Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Ornaments and Angels

Last Saturday we bought our traditional fresh cut sub-alpine fir for our Christmas tree, then Sunday after church we all helped decorate it. Ours is a very eclectic tree with quite a variety of ornaments. The most common decoration are the dozens of tatted snowflakes that my grandma Veara Southworth Fife made for each of her grandchildren while in her nineties and confined to a wheel chair.

No one snowflake is the same. Grandma made up the designs as she tatted away the hours.

I made several of these clove (poked into apples) pomanders for my mom and grandma when I was young. I inherited this one which is now nearly 50 years old.  

Marie crossed stitched these two ornaments.

Some of the ornaments are hand made by children in school.

Will and Sarah both had teachers who had them create a snowman ornament using a white paint print of their hands.

Will made the sparkly bell at his pre-school in Jerusalem and Sarah made the sparkly ornament in kindergarten. 

Other ornaments have been collected over the years while traveling the world. Many of these ornaments center on Christmas themes of angels, stars, bells and the nativities.

Hollowed egg ornaments and straw ornaments from Prague.

An angel from Krakow, Poland.

A toucan from Guatemala

A miniature nativity and donkey from Ecuador

A tin shepherd and angel from Mexico

Angels and a star from the Philippines

A wooly sheep from the Amana colonies in Iowa.

 A ceramic garlic bulb from Istanbul

A porcelain Delft ball from The Netherlands


There are also many Holy Land ornaments in Bethlehem Olive Wood and Hebron blown glass and Hebron pottery.

(from Mt. Tabor)

(Armenian painted bell)

(Marie made the cinnamon bell)

(Hebron bell and evil eye amulet from Istanbul)

Beginning when Joel and Sarah were young, we started giving the children an ornament each Christmas with the intnent that when they move away from home they can take a collection of ornaments from our family tree.

One year they each got a small nativity ornament

Another year they got camel ornaments.

Three wise men for three children.

Three gold stars


 More angels

Three snowflakes

Hand painted wise men globes (the cello in the back came with a first night of Advent gift--Piano Guys Christmas CD. Cellist Sarah has claimed this one)

This year they divided up a collection of twelve stars, each has a different title for Jesus.

Some of our ornaments are gifts from friends, family and neighbors.

A silver filigree angel from Jogjakarta Indonesia

Bali birds

 An Emmett's Toy Shoppe canister from England

 A heart from Nepal.

Pinocchio from Italy.

A sock from Grandma Tueller

A pickle for hiding from Grandma Emmett

This Santa skier was a gift from Marie to go with a gift of skis she bought me for one of our first Christmases.

One of my first Christmas gifts to Marie was an angel ornament (the center one that says "Sing Praises"). She was so delighted that I started to get her an angel ornament/statue for each Christmas. It is now an entrenched tradition. Those ornaments hang on our angel wall.

They perch on our mantel.

And they decorate our window sills

and shelves

Will looking for the green pickle ornament hidden by Joel. 

In addition to the angels, Nativities are our main decoration. click here to see my Nativity post
Last year Marie completed this amazing stitched Nativity quilt.

Joining it this year on the wall of some unique batik angels from Indonesia.

Also new from last year (a gift from Will to his mom) is this lovely Flight into Egypt.

Will's gift to his mom this year was this Charlie Brown nativity. We all love it when Linus recites the Christmas Story from Luke 2.  click here to see the Linus monologue

Outside decorations ( I refuse to climb on roofs).

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