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The Santa Tree

by Vonda Gordon, Design Assistant

This is not about having multiple Christmas Trees, even though I am one of those people. I won’t get into how many trees, but there are a few. I have one that has only Santa ornaments. Why? It is best to start from the beginning.
I did not start out as a multi-tree person. My husband and I started out with a sweet little 12-inch beauty from Dollar Tree. I also spent two dollars on two packs of mini ornaments. We still have that tree, the tiny red bows and the tiny red balls coupled with all the fond memories from our early days together.
It was that first Christmas as a married couple we decided to purchase a yearly ornament. We wound up buying Santas. My husband chose the first one and surprised me with it. That Santa’s body is shaped like a ball and he holds a tree in one hand and a star in the other. He sat on display in our den. I loved that Santa then and even more now.
We continued to get a Santa each year. They are all different. Their colors vary from red, green, white or even multi-colored. Some of the fellows are traditional, others are contemporary, and some are Father Christmas-like. All that really unites them is that they are all Santas. None ever made it to the big tree (we did graduate to one of those). They have always been a separate display. For years we lined them up in order and put the newest addition front and center. It was nice to see a representation of the growing number of years we spent together.
Last year we accumulated 22 Santa ornaments. They no longer looked like a collection. They looked like a jumbled mess of ornaments on a shelf. That somehow defeated the celebration they represented. We wanted to keep them separate from the other decorations but still have them together. So, I spotted a discounted deal. It was a skinny, pre-lit, cashmere tree that came in a pretty decorative pot. It would fit nicely in this little corner of my living room. I shared the idea with my husband, and he helped load it in the car and set it up!
The Santas are no longer in order, but they are together. The newest one is near the top. I visited Dollar Tree again and bought a few branches of red berries to fill in spaces. Now we have a Santa tree. We look forward to many more Christmases and to the many more Santas.
What does mushy sentiment and excessive trees have to do with decorating? There are a couple of things. One is you don’t have to give up personal items when you decorate. They are what make the décor warm and unique. No one really wants to live in a store. The second take-away is that you should group items with a similar feature. For example, a common frame unites different kinds of pictures. Or, a collection of different items made from the same metal look good together.
That said, Merry Christmas, have fun decorating and don’t judge the tree people!
Here are pictures of the Santa Tree and this year’s Santa.

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