For me, the highlight of our trip to Gatlinburg was the hour I spent in a Christmas store. Every year I go shopping the week after Christmas to get ornaments and decor 75% off. Yes, I'm becoming one of THOSE people.
I have a three-part theory about my
1. They are fairly inexpensive, so I feel I can buy them impulsively.
2. Unlike other decorative items, I don't have to think about where to put them or whether they match anything in my house.
3. They're just pretty! Each one appeals to me visually, and all together on the tree it's almost more prettiness than I can bear.
This year and last, I bought so many ornaments that *gasp* I'm now out of room on the tree! I've been trying to enforce the rule that I will only buy it if I truly truly love the ornament. I try to do that with clothes, too (with mixed results in both cases).
In Gatlinburg, I tried to make myself buy only ornaments that I couldn't find at home. Like the mermaid and the blown-glass seahorses, the glitter-topped cupcakes and the watermelon slice. The miniature mandolin for Darwin.
Still, I love my old favorites best: the globe and the pink rose that reminds me of the rose in Beauty and the Beast, my favorite Disney cartoon.
For your viewing pleasure, a (very) small part of my collection:
And last but not least, the tree:
We'll just pretend that woodwork behind it is finished. Christmas is the time for using your imagination, right?