Today I decided to finish putting the old ornaments on my new Christmas tree. I purchased a small pre-lit artificial one a couple of days ago. Last year’s pine needles still come out from their hiding places, giving me incentive for a new tradition in 2011. ‘Simplify’ has become my mantra. I actually carried my new tree inside and set it up all by myself. For me, a single empty-nester, it is definitely an evolving skill to ‘do’ Christmas decorating without my children or former husband around. As I unveiled each ornament from it’s tissue, the memories of Christmases past danced through my head. There were handmade ornaments from the days when my children came home from school–their small hands stretching out to hand me their precious Christmas handiwork. I recalled their eyes shining with pride, and their grins from ear to ear, as I unveiled each of these treasures from my sea of ornaments. Those memories were coming to me in the fashion of a slideshow created from secret places one holds dear for a lifetime. Most of those handmade ornaments have faded now or have chipped through the years, but my tree was calling for them to join it. My tree became a tapestry of Christmases past. I finished adorning my tree with the angels and crystal ornaments — some newer than others — but all equally important to create my new Christmas tree.
And now, I behold my ‘new’ tree, and I realize how life is like that Christmas tree. As life unfolds we are called to evolve, to grow and change. We take the old and mingle with the new to create our ever-changing tapestry. Living in the moment does not mean we forget. It means we put on some joyful music and dance and sing:
“O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree!
Thou hast a wondrous message “