Today I have actually found some time to sit down and write! I have been wanting to share what I am about to write for a few weeks now, but due to my schedule an adequate amount of time has not presented itself until this very moment! What I am about to write about is a very special tradition that I share with my mom and dad around Christmas time. My parents and I celebrate the tradition of the 12 Days of Christmas, but in a very different way. Unfortunately this is our last year celebrating it, which I will explain why momentarily..
As a young child we always put up our Christmas tree, decorating it and our house with the colors of gold and silver. It was beautiful and I could always remember the gold glittered sleds and the silver stars that dangled from the trees limbs. Luckily for me my parents would always put up a tree of my own in my bedroom. It contained artwork I had made and Christmas ornaments I created at the class holiday parties. Needless to say, it was a very special tree. Around Christmas in 2001 my parents decided to make my tree the family tree and put it down in our living room. This is where our new tradition began.
When we moved our tree to our living room, my mom started buying random ornaments that she though was pretty. Glass ornaments of all different things, there was an Ohio State one, Steelers, patriotic, and a variety of other random things. The first year I received 12 ornaments and needless to say this became tradition for all the years to come until this past Christmas. As my mom continued celebrating the 12 Days of Christmas she began becoming more creative with the ornaments she purchased and some she even made. She explained to me one year that each ornament was a representation of something that has happened, something I accomplished, or something I had experienced in the previous year or years before. Each year she kept some ornaments a consistent theme, each year I received an ornament with my name, a patriotic themed ornament, and a destination ornament that she wanted me to visit sometime in my life. As you can probably already realize, my mom took a lot of care and consideration when it came to our tradition. As the years went on my ornaments continued to grow and we had to buy a larger tree not once, but twice.
This tradition my mom has created has become my favorite part of the holiday season. She reminded me of the great moments I have had and I will cherish them forever. My mom always told me that she would stop purchasing my ornaments when I was 18 years old. This past Christmas I was 19 and thought that this would be my first year I did not receive ornaments since 2001. To my surprise, my mom carried on the tradition. She said her reason was that I was still a teenager and that this would be her last year. So since this may or may not be the case (we won’t know until next Christmas), I wanted to share what could be my last 12 ornaments I will receive from my parents on the 12 Days of Christmas.
My first ornament I received was the Seventh Day of Christmas, when my mom began the tradition she simply bought ornaments she liked a lot, but it eventually turned in to the current tradition where each ornament represents something about my life. This ornament represents the seventh year of that tradition.
Next is my Walmart grocery bag. When I turned 16 and got my license I started doing all the grocery shopping for my family because my mom HATED grocery shopping. On the other hand I loved so I took over the grocery shopping for our household. Not only does this ornament represent my grocery shopping responsibility, but also all the late night Walmart runs my dad would take me and all the neighborhood girls on as we grew up. I sort of took over that tradition senior year when we spent many of our summer nights running to Walmart at 2AM!
This is a funny story. This is obviously a chip bag. The reason behind this one is because this year I had a bag of chips in the kitchen at my apartment. Unopened needless to say. Anyways they went missing so I texted all my roommates kindly asking if they ate them and all of them said no….I wasn’t such a happy camper because chips just don’t get up and walk away. I constantly complained about my missing chips for about a week or so to my mom, therefore she gifted me with my “missing bag of chips.” God love her!
I am going to try and be as nice as possible about this one. To start this is a representation of my dad’s boss’ wife…My dad’s boss is German, born and raised. Late last year I agreed to go to dinner with my parents to meet my dad’s new boss, his wife, and their child. They recently just moved to America from Germany so we wanted to give them a warm welcome. When I met my dad’s boss and his wife, she turned out to be Chinese who did not speak Chinese, but Spanish. Their son was the cutest little boy ever but he only spoke German and Spanish, but did not understand OR speak any English. Needless the say the family dynamic threw me off, but they are great people to be around!
Before 2012 I had never flown on a plane in my life! This year I flew for the first time home from South Carolina and then again from Columbus to Philly and back! I love flying and was really excited I got to experience it, finally!
In 2012 I took a big step in my life when I moved out on my own and to Ohio State’s Campus! My mom and her creative mind made me a mailbox with my street address on the side. I could not be more thankful for how supportive my parents have been since I have moved out and I honestly just can not get over how adorable this ornament is!
My mom knows how obsessed I am with the Twilight Series and to celebrate the release of Breaking Dawn pt. 2 and my sadness that the movies are all over she gifted me with this ornament. It was filled with my favorite chocolate too! Woo!
In the year 2012, the anchor became a prominent symbol in my life. It has become a representation of my self worth, independence, and confidence. I was encouraged to push through hard times and to continue to live my life despite things that were happening in my life. I was told that it was important that as I grow up I continue to maintain my independence because you must be happy with yourself before you depend on someone else to make you happy. I promised that I would “be my own anchor.”
With this ornament I am also going to talk about my 12th ornament because I somehow forgot to take a picture of it. Both ornaments represent my visit to the zoo in 2012 with my mom, dad, and uncle. As we all well know the zoo can be very, very boring because most times the animals are just laying around and sleeping. Well fortunately on this trip to the zoo I got to witness the polar bears playing in the water. It was one of the most fascinating things I have witnessed. My other ornament was simply just a manatee that my mom bought at the aquarium store at the zoo. Manatees have always been one of my mom and I’s favorite zoo animals. Therefore she bought it to represent not only that trip to the zoo, but all the others one they took me on as a child.
This set of ornaments marks the end of a very long and special tradition that my parents created. I could not thank them enough for making the Christmas season a special and memorable one. I appreciate the dedication and creativeness my mom and dad took to think of ornaments to gift me with and sometimes making them! I have to say that I probably have the best Christmas tree there is in the world. The tree holds so many memories and moments throughout my life and is a great reminder for all the things I have to be thankful for. I intend to one day carry on the tradition with my children. Thanks mom and dad!