Sunday, December 11, 2011

25 Days of Christmas and Holiday Series: Day 11

A Collection of Captured Visits With Santa
a Silver Jingle Bell Frame

I knew the moment that I decided to put together this 25 Days Christmas and Holiday Ideas and Gift Series, that I was going to share some treasured traditions from my own Christmases.  Today, I want to share an idea with you that is close to my heart, along with a little mini-project too.

Every year since the birth of my first child, I have faithfully taken my kids to the traditional Santa & Me activity.  You know the to mall with kids dressed in their finest for a visit with Santa and a picture on his lap?  Somewhere along the way, my sister and I developed the added tradition of buying a discounted frame in the frenzy of after Christmas sales.  Before packing away the collection with the Christmas decorations, we would place the current year's photo into the new frame...and so on throughout the years.  All of us enjoy decorating the Christmas tree, but I have to admit that bringing out these individually framed images of my kids throughout the years is the highlight of my decorating. 

Some of the images are hysterical.  Like the one of my daughter at 2 years old crying her eyes out while sitting with a very pleased older brother on Santa's lap!  I have found over the years that these photos do something even more important...they have documented the amazing years that I have had as a mother with these two awesome kids!   

I still make them go take them with with total disgust and embarrassment excited anticipation to the mall for these photos.  I know...I know, it sounds cruel.  After all, they are teens.  Just rest assured that we go on off hours to make sure that none of their friends see them! The agreement is that when they reach 18 or graduate from high school, their time is over.  They get a great meal out of it, a kick out of seeing the babies cry and a few laughs along the way.  I surmise that they will look back and miss this time.  I know I will.  (I have to tell you that, after a few years hiatus, my sister's 22 year old, 6 foot 4 inch son returned this year to Santa's lap for a fun loving, hysterical picture.) 

When I was unpacking the framed memories, I noticed that I didn't have last year's image framed.  I cannot remember why I didn't buy one.  So, I thought it only fit that since this is the inaugural year of The Homeless Finch, why not put something together with what I already have?  So here is what I did.
I looked through a box of old frames and found this tarnished silver frame. Perfect! I dragged out a few things, including the Dollar Store ornaments that I used in blog post #8, Metallic Ornament Wreath.    

In the end, I decided to use the silver jingle bells.  I simply glued four of them across the top using Gorilla Glue, added a shiny silver bow.  Here it is standing among so many other memories.  

Where did all the years go?  How did that little crying 2 year old girl grow up so fast?  How is it that my son's time on Santa's lap is coming to a close?  It's been like a whisper in time and it's almost over.  I am so fortunate to have captured those moments on a few fleeting photographs placed in fun and whimsical frames throughout the years. 

I wanted to share this idea with you guys.  I don't know what stage each of you are at with raising kids, but I was hoping that at least one of you would get a kick out of this and try it out for yourself!   

My kids will continue to grow up and move on...but my memories of these cherished years will greet me each year as I crack open the boxes of decorations...
Don't forget to come back tomorrow for my
Day 12 of
25 Days of Christmas and Holiday Ideas and Gifts Series!!

-The End-
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Grammy Goodwill said...

What a great tradition you have going there. I bet those pictures are so heart-warming. (I only have a few like that - and they include a crying little sister with a happy big brother. I wonder if Santa knows anything about that?)I miss those days. Sigh.

WrightStuff said...

Oh what a lovely post! Christmas is full of treasured memories. I remember going to see Santa in Selfridges when I was about 18! I think he was a bit shocked but I loved it - I think I've still got the picture somewhere - i was wearing a shocking Christmas jumper.
I remember the first time my son saw Santa he was terrified!

Vickie @ Ranger 911 said...

I love that idea and will pass it on to our daughters who are both new mothers. It was our tradition to take a photo greeting card picture every Christmas. As the girls got older, they hated it! Now it has come full circle and they are making their own photo greeting cards. Ha!

Shortbread and Ginger said...

Looks great!
Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger

Teresa@1800 Farmhouse Rd said...

I love the silver frame! But, I also love that you still take your children to have their picture made with santa! And at least your a decent enough mom to go in the off hours, to avoid the humiliation, lol. I just love it! Someday they will look back and appreciate it, and know that it is done out of love.

tofubeast said...

Well, you already know where I stand re: Santa pics as I got the first two now to look at! My mom did the same with me, and so it continues. Love the jingle bell frame and how you display all those pics!

Cassie Bustamante said...

i love this idea of being able to look at all of the changes over the years... so fun!

Twice Nice said...

OOOh, I do this one already!! I've told my 3 girls that they will be visiting Santa and getting their picture taken until they turn at least 21, and I don't want to hear any whining about it. I so love looking at the changes in them over time. Deb

Deneen@dreaming-n-color said...

I just put mine out the other day too! They become more and more the best decoration for me. I'll be posting mine too. Thanks for the peek into Christmas past.

Robin said...

What a cute idea! I remember doing the same with my son and daughter (26 and 23 now) although my daughter refused to have anything to do with Santa when she was a toddler! Thanks for visiting my blog and enjoy having your children home with you. It happens so quickly and then they're gone! Merry Christmas!

Robin Flies South

Rosemary@villabarnes said...

Great memories Lesley. Of course I love the silver jingle bells.

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