When I was a little girl, my Mom decorated our Christmas tree with ornaments she bought from the Sears or Eaton’s catalogues. They were made of glass and, of course, fragile, so most of them didn’t survive over time. But, my sister and I were given the few that made it and now these ornaments decorate our trees.
When my husband and I married, we bought tree decorations that were slightly old-fashioned and reminded us of our childhood Christmases. I also bought ornaments that reflected special moments in our lives, like “Baby’s First Christmas” or “Thomas the Tank Engine”. (Our son Nicholas was only two years old when he started playing with that series of toys.) Family and friends also gave us some lovely ornaments over the years.
My sister and I, and later our younger brother, had our share of school-made ornaments (like angels and stars), as well as the ones that we received as gifts at Catechism class (mostly pop-up Nativity scenes).
There is one Christmas item that I definitely consider an heirloom. It isn’t a tree ornament, but it’s so important that it just wouldn’t be Christmas without it. It’s our crèche – the Nativity set – that holds pride of place under our tree. Mom bought it not long after she and Dad married. Made of wood, it measures about 21.5 cm x 33 cm (about 8½” x 13”). Overall, it’s in reasonable shape for something that’s about 55 years old. The angel and the little sheep have been repaired over the years (they are the two pieces that seem to break the most often), and there’s only one or two pieces of hay left. The crèche was handed to me by my Mom after Dad passed away, and one day, I will pass it to my son.
|Belair Family crèche, with Patches the Cat, 2008.|
Copyright © 2012, Yvonne Demoskoff.