This year is the first time I have a real, grown up Christmas tree. Not your sad Charlie Brown Christmas tree but a genuine, artificial (that’s not contradictory is it?) taller-than-me tree! I’ve been wanting to buy one since we moved last winter, but packing up with a 6 month old and a 4 year old and then UN-packing is no joke. I knew better than to add to the craziness and told myself to wait until the following year.
Fast forward to this year, but again my tree project had to take a backseat, this time to a Thanksgiving family vacation. For a while the focus became on how we’d survive our first trip with TWO kids (and all their associated gear). “Oh well, there’s next year,” I thought to myself. “Just wait for the after Christmas sales and buy one then.” I figured I could just put up the cute four foot tree that I bought a few years ago for Photo Book Boy (who was then Photo Book Baby) – or I might not even bother.
Well, I made the mistake of going to the local craft store last week however and before I knew it, I’d bought a nine-foot tree and all the trimmings. I couldn’t resist the 50% off. With mostly floor samples left there wasn’t going to be much inventory for the after Christmas sales I was anticipating.
I dragged the box into the house and enlisted the hubby’s help. He gave me this kind of grinchy look and muttered, “I’m not storing this thing.” (Admittedly, I kind of have a lot of things. But I swear I’m not a hoarder…)
“Well, I guess we’ll just leave it up year round so you don’t have to store it!” I replied with a hopefully convincing smile.
I already have plans to decorate it for Chinese New Year. No joke. Maybe make a bunch of hearts with the kids to hang for Val’s Day? Why not? Then there’s St. Patrick’s Day. I do love the color green. Here’s an initial shot of my tree. It’s not finished yet cause I don’t have much time to work on it unless the kids are asleep so I have to do it bit by bit…
So why am I boring you with my story about buying a Christmas tree? Well, you can’t try out this first holiday photo tradition without one!
Photos Around the Christmas Tree
Ever since I saw this photographer’s pin on Pinterest, I’ve been wanting to give Chubby Cheek Photography’s Christmas tree photography tips a try. I created a board on Pinterest called, “Photos I’d Like to Recreate Someday” for the purpose of bookmarking inspirational images or tutorials or like hers. I’m happy to say I’ve actually followed through on several of the images I’ve pinned. This one is very timely and is next on my list!
Aren’t her images lovely? Classic. I love the sense of wonderment she’s captured and I enjoyed reading how this has become a Christmas photo tradition for her family. She gives great tips as to how she takes these photos. I hope I can get similar results!
At the same time I picked up our new Christmas tree, I spied some Santa hats. Did you catch my post on ideas for your own Christmas card photos? I thought my friend did a great job styling the shoot.
Santa hats instantly lend a festive touch and I found them for cheap (only a couple dollars each). I bought one for every one in the family and figure when friends and extended family come over for the holidays it will be fun to use them.
In addition to Santa hats, you can find reindeer antlers, elves’ hats etc. etc… I’ve also been seeing giant ornaments like the ones in my friend’s photos at big box retailers like Home Depot. All of these can add a little holiday spirit to your pics!
Recreate an Old Family Photo
Earlier this year, my cousins, my brother and I recreated a photo from 30 years ago. We didn’t even plan it ahead of time – if we did we probably could have gotten our clothes more on point but it was fun nonetheless.
Pull out a few of those old cherished pictures and pick one to recreate at Christmas. It will be a fun break from stuffing your face with all those holiday treats. I have a bunch of other links with inspiration along these lines at my earlier post. Plus here’s a new similar post from the TinyPrints blog with funny old photo re-creations. I love that these photos are just everyday snapshots. You can totally do this! Photos courtesy of TinyPrints.
Designated Photographers – Get In the Picture!
Are you the one always taking the pictures? Are you never in any of the photos because of it? This last idea is not so much an idea as it is a reminder to make sure to get in some of the holiday snapshots. Photos, especially at holiday time are all about capturing memories and preserving family histories. Make sure you aren’t missing from that!
Share Your Photo Traditions
Do you have any family photo traditions? Are you planning to try any of these? I’d love to hear! Please share below…