This post is sponsored by Hallmark; I received an ornament, but no further compensation was received. All content and opinions are mine.
Decorating the Christmas tree is one of my favorite parts of the holiday season.
For the past seven years, we've gone out on our wedding anniversary, Dec. 10, to get our tree, and then we spend the evening decorating the tree and probably watch a silly Christmas movie together. After Max goes to bed, Jamie and I settle in to watch Die Hard, which was a Christmas tradition for us since the early days or our relationship.
I have lots of friends who put together gorgeous trees every year. They brainstorm their decor theme for months in advance, buying ornaments that match the theme, and then hanging each decoration just so on their lovingly chosen tree.
If our tree has a theme, it's probably going to be something like, “Parents who grew up in the 80s with a kid born in the early 2000s,” and our ornaments are a reflection of our lives, both as individuals and as a family.
I love how our ornaments tell the story of us, and each year, we add an ornament or two to reflect an important part of the previous year.
Check at the end of this post for a sneak peek at Max's 2014 ornament, and a chance to win a Hallmark Keepsake ornament of your own!
I'm going to give you a closer look at just a few of the ornaments on our tree, this year and every year…
And so I'll start at the very beginning (a very good place to start!)
My very own “Baby's First Christmas” ornament! Interestingly, I posted it on Instagram a few days ago, and three different friends from all over the country said they have the same one! I guess Hallmark had fewer options back in the day, unlike all the choices they offer now! LOL
My ugly Cinderella. I think she's from 1982, when I was 5. It was the first year my mom let me choose my own ornament at a crafts fair at our church, and this is what I went with. Her other foot fell off sometime when I was in junior high, and her pipe cleaner hair and arms are showing their age, but I love her in all her terrible DIY glory.
Bob Denver. Bob is a fixture in all of my childhood memories, I'm pretty sure my parents acquired him sometime in the 70s, even though my sister and I didn't name him until the late 1990s. Now, he lives near the top of our tree, serenading our angel with his smooth folk ballads.
Another cute one from Hallmark. I bought this for Jamie in 2006, as we were finishing a huge kitchen remodel together.
Three World Series championship ornaments. Need I say more? 😉
A preschool craft project, it's filled with plastic tinsel on the back.
In case you can't read it: Dear Mommy & Daddy, I love you… I like the way my Mommy hugs me and
I really like when my Dad kiss me. Love, Max 2012
My brother-in-law is a talented glass blower, and a couple of years ago he gave us two ornaments. I love them both equally, this one just photographs better.
Max's 2nd Christmas ornament, from 2009. I commissioned it from an artist I found on Etsy;
the ball contains 91 stars, one for each day he spent in the NICU when he was born.
And now, Max's 2014 ornament…
The Harry Potter Sorting Hat!
Like I said, we always try to get an ornament that represents the year. For Max, he has a Lightning McQueen Mickey ear ornament from when we went to Disneyland (and he was obsessed with Cars!), from last year, it's an Angry Bird wearing a Santa hat.
This year, it's Harry Potter. To be honest, it was a serious struggle to choose this one or the Darth Vader one, but I figure we have lots of years left for Star Wars obsession (and as I write this, I remember that I also purchased the LEGO Boba Fett… where did I put it!?!?)
But this is the year he has really discovered his love of reading, which thrills Jamie and I to no end. Partway through the third book right now, he is enthralled by all things Harry Potter, so it seemed like a fitting selection to represent 2014.
And now, because Hallmark is awesome, they're going to give one of YOU a Hallmark Keepsake ornament from their 2014 collection! (Hallmark will select ornament to send, but I'm sure it'll be awesome because Hallmark cares enough to send the very best)