Tuesday, November 30, 2010

singing to 'oh christmas tree' as we 'deck the halls.'


we ain't got snow, 
but we got us some christmas spirit.

i think i've been saying it over and over and over again, but it is so good to be home with my family for the holidays. and i'm not talking about flying in from Chicago a couple days before the 25th. i'm talking about being a part of ALL OF IT! this is such a gift. it's something i have longed for every single year. my heart would ache (i'm not exaggerating!) when i would remember our family traditions and i was disappointed that i couldn't be a part of the whole experience.

but this is a different year.

 
Sweet Shot Day
 

come on. don't tell me i'm the only one that likes to lay underneath the tree and look up at the lights? i used to do this with kristine when we were little. though it's a bit awkward to slide underneath it now, it's still fun and reminds me of childhood days.


i wish i could show you all the ornaments on our tree. pretty much every single one has a story. we've collected one a year since we were little kids, so it makes tree-decorating super fun. some seem so random when you look at them, but then once you hear the story, you're like oooooh, i see. there is the ornament from japan when we lived there - or the one i brought back from the Philippines - and even ashley's first ornament as a baby. when you look at our tree, it's almost like a peek back to our family's history. i love it so much.

do you have any cool family traditions? 
or is there one you want to start with your own family one day?

i'm especially fond of this tradition and hope to be able to carry it on with my own little family one day. maybe ryan and i can even start our collection next year when we share our first christmas as husband and wife! 

one quick thing:
oh, and don't forget to enter sweet shawni's giveaway if you haven't yet! 

[happy tuesday, friend!]

48 comments:

  1. I can't wait to start our own traditions! I'm so excited for that!

    I'm happy you get to be with your family :)

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  2. Love the Maligayang Pasko ornament. We have been doing the christmas eve dinner since my husband and I got married :) Would love to incorporate more though.

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  3. love love LOOOOOOVE your sweet shot tuesday pic girl!!! :D

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  4. oh man. this is such a warming post! <3

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  5. How incredibly sweet! I love that you collected all these ornaments over time. So special!

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  6. i love seeing all of the pictures of you and your family. you all look so happy and full of life, it's awesome. :)

    and christmas traditions are really the best!

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  7. Your tree is amazing! I love that each ornament has a special meaning. That's what I would love to do this from this year. It's my first Christmas being married :)

    And I want to start a tradition now!

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  8. Um, can your smile be any more precious? You are so adorable!

    I would be sad to be away from my family at this time of year, too. So glad it's worked out for you to be with them.

    P.S. I've never looked at the lights from underneath the Christmas tree.

    P.P.S.Your family looks fun.

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  9. We put up our tree this weekend too, but I don't think we had nearly the fun you did. Great pictures!
    bek

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  10. Beautiful pictures...looks like so much fun!

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  11. I know what you mean! I love being home for these types of traditions! your tree looks so great!

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  12. I think decorating the dog is a great tradition idea :) great pics :)

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  13. i love how close knit you all are. :D we have yet to put up our tree..haha

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  14. Your Chicago ornament totally inspired me (and, I admit, I kicked myself over this) but I should REALLY be grabbing ornaments from every place I travel. I kinda think that'd be a rather awesome tree! Our ornaments almost always have a story and have been collected since we were kids too -- makes decorating SO much fun!

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  15. Great photos...what a cute and fun family you all are!

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  16. What cute pictures! It's funny you mention laying under the tree with the lights on... I caught the hubs doing it when I got home from work last night. :)

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  17. what great photos! love them all! it makes me so excited to put up our tree.

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  18. I'm so excited about Christmas {which also happens to be my birthday}!

    We won't be putting up a tree this year because we're going up north to visit my grandparents...so sad. I'll definitely miss decorating the tree!

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  19. these pictures are so sweet! i love the tradition of one ornament every year...I should do that with this baby! :]

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  20. LOVE LOVE LOVE the pictures!!! I hope to start collecting a new ornament each year with my hubby (whom ever he may be! :P)

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  21. So much fun! We're going to cut down our Christmas tree this weekend!

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  22. 1. You are too cute for words!
    2. You take fabulous photos!
    3. That is one cute dog.

    Looks like so much fun!!

    http://ashleyanderic.blogspot.com

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  23. these photos are so fun!! i can't wait to put up our christmas tree :)

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  24. We are *hopefully* getting our tree this Friday and I can't wait to trim the tree!!! I love waking up in the morning and going into the living room and seeing all the beautiful decorations!!!!
    PS I loooooove your new blog header!! I have been meaning to tell you that but I keep forgetting! :p
    Have a wonderful Tuesday love!!!
    xo

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  25. Aww - the pictures are great - you have such a sweet family!
    Love the tree and the Chicago ornament!!! ;)

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  26. im excited to start our xmas tree tradition too!! were thinking of getting our baby girl an ornament even though she's not born until March :D

    Isn't it great just being around your family! We wont be able to make it back to midwest this year but hopefully next year!

    have a great week girlie!

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  27. LOVE!!! i really love the snowflake ornament around the pup's ear! :)

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  28. You guys are too cute! My mom gave me all of my old Christmas ornaments when I got married, and now I love sharing them with Mr. Deer! XX!

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  29. You guys are soo cute! And your tress is so gorgeous :) We didn't do a big "whole families gonna decorate" tree thing this year. We did it in spurts..lol..

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  30. such a fun post!!! and decorating the tree with the family is one of the best things!!

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  31. Oh my, these were so much fun!!!

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  32. Wow, you look like you were having so much fun! Great photos.

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  33. Loved every shot and your beautiful smile! Glad you are enjoying the season already :-)

    Blessings,
    Jill
    www.fnaphotography.blogspot.com

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  34. Hey Illene, YAY That's the way we have our tree. A hodge podge of ornaments but SO MANY memories. I think "theme" trees are pretty but just not as personal, at least to me! Love your photos! :-)

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  35. These are great pictures! So great to see a family decorating a tree together ;) I can't wait to decorate our tree this year! xo

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  36. I love the header. It might not be new, I've been so bad at keeping up with reading blogs, but I really like it!

    Also, what a fun way to spend time with your family! We used to decorate the tree together when I was younger, but now we're too grown up!

    And I agree, it's weird to think next Christmas I will be a wife!

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  37. Aw, I love photos like these! You look like you had a blast. And I adore your hat.

    Me and my sister go all out with the ornaments. I think we may run out of branches on the tree to put them on soon!

    xx

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  38. Love your pictures and what a fun tradition.

    We don't have decorating traditions, I wish we did. I do make Clam Chowder every Christmas eve and Cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning!

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  39. I LOVE your Chicago ornament!!! Where did you get it??

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  40. Awww such cute photos.. I love the Malgayang Pasko ornament.. my mom would LOVE that!! hee hee. :D

    I can't wait to put up our Christmas tree.. last year the hubby and I crafted our very own Chanel christmas tree.. I think we'll put the same one up.. yay!

    Hope you're having a lovely day!!!

    xx Love & Aloha

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  41. Looking at your photos just got me really excited for the holiday! Can't wait!

    xoxo,
    Dreaming of Palm Trees

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  42. you and your family are adorable! i am so glad you were able to spend the time with them this year.

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  43. I've been getting an ornament for the hubs and I and know for the dude every year. I'm hoping to build up a good memory ornament collection in the coming years! Love your family pics!

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  44. Where'd you get the Maligayang Pasko ornament!?! I have to get one!!

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  45. Aww, these are lovely photos!! We always have two Christmas trees, haha. One upstairs that my Mom decorates really nice, with lots of gold & whites (I should take a photo) and then one downstairs that has all of the ornaments we would make or get every year. Like our first Christmas, things like that.

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  46. oh my gosh I die over the filipino christmas ornament! Have you had a shower yet? My mom hosted a christmas shower for my hubs and I and all our guests brought ornaments and such for our first christmas together! I chose wrapping paper as a color swatch that she made a part of the invitiation so guests could match my theme!! :)
    p.s. Did you say an SC winter? We used to live in Columbia, but we moved to nc! We're neighbors!

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