Monday, December 15, 2014

Ornament Nostalgia, Day 2

Mt. Rushmore, South Dakota.
Today our Christmas tree reminded me that it's time to go on vacation, or at least to do a better job purchasing ornaments when on the road. Judging from our tree, we haven't been out of our neighborhood in nearly six years.

Steamboat Springs,
This is, of course, not (entirely) the case, but it does reflect the fact that my wife and I used to do a much better job picking up Christmas-time tchotchke while away. Over the course of three summers, my family and I not only went on vacation, and while away, picked up oddly similar tree ornaments commemorating the occasions. I don't recall having done so consciously, but we had begun a homemade series of ornaments, each with a poorly drawn image (especially in Gloucester, see below) framed with inexpensive faux gold.

In August 2006, my wife, stepson and I went west, as I competed with my brother-in-law and his friends in the Wild West Relay from Laramie, Wyoming to Steamboat Springs, Colorado. While some of us were alternating legs of the 192 mile run from point A to point B, my wife and in-laws drove to Steamboat where the run concluded.

Gloucester, Virginia.
After visiting one brother, we headed south the following summer, spending part of June 2007 with my other brother-in-law in Gloucester, Virginia, where he and his wife live. As in the past, we took advantage of Gloucester's advantageous location around many historical sites to check out some US history, and I believe we picked up this ornament (right) while touring the Jamestown Settlement.

In July 2008, we drove cross-country back to Wyoming, this time taking a southern route out and going north on the way back. In addition to checking out tourist spots like the Corn Palace in Iowa, we also stopped by Mt. Rushmore and Devil's Tower. This trip turned out being one of the best we'd taken as a family and despite my brother-in-law's passing, I would love to go back that way again someday... but there are other roads to travel and unique ornaments to collect.

It's been too long since bringing back and ornament, a problem I hope to rectify as we head out and about over the next year.

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