Ornaments made out of leftover egg cartons (with lots and lots of glue and glitter), walnut shells made into little mice, paper rings so faded it's hard to tell if they're red or green anymore created by childhood hands just yesterday. The lovely crocheted stockings made by our elderly neighbor when our twins were born, an ornate dream-catcher from a former student, so many from former students. So glad I took the time to write their names and years on them as surely I wouldn't have been able to remember them all otherwise. The yellow-slickered fisherman from our trip to PEI is one of many ornaments picked up on memory-filled vacations. I hang the craftpaper Rudolph, plug in the stocking lamp, settle mini Mr. & Mrs. Santa into their rocking chairs. The hand-made picture collage/advent calendar is hung and I've set the Santa cookie plate onto its spot on the mantle. The Christmas book is on the shelf and the wonky elf has taken his place in the sleigh I made at a toll painting class many years ago. So many of our small treasures were gifts from our small children, bought at our local craft fair which was a yearly event in itself. I have fond memories of our children running around hiding what they had bought for each other when I knew it wouldn't be five minutes after we got home that they would have spilled the beans on all the goods they had gotten. I'll tell you if you'll tell me :)
As I place each of these treasures into their own spots I am flooded with emotion (again!) You see Christmas is one of those times of the year where it is about so much more than a "holiday". It is a season of memories past and a time to create more memories to add to those that already fill your heart. It is a time to treasure all life has given you and a time to celebrate all that life is. Time now to go off and make some Nanimo bars, Cyclops and Butter Tarts, wrap some gifts, tie up some loose ends on those gifts I'm making and then settle in and enjoy the sparkle that comes with Christmas.