Traditions

This Christmas has been an emotion roller coaster for me as I reminisce Christmas memories and focus on creating new Christmas traditions with Jeff.  Doubtful I’ll get through writing this without becoming a sappy mess.

Growing up my Mom made sure my sister and I had perfect Christmas memories.  We grew up making more cookies than our neighborhood could eat, stringing popcorn and cranberry garland, visiting Santa at my grandpa’s Masonic Lodge, driving to downtown Columbus to see the lights, decorating the tree and waking up to a living room full of presents on Christmas morning.  I’m sure it was very similar to our friend’s Christmas, but it was magic to me.  This picture cracks me up… not sure why I was shooting my sister a stern look.

When Jeff and I were raising our little family, I was either really into Christmas or the biggest ba-humbug in history.  I never felt that I could live up to my expectations and was exhausted before I even attempted to gear up for Christmas.  Somehow, we managed to create a few traditions that stuck over the years.  We made cookies (always buckeyes), hunted and cut down the perfect tree, decorated the tree, topped the tree with a lift from Dad, and a new pair of pajamas on Christmas Eve.  Most years the kids opened all their presents before Christmas because Jeff and I simply could not wait.   Cutting the tree became an all day event, as I insisted on hunting the tree farm until I found the perfect tree, regardless of the weather.  As the kids got older, the traditions were for my benefit.  Yep, the kids were having a blast!

The year before we all flew the coop…. oh boy, did the years fly by.

Over time, I experienced my favorite traditions in other ways.  Like the year my sister and I baked cookies with my Grandma.

My Mom now makes Christmas cookies with Emily, my daughter and her friends.

Emily and Jacob (daughter and son-inlaw) have started their own traditions, including cutting down a tree from our favorite tree farm.  Emily posted to Facebook, “We got a Christmas tree. I was channeling my mom and made us walk all the way to the back of the tree lot, in the cold to find the “perfect” tree. Good memories.”  LOVE that girl!

I LOVE the smile on her face!

Last year Jeff got to place the star on the top of our tree for the first time.

This year I went shopping alone for our trees (yes I said trees, meaning two for our house and five for The Coop) and bought them from a big box hardware store.  GASP!  After all these years I discovered that I can get seven trees for the price of one.  However, it will never have the same magic.

This year Jeff and I started a few new traditions.  He joined me in making buckeyes.

We went to see The Nutcracker at The Festival Institute in Round Top.  Jeff and his mother, Ginger, had never seen The Nutcracker.  None of us had experienced The Festival Institute.  Wow!

This was my first year to decorate The Coop.  I honestly enjoyed transforming The Coop, making ornaments and hosting Christmas At The Coop.  I look forward to Rocking Around The Coop next year.  Great memories to build new traditions upon!

I miss the traditions of my childhood and the ones Jeff and I created with our kids.  It is heartwarming to watch my adult children maintain some old traditions, while creating their own.  Jeff and I have whittled down the traditions in our empty nest and have enjoyed a slower paced holiday.  I’m insisting we wait until Christmas morning to open our gifts, a first for us.

The traditions are fun, but it’s the people I created them with that is priceless.  I’m so grateful for a rich life filled with family and friends!

May your holiday season be full of joy!  In the midst of a hectic season, I pray that you savor time with loved ones and make memories to last you all year long!

~Tiffany

And the birds fluttered around her writing, “YES” in the sky!

 

Acquiescence

source unknown

~A reminder for me to surrender to the journey and trust.

Sentimental

While most people are busy dashing from one holiday event to another, I find myself curled up in our “empty” nest decorated for two and thinking about the journey.  This year had unexpected bends in the road.  I wonder what 2014 will bring?  It feels good to be still, enjoying our first Christmas tree at FTC headquarters and establishing new traditions for the two of us.

I am excited that Flown The Coop has settled into a nice routine of quality shows and feel blessed beyond measure with customers who have become friends this year!

Even though Jeff and I have “flown the coop”, we are grounded by our expanding family!  We are having fun planning our daughter’s wedding in 2014 and getting to know our son’s girlfriend and her son.

“If you aren’t in the moment, you are either looking forward to uncertainty, or back in pain and regret.”  Jim Carrey

I am determined to not allow the mountains Jeff and I had to climb this year wear me out.  Cancer, a stolen trailer and other various disappointments slowed me down a little.
Cherishing the relationships in my life and enjoying rest in December will rejuvenate me.

If I live the life I’m given, I won’t be afraid to die.  ~Avett Brothers

There is no way to predict which way the road will bend in 2014, the uncertainty is both scary and thrilling.  Life is a journey.

I’ve spent time researching trends, dreaming of projects to undertake and looking at what worked in 2013.  When it comes down to it, I know this journey is best traveled simply pursuing what I love.  I envision “Road Work Ahead” signs along the way.  And that’s ok.

I love being the author of my job description and pursuing new ways to connect with junque and the lovers of junque.  I love deep roots in family and strong friendships.

source unknown

I hope to be known as a person surrendered to LIVE the journey given me, despite the unexpected bends in the road.  I will reread this post mid year and see where I stand.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Hope your December is filled with the warmth of your relationships and traditions.  I also hope that 2014 will be the beginning of an excellent adventure!  Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.  Fly free!

~Tiffany

And the birds fluttered around her writing “YES” in the sky!

 

 

 

Supporting our friends this holiday season

Now here’s an idea:

Not sure who exactly to give credit for the picture… but was so happy to see a friend share it from Let’s Paint Facebook page.  

Got me thinking!

This is not just a shop local campaign, but an idea worth sharing.

Let’s use the next couple months to think about our holiday gift list in a new way!

Who on your list has a small business, product or an amazing talent?  Why not support them by sharing their product or talent with your extended network of friends on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or an other forums?

Our network of friends are seriously the best recourse in the world!  If you are on the hunt for gift idea, ASK your friends on Facebook for ideas.  I bet they know someone (or someone they know will know someone) with that perfect item!

So Let’s Share

We all have incredibly talented friends with Facebook pages, Pinterest Boards, Etsy shops or websites worth checking out for holiday gift ideas.  I got to thinking that it would be fun to share resources here at Flown The Coop.  So… let’s get the party started!

Post a comment with a link to your friend’s Facebook page, Pinterest Board, Etsy shop or Website.  Let us know why you think they are a great gift resource.

And then share this list!  

Here’s to supporting our friends in business!!!!

~Tiffany