Never say “Never”

Three things I said I’d NEVER do again:

  • Buy more Christmas ornaments  Downsizing means you haul things OUT of your house, not bring more in!
  • Have another “real” Christmas tree.  No more needles in the carpet!
  • Decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving  Really, people, at least wait until after the Turkey Day dishes are done!

Before leaving town to spend Thanksgiving with family, I did not one, not two, but ALL THREE of those things. Oh, brother…


My proverbial downhill slide (which I happen to think isn’t so bad after all) began when I started decluttering my vintage ornament stash by making a mercury glass wreath. It was so much fun that I made a few more wreaths.


And that was so much fun that I made the mistake had the brilliant idea of looking on craigslist for vintage ornaments—because vintage ornament wreaths are most spectacular when they’re comprised of pretty ornaments, and the older the better.


There it was… the mother lode of vintage Christmas ornaments.

American Shiny Brites with stripes, stencils, and mica. Handpainted Polish teardrops and balls. Early 1900s indents. WWII-era unsilvered beauties. Japanese honeycomb-paper Santas, birds, and balls. And more. Much more.


500+ ornaments for pennies on the dollar.

Spread out on my dining table and sideboard—a separate basket for each style—there were tiny feather tree pretties, handpainted balls the size of my hand… and everything in between.


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And then I shopped my new stash—and made a new wreath! What do you think of these retro colors?


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The end of the year is a really busy travel time for my Renaissance Man, so—since he was home the weekend before Thanksgiving… and since we wouldn’t be home for Thanksgiving—he decided to haul the Christmas trees and lights down from the attic. BEFORE Thanksgiving? Oh, why not? …


I opted to put up only one full-size tree this year—and chose the easiest one… only to watch yet another pre-lit “convenience” bite the dust.


Me: “I have a mind to get rid of every single artificial tree and go back to real ones now that we have hardwood floors; and we’ll have wood floors in our next house.”

Renaissance Man: “Let’s do it!”


And so we hauled the tree back to the garage, headed to the Christmas tree lot—and bought the second tree we touched. Nothing short of a miracle!


And then, a full FOUR days before Thanksgiving, I decorated our tree with favorite ornaments—old and “new.”


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And as we drove back to Tennessee today, I loved knowing that

  • the tree was up and decorated
  • the house would smell like fresh Fraser Fir when we walked in the door
  • the faux trees will find new homes this week and won’t have to be stored in our next house
  • spontaneity is alive and well—and sometimes a great stress reliever!
  • I will begin the Advent season relaxed—and focused with anticipation on the Baby’s arrival

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When do you put up your Christmas tree(s)?

Do you have vintage (or antique) ornaments from your ancestors—or someone else’s?


What’s on your “Never again!” list?


Linking to Pink Saturday at How Sweet the Sound


  1. Great post! I have such a hodgepodge of ornaments….from my son’s macaroni and glitter ornament, made when he was 3 years old…to Simpich Angles and Snow Babies…to you name it. Since I’m allergic to Christmas trees, I always pray that our lovely artificial tree will cooperate yet another year. I can imagine how delightful it was to walk through your front door post Thanksgiving. Lovely! Thanks for inviting us a peek. Cherry Kay

    • Cherry Kay, I have the “hodgepodge” ornaments, too! I plan to put a 3′ tree in an urn and load it with some of those. That way I still get to enjoy the pretties (and the memories!) without having to decorate a full-size tree.

      So sorry you’re allergic to Christmas trees. I’d love to share this amazing fir scent with you!

  2. I love your beautiful ornaments and it filled me with such…..regret. You see, many years ago, my mother gave me ALL of her Christmas ornaments from the 40’s 50’s 60’s and they were in a black trash bag. I know…not a good idea but mother was the queen of expediency (get it done). My dear husband went out to the garage one Thursday morning…Trash Day…and …you guessed it….mistakenly THREW THE ORNAMENT BAG OUT WITH THE TRASH!!! We didn’t even realize it till time to put up the tree in December. This event occurred in July so we had no idea what had happened. Every year I go through the regret of having thrown out all my childhood ornaments and it hurts. I made a promise then and there to always put up my ornaments in a safe place, well marked, and carefully packed away. Enjoy your ornaments and think of me!
    Gmama Jane

    I haven’t visited in awhile. How is your ministry going?

    • Oh, Jane, your story breaks my heart! The same thing happened several years ago with all of my Mom’s Christmas garland — Daddy accidentally threw it out with the trash — but that was replaceable garland, not vintage ornaments!

      Thanks for asking about Hope Unlimited for Children. Things are going well with the usual challenges and exciting prospects. This is the most stressful time of year with 40% of the annual budget having to be raised in the last quarter of the year. To say my Renaissance Man is on the road A LOT these days is a major understatement!

  3. You made me laugh. I agree. Never, ever say never. It will get you every time. But, of course, you just had to do these things. They were the right things to do.

    Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. I can feel them in my days. Come on over and link this great post with us for Pink Saturday.♥