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Thursday, December 18, 2008

What's On My Tree?

Since some of you might now doubt my classiness as a result of my beloved fra-gi-le lamp, I thought I'd share with you a bit of Christmas goodness from Tonggu House. However... before you read any further, please agree to abide by the following rules:
  1. Accept that my photography skills leave a lot to be desired.
  2. You may make fun of any ornaments handcrafted by the husband... even ones created by the Tongginator... but you may not make fun of my beloved Christmas star. Which I made in 1977. And yes, we still hang it on the tree.
  3. Remember that this is not a decorating blog. Expect mediocrity.
Okay, now that we've covered THAT, behold the most treasured holiday possessions of Tonggu Momma Who Morphs Into The Christmas Freak.

We have 2.6 trees. I arrive at that number by counting our two real trees as well as two pitiful trees that I hang ornaments on just because I can. The first once acted as a table topper at our wedding lo, those ten years ago.

The second pseudo-tree is actually a fake ficus tree that we reserve for several of our China-specific ornaments. It's meant to honor the first parents of our little Tongginator, although that whole fake ficus thing might actually work against me on that. Hmm...

We do have some beautiful ornaments hanging there, however, including the husband's and the Tongginator's zodiac ornaments, which join Tonggu Momma's "glad tigers."

I especially love my Santa on the Great Wall ornament.

That covers the 0.6 of the 2.6 trees in our home. As to the other two trees... well... one is mine (because what can I say except that I'm totally selfish?) and the other one belongs to the entire family, including me (again... selfish). Our family tree is filled with ornaments that look like this:

and also this:

Which totally and completely explains my desire need to have a second tree, where I can hang my music theme ornaments such as this:

and even this:

I must also share with you my recently formed and overwhelming love for all things snowperson, including this year's favorite:

and last year's favorite, which I quickly demoted to second place because my typical "be nice to the planet and don't fall into the consumerism trap" completely deserts me when it comes to Christmas decorations:

We received many of our beloved Christmas decorations as wedding gifts... one of the many benefits of being a December bride. Some of them remain favorites such as:

It's our third Christmas waiting for an adoption referral from China. We continue to hope, to pray and to wish.

Sometimes, though, we can't help but think we will see a referral...

Still, it's always calming to remember that Christmas isn't about us - the focus is not on our triumphs nor even our struggles. It's all about a little baby, born in a manger. Jesus is the reason for... well, for everything.


Peanut said...

Wow! You ARE all about Christmas!! How big is your house!!!??? We live in an apartment, so we can barely squeeze in a skinny fake tree every year.... I'll count it as a 0.4!
Oh, and I was thrilled last night while watching "The Christmas Story" to finally get what the fra-gi-le lamp is all about! Is it Italian?
I love all your decorations! You must have so much fun pulling them out every year.
I hope 2009 is the year when your family finally gets to grow :)

OH MY #6 said...

One thing I must say is...nice, GIANT, stockings!

Seriously, I love this post. So many memories. And, it is nice to get to know you through these.

I must say the bride and groom are awesome. And the nativity scene is outstanding!

Have the BEST day my friend.


Rebecca Ramsey said...

What a fun post! I love ALL your ornaments--especially the star! We save plenty of paper ornaments here too.
I love the ficus tree--that's very cool!
Merry Christmas to you!

Georgia Peach said...

beautiful nativity. wooden nativity figurines is a good idea - ours is made of porcelain and super glue.

You and Big Apple have similar philosophies about "special" ornaments. We have a several homemade ornaments that date circa 1972-74.

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

I love that you have all of those ornaments...especially those handmade ones circa 1977....I have some of mine, but a lot of the fra-gi-le ones didn't quite make it through the years!!

Even though I share your love of all person made of snow, I have to say your manger is my favorite.....it is the reason we celebrate!!


PS. You know I laughed out loud when I saw the Irish flying pig...

Laura L. said...

What a fun post! I'd actually thought about doing a "what's on my tree" post too, only I'm just not that organized. :)
Yours is great. It is fun to see your ornaments and learn more about you.
I love your beloved Christmas star. It's so neat to have those precious things.
I keep this unattractive wooden girl ornament on my tree. My teacher gave it to me in 3rd grade. She always graces our tree and my husband says he actually likes it now. :) He used to make fun of it. That's another story though.

Heather of the EO said...

You're looking lovely and non mediocre.

Miles made that same reindeer/hand ornament. I LOVE it :)

Lynn said...

Lovely, did you get some Christmas ornaments while in China? I found some on Shamian Island, stars and bells.

Rhonda said...

Yup, when pigs fly... ;)

You SO need to find a tiger, though I'm sure that would be a mighty tall order.

redmaryjanes said...

You have gorgeous ornaments, I love that you have hommade ones and ornate. Just beautiful!

prechrswife said...

Fun post! Love the Willow Tree nativity. I started collecting that one last year, but so far only have the basic set. (I planned to use birthday money, and this year that was spent on winter maternity clothes...). I think Santa is bringing me another part this year, though. :-)

Kate said...

Oh...well...yes...the overwhleming love for all things snowperson. Classic. And might I say I share that love??? Oddly. It's a puzzler.

I love all 2.6 of your trees. That wa all mathematical like of you TM...averaging and all. mpressive.

My fave is that little pig taking flight. I need t get one of those!!! This is only our second Christmas waiting for our second China miracle...with many to come I am afraid.

Happy holdiays to you!!! I hope this Christams magical!


Lisa Cairney said...

Amen, TM! And hey, I have that same nativity set! Love it.

The Source said...

Is that a flying pig with shamrocks?? COOL!! I'm not taking any pictures of out Christmas tree. Because it's umm...very homey. And that's all I'm saying.

Briana's Mom said...

What a fun post! I love all the precious memories that are scattered throughout your house at Christmas. Wonderful!

Beverly said...

Love your decorations. One year G's all time favorite things were snowmen so we bought one that sings shake your ice thing and well you know shakes his ice thing, heh. It stays out all year and is played regularly throughout.

Momto3 said...

We have 2 trees. One big tree with all kinds of ornaments and a small tree that the boys decorate too. I love your nativity!

Aunt LoLo said...

Love it! My family always had two trees...one for Mom to decorate all fancy, and one for us kids to hang our schtuff on. :-)

Can I just say, I was SO excited when I was in Hong Kong and saw a real, live ficus tree?! I didn't even know there WERE real ficus trees! (Yes, pathetic - I know.)

CC said...

Love Santa on the Great Wall.

the handprint reindeer. Um. Yah... that might need to "hang" out with Quasimodo ;)

T said...

I have the same nativity too - among others... but the Willow Tree is my favorite!

somewhere I finally bought a fra-gi-le lamp ornament - but I'll be darned if I can find it this year!!! grrr...

Jennifer said...

About your childhood Christmas star... I made something similar with cinnamon and cloves when I was in the 1st grade. If my mom doesn't hang it in her tree than I throw a grown-up tempter tantrum. :)

Kristin said...

What a beautiful post. Very sweet.

I love the handmade ornaments. We still hang all ours on the tree too. Even the ones we made at age five in 1972 or something. A long time ago. :-)

Kimberly said...

OOOOOH, I absolutely love (not covet... no, never...) your Santa on the Great Wall ornament!!

Sharie said...

I loved a peak into your home. Ours is pretty bland - but I do have a favorite ornament - the only hand made one on my tree. Amelia brought it home from school last year and I couldn't WAIT to hang it.
I REALLY want that Willow Tree nativity set, but have no room for it, so we settle for the Fisher Price one:)

Merry Christmas.


Anonymous said...

i love snowmen, too. which always looks out of place when i decorate my house, since we celebrate christmas in 90-degree heat. (not quite the same in africa as it is in america.)

and i love my willow tree nativity set. i think it's my favorite christmaas possession.

Debbie said...

Why would anyone make fun of them? They are great! I love the star. I have ornaments from my childhood as well.

Lanxi said...

The kids always kinda snicker at our ornaments from my childhood, but I think deep down they love the tradition (at least that is what I am telling myself...so hush!)

Growing up, we always had two trees. The family tree and my mom's tree in the formal living room. So, you are not alone, and some ornaments deserve a special place to shine!

Joyful Dreamer said...

Great ornaments! I have many from my childhood too, as well as ones my kids made. All of them have a place on our family tree. I'm selfish too, I have my very own tree in our bedroom which I decorate different almost every year. Christmas is fun and not the time to be reasonable LOL.

Storm said...

I guess if you are selfish then I am really selfish because I have over 30 trees in my home and all but 3 are mine. Lol.

Thanks for the tour.

Merry Christmas.

I have 25 Days of Christmas pictures at http://365-days-of-christmas.blogspot.com/