Monday, December 1, 2014

A Different Kind of Christmas Tree

Yesterday two of my granddaughters shut me out of my lounge for an hour or so. When they eventually allowed me in, I found that they'd had a great time decorating the room with a box of old Christmas trappings. There were three Christmas trees—a miniature artificial tree, another which bore a marked resemblance to a reading lamp in disguise and the third the wire tree in the photo below.

Definitely not your traditional Christmas tree
I bought this tree a few years ago from a man whose shopfront was the the side of the road. The patch of grass nearby was his workshop.The vendor and his friends sat in the hot African sun and twisted lengths of wire together into the intricate patterns which form their wares. These trees are very versatile as they can be dressed up with bows, sweets, trinkets, tinsel, Easter eggs, chocolate—in fact with anything that takes your fancy—to grace any occasion.

The two girls made the hearts out of strips of cardboard. The little angels swinging on the tree are made of dried banana leaves and bring back happy memories of a visit to the tearoom where we bought them.

Banana leaf angel with her harp
The bead figurines below are generally to be found hanging among the branches, but for this season they are standing beneath the tree, adding to the overall African feel of the tree.

Bead figurines

But the thing I love most about the tree is the star, made simply of two bottle tops, glitter and tinsel.

A very special star
Jenni, my younger daughter, made this star many years ago when she was a preschooler. This will be Jenni's second Christmas in heaven, so the star is of great sentimental value to me. It's also a reminder of the wise men's visit to Jesus, but, more than that, it reminds me that God sent His only Son to this earth to die on the cross. As the Bible says in  in John 3:16: "For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life."  Because of this, I know Jenni is alive and well in heaven and that I will see her again. 

Thank you for your great love, Lord God.

Thank you for decorating my lounge, Erin and Taryn, I love it!

If you have a non-traditional Christmas tree, please tell us about it in the comments section.


  1. Very special. Thank you for sharing, Ruth. My heart hankers for my African roots at this time of year so this brought them a little closer. Blessings to you and your family this Christmas.

  2. Ruth, I LOVE your African nativity scene / Christmas tree. So special.

    This year we will have a totally different kind of Christmas ... a white one. I guess it will be the first time we will have a real tree for Christmas, too (I think that's the way it's done in Finland).

    Ten more days till we leave and I'm super excited ... and it's snowing today in Budapest, our first stop for a week.

    Wishing you all a blessed, Christ-filled Christmas.

  3. Ruth, great post! I love the simplicity and creativity of your Christmas tree. Thanks for sharing your special Christmas memories with us :)

    Marion, enjoy your white Christmas! :)

  4. I love that wire Christmas tree, Ruth, and all the decorations, especially those little banana leaf angels! Thanks for sharing them with us. I can remember traditional pine Christmas trees from my childhood days in Queensland, Australia--or even gum trees on occasions! But now in our small home in Sydney, we just have a tiny artificial one on a table, along with our manger scene. No show here for sure though at Christmas--only lots of hot weather!

    1. I meant no SNOW, of course! The hot weather has already had its effect on my brain!

  5. So pretty and so special! I see Christmas trees as birthday cakes for Jesus. He can't eat them since He is not here, which is why we use trees, so that He can look at them from heaven. Together with Jenny. The lights are instead of the candles and the presis underneath the tree would actually be for Him, but since He is not here right now and He told us to love each other...the presis are for each other too. So, in a way, my Christmas tree always is kind of a birthday cake. Wishing you all a very happy Christmas!

  6. Ruth, I love your Christmas tree and its novel decorations. Thanks for a beautiful post. I hope we'll get to see you at some time over the Christmas period when you're down here.

  7. I love this! One of our best Christmases was the year we had car trouble and couldn't get home. We ended up staying at some relatives house while they were out of town and made decorations from colored paper. It ended up being so much fun and memorable!