Readers Write: Favorite Christmas Tree Ornaments

Ann Hutchins
The whirligig ornament takes me back to being five-years-old (early 1960s) and watching it spin from the heat of the big old lights on the tree. Now I have to find a place on the tree where sunshine might find it, to make it whirl! There were four of these, one for each of us children, in 4 different colors.

Joann Kilgus
My good friend Sharon Waller Bergseth gave me this ornament years ago. It is from Door County and hangs on my desk in the living room to remind me of my good friend.

Kathleen Harris
In the 1950s, the bell hung on one of Mom & Dad’s first Christmas trees. Santa? Mom bought Santa for me when we visited Door Co in 1986, just before I was married. I had never been to Door County but she and Dad honeymooned here in 1953. Little did I know that within a few years I would move to Door County to work at The Ridges Sanctuary. Finally, in the upper right hangs one of Mom’s dangly earrings from the 1970s. Ladies – a new way to enjoy your costume jewelry!

Paul Jones
My family has been a part of Ephraim for six generations now, my spiritual home since my second month on earth. Ephraim, forever gentle on my mind.

Linda Carey
It was fun to look over our tree and try to pick out the ornaments I liked best. As you can see, I couldn’t pick out just one.

I purchased the crocheted snowflake about twenty years ago because it reminded me of the kind of tatting work my grandmother, Dana Hogenson Knudson, used to do. Grandmother was born in Ephraim but her father came from Norway. Editor’s Note: Plan to check out the impressive lace display in the Anderson Store, once the museums reopen. While there, ask to see the tatting shuttles!

This ornament was my mother’s, Mally Knudson Mayhew, when she was a child. I used to have four of them but one by one they either broke or the clamps stopped working. This is the only one I have left. It’s very faded but is a memory of my mother. She was born in Ephraim in 1907, so you know this little Santa is pretty old.

My mother gave me several glass birds that had been on her Christmas tree as a child. Sadly, one by one they got broken. Having this newer silver-colored bird, with a real looking tail, makes me feel like I haven’t lost all those old treasures.

I think I’ve had this little bicycle about 45 years. It reminds me of the kind of bicycle my father, Tom Mayhew, had when he learned to ride a bike.

My mother made the egg shell ornament in the early 1960s. She had seen them in a magazine and they had an exorbitant price tag, so she made several herself. Editor’s Note: Look carefully at the couple inside the ornament. Note the swing skirt and the mustachioed gent. Perhaps these represent Linda’s parents, Mally and Tom who met on a triple blind date. Mally, a nurse, was not that interested in going on a date after a long work day. “Can he dance?” she asked her two room mates. “He teaches ballroom dancing,” they answered. The rest is history!

My cousin, Eunice Seiler Rutherford, made this felt candle ornament. It is in the style of the beeswax candles used at the Ephraim Moravian Christmas Eve church service. How beautiful the little church looks when the lights are dimmed and we carefully raise flickering candles while singing Stille Nacht!

I bought the wax angel when we lived in Texas about 58 years ago. Her wings are little bent and the wax on her face isn’t quite as perfect as it used to be, but I still love her. Click here to find out how to make wax Christmas ornaments.

A childhood friend, Joani Lewis, made the handmade felt bird, trimmed with all sorts of sequins. I still know and see Joani often. I told her the other day that it was still on my tree and she couldn’t believe I still had it. She gave it to me when we were both living in Evanston, Illinois. That was over 55 years ago!

The little English cottage is filled with balsam needles. Once, it smelled wonderful. The needles are still in there but, after forty years, there’s no longer any fragrance!

Thank you, friends, for joining us on this nostalgic look at favorite Christmas ornaments.
Submitted by Kathleen Harris, EHF Educator

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