Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Dollar Tree saves Christmas!

Andrew and I have been so excited to celebrate our first holiday season in our first house during our first year of marriage... decorating, our first real tree, yummy food! But then we realized that all of those things don't come cheap! Aside from raiding my parent's attic for extra lights, we don't really have any holiday decorations or ornaments... a tree with no ornaments? Now THAT would look silly! So I dropped by the Dollar Tree on my lunch break a couple of days ago to grab some cleaning supplies and sandwich bags (random, I know), and saw that they had a huge selection of ornaments! They had a 9-pack of pretty clear figurine ornaments for $1, pretty glittery snowflakes, bulbs, clay ornaments... tons and tons! Granted, these are not going to last forever, but they will fill up our first tree without making it look gaudy and cheap (I hope!).

We do have 4 very special ornaments we've gotten since the wedding day that will stay with us forever:

1. For our wedding night, Andrew's parents rented a cottage at Barnsley Gardens for us. It was absolutely beautiful and charming. We walked the grounds for a little while the next day, and while we were in the museum, a woman who worked there came up and started talking to us. As it turned out, she lived just behind Mission Estates- and had lived there for years. She started talking about this sweet black and white dog that used to come out and play with her dogs all the time, and would sometimes come with another red dog. She knew they had a home because they were well-fed and always left in the evening, so one day she tied a note around his collar with her name and phone number on it so the owner would know where he was going. Well, it was my family's dogs! Our sweet Lewy who was only with us for a couple of years, and our sweet Cherokee who just passed last September after 16 happy years! I told Andrew that I still remember riding in the van with Mom to pick up the dogs from her house! Anyway, back to the ornaments... while we were talking to her, another woman came up and handed me a tiny wrapped package, telling us we left it behind in our room. I looked at the tag on it and it said, "Love, Fairy Godmother." Inside the wrapped package was a beautiful pewter Barnsley Gardens ornament! And that's where it started! :)

2. While we were on our Honeymoon cruise, I told Andrew we could not leave the Bahamas without another ornament for our tree. He helped me pick out a Christmas angel made out of seashells that says, "Bahamas 2008" on the back. The tradition continued!

3 & 4. A couple weekends ago we had absolutely no plans. It was our first weekend since we moved into our house that I didn't have wedding things to work on or we had no visitors. For some reason, instead of sleeping our Saturday away, we both woke up early in the morning and decided to go to Cracker Barrel. It was so much fun just taking our time and talking about our plans through the holiday season. I know it wasn't a big life-changing event or experience, but sitting there and just enjoying my husband's company made me want to make a memory out of it. So, lo and behold, we left Cracker Barrel with 2 more specially picked out ornaments for our Christmas tree! :)

Tuesday night I got our four special ornaments together and put them with our Dollar Tree ornaments to get ready for our first tree. Although our special pile is small now, we're excited to see how it grows each year!


  1. What a sweet, sweet story, Chelsea! We were given some ornaments as a wedding gift, and they were TOTALLY tacky... red glitter ball ornaments with black feathers shooting out in all directions! I mean, we're all about a red and black ornament (Goooo Dawgs!), but that was over the top. It sounds like y'all have a great tradition started!

  2. That is a great tradition to start. My husband and I have purchased a dated ornament every Christmas and now that we have been married 30 years our tree is full of wonderful memories. Keep it up!