Thursday, December 11, 2008

Our Elva tree.

Our Christmas tree used to be done in all silver and crystal. I it was beautiful, but to my husband it lacked character. He had grown up with a tree with all sorts of decorations that the kids had made or what ever his Mom would buy at the base. It had charm to it, but I didn't really love it. I still lacked something.

My Mom always had a matching tree. It was always pretty. The down side of that though, is what ever ornament you thoughtfully made at school, wouldn't be placed on the tree....(unless you hid it in the back) So naturally when I got to be old enough to have a tree of my own, I had grand plans of a beautiful coordinated tree. I did a country craft tree for a few years until I found the prettiest silver set of Christmas glass balls. Then that became my tree afterward.

Well, Jeff requested about 4 years ago if we could just try having a mish mash tree. It was only fair. I also was getting stuff the girls made in school and they always would go on the tree, but they were throwing off the perfect balance.

He really changed my mind when he asked me if I had any memory of having a colorful tree. I had to only think for a second before my beloved Grandma Elva sprang to mind. She was my Great Grandma and if there ever could be a candidate for sainthood this woman would have been it hands down. I could go on and on of her perfections, but what I will talk about is her love of color. Her house to the outside eye would appear to be tacky. She had orange and white striped wall paper with brown flowers on one wall and a different paint color on the others. All of her furniture was different colors too.

So when her tree would go up, it was so fun and whimsical. It had bubble lights and other different shapes of lights in all different colors. The ornaments were an assortment of things their kids had made or things they had collected over the years. When we would go to their house, which was often, I would just sit in the chair and stare at the tree. I thought if Santa has a tree, this is what it would look like. Ahhh, memories.

That inspired me to go ahead with what I like to call the "Tacky Tree" It's bright, colorful, and filled with new and vintage ornaments. I like to collect the 40's-60's era of ornament. I settle for recreations too. Before I buy an ornament I think, "Would I see this on Grandma's tree?" If it's a yes, I buy it. I know that people may look down on my tree for not being sophisticated and styled, but in my mind it is. It's Elva styled, and I don't think you can do better than that!

I can never seem to get a picture that shows it off all the way. I think I need to study my camera manual more. The tree has about 800 lights on it. Since the tree is a real one, that's as strait as we could get it. I still love it.

Abbey and Lindsay do most of the decorating on their own. We do move stuff around afterward though. Don't most parents?

You can see Bruce's ear in the corner of the shot. He's on my lap.

My mom got me these trees last year. I wanted more color for my tacky display. It also creates the perfect scape for the Santa Abbey made. I made the wreath on the stand this year too.

I hope you enjoyed my lovely Elva inspired decorations. Jeff wants me to show his Christmas village in a post sometime. Maybe I will do that next.


SuzanSayz said...

Heidi, that is one of the finest Grandma Elva trees I have ever seen.
I also love how all those little dollar store trees turned out in your display. Please tell Abbey that Grandma loves her cute little Santa that she made. You really do need to put pictures of your Christmas villiage on here. It was so darling last year!

Mike Brinkerhoff said...

I can't wait to see the Christmas Village. When I was a kid, I was always in charge of setting up our Christmas Village. It wasn't like the fancy (and stupid-expensive ones) you see now in stores, where most people can only afford one piece per year... It was made up of little, cardboard houses, stores and a church, and they had red plastic for windows, that glowed so beautifully.

I really want a Christmas Village of my own now, but our house is severely lacking in flat surfaces upon which to construct a village.

I love your tree this year, I ALWAYS think Christmas Trees should be like Grandma's was... It's about the JOY of Christmas, not the STERILE, MICROMANAGED, OCD of Christmas...

Lisa said...

Oh how I wish I could have known your Grandma Elva! I am so glad that Elisabeth's name is able to honor her :)

I love you tree. I like them when they are random and colorful. Ours is decorated with hodgepodge too. But I do like to put on a lot of the shiny glass bulbs because they help reflect the light and make the tree even sparklier!

One of these days I'll post a "tree 2008" pick.

Oh yes, and your little tree display on your bookcase is perfect! Those tree's remind me of art that my grandfather would have drawn.

Merry Christmas!

Jan said...

That is so cool Heidi. I love how you attached such a great lady to the tree. She sounds so lively and fun. And colorful. Really great job that you are doing over there.

Whitaker Family said...

I love your story behind your tree! I laughed when you mentioned how the homemade ornaments the kids made got stuck on the back of the tree :). I have been guilty of that, but I now hang them proudly in the front :). Beautiful tree!

The Donald said...

Actualy before Mom went all orderly on us with the Christmas tree, we could hang stuff on it. I remember hanging something I made from school right next to the 'Texas' ornament that Aunt Clara had given us. Shortly after that she regimented it.

Anonymous said...

I love the tree, it is the most beautiful display of fun! Merry Christmas to you all, our thoughts and prayers are with you! Doni

Janice Head said...

I have put up with a "hodge podge" tree for years. This year, Miranda, inspired by the beautiful trees at Tri City Retirement Inn, would like to have a "beautiful" tree. I bought all gold matching stuff before we had kids, and can't wait to put it on the tree. I am hoping that decorating a "beautiful" tree will become a fun mother daughter tradition in the future.

Jeanette said...

I love the tree. I love the story behind it too. I have a dressy tree in the family room, but I thought that maybe next year I'll add an additional tree-a fun tree just for the kids with all sorts of ornaments. That's IF I have the energy to add one more thing to my holiday to-do list. ;)