24 December 2012

Ex Pat Christmas

Christmas is an odd time to live 3500 miles from your family.  I think that there are some definite pluses and minuses.  Mr Grumpy and me never have to pick which family to spend Christmas with, but seeing my parents won't ever really be an option.  Even though we don't have any mini uses yet, I still feel that we need to take parts of both of our childhood Christmases and create our own traditions. 

I wanted to share with you a few of the decorations that I've brought from the States.  There are still lots of things, decorations included, that need to hop over the pond, but this is a start, and I love pulling these out and remembering their stories every year.

This little angel hung on my Mom's family tree when she was a kid.  She's always been one of my favorites.

 This beautiful child was me, aged one, a gift from someone to commemorate my first Christmas.

Legend has it, that when I was one I didn't quite understand why my parents were hanging things of a tree. If you know nothing about Christmas, it would be an odd thing, wouldn't it?  Despite thinking my parents were crazy, I wanted to take part, so I too my shoe and hung that on the tree.  What I don't understand, is how I tied the shoe, was it off my foot, or did I take it off, and why the heck was my foot so big when I was one?  Anyway, this is a family legend, so I will take it at face value, and pass it on to my eventual kids that way.

This is a rare one, we have lots of ornaments from my Mom's family tree, but not my Dads.  I think its partially because my Mom didn't like a lot of their sorta kitch decorations, and my Dad is one of four boys, I'm sure they destroyed a lot of them as well! I've always liked this little bird, the clip is getting weak, but he is about 50 and made of plastic.  On my next visit I'll be taking home the green squirel, yes, he's green.

I think this one was on my Mom's tree as well.  I brought him over because, well, he's a family tradition and I really feel that I want that connection now that I'm so far away, but also because he wasn't breakable and could be easily brought over on a plane. 
Is anyone else out there far away from their family?  How do you reconcile new traditions with the old? 

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