Archive for December, 2010

Little pink houses

December 23, 2010













Back in the day, my mom used to live in Bermuda. For real! Let me tell you, that was a good time, when going “home” for grad school breaks meant flying south to that picture-perfect island (situated in a much more temperate climate than Cambridge). A long-time favorite of the women in my family — yes, I’m thinking of you, Great Aunt Elsie, and the paintings you did during your stays on the island however many decades ago — Bermuda proved equally captivating to me. This ornament isn’t actually from a trip that I took… maybe it came back with my mom, as a souvenir of her first visit? But I couldn’t have picked a better one to capture my own memories of that fantastic place. My very favorite part of any visit to Bermuda is the final moments of the flight in, when the turquoise waters become more and more vibrant before giving way to the impossibly white beaches, then the pastel rainbow of houses dotting the island. For some people, little pink houses may make them think of John Cougar Mellancamp… but for me, they’ll always belong to Bermuda.


12 Days of Christmas

December 23, 2010

The fact that my 3 year old knows all the words to “The Twelve Days of Christmas” is totally blowing my mind. At first, she would just kind of chime in every now and then — you know, belting out  “FIVE GOL-DEN RINGSSSSSSSS!” at the appropriate time and whatnot. But then one day it was she who remembered the various people, places, and things of each verse quicker than I! Who knew that the notion of eleven pipers piping could make a grown woman tear up?

I think it will be a few more years, though, before I share my favorite version of the song with her. Each year, I wait for that moment when I’m driving somewhere and finally catch this on whatever radio station is doing the non-stop holiday music. And though I may not be a beer drinker, Bob and Doug, I salute you.

Santa Claus is coming to town

December 21, 2010

We’ve already been hosting members of his advance team for quite some time now. Let me introduce you to Cartman Claus (codename Baby Santa).

Dei sub numine viget

December 11, 2010

What better day to feature an ornament from my alma mater than today, when two fellow Tigers are tying the knot? Congratulations, Gia and Craig, we wish you much love today and always. XOXOXOXOXO

Kiddie kitsch

December 10, 2010

Once upon a time, I went to parochial school. Then my mom came to her senses and sent me to Quaker school for a while (c’mon, I couldn’t make this stuff up!), but I still was subject to a little indoctrination at CCD. I honestly can’t recall whether this lovely piece of ephemera came into being during my days at St. Peter’s School or the Tuesday afternoon catechisms at Good Counsel, but I’m pretty damn sure it wasn’t the Friends who made me write “I love Jesus” in cursive! It is a sweet little trinket, though, if a tad more evangelical in spirit than I am in my daily life. I’m more the type to wear my spiritual heart on my sleeve, so to speak. Still… this ornament rocks, for so many different reasons.



Why hang a wreath on the front door when you can have one on a plate?

December 9, 2010

You know those places you can go when you’re feeling all frustrated-artist-y and paint your own pottery? Well earlier this week, for a non-profit event, we arranged to have the pottery brought to us for painting. Talk about low stress!

To the left, I give you the end product of a collaborative effort on the part of my three year old and I. Much to my surprise, she was not won over by the idea of painting her fingers to decorate a plate (I think the snowman cookies someone brought over as a snack proved too great a distraction); however, when she saw some of her friends using Q-TIPS! TO PAINT DOTS! That got her attention, enough so that I can put her name on this plate and not feel like I’m totally misleading people.


The fine specimen on the right was produced by another 3 year old pal. (He, too, was captivated by the array of holiday sweets on hand, but not as much as my girl, apparently. Quelle surprise!) I think I see the use of some q-tip here, as well, along with brushes and fingers. My favorite rendition of an abstract Santa this season. :)


Secret Santa

December 8, 2010

OK, so I can’t remember what I ate for breakfast this morning — blame Mommy Brain! — but I can tell you that Katie Hartmann was my Secret Santa in 7th grade, and this oh-so lovely Santa ornament she gave me hangs on our tree to this day. The fact that my 3 year old identifies it as an elf gives me no little pleasure, since I’m pretty sure the original giver put zero thought into the gift and it is now turning into a family joke. “What’s your secret, Santa?” “I’m an elf!” Ba dum bum! :P

Yes, Virginia, there IS a blog at this site

December 8, 2010

I’m back!!! Didja miss me? :)

So maybe it wasn’t actually the best idea to launch a Christmas-themed blog in the days leading up to Christmas… Lots of food for thought, for sure, but not as much time to actually indulge, evidently. There have been many times this past week when I’ve been itching to get a new post up here, but chose to act out my love of Christmas, rather than just write about it. Mea culpa. I promise to pull some goodies out of my treasure trove of Christmasy delights ASAP… hopefully before the close of business today… at least a new ornament of the day, how about? Will that be enough to satisfy, at least for now? I might even be able to share some of the other stuff that diverted my attention — distractions in the form of a small-town parade, big-name charity toy drive, and a broken arm (thankfully not mine!), to name a few — if I can ever carve out enough time. Do you think it would be too much to ask Santa to add an extra hour to every day?

Well, we’re movin’ on up

December 2, 2010

We have comments! And subscribers!!! HOLLA!

Tad’s ornament

December 1, 2010

One of the biggest motivations I had for starting this blog is the fact that we have a stellar collection of ornaments on the tree — ornaments remarkable not because they are innately beautiful or exceptionally valuable… or perhaps because they are both, though not in measurable terms. Each of the ornaments on our tree carries with it a piece of our history, which makes trimming the tree each year the best kind of walk down memory lane. Call me self-indulgent, but I wanted to have a place to catalog our ornaments and their stories.

And so today, on World AIDS Day, I give you Tad’s ornament. I discovered this piece somewhere just after my step-brother died, and my mom and I bought up enough to spread around the family. For so long, all I could do was cry when I pulled the fragile glass ball with the red ribbon inside out of its box, but this year I smiled. With a heavy heart, I smiled.


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