Sunday, 13 December 2015

Christmas Forest

For all of you who are here to see quilts, there aren't any in this post.  I am hijacking my own quilting blog to talk about Christmas trees at the Running Thimble household. It's pretty serious business... we don't do just one... we like to do a forest.

Don't feel like reading a long post?  Just scroll down to the bottom if you just want to see my 2015 Christmas forest.

Otherwise, follow me while I am reminiscing...

Looking at my very first Christmas tree, you might not guess that I come from a long line of Christmas tree enthusiasts...    I mean, this is a pretty boring tree.  What was my mom thinking?  mmm... Probably had to do with the fact that she had two kids barely in school and a three-month.  Or maybe she was just trying to preserve her sanity before Santa came with a drum set and a play oven...

My First Christmas - quite oblivious to the Christmas Tree

Me?  I'm happy with a clown stuffy and oblivious to the ho-hum tree.

I can remember our trees being pretty standard in my early childhood.  All but one year, they were artificial, but by the 80s we began to add a village, and then a second tree, something my mom used to do with her own mother.

Here is one of the last "single" trees - from 1981.  Not a forest yet, but you can see where this is heading...

1981 -  How about that "baby doll" pajamas/nightgown...

Moving on to 1989 version, a renovation had left a very odd corner in our living room, a perfect place to set up the trees.  A funny story is that when the house was sold, the buyers bought without having seen what was on the other side of the trees because they showed up in December and wanted the house by early January.  There was no way these trees were coming down!


Notice the "sky" in the back...  We only did that for a few years before the house was sold, and I have been meaning to do one ever since.

Moving on to 1999.   I was now out on my own and decorated my own tree(s) but never thought of taking pictures.  I usually spent Christmas at my mom's and she would wait for me to put up her trees.  In this picture below, the nativity scene, the houses, the tree toppers are all from my grandmother's, as well as some of the ornaments.

At my mom's - 1999

A few years later, I was just dating my husband and he asked me if I wanted to put up the Christmas tree with him.   Hee hee hee... he had no idea what was about to happen!  Well, at least, it was full disclosure.  When he proposed a month later, he knew what he was getting into!

Fast forward a few years...



We don't have a picture of the 2006... but I have very specific recollection of the day we set up the forest.  We were decorating the trees until about 5:30 that afternoon, and my second child was born at 7:17pm ...

2007 someone's excited


The smaller tree (not counting miniatures) used to be decorated in blue green and silver, and the bigger one in red, gold and everything else.  By 2010, I have thee kids and they all love to make ornaments... the big tree is starting to get a little full... 


More kids ornaments!  I don't keep all their art projects, but Christmas ornaments?  Can't throw them out.


Yup, more kids ornaments! Most of them are quite sweet, some are really beautiful and others... well, they are all made with lots of love.

I decide it's time for another tree.  I moved the red and gold ornaments to another tree, and kept the kids ornaments and other family ornament in the middle.

My husband decides it's time for a train...


And the forest is growing...


I am officially a tree-a-holic.  We're taking over the living room!  I am no longer able to tuck in the train set....   I have also devised a solution to keep those lovely kids ornaments out of my forest without throwing them away...  Kids get their own Christmas tree!

2014 - kids get their own tree

They love to help, but I am not quite ready to give up control on the appearance of my forest, so the kid tree is a win-win situation.  I don't even care if the ornaments are all on one side, or only at their eye level!

Meanwhile in the living room... yup!  another tree.  I kept the coloured themes: red/gold, silver/blue and moved the green with some pink ornaments I somehow acquired.  The one on the far left looks a little bare, but that's because it is exclusively decorated with my grandmother's ornaments.


Which brings us to today...

I have a new tree - again, but only to replace one that is not in good shape.  I think I have pretty much reached my limit in terms of the number of trees but... I finally got around to do a "sky" like I've always wanted.  White lights, sheer blue curtains, and some batting to form the clouds.


And that, friends, is my 2015 Christmas Forest.  And see that empty space on the floor in front of the trees on the right?  Gotta leave some space for the presents, right?


  1. Wow. That must be a lot of work, but it looks awesome.

  2. It's beautiful! I showed my daughter and she was enchanted by the idea of a tree just for the children to decorate, I can see she may want her own tree next year...

  3. You are a dedicated Christmas tee-aholic! Makes me want to put up more than one... then I wouldn't have to rotate my colour schemes. I could have all of them! Please tell me you didn't put off going to the hospital in order to finish the forest...

  4. This makes me love you even more! Three cheers for multiple trees!

  5. How fun! I've never seen a Christmas forest before :o)


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