Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Sentimental Journey.



It is time to Fa La La, and I am doing OK

The pages of my life seem to be turning very quickly. It seems like we just put that "stuff" from Christmas away, and then, pow, that season comes upon us again.  So, it is time to dig in, accept that another year has passed and get with the program.  So down to the basement I went, checked out the numerous boxes of decorations, and sat down on the floor and considered my options.  Why do I have all these containers? I gave so much away last year, and there is still too much.  Should I open them all?  If I don't see them, I won't feel the need to use them.  I decided to just look at the tree ornaments.  Many of the them are inscribed with dates.  Some have the names of people who have passed on and who once gifted me these.  Tears started to fall.  Yes, those from my mom will definitely go on the tree.  Then I came across a container labeled "special ornaments".  These are the ones that my children made or bought for me.  Who couldn't love a tin ashtray from a bowling ally of the late 70's. There was also the hanging lady, created by my oldest daughter and made out of pipe cleaners. They are smoke'n aren't they?  How times have changed.


There was one of a felt tree that was decorated with glue and buttons. The writing is faded and I could not make out the name of the artist, but it made me emotional anyway. I came across the paper 3D snowman that my baby daughter made at age 7.  That definitely must go on.


I have many beautiful and some expensive ornaments that I have collected over the years.  I do love their sparkle and am always so happy to display them.  They give me joy also so they go on and join these others that for some years were only displayed on the sides and back of the tree. 
 
 I also found a box full of Christmas cards that were sent to us on our first anniversary.  I read through each and every one.  People in those days tended to write notes and, again, I cried.  What a sentimental old lady I am but I will admit that am glad that I saved them.  50 years later I can still remember some of those people like it was yesterday. They will remain forever young in my mind.

Nothing much got done that day as I ended up opening all of the containers and deciding that maybe I will use everything.  Then I rethought it, considering that what goes up must come down and it is the coming down that I hate.   Half will be enough. 

While decorating, an ornament that my Mom gave me, fell and broke.  That hurt and I wanted to fix it but there are many things in life that can't be repaired and we have to move on and accept loss.   What is in my heart, will stay in my heart till its last beat.  The reminders of the past and the joys we had at this season of the year are part of me and I think my tree tells a lovely story. 



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I wish you all a wonderful holiday, full of smiles and contentment.  We all celebrate these days differently but it is the same message of peace and love that we seek. It has been a difficult year for many of us and there might be some more hard days ahead.  Take this time to be grateful for what you have and try to find some time to give to others who aren't as fortunate.  It is through giving that we get the most joy.

Also, like my bottle holder frog,
Make Merry







74 comments:

  1. Good advice, ours has been a difficult year but I'm counting my blessings and have given generously of time and money, it works.

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    1. The greatest gift we can give ourselves is the feeling we get from helping.another. I hope you have a very merry Christmas, Susan.

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    2. Warmest of wishes to you too.

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  2. Your tree is delightful. Our ornaments like yours bring back memories and tears.

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    1. It is good to have a cry every now and then. I try to live in the present, but sometimes old memories tug at my heart. I am always up for making new memories also. I hope that you will be making those also in your future new home.

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  3. Your Kewpie ornament is too broken to fix. I would feel bad about that one, too. My mom liked Kewpie. I have no old ornaments. I considered asking for some back, but Laura wanted only new. New. New. New. It all had to be New. So it is.
    Your tree is beautiful!

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    1. Yes, the ornament is unfixable but I still have not been able to throw it out. I probably will when the holidays are over.

      I can understand Laura wanting new decorations. After what she (and you) have bee through, she is looking forward to the future with her wonderful grandmother by her side. You saved her and she does not want to look back.

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  4. What a lovely post and the tree is delightful. Have a Merry Christmas and Happy and Healthy 2018.

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    1. I wish you and Doug a very happy first Christmas as husband and wife. You epitomized the saying, The best is yet to come. Thank you for stopping by Susan, and for your kind words.

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  5. What a beautiful post! I really enjoyed it -- from the ornaments full of memories, to the lovely tree, to the hope for the future -- it's just the right balance of everything for this reader. Thank you, and I hope your Christmas season is kind to you.

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    1. Thank you very much Jenny for your kind words. May the Christmas season bring you and your loved ones much joy.

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  6. Unpacking Christmas ornaments cannot but make us sentimental. Each year I think I should 'downsize' but I end up packing them all away again. Amazing how many memories are contained in baubles!

    Happy Christmas to you!
    Enjoy!

    Denise :-)

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    1. Every year I make an effort in downsizing. Sometimes the effort actually produces results,

      Enjoy your holidays, Denise.

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  7. Love your header - and your Merry frog.
    I have some very similar precious ornaments, and have wept for the others which broke. Foolish really because they remain (and sparkle) in my heart.
    A lovely post. Thank you so very much.

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    1. You always say the nicest things, EC and make me feel good about my writings. Thank you for that. I wish you and the smaller portion a beautiful holiday.

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  8. Unfortunately all my 'memory' decorations are back in a loft in the UK; over here we have a rag-bag of newly acquired baubles and trinkets, but still nice.

    We usually add one or two new things each year, but you're right, the old ones with memories are the best!

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    1. I alway add a few new, pretty baubles to my tree every year also, Cro. Next year they will become part of my memories also. Of course, that does depend on me having a memory then.

      I hope you and Lady M Have a wonderful holiday and that your meals come out perfectly. I have no doubt that they will.

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  9. You have some lovely memories from your tree decorations. I have a few which my good friend sent me for Lily, including the little angel on the top so they mean a lot to me too.
    The pages do turn quickly but thankfully they're still turning. Much love for the season. X

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    1. Besides us giving our children an ornament every Christmas which reflected something they experienced that year, my mom also gave them one. All were labeled and dated. When they left home and started their own households, they took their collection with them. I know they are precious to them all. I continue doing this and also gift my grandchildren with one. I hope they will have a sweet memory from these when they grow up.

      The holidays are memory making days. I wish you and Lily many wonderful days to remember.

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  10. What a wonderful feel-good post, from top to bottom. Your cat looks adorable in that elf hat, but lots o' luck ever getting one of our cats to wear it.

    Your tree looks beautiful. Most of our ornaments are about seventy years old, but my favorites are the motley mix of handmade ornaments our kids made years ago. They used to tease me mercilessly about putting them on the tree, but I think they would've been sad if I hadn't. :)

    Now, we do minimal decorating. It's just for the two of us, so it seems like too big a bother anymore. Instead, we spend the holidays with the kids, and we enjoy THEIR decorations.

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    1. We do Christmas decorating because part of my family, who live in California, come east for the holidays and the rest of my family who live by are at my home for this special time of year. I hope I can continue doing this for years to come.

      They all have their memory ornaments and I hope they treasure them as I do mine.. I kept a few and my tree would not be complete without Hanging Lady and Tin Ashtray. Now, though, the are front and center. I like classy.

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  11. I wish you the very best and Merry Christmas ever. I read your story and it is so much like mine. I gave some away and have some in the basement. I got all mine out from the kids too and looked at it with Andy - funny he didn't see the value in it I did - lol - he's to young. But memories mean a lot to us don't they? Sandie♥

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    1. The older we get, the more sentimental we get, Sandi. It is all good.

      Have a wonderful Christmas with your family and may the new year bring many blessings.

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  12. The older I get the more sentimental I get --as you say. But I am a man --do men even have hormones?-- and yet I read your post with interest, and visions of our kids scattered across this beautiful planet crystallized in unpacking the ornament boxes today. I thought of them, then absent friends and relatives. Well, I should close --there seems to be something in my eye.

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    1. Being sentimental is a sign of a good heart, Geo. That is something we all know you have.

      Have a wonderful and healthy Christmas, dear friend, and let us all hope that 2018 will be a better year for us all.

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  13. Hi Arlene! Your tree looks lovely and it was nice learning about the history of your beautiful ornaments. Sorry you just lost one that your mom gave you. Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy & Healthy New Year!

    Julie

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    1. I was able to glue my mom’s ornament. It does not look perfect, but it is in one piece. I just am not ready to throw it away.

      Julie, I wish you and yours a happy holiday season.

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  14. Such beautiful words here Arleen. Lovely sentiments.
    The years of getting the lights out each Christmas and finding that what worked perfectly last year does not work now may become a distant memory. I suppose that with LED lights that will become a thing of the past.
    I wish you and yours all the best for the Festive Season.
    CLICK HERE for Bazza’s seasonally adjusted Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

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    1. Oh my, I missed your comment, Bazza. So sorry.

      I do love the new LED lights. The colors are lovely and bright and are much cheaper to use. Those old lights hold memories of hours spent finding the burned out bulb. Some things are better now.

      Have a wonderful holiday with your family and let’s hope for a miracle of peace and a better year to come.

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  15. What a beautiful holiday post. I have all my Xmas boxes down from the attic and you have motivated me to start going through them all. Cheers.

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    1. I hope you enjoy your trip down Christmas memory lane also. I find it that it gives me so much joy to remember the lovely times that once were. Thankfully, I can only remember the good.

      I hope you have happy holidays, Colette, and many blessings in the new year.

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  16. Your tree looks very beautiful. We don't decorate ours until Christmas Eve when we bring the same straggly specimen in from the garden that we have decorated for many years. Like the other bloggers who commented, our tree will be dressed in memories, with decorations made by family and friends. Last year I made the comment that I should make a new fairy mouse for the top of the tree as it is at least forty years old and looking rather shabby. Cries of protest, "A new one! We don't want a new one!"

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    1. When I grew up, the tree was decorated on Christmas Eve and was taken down on New Year’s Day. When I got married, we started the decorations two weeks prior. My parents were horrified. Now mine goes up even sooner so we can enjoy it longer and it does help to raise one’s spirits to see all the sparkle. By January 2nd, though, I am tired of it and want my house uncluttered.

      I do like changing some things around in my tree decorating, but I would never be able to get away with not putting up something that has always been there, tattered or not.

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  17. Dear Arleen, your Christmas-tree posting is a lovely, lovely one. I think you speak for most of us who have collected a life's worth of ornaments and decorations and cards from family and friends. Each carries with it a memory and a feeling/sentiment. And each brings some initial joy to us as we hold it and then maybe a sense of sorrow at loss. You express so well what I am feeling during this month of exception and hope. Take care please and be gracious to yourself. Your tree is lovely. Peace.

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    1. I think I, and many others, are very sentimental and reflective this time of year. Although much of my sentiments are related to loss, I am accepting of life and I am so joyful and thankful that I had such splendid folks in my life. I have been very blessed..

      I hope you have a wonderful Christmas, Dee, surrounded by people you love. You are an extrodinary, kind and giving human being and I wish you peace.

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    2. Dear Arleen, thank you for your kind words. I feel the same about you. I know you through your writing and your posts always show me how compassionate you are.

      As to my comment, which I reread, I see that I said "exception" when I meant to say the "month of expectation." !!! Peace.

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  18. What a lovely post and it so resonated with me. I too gave my daughter a TON of holiday decorations but I still have several boxes full. Many decorations are those that my (now adult) children made me when they were little and I can't bear to part with them. They go on my tree always. I still have their Baby's First Christmas ornaments and yep, on the tree. DH and I also have a tradition whereby we purchase a new ornament every year with our names (this is our 2nd marriage and we feel very blessed to have found each other) so, there are 20 additional ornaments and a new one each year.

    I truly get your getting sentimental over items that have so much history behind them.
    I hope you have a wonderful Christmas !

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    1. I still purchase a new ornament for each person in my family and a couple for us also. Like you, Teri, I think it is a lovely tradition.

      I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas and more good memories are added to your book of life.

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  19. Your ornaments are so lovely! Isn't it great to be able to look back into the past and touch those things that have been so meaningful and special? This is a really great post! Hugs...RO

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    1. Thank you, Ro. I touch and hold those special ornaments like they are gold. They are precious to me.

      I hope you enjoy your holidays and make some more lovely memories.

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  20. Oh yes this is exactly how it is today. We are trying to downsize (slowly) but Christmas is too much and impossible. My spouse with Alzheimers is determined to go on as always. We keep going as she needs on this occasion still subscribing to our Moto. "We're a team and we keep on trukin....:)

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    1. Yep, we keep on trucken and celebrate the here and now - with the sweetest of the past intertwined.

      Take care and have the best Christmas you can have.

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  21. This year I sorted through things too. The stuff that was my mom's that I'll never use, the couple of things that don't have good memories attached, all went to a woman who lost all her decorations in a bad break-up. That feels great, and yes, it's what we need most. Have the best holidays, Arleen, and a very happy, healthy 2018!

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  22. p.s. the cat in the elf hat cracks me up.

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    1. It felt good to pass on many of my Christmas decorations to others that can use them. However, I still have too many so I will have to sort through them again. I have to admit, though, that I did buy a few more holiday baubles from our town craft store. I could not resist.

      Have a wonderful Christmas, Laura and spread as much love as you can to those who mean so much to you.

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    2. I never thought the day would come when I would dress up my cat - but it did. I have become a crazy cat lady.

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    3. Hahahahah!!! Much love to you and yours!

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  23. A lovely post, Arleen.

    I stopped putting up decorations a few years ago...and I no longer have any as I got rid of them. It's fun putting them up but the taking down becomes a chore! :)

    I do enjoy Christmas, though...and am never a Scrooge or Grinch. I always have far too much food...of course! That never changes!! :)

    A very Merry Christmas to you and yours, Arleen. And a Happy, Prosperous, Healthy 2018. Take good care. :)

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    1. I mostly put up decorations that mean something to me and hold some sentimal value. Gone are the days of “Deck the Halls” as the boughs of holly have become too much for me to want to handle. Instead of Fa La La, I can only manage Fa La. Next year, maybe just Fa.

      Have a Merry Christmas, Lee, and may the new year bring you joy.

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  24. Lovely journey through your Xmas boxes of decorations. May you have a wonderful Christmas and a happy New Year.
    xxx

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    1. I hope that you and your family have a wonderful holiday, Thelma, and that you are surrounded with love.

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  25. Your post was very touching for me. I'm very sentimental myself, add emotional to that and sometimes I'm just a big heartfelt mess lol...going down memory lane is nice. Even with tears. It's important to keep memories alive. That's all we have of some people and remembering those times ultimately makes us feel grateful and joyful. At least that's my opinion. :)

    I hope you have a lovely holiday season! Your tree is beautiful!

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    1. Our good memories are our base and from which all good things come. Lucky me, with time, many of the bad ones have slipped away.

      Rain, I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a healthy, happy New Year.

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  26. Fa La La indeed Im all for it though the passing season of our life and my spouses dementia have led to some downsizing of things including some of the traditional aspects of Christmas
    signed Ebenezer S. (a.k.a. Troutbirder)...:)

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    1. I am so sorry that you are going through difficult days. I hope you will be able to find some times of joy and have some smiles during the holidays.

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  27. I love the cat in the hat at the top of the page, his expression says it all.

    I have all the ornaments that I made for our first tree, 49 years ago, when we were too broke to actually buy any...now, sadly, I don't do Trees, but still have a huge number of ornaments.

    Maybe next year.

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    1. I never thought of Cat in the Hat; thank you for pointing it out.

      I have a reason for putting up a tree and all the decorations. My family celebrates the holidays with us and I can’t disappoint. I doubt if I would do all this fanfare without them.

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    2. This is why we don't bother. All the people we used to have for Christmas are gone, and we now go to his cousins', who host well and generously.

      As much as i would love to have the entire mob of them, there just isn't room for six kids and 17 adults and at least one dog.

      So it's easier to indulge ourselves and let them do the cooking and decorating. As much as I enjoyed it, it does seem a bit unnecessary at this point.

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  28. A lovely post.
    I do like your photographs and I think your tree looks great.

    We put a few decorations out, and I love to display our Christmas Cards too. Of course Christmas is not Christmas without a Poinsettia plant!

    My good wishes

    All the best Jan

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    1. Every house needs a poinsettia. I sent my husband out to get me “1”; he came back with 4. He did not know what color to get.

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  29. Hi Arleen,

    Such a thoughtful article. And each opened box for Christmas, brought back the memories. Each trinket for the tree, symbolic of those so very much a part of your life, past, present and future.

    Wishing you and your loved ones a most wonderful Christmas, Arleen.

    Gary

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    1. Thank you, dear Gary. I hope you have a peaceful and happy holiday.

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  30. Hi Arlene - I seemed to miss this post - probably just arrived over the pond - I'll be back to read and comment properly - thanks for being over in Canada with me! Cheers Hilary

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    1. May you have a wonderful holiday in beautiful Canada, Hillary.

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  31. This clearly touched many Hearts by the overwhelming response you have gotten to this poignant sentimental Post. Yes, the Holidays should have many Memories attached to the past Celebrations of it and I tend to be overly Sentimental to the hilt myself, so culling of Seasonal was always difficult for me because I did worry of what would become of those hand-made or badly aged ornaments? What is so funny is that many I donated to Charities ended up being seen in various Antique Malls and apparently many people do Collect the Vintage Folk Artsy Ornamentation with that Nostalgic look of being made by various hands with Love! Who knew? Merry Christmas, Love the Cat in the Hat Banner! *winks*

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  32. Hi Dawn, our most precious memories are those times with or about family. I hope your family will have a joyous holiday. There are always more memories to make.

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  33. This was a beautiful, touching post. I hope your Christmas is filled with peace, joy, and love.

    Your friend,

    Jennifer

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    1. Thank you, Jennifer. Thinking of you and hoping that you will get good news soon.

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  34. Your tree is lovely, as is your post. This year less went out at my house and nothing new came in to decorate. I gave out more than I received and that felt very good. Best gift was spending time with the young people in my life and so grateful they still enjoy my company. Sending you wishes for a happy, healthy and especially peaceful year. Thanks for all your visits to Buttercupland and the light you share.

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    1. I hope you have an adventurous new year with lots of visits to fabulous places, Carol.

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  35. Architects and builders need to know how important storage spaces are for the very reasons you have explained. And there should always be surfaces for photos and things. I should know - I have neither!

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  36. Wow! Your tree was so beautifully decorated, and isn't it great to collect such wonderful treasures? Hugs...RO

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  37. Hi there Arlene, hope your new year is off to a good start! I didn't get out and unpack half of our normal Christmas decor this year and you know what?--I really didn't miss it, We had enough out to be festive, LOL and it sure made taking it all down SO MUCH EASIER AND less complicated. We've used a small table top tree for several years now and it works just fine. If I get bored with it I add a new color of lights and this year I bought new ornanents in dark midnight blue which changed up the "look" alot. I did reply to your question about the lemons on my post if you would like to stop by. I notice alot of people replying that way as well as making a new comment on blog posts...not sure which I like best, how bout you?

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