The Beauty is in the Eye of the Ornament

Lost Mule Lodge

… a journey that began with a cabin in the woods


“Please be very, very careful with this one, it was your mommies very first Christmas ornament.” – his eyes got wide as he carefully held out both hands – it was like he was lifting a baby bird.

Has it been 4 years or 5 since we opened this box of Christmas ornaments?

After several years of stringing lights on the cedar outdoors and calling it our Christmas tree – we were finally able to have an indoor tree again.

Upon carefully unpacking the ornaments it became clear to me that our long awaited tree was not going to be one of those glamorous, sought after trees with the beautifully crafted, sparkling ornaments.  You know the ones that stop you in your tracks and make you take a deep breath and sigh….


Instead we were sharing with our future generation our most precious keepsake ornaments.  Most these ornaments have accumulated tiny marks and scars from little hands over many December moons.



For our sons first Christmas we let him pick out his very own ornament.  There may have been a hundred ornaments on the store display.

But the minute he saw it he loved it and he insisted on holding it throughout the store – by the time we got home the body was missing and the head had multiple puncture wounds from his tooth.

It was difficult to tell if it was a happy clown or a sad clown.  It just looked kind of scared.

These look like something you might find in a dumpster.  But, the value on these ornaments to us?  Priceless.


This little sleeping mouse was our daughters prized possession on her first Christmas.  When she turned 2 she learned that when you color on a styrofoam cup and bake it – it becomes a treasured masterpiece.


We continued the tradition of the kids getting a unique ornament each year.  The Christmas Moose with the tennis racket and the Hiking Santa with the backpack.  They all hold unique and special memories – but only to us.



Had anyone else gone through these boxes of old ornaments – they would have kept the pretty ones and gotten rid of these old things.

Just the opposite of what we have done.  Our keepers had long lost their external sparkle.

One day we hope these will be hung by the hands of yet another generation.  When you keep something for this long, you just hope someone else can see the beauty in the eyes of that scared little clown.


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All photos, thoughts, experiences and opinions are my own.

Copyright © Lost Mule Lodge 2016 All Rights Reserved


  1. Molly

    Everyone is in a rush to discard or pass on those keepsakes you save for so long…after decorating my parents tree this year with my own children, I would say keep them just a little longer. While I laughed and remembered as we hung the old, ugly ornaments growing up, it never meant as much as it did to me this year, sharing those with my own children. Thank you Mom & Dad for starting the tradition, and for saving each one for 40 years!

  2. Maddy

    Memories of Christmas past and making memories for Christmas future….that IS what Christmas is all about…..thankyou for sharing these very special memories with us!

  3. Becky myers

    Your chewed up priceless clown is not scared or sad. 35+ years ago the clown was trying to figure out his premonition of being featured in a futuristic blog. Now that his premonition has happened he can relax and blissfully hang on your tree with his beloved ornament friends. Once again your photography and words make me smile and reflect.

  4. Mary Kay

    Your pictures and words make the memories come alive. Your tree has soul and that’s what makes it beautiful.

    I have a felt Santa that my mom made. He always had to be front and center on our tree. Now every Christmas that’s where you find him on my tree 🙂


      Mary Kay – how awesome that you kept that felt Santa! And I love that he gets center stage on your tree. You are such a minimalist – he must be very special that he is still here!! Love you!

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