Holiday Traditions

Everyone has their own holiday traditions. Where did they begin? Were they passed down to you to keep the tradition alive, or did you start your own holiday traditions to pass them on to others? No matter where they began, I believe the magic of the holidays are all about these traditions. From making Christmas cookies, to decorating gingerbread houses, secret Santa’s, filling Christmas stockings, celebrating Christmas Eve, or celebrating during the day, we find a way to share in meaningful ways.

I started a tradition that has become a very important part of our holiday. It began 28 years ago, and as a family we are committed to keep the tradition alive. 28 years ago I decided to make something to send to family and friends that lasted for longer than one holiday, but could be taken out year after year. I decided to would make a Christmas ornament to mail out as our Christmas cards. I had no idea it would be the first ornament of many, that would end up turning into a yearly family tradition that has been going on for 28 years.

I collected fallen fall foliage and placed my collected treasures between large sheets of wax paper with wax shavings and a string to hand them on the tree with. I then took an iron and melted these natural materials together, cooling them just enough to still be pliable to cut the large circles you see here. I finished them with a gold edge. I made almost 100 of them.

A golden tree for 1993, we made a mold to wrap and bend wire around. When completed and taken off the formed mold the wire opened into a Christmas tree. We then dipped them in epoxy to create icicles clinging on the boughs and to make the tree glisten.

In 1994 I was busy with my first born child that would turn one in January of 1995. I decided to keep the ornament simple and collect leaves and dip them in epoxy with thin wires to hang from the tree. I wanted them to resemble leaves blowing in the wind. I also decided that we should all be involved as a family to create a tradition of giving. I placed a huge piece of water color paper on the floor and poured out a bunch of finger paints and let my son Michaelangelo crawl, roll and paint. We cut the paper into small squares and sent them along with the ornament as a card with a photo of him covered with paint inside.

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