Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve Tree Trimming


When I was a child we would put up our Christmas tree on Christmas Eve.  My Dad would get the tree in the stand and put the lights on and then the kids took over.  I think we started out with a string of multicolor lights and then my Mom bought blue replacement bulbs and eventually, the entire tree had blue lights with just one white light at the top.  We had a star made from some sort of plastic that went between the bulb and the socket and that had to be placed strategically at the top of the tree.

In our family, we have continued with the Christmas Eve tree trimming tradition for the live tree even though we put up quite a few other trees in the days leading up to Christmas Eve.  In Germany, the gifts are traditionally opened on Christmas Eve.  We have changed this to opening only one gift on Christmas Eve - everyone gets to choose a package when we get home from the midnight church service.  When our kids were small, we managed to have the packages that they opened always be the one with new pajamas so they would look cute for the photos on Christmas morning (and yes, they were matching pajamas but they survived unscathed to adulthood!).

I'd love to hear about some of your traditions if you have time to leave a comment.  I know that it is a very busy time so you could certainly stop back another day to add your story.  I do have a card to share with you today.  It was made with another Memory Box die - I am enjoying all of the delicate designs they offer.

This is the envelope with the Flowering Christmas Tree die - I like this packaging system which protects the die and also gives a visual reference for the image.  I just noticed that the dies can be used on shrink plastic - I think that would be beautiful for an ornament (maybe I can find a few minutes to try this today...).

This is the die - there are tiny holes that you can use to push out any bits that might get stuck inside.

In this close view you can see just how thin the lines are.  While some machine might be capable of cutting a design like this, it would take a long time to cut and it would probably be difficult to lift from a mat.  Sometimes a die is the best choice for a design.

Adhesive for a delicate design like this can be a challenge.  I used the LetraTac adhesive.  I have written about this several times - here is a LINK to the posts showing how I used this product.  You place the item on the sheet with lots of tiny dots of adhesive and then put the top sheet over the images and burnish with this tool to transfer the adhesive to the cut.

In this photo you can see that the image is so thin that even the tiny dots from the LetraTac extend beyond the edges.  These are not difficult to deal with if you have a gum eraser.

You can use the eraser to pick up the stray bits of adhesive.  The eraser might get a bit gummy and you can just snip off the edges to get a new clean surface.  These are inexpensive and can be found at an art supply store.  Creative Memories also sells them as "pick up squares."

When I was looking at the tree cut and thinking about a sentiment, I realized that the "Merry Christmas" from my new Stampers Anonymous Tim Holtz Christmas Mini Holidays 3 set would make a nice base for the tree.

I used the super fine detail embossing powder in gold to heat emboss the sentiment.

This powder was fantastic and produced a lovely embossed image - some of these lines are incredibly fine.

I added some small red gradient gem stickers from Creative Charms to the center of each flower.

I used the stardust clear gel pen to add more sparkle to the tree.

Stars and dots and lines on the leaves make the tree sparkle.

I added some gold "peel-offs" to anchor the base of the card with a double row to add interest to the right side.

The cardstock I used is Ripe Avocado from Papertrey Ink.

Just a few more things...

Blitsy is having a second chance sale!  They put all of the still available items that they have offered since they opened on Black Friday back up on their site.  The sale will run until January 3rd but some items are very limited in supply so will likely run out (or be "blitsed") sooner.  Here is my link again if you haven't already signed up...

Once you join the site (membership is free) you can go to the "my account" tab and click "invites" at the bottom of the column to get your own code to give to your friends.  When someone you refer makes a purchase of $10 or more you will get a $10 credit to spend in the store - now that's a great deal!  I got the super fine gold embossing powder from Blitsy - it is in the Ranger Ink category for just $2.49.

Finally - I want to say Happy Birthday to my brother Bill.  This photo was taken at the Philadelphia Zoo when he was five or six years old.  As a Christmas Eve baby, he had to share the holiday but we were careful to wrap his birthday presents in "regular" paper and we always had a birthday cake on Christmas Eve.

I hope you have a wonderful day - we'll be putting out the luminaries later this afternoon.  No sign of snow so far...

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  1. Beautiful card; simple and very elegant.
    Mine wasn't the best childhood so don't really recall any family traditions while growing up.
    Wishing you and your family a Very Merry Christmas and Happy and Blessed New Years

  2. Beautiful card! I remember everyone coming to our house for Christmas dinner. My Mom cooked a 5 course meal. It was the best of times sitting around that table for hours. I miss those days so much. I don't know how she did it all.

    Merry Christmas to you and yours!

  3. I thought the picture was of Will and I wondered why it was in black and white!

    We couldn't go see the tree until everyone was ready and cameras were poised, and then we went in a line from youngest to oldest. It is still the same way Christmas morning now.

    - Melanie (your SIL)

  4. Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year....don't have time to say any more!

  5. Thank you for your wonderful blog, I so enjoy reading it every day and learn so much! I hoep you and yours have a wonderful and blessed Christmas!

    Jan S.

  6. Beautiful card, simple but very elegant. Where can I buy one of those dyes? TFS`


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