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10 Unexpected Treasures

Found in my Christmas Tree

(that aren’t ornaments!)

My Christmas tree is THE most sentimental thing I put up all year long. It houses ornaments from all our trips, gifts from special friends and family and remberances from our and our children’s childhood.

Full confession: It’s also a home for a lot of things I didn’t know what else to do with! My aunt introduced me to the idea of using unexpected things as decorations in your tree when she added small books onto one of her trees.

And I have elevated that idea to another level…with results that make me smile year after year. It has become a holiday commandment of sorts: If you don’t know what to do with it…put it on the Christmas tree!

Here are 10 Unexpected Treasures found in my tree this year.

Mr Pickle was a toy from the hubs childhood. He protects the tree every year along with his friends Dudley the Dog (also the hubs), Rudolph the Reindeer (a gift from my dad once upon a time) and the Pony every girl dreams of (from my sweet friend Andi).

The same sweet friend who gave me the Pony also adoped her first daughter from China. Before Olivia came home, we hosted a baby shower and these tiny take-out boxes were filled with favors. Now, 15 years later, this little reminder is of those days filled with waiting and the final journey home.

Occasionally the hubs surprises me with a little gift that warms my heart. This tiny book of 101 Things I Really Mean when I Say I Love You is extra-special from a man of very few words. And every year when I get it out I remember that there really are a lot of ways to say I love you.

My stepson’s first car required a memorial. It was a Mazda 3 WAGON, of all things (I was not involved in the process of buying it). It was affectionately nicknamed the Swaggin’ Wagon and will perhaps one day grace his own tree. If I can part with it.

My great-aunt Evelyn was a big reader like me and also a very well-travelled lady. I don’t have many things that she gave me but I carefully keep a book of poetry and this wooden doll, who’s origins I unfortunately can’t remember. Except that she was a gift from a much-loved aunt.

When my friend Meli got married, we made the trip back to North Carolina to share in her happiness. She may live far away from me now… with her hubs and now a beautiful little girl, but this tiny reminder always makes me smile and remember our friendship.

My grandparents had so many lovely friends that I grew up being spoiled by. One of these ladies was a hobby ceramics painter. This tiny letter opener was one of her beautiful gifts and now graces my tree with her delicate artwork.

We lost our sweet Lucy a few months ago (I’m tearing up as I type this). She was such a special part of our family for a decade and I couldn’t imagine Christmas without her. So this ornament I crafted (with some help from Shutterfly and this lovely Etsy vendor) will keep her collar and tags with us always.

If you have never participated in a Color Run you should put it on your bucket list. It is amazing fun and even though I wasn’t much of a runner when I finally checked it off my list, this little unicorn keychain is a reminder of a very fun day.

Do you have any little Christmas decorations that you don’t know quite where to put? I have several little windchimes that got lost in the rest of my Christmas decor. So they made their way onto my tree. And they make a sweet little chime when I turn on the revolving tree stand.

Hope you are inspired to add some unexpected items to your own Christmas tree!

It is such an amazing way to save little sentimental treasures. And every year when you put them on the tree you are reminded of fun times and the wonderful people who have impacted your life.

Happy Decorating!


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