Thursday, December 5, 2019

A Few of My Favorite (Christmas) Things!

We all have them. The ornaments that must be on the front of the tree. The Santa or the angel that must have a place of honor. That special decoration remembered from childhood.

My decorating is coming along well with several trees up and lit, but with no ornaments. No, I haven't pulled out the ornament boxes yet -- probably later this week. But I've been revisiting my favorite things from Christmases past and I thought I'd share a few with you!

(Cue the music!)

This is the oldest ornament on my tree. It was from my grandparents' tree (mom's parents) and she had it after them. Now it's mine. Barely hanging together with wire, too fragile to take apart and repair. But a treasure, nonetheless.

As you might expect, many of my seasonal things have a connection to my Mom or to our family tree when I was growing up. I think (but am not sure) that she made these! There's an Andy, too.

On one of my trees, this is the first glass ball that goes up each year. We've had it as long as I can remember. (The "egg" to its right was a gift from my friend Lisa back when we were in high school or college and the small bell a Shiny Brite from my other grandmother's tree.

I love these Santa ornaments too, again from the old family tree.

And these -- the paint is chipping off and I'm sure it must be lead. But I still love them.

Always have, always will.

I've written about the Gingerman tree and the story of the giant Gingerman at the top. He is a must on what I call the "Mom" tree.

When she was ill she started making tons of little ginger guys like this one and stringing them on garlands for her friends. In a Christmas wrapping competition one year, my dad made a giant version, leaving a small space unsewn into which he tucked a pair of earrings. I still have those, too.

I have loads of ornaments like these -- photos from our different years together.

And ornaments from our travels, of course!

And what goes on the top of the big tree? Turkey Lurkey, of course! A friend and I made puppets for my Henny Penny puppet show in my puppetry class in graduate school. This is a must, albeit an unconventional topper!

I have too many collections, some started by others, like about 25 silver bell music boxes, a collection my friend Lin began for me.

And others I've chosen. I won't show you every Santa (I know -- you're breathing a sigh of relief!). Just a couple of favorites.

This one reminds me of my favorite advisor in grad school. It's the eyes and mouth of the face.

I have a few snowmen friends, too. My pal Judy gave me this silvery charmer...

...and this was a craft fair find.

 These little elves were given to Mom by my cousin, Nancy. They're so cheery!

And this was from Mom's Royal Doulton collection. So graceful for December!

I love Margaret Furlong's shell angels. I wish I had more!

 And lest you should think I'm only about the Ho! Ho! Ho!, I do have more than a few creches or nativity pieces. This is one of my favorites, but far from the only one.

So grab yourself a cookie from my happy cookie jar and enjoy.

The season is here and I'm eager to see your decorations, too!

Sharing with:  Pink Saturday     /     Let's Keep In Touch     


Misadventures of Widowhood said...

You sure have some special Christmas things. The fun of unpacking them is they come with such great memories of times and people in the past. Love that photo of you and the dog and your Santa set. I had a collie just like yours when I was about the same age. I suppose the Lassie series had a lot to do with that.

I might have to steal the gingerman idea for next year. I used to make ornaments for my nieces and nephew for their first twelve years of life and now that they are all grandparents I'd like to---just once---make an ornament for all 20 of the young ones in the family.

Lynne said...

Thank you for this “favorites post!”
I think it is the best part of decorating . . .
Each piece tucked away, brought out,
is a reminder of a person, time, place!
Is that you and your “Lassie Dog?”

Valerie-Jael said...

Your decorations are precious, have fun. Good that you have such happy childhood memories, too. Hugs, Valerie

Mae Travels said...

Your ornaments are so impressive and so meaningful! It really highlights how many different ways you can have a Christmas tree -- starting with the totally un-meaningful but HUGE one in the lobby of the Detroit Airport Terminal. It's pretty but has no connection to anyone. And proceeding with trees in people's houses that look like they were done by a decorator: all matching and color coordinated (I'm especially thinking of one that I saw in a McMansion somewhere). And the peak of meaningful: here!

best... mae at

La Table De Nana said...

♥ I just love personal posts:):)

Pamela said...

My small Japanese tree only has my stitched ornaments. I liked it so much last year that I didn’t take it down. I’ve been enjoying my tree and ornaments all year!

Your blog is a good record of your decorations. When you get old and can’t remember, you can reread your blog.

Louca por porcelana said...

So sweet and adorable!

Rustic Pumpkin said...

Thank you, Jeanie, for sharing your special treasures with us. You have some really precious memories tied up there, and you are so lucky to still have them. Many of mine have been lost, mostly due to one too many moves around the world.

Nadolig Llawen!

Waving~~~Deb in Wales

David M. Gascoigne, said...

I think you have more "stuff"than most, Jeanie! I don't want to be anywhere near when you downsize!

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Thanks for sharing your favorites! I don't think I've ever seen the turkey tree topper - so fun! Bridges the gap between the 2 seasons, which are particularly close this year!

Most of my decorations as ones I purchased on clearance after Christmas my first year I lived alone! So they remind me of leaner times, but are still very pretty. I've added to my collection over the years. Some of my favorites are Paris ornaments from friends (including you!), and ornaments purchased during my travels, and Paul's handprint/footprint ornaments from last Christmas.

Jean | said...

Jeanie, what an *adorable* photo with the collie! Awwww.

eileeninmd said...


It is nice too see your favorite decorations. They are seem to have a happy memory attached. The turkey topper is cute, I always love the Santas! I hope you are having a great day!

Iris Flavia said...

Wow, such treasures!
Nothing left from my family, as far as I know. Andy is cute!
Cute pic, I assume that´s you and your best friend?
And the pic of you and Rick, awwww.
Freddie Mercury sure would be pleased... oh, wait, that´s the other Queen, right ;-)
LOL, maybe I take pics of who lives here all year round - Christmas-Henries included!
A great collection!

Sandra Cox said...

Lots of wondrous memories here.

The Joy of Home with Martha Ellen said...

Jeanie, you have wonderful reminders of all the memories of Christmas' past. The turkey lurkey is a riot, my friend! I've always loved a tree with ornaments that show the love and joy of all the years past. I must say I'm not a big fan of themed trees, but one full of generational ornaments such as those you have shown.

My name is Erika. said...

It is so fun to see your collection. We do the same thing. I have some old brittle ornaments and some new ones. They tell our story, don't they? But your tree topper is wildly unique and I do adore it! Hugs-Erika

Marilyn Miller said...

My daughter collects the Margaret Furlong ornaments. I don't think they are making them any more, but I found one at the antique mall to tuck in Jill's stocking this year. I love the vintage glass balls. Oh what treats you have. Reading this post I realize I don't have any of my mothers ornaments. Not sure what happened to them. Now I must ask my sister if she has them.

BeachGypsy said...

I just loved seeing all your sweet ornaments and reading about the sweet memories!! Love that silver ball---the first one on the tree---just think of all the years of memories with that one! Is that a picture of you when you were a little girl?----so so cute! Was that your doggie? Is it cold there yet and have you seen any snow?

Nasreen said...

It was so lovely to see all your Christmas decorations. So much history and memories.

shoreacres said...

Did I laugh at David's comment? You bet I did! I'd show you a decoration or two, but right now I still haven't come across them. I actually know where they are, but they're buried under other boxes. Maybe I should stack boxes in the shape of a tree and put some construction paper bells and stars on it. On the other hand, maybe I should just keep unpacking!

Linda said...

Wonderful tree Jeanie and your SANTA and mrs claus.......what a sweet tender memory.

Sandra at Maison De Jardin said...

Jeanie, you are amazing and your collections are also. I do believe you just may have too much talent for one person. Such a shame you couldn't wave a wand and scatter it around. Speaking of wands, mine has disappeared.

I do love this post and I am in love with Raggedy Anne. I know your home must be aglow with Christmas. Happy day to you!

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

I always love seeing your various trees. You hit on something. I have some of those Shiny Brite ornaments. I even have the box they came in. They were my grandparents' and, even though I no longer have a place for a large tree, I keep them, along with the other ornaments, in the event I DO find a way to set up a large tree again. For some reason, I don't remember the gingerbread ornaments. The others I've mostly seen in the past. I love them this time of year when you share your various trees and your decorations, too.

Polly said...

Hello Jeanie, you have some lovely ornaments. I have favourites too, one that my grandson made, 3 that belonged to my mum, some from trips abroad, old ones, new ones and pretty ones that I bought in sales at bargain prices :-)

Anonymous said...

I just love the vintage ornaments and you have some lovely ones! I have a Fontinini ( I think that's how you spell it) Nativity like yours. It's one of my favorites for Christmas. Let the fun begin.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Karen said...

I love the stories behind your favorite ornaments

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, I am behind once again on commenting. I so enjoyed walking down memory lane with you and seeing some of your most treasured Christmas decorations. I must tell you I have several Margaret Furlong shell angels, I haven’t used them in several years and I am not sure why. I have more Christmas than I have places to set it.

Sketchbook Wandering said...

Wow! Fun filled, memory filled! I'll be back soon to read and comment on your more recent posts, Jeanie!

Miss Val's Creations said...

So many charming ornaments Jeanie! I love the homemade Raggedy Anne. It is fun how treasures like these all have a story. A turkey on top?! Now that is original!

Sami said...

Such special Christmas ornaments Jeanie.
When we moved to Australia in January of 2007, we left the Christmas tree and ornaments in the apartment where we spent our last days (we lived in the country) and where my daughter lived while she was studying at University in Lisbon. She took those with her when she went to live in France, then Holland and now The Philippines. She was just setting up her tree the other day and showing me all our old ornaments, some of them home made by me with felt, many years ago. She's happy to have them and thinks they are very special.

Lowcarb team member said...

Wonderful post and photographs.
So nice to see all of your Christmas decorations... they have so many special memories.

All the best Jan

Red Rose Alley said...

Oh Jeanie, it looks like you have some hand made ornaments too. How special they are, huh? And the chipped Santa and Mrs. Claus is a treasure, I love them! The Royal lady that belonged to your Mom is lovely, and these are the porcelain figurines that I always look for in the shops. They are hard to find. The Santa that reminds you of your advisor is delightful, and he really looks like the real Santa, doesn't he? And I absolutely LOVE the photo of you, all bright eyed and curious for Christmas. Thanks for sharing some of your favorite things, Jeanie. I really enjoyed seeing them all. : )


William Kendall said...

You certainly go all out for Christmas.

Tracy said...

Oooo... LOVE all the festive "merry and bright" and memory-full of this one, Jeanie... It's Christmas Wonderland at your place! :) ((HUGS))

Katie Mansfield said...

Adorable and fun to read post. I love your mom's gingerbread men.

Olka said...

This red-head doll is creepy :D
You know what? I also have some old ornaments - some of them belongs to my great grandma! They're very precious to me as well!

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