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PCSing and Christmas

The other day my husband was kind enough to lug the numerous totes of Christmas decorations out of the garage.  He told me we have way too much and I need to get rid of some of the decorations.  What he didn’t know is that I did purge A LOT of stuff this summer before we PCS’d.

I was horrified when I opened one of the totes to find a bunch of ornaments all tangled up and broken.  Apparently the movers didn’t like the nice ornament boxes I bought and carefully filled so I wouldn’t have broken/tangled ornaments.  I don’t even know where the ornament boxes are!  Grrrr…

Some of the decorations were still wrapped in tissue paper and all in one piece.  I was getting out the stocking hangers to put on top of our hutch and I realized, “Wait a minute.  I don’t need these this year.  I have steps and I can hang the stockings on the railing!”  We haven’t lived in a two story house since 2006 and I am so excited to put lights on the stairs and hang the stockings on the railing like my mom did when I was growing up.

I also got to thinking about how military families have to “learn” to decorate for the holidays every time we PCS.  Every house is different.  Furniture changes (i.e. new furniture or can’t fit the furniture like we did in the previous house, etc).

One of my kids’ favorite decorations is a plush Nativity set that my mother bought for my son for his first Christmas.  You can move the pieces around and set it up however your heart desires.  My kids are 10 and 7 now and they still love to play with it.  I love the fact that they still find something like this fun to play with after so many years.

Another “constant” in our decorations is a star for the top of the Christmas tree.  My son made it in Kindergarten.  It’s a toilet paper tube with a yellow star made of construction paper.  Our kids take turns every year putting the star on top of the tree.  Sure we have beautiful angel toppers for the tree, but the star my son made is very special to our family and I truly hope it hasn’t gotten lost (or smashed) in the totes.

What are your (or your child’s) favorite holiday decorations?

About Joan D'Arc

Joan D'Arc has been an Army spouse since 1997. She started her marriage as a geographical bachelorette and experienced her husband's first deployment before their first wedding anniversary. Since then, she has had two beautiful children who amaze her (and frustrate her) every day. Joan fought her way through graduate school and is now a Licensed Social Worker. Joan enjoys volunteering with Soldiers' Angels and giving back to the military community in any way possible. Joan feels very blessed to be an Army spouse and wouldn't trade this life for anything!