Thirty Below

Well Hi, strangers.

I’ve finally had the chance to sit down and update you all. Today it was 25 below freezing and tomorrow weather reports are estimating it will likely be over thirty below with the wind-chill. Brrrr. I thought today would be a perfect opportunity to photograph a little tradition my grandmother started some years ago. She was given a grapefruit tree from her Aunt Linda after she passed. She decided that the grapefruit tree would become more than just a house plant; it was an opportunity to bring life and sparkle into the house while the cold Wisconsin winters murmured outside.

She began to decorate the grapefruit tree for Christmas, a theme of multi-cultural angels. Each year she would purchase more, and soon the tree was sprinkled with delicate porcelain figures. When visiting for the holidays, usually before even taking off my coat, I would run to the tree to try to identify the new angels for the year. Christmas would pass, but the magic and ambiance of that tree would continue, as she put away the angels and replaced them with wintery objects like snowflakes, icicles, and crystals. My family and I began to give her Swarovski crystal snowflake ornaments each year, to make the winter tree glisten in a way that only Swarovski crystal can. Such a beautiful sight, and a lovely reminder of the beauty in each season no matter how many layers you have to put on.

That tree has now passed to me, and I was delighted to carry on the tradition. At first, it was a difficult feeling, putting up the ornaments knowing that this was a duty I was now entrusted with. When putting up the angels I felt anxiety, as if I couldn’t do this poor tree justice. The crystals were different. For a moment I was able to relish in memories of my grandma, carefully selecting which items would hang from the delicate branches of that grapefruit tree. It brought me closer to those memories, and closer to her.

Perhaps the ease of that experience is an indicator of growth. I’ve been neglecting this blog since the holidays. That is largely due to the fact that I just needed some time. Time to prepare for the holidays, time to enjoy them. Time to reflect upon my year and strategize ways to be a better me. Time to let myself feel and do what I needed.

I feel like I’m approaching an exciting time in my life. I have a lot of goals that I want to achieve and finally possess the tools, or at least the building blocks, to put those goals into action. I look forward to sharing with you all my new discoveries and adventures as this year unfolds.

Enjoy the images of the grapefruit tree. ImageImageImage

2 Replies to “Thirty Below”

  1. JessyStoleYourRecipe says:

    Very lovely images, very lovely prose, very lovely sentiments

  2. mom says:

    I am cheered by your happy memories such as; identifying new angels while still in your coat, the beauty of each season no matter how many layers you have to put on, and the magic continues after the angels are put away. Thank you for carrying on your Grandma’s tradition! I like the 6 pt. star’s depth & reflecting blue lights complemented by the citrus leaves. Intersecting lines, contrasting blue light & clear crystal within geometric shapes of the 12 pt. crystal are fascinating. Wow! I love the twisting, curving tree with it’s soft, dazzling glow. It’s fun to look for individual crystals, & ornaments. I found the red & clear crystal!

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