Christmas over the years

Towering trees

Christmas over the years

Christmas has always been the best holiday ever. This is the only holiday that my dad, who used to work offshore, was home. Jim Reeves on the radio and a 10 feet xmas tree were the highlights then. As I came to Bangalore for my graduation, I joined the Mar Thoma Church Choir just for the fun of it. 

     One day, one of the choir members asked me if I could make ‘blue’ Poinsettia flowers with crepe paper. I decided to give it a shot and it worked, though I had blisters from the scissors I was using.

When asked why make decorations, the answer was, ‘It’s always easy to buy decorations, but the challenge is in making it’. Year after year we kept coming up with ideas and implementing it with a lot of support from friends and members.In the beginning it used to be a challenge when I had to run from college to help out with the decorations. Each year we tried to work with different materials — dried vines,  paper, wire, etcetera.

By 2006, I was expecting my first child. I knitted couple of booties and realised they looked better on the tree at home. Making decorations at home or church got tough after children. Turning eco-friendly wasn’t easy but we believe materials have one more life cycle before being completely disposed.

From 2008 started the series of eco-friendly decorations. It was easier to do most of the work, I had to do, at home and then bring it all together at church. I remember times when the kids would be sleeping on the cushions inside church because they were so tired from the day’s work. But that is also when I realised that my older one had a very good eye for these things. Now she is also my fashion advisor.

In 2009, it became all about the size, a 30-foot-tree of video tape, lovingly called the ‘Peace tree’ (in solidarity with the ongoing world initiative against climate change in Copenhagen). The following years we have been able to reach the height of over 30 feet.

But now, at the ages of nine and six, they have become part of the team. Loving the work, the company of friends, the late nights, all part of their Christmas. Some days are more difficult than others especially when they have co-curricular classes.

As a mother, I have to keep them warm. But the challenge is to give them age-appropriate work and appreciate their work however neat or shabby it is.  I can’t ask for anything better than this. Let's see what the Ghost of Christmas Future has in store for us.

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