Our Christmas tree holds a collection. There are bits and pieces that have no value for anyone but us. And every member of my family sees the tree with different eyes.
When I look at the tree, I see where we've been.
I see the union between my childhood and my husband's childhood...
... and I see the tie between my childhood memories and the memories my children are creating.
I see days that were special to us...
... and I see the people we've cared about.
Our Christmas tree has been lovingly decorated by us and our children -- one child who, with a broken leg, scooted around the base of the tree like a seal -- and I won't correct anyone's decorating. Our tree will never be photographed for a magazine or copied by decorators. It is uneven and sparse, battered and mismatched. But it is beautiful to us... It is ours.
And it is alive with color and memories and stories. This is what I want my children to remember... This is what I want to remember. This ever changing portrait of our lives together.
I look forward to collecting more bits and pieces for our tree in the years to come.