SH Sean Harding/blog
Honey, I decked the halls!
Monday, December 4th, 2006

It isn’t the Christmas music on the radio, nor the catalogs jamming our mailbox nor even the chaos at work that makes this season feel like Christmas. No, it’s our Christmas tree that makes things official to me. As of Saturday, our Christmas season is officially under way.

Saturday morning, we went to McLendon’s in Woodinville and bought our tree. Not only is it tall, but it’s impressively heavy. We strapped it to the top of Becky’s car, drove it home and then struggled mightily to get it into the stand. We finally succeeded, and we did it without any permanent injuries or damage to the house. I consider that a significant triumph. We could actually fit a much taller tree in our living room, but I don’t think we’d be able to get it set up without killing ourselves. Not worth it.

We didn’t end up actually decorating until Sunday. As you can see in the photo, we have a lot of ornaments. We didn’t even put all of them up this year. You might say we have a bit of an ornament problem. On the scale of problems, though, that isn’t such a bad one to have.

I’m not really much of a collector. When I was a kid, I had a few collections. I had a small coin collection, and for a while I collected police and fire department shoulder patches. But as I grew up, I grew out of those hobbies. The one collection I do still have is Hallmark Frosty Friends Christmas ornaments. That might seem like an unusual type of collection for me to have, but you’ll just have to come to terms with it. I’ve been building my Frosty Friends collection since my parents got me number two in the series in 1981, and it means a lot to me.

The 1981 igloo is still one of my favorite ornaments. I’ve been trying to get the 1980 edition (first in the series), but it’s pretty hard to come by. They do come up on eBay, but they go for hundreds of dollars and most are damaged. Some day I’ll bite the bullet and just buy one, but that time hasn’t come yet.

The 2006 limited edition above is a repaint of that original 1980 ornament. Hallmark makes a lot of special editions, “repaints” and other Frosty Friends paraphernalia to extract more money from collectors like me. It works.

This is the regular 2006 Frosty Friends ornament. I like it a lot. The marshmallows are browned on the bottom, which is a nice touch. It would have been cool if they made the flames light up, but they seem to reserve that kind of thing for special editions.

For example, here is one of my favorite special editions. It has a clip in the bottom to insert a light, so it glows. Nifty!

When Becky and I go on trips, we like to get an ornament to commemorate it. This one is from our first trip to Lake Tahoe together, before we were married. Does it look like us?

We got this one on our honeymoon in Maui. In Maui, they sell just about anything you can think of with the phrase “Just Mauied” on it. Kinda cheesy, but we couldn’t resist. At the bottom of the photo, you can also see the tiny Mickey Mouse ears ornament we got when we were at Walt Disney World last month.

A few years ago, Becky started getting me a fire engine ornament every year. So I guess that technically makes two ornament collections (three if you count the vacation ornaments). Don’t tell anyone! The one above is this year’s fire engine, and it’s my favorite of the series so far. They all have a sound or light effect. This one’s headlights come on and the red lights flash.

Of course, no ornament blog can end without mentioning this beaut. Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without Dwight in his elf ears.

So, yes, we’re ornamentaholics. We’re not in denial — we accept it, and we choose to live with it. And if you’re going to be our friends, you’re just going to have to live with it too.

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