Saturday, December 3, 2011

Advent Calendar ~ Day 3 ~ Christmas Tree Ornaments

Our tree always had traditional German ornaments, the most beautiful kind. Some glass, some handmade and very delicate. Mom (1933~2010) still has many from close to fifty years ago. I have several heirloom ornaments that have a very special meaning to me so I have chosen a few to share with you.

My Oma, Liselotte Haf née Kaiser-Saule, passed away the 5th of April 2010...these ornaments are truly a treasure more than ever.

My Oma, Lieselotte Haf, lived in Augsburg, Germany, made these wonderful walnut ornaments for me. Oma traveled every few years to California to visit us. During one of her visits she wanted to make some traditional walnut ornaments, the kind she made back home during tough times.

We bought a bag of walnuts, red yarn, and gold paint! Oma and I sat and carefully cracked open the walnuts so that we could glue the string inside, glue the walnut back together and paint them gold. That was 31 years ago this Christmas. I will never forget sharing this time with her, laughing as we would try not to crack the walnut shells into pieces! In mom's own words, "German's like handmade ornaments, nature type ornaments." I have cherished the walnut ornaments Oma made me and proudly put them on my tree each Christmas.

Hand made ornament

My aunt Gitta in Germany is an expert at "Kloppeln". It's not embroidery, it's not needlepoint, or cross stitch - it's German Lace Making. Aunt Gitta has her own style, but I can tell you it's amazing. Aunt Gitta has spent many hours making these beautiful heirlooms and I cherish each and every one of them she made for me.

Aunt Gitta has made several items for mom and for me over the years, the Christmas tree ornament is truly beautiful along with this Kloppeln doily that I use under my mini memory tree in my family room. My mini memory tree has photos of loved ones and ancestors passed. I always have a mini tree in my kitchen/family room, it use to have Christmas cookie cutters on it, now it holds photos as ornaments of those we want to remember and we miss so much.

This year, I have decided to do "Mom's Christmas Tree Jewels ~ Memory Count Down to share mom's Christmas tree ornaments that she collected over my lifetime and many that she gifted to me each Christmas. This year I have been blessed to own these beautiful ornaments and her lovely artificial tree. Click ~ here ~ to enjoy an ornament a day. Originally I was only going to post just up to Christmas day but I have decided to do it for the entire month of December . . . there are so many that I may have to double up but I want to visually document our Christmas memories for the generations to come.

~ Happy Holidays! ~

blog divider

 This post originally created for the Christmas Tree Ornament Memories on the
             With the passing of my Mom and Grandmother in 2010, I
have made changes to the original 2009 post . 


Catherine Pendleton said...

Beautiful! I'm going to miss seeing my mom's tree this year (not going home to visit until spring). She has so many ornaments that she's purchased, made, and gotten as gifts over my 50+ years that bring back memories of Christmas gone by. I love the memory tree idea!

Gini said...

Thank you, Catherine! I know very well about that missing thing . . . I very much miss mom's Christmas' . . . having her ornaments keeps me close though and brings back so many memories too.

Wendy said...

I am unworthy! I am unworthy! You win -- the ornaments are wonderful, but that memory tree and the Kloppeln doily are magnificent. I'm speechless.

The Path Traveled said...

I look looking in on the next Christmas treasure your sharing. They have all been beautiful!

Gini said...

LOL, Wendy, thank you, you made me smile! We are all winners! I was lucky enough to inherit some wonderful Christmas treasures from my mom. Before she passed, each Christmas she would gift me a set of ornaments. The ancestry tree is special and came about doing our family history, the doily, oh yeah, my auntie in Germany is amazing!

Thank you, Betty, you can tell our family loves Christmas!

Kathy, the Single-minded Offshoot said...

It is delightful visiting your Christmas memories. I feel as if I am back in my favorite place, Saarburg, able to find unique German artistry such as your aunt's Kloppeln or my hand embroidered coffee-table cloth in red with its gold embroidery. I get it out every year and am so glad I yielded to temptation and bought it.

Greta Koehl said...

Ooh, stars and icicles - love them. These remind me of the time we visited my grandmother on her farm in Texas and made our own ornaments for the tree! Ours were pretty amateurish - chestnuts wrapped in silver cigarette pack wrapping, popcorn garlands - but as a 7-year-old I loved them. (I'm late to comment here - just got a bunch of posts that I missed restored to my Google Reader.)

Gini said...

Actually those kind of homemade ornaments, Greta, are the best kind! I bet they were wonderful!

Thank you, Kathy, I'm glad you stopped by. My aunt sure does beautiful work. There is something about German linens and their needlework that is very special and unique. Glad you have a piece to treasure. Mom brought me quite a few over the years from Germany and I just love and treasure them.