle. By the way, that is an amazing gift. Most newly marrieds don't have a ton of ornaments, unless of course they do a theme tree.
One of those Disney Princess ones. They all have to stay near the top. Thankfully, none of our kids have every tried to wreck the tree. Ella stays away this year too. She randomly will run over, hit a branch, and run away. But no one has bothered ornaments. And we have only had to changed it up once by skipping the bottom few branches last year.
My friend Jennifer brought this to me in the hospital when I had Landon. I  LOVE LOVE LOVE this. I probably cried. I love Christmas, and I love snowmen. She was miserable, due with her baby before me, had been in the hospital and sent home and her baby was still cooking . Almost all of the ornaments Luke & I have gotten together are snowmen;we even have a snowman sandcastle from San Diego.

My friend Cindy brought this to me in the hospital after I had Lucy. This was right after I moved rooms, saw Lucy for the 1st time, and had a slight anxiety attack in my new room. She also brought boxes of Christmas Tree Cakes! She wasn't sure at the time what to put on the ornament, in case Lucy didn't make it, and didn't know how I'd feel about it. But I love it, and Lucy says it is her favorite too!
And this is Ella Ruth's from this year. Most of the kids' first few years, I got to match their birthday party/cake theme. She loves 'mamie', so we had to snag this as soon as we saw it in the fall.
Now I feel like I want to take a picture of all my favorite ones, and add the story to go along with them. Do you have an  all-time favorite ornament? There are some sentimental ones left on my tree, and some great people to be remembered too. I might get back to that after this weekend. We have been jam packed the past 2 weeks, but all birthdays are finally over, school is over after tomorrow, and we should be able to relax just a little! 
And just in case you haven't seen these adorable kids yet:
We got some family photos taken over Thanksgiving break by Timothy Miller Photography in Louisville.  I'll add more later & fill everyone in on all the fun we have had in the past month!