Friday, December 17, 2010

Tis the Season

Why hadn't she asked her mother for that ornament? Every year since she had moved out she meant to ask for her ornament at the beginning of the holiday season, but the idea would slip her mind until she saw it there, nestled in the branches of her mother's Christmas tree. Her own tiny Christmas tree was filled to the brim with ornaments she had collected over the years and the ones that her husband brought with him from his family. But there was nothing on her tree from her childhood and it always made her a little sad not to see anything to remind her of her past.

This beautiful, ornate, ruby red ornament had been given to her by her grandmother when she was only six and since she had passed away three years ago, it would have been nice to have a small remembrance of her on her little tree in her cramped apartment. It was so shiny and glittery, you could tell that her grandmother had spent a lot of money on it, but it was the sentimentality that drew her to it. And yet there it was, almost lost in the large branches of this monstrous tree. You could barely see it, for all the other numerous ornaments, and she rationed that her mother probably wouldn't even notice it was gone if she just filched it.

Out of the corner of her eye she spied her mother's favorite ornament, a little tattered, green yarn ball that her own mother had made for her one Christmas year's ago. Her mother always told the story of how her mother had handmade this ornament for her and although it wasn't the prettiest ornament it was the most special to her.

“I've always loved that ornament. Isn't it beautiful?”

“Yes it is, Mom.....”

“ That ornament is over fifty years old. Your grandmother gave it to me when I was five years old. I remember the day like it was yesterday. We didn't have a lot of money that Christmas and your grandparents were so worried that we would be disappointed Christmas morning with the small amount of presents we would receive. Your grandmother was so thoughtful though, and handmade a beautiful ornament for each of us. She made mine red because she knew that was my favorite color. Look at all the detail and craftsmanship that went into this. A gift from the heart is the best gift to receive.”

“This is the ornament that Nana gave you?” I held the red, sparkly ornament up for her to inspect.

“Oh yes dear, that is something that you never forget.”

“No, you would never forget something like that.”

This post was inspired by a prompt from The Red Dress Club, a photo of a Christmas ornament.


Kim said...

This is the first Christmas I started thinking about passing down special ornaments to the kids. I liked your little story. It made me stop and think about how different our perspectives can be from those of our parents.

Rebekah Costello said...

What a sweet story!

Dropping in from TRDC.

Sluiter Nation said...

I really like this story. Ornaments are so important to me. My MIL gave each kid a new one with their name and the year on it each year. When the hubs and I got married, he took his box of ornaments with him. I thought that was so neat. Last year, for Eddie's first Christmas, I started a box for him. Love this!

(Florida) Girl said...

Isn't it special how ornaments can carry our memories?

Stopping by from the red dress club.

Anonymous said...

I started out wanting her to steal the ornament because I felt so strongly that she should have something on her tree from here own childhood and then ended up being so glad that she didn't steal one. I love the idea of memory serving in place of the object.

Cheryl said...

Okay, wait. I thought the yarn ball one was the one the grandmother made for the mother, and the red one was the one the grandmother made for the main character?

Sarah said... win the prize(the prize of figuring out my silly story). The red ornament was the main character's, the mother is starting to get confused...maybe early onset Alzheimer's?? Maybe I should have had the ornaments from different people and then there wouldn't be such confusion....

Carrie said...

I was thinking the same as Cheryl :)

Regardless, a sweet story. Sometimes the ugliest ornaments are the most cherished simply because of the story behind them :)

Nichole said...

I was a bit confused too, but the story is so lovely that I could overlook that piece. :)

Christmas is such a magical time...I can't wait to share the stories of our ornaments with out children one day.

The Drama Mama said...

Definitely a beautiful story.

Anonymous said...

I passed along to my son a box of ornaments that were his special favorites: a mouse nestled in a nutshell, 3 glass bells that hang within each other, one of my grandmother's ornaments and other favorites. I have my grandmother's Santa, ornaments she and my mom made. My tree could tell a story!

I loved your story - so perfect, the way the heart of a family is passed down:)

Merry Christmas!


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