Trimming the Tree

Trimming the tree is one my

favorite Christmas traditions~

I enjoy pulling out the ornaments

and taking a walk down memory lane.

My Shiny Brites and vintage ornaments~

glittered and flocked~ add a little nostalgia

with their soft colors and time-worn patina.

While some ornaments offer

Christmas wishes & messages. . .

I find myself wondering what these ornaments

would have to say or share

of Christmases past if they could talk~

A rosemary topiary tree from Lowe’s, and appropriately the herb of remembrance, is swaddled in landscaping burlap, in an urn at the table.

This variety is hardy to 20 degrees and should survive the winter  on the porch, which gets lots of bright light, if I can remember to water it :)

Rosemary’s affiliation with Christmas may have evolved from the legend of the Virgin Mary. One legend involves the color of the blooms and its fragrance.

According to legend, when the Holy family fled into Egypt, Mary, weary from travelling, draped her blue cloak over a rosemary bush taking shelter to rest.

The rosemary flowers changed from white to blue, acquiring the color and its fragrance of Mary’s cloak and the plant was called thereafter called ‘the rose of Mary’.

In a similar legend, Mary dries the baby Jesus’s clothes on a fragrant bush after laundering. The plant’s name and its blue flowers are in remembrance of its humble service to the Holy family.

Legend has it that rosemary will not grow taller than Jesus was when he was on earth or live longer than his 33 years.


Trimming the Tree Table Details:

Dishes/ Johnson Brothers Old Britain Castles Christmas/ HomeGoods

Napkins & Jute Runner/Pottery Barn

Chargers/HomeGoods

Goblets/ Mikasa French Countryside

Flatware/ Oneida Community Evening Star

“He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree.”

~ Roy L. Smith

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  50 comments for “Trimming the Tree

  1. November 29, 2012 at 7:03 am

    What a beautiful vintage post- I love all your sweet ornaments. They are gorgeous- xo Diana

  2. Happier Than A Pig in Mud
    November 29, 2012 at 7:10 am

    Thanks for the symbolism Mary! Love your vintage ornaments-enjoy:@)

  3. November 29, 2012 at 7:19 am

    mary, your vintage ornaments are making me smile this morning! :D

    Such a sweet post about rosemary; I enjoyed reading it! Lovely table as always!!!

    xo,
    RJ

  4. Ellen Martin
    November 29, 2012 at 8:06 am

    Mary, I’m a recent subscriber to your blog, and I must tell you…….it is a feast for the senses!! Beautiful photography, amazing creativity, and yummy recipes!! T!hanks for the excellence with which you share! I’m hooked……..

  5. Sue
    November 29, 2012 at 8:11 am

    What sweet stories of the rosemary plant and the Holy Family. Lovely decorations, too. :-) Sue

  6. November 29, 2012 at 8:20 am

    The rosemary stories are beautiful and magical, thank you so much for sharing them. Of course your tree is magical too…do you bring your ornaments in when it freezes? I love the contrast of the burlap with the shiny ornaments!
    Jenna

  7. November 29, 2012 at 8:33 am

    Beautiful table Mary…you have so many gorgeous vintage ornaments!…Sad to say, but I did not know about the legend of the Rosemary…knew about the Dogwood, but not the Rosemary…thanks you for sharing that story….and your table, gorgeous as always!!!..

  8. November 29, 2012 at 8:37 am

    Adorable ornaments! Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  9. Linda Lee
    November 29, 2012 at 9:17 am

    Your blog is always beautiful! Loved the story about the Rosemary, I didn’t know the legend behind the name. I love all your vintage ornaments too!

  10. November 29, 2012 at 9:35 am

    Mary, this was fabulous. I loved the story of Rose of Mary. I had not heard either of those. Your table is precious with the ornaments and the beautiful tree dishes. xo marlis

  11. November 29, 2012 at 9:57 am

    Every season I treat myself to a rosemary plant, but mine never looked as lovely as yours does here. Thanks for the great idea. This season I’m going to decorate mine!

  12. Jan
    November 29, 2012 at 10:21 am

    I love the rosemary stories. And I love vintage ornaments.

  13. November 29, 2012 at 10:38 am

    What a great post, Mary! Love how you implemented the rosemary! The vintage ornaments are awesome! Great setting!

  14. November 29, 2012 at 11:11 am

    I love all the old ornaments. I’m putting mine out in a huge vase for safety(two curious cats), I love all the info about Rosemary and I think I’ll just have to get one for my home this year!

  15. Bonnie
    November 29, 2012 at 11:38 am

    I discovered your blog this past autumn and am addicted. You just amaze me with the wonderful table settings and recipes. Thanks so much for what you are doing to inspire us. I have printed off some recipes and bookmark posts for future reference.
    Glad you are feeling better!

  16. November 29, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    I love all of your vintage ornaments. Your tablescape is beautiful and so perfect!!

    ~Trisha

  17. Susan Long
    November 29, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    Such a beautiful table, makes me feel Christmas’s past at my grandmothers – seeing all the old ornament. Can’t wait to use mine in a different way, so very talented lady!
    Susie

  18. Debbie
    November 29, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    Your Table is lovely. I love the antique ornaments and the lovely rosemary legends, I will remember them always. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and beautiful things.

  19. November 29, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    Mary, your Shiny Brites offer a sweet waltz down Memory Lane for me too. Makes me wonder what happened to all the ones that hung on the trees of my childhood. Thanks for sharing the legends about rosemary. Another beautiful post to set the stage for the Christmas season. ;-)

  20. November 29, 2012 at 1:28 pm

    Beautiful table and vintage ornaments, Mary…the ‘old rose’ color of the pattern in the dishes complement the old feel of the ornaments quite well..I don’t think green and red would fit the bill at all in this one..

  21. November 29, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Love the smell of rosemary and your vintage ornaments. They remind me of ornaments my Mom had when I was growing up. Guess that dates me but that’s ok. Beautiful table Mary, and I really enjoyed reading your post.

  22. November 29, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    I adore your ornaments. Now that I have animals that think the Christmas tree is a big toy just for them, I’ve packed away my glass ornaments.
    I love the rosemary stories as well!

  23. November 29, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    What a gorgeous collection of vintage ornaments! Your table is just beautiful with the rosemary, and the urn & silver tray are the icing on the cake:)

  24. anon
    November 29, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    what wonderftul tidbits about rosemary, i adore the smell, it just lingers in your mind long after bruising. thanks for taking me back to turkey, they say mary lived there, brought by paul. all wonderful remembrances…

    hope you are feeling well and thanks for ushering the new season~

  25. November 29, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Adore your table and old ornaments. :) I think my favorites are the ones that say “Merry Christmas”.

  26. November 29, 2012 at 7:37 pm

    You have a wonderful collection of vintage ornaments Mary. Love that dish pattern!
    Beautiful tree trimming.

  27. November 29, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    Okay Mary you have the trifecta of greatness here today: Old Britain Castles Christmas (LOVE), Shiny Brite ornaments, and telling of He who matters most. xo, olive

  28. November 29, 2012 at 9:19 pm

    Mary, this has to be my favorite post yet!!!! I agree with Olive!! Such visual beauty and spiritual beauty combined!!! I lingered and lingered over you table!!! The fairest by far!!!
    I’m giving you a big hug!!!

  29. RRJD
    November 29, 2012 at 9:20 pm

    Beautiful stories, and great display of the ornaments. I have many of those same ornaments, passed down from my husband’s family. I LOVE the tray under the tiny tree display! I will copy for sure. Thanks for such a beautiful way to start the season!

  30. November 29, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    Beautiful! After seeing your table, I’m kicking myself for not buying the bag of vintage Christmas ornaments I saw last week at an antique store out of town. Such inspiration from your pictures!

  31. Pondside
    November 30, 2012 at 2:10 am

    I love the afternoon, each year, when I pull out the box of tree decorations and take that trip down memory lane about which you write. So many lovely memories are in our tree trimmings, and you’ve illustrated your post beautifully.

  32. November 30, 2012 at 7:49 am

    What a beautiful collection of vintage ornaments you have! It brings many of us back! We would all line up as kids and my dad would sit in his “easy chair” and hand things out one at a time. Of course the fabulous vintage ones were our favorites. We were all to inherit some from my aunt who was single and never married so none of hers ever got broken, but my cousin has kept them all. Hope I see some of them someday. My favorites are your little ones with scenes in them. What a beautiful combination they make with your plates. They are wonderful.

    I almost set my table outside the other day too as the weather was so beautiful. This has been the nicest November. I still have things in my garden.

  33. November 30, 2012 at 8:06 am

    Mary, I enjoyed reading the information about rosemary and I’m glad to know that this variety will survive on the porch. You have a wonderful collection of vintage ornaments which you have displayed so beautifully on your table and tree.

  34. November 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    I have never heard of those stories about the rosemary plant they are delightful to read about and very sweet. I also love your red Christmas transferware and your tablescape is just beautiful. Merry Christmas and God bless.

    Cathy

  35. November 30, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    Hi, Mary! It was neat to look at all of your vintage ornaments! I don’t think my Mom kept any of hers. She likes everything shiny and new…no appreciation for vintage. Sometimes I just wonder about that woman! :-) I had never heard the legends re: Mary and rosemary. Very interesting! It’s great that something will survive your winters outdoors. NOTHING survives around here…hardly even us humans!!! :-)

  36. December 1, 2012 at 9:36 pm

    I have never heard either of the stories about Rosemary before. I love it, we have large Rosemary buses surrounding our deck. Your vintage ornaments are so special. They remind me of many we had in our family when I was little, but they are all gone now. So glad you have yours. thanks for sharing your memories. Dianne

  37. December 1, 2012 at 11:05 pm

    Beautiful images. Love the legends. I hadn’t heard of them before.

    – The Tablescaper

  38. December 2, 2012 at 7:40 am

    I haven’t used my Shiny Brites in years. With three cats I decided shatter-proof was the way to go! Love your rosemary story. I must get to Marshalls (my Homegoods) and see if they have any Johnson Bros! Happy Happy!

  39. December 2, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Beautiful post!! I will never look at Rosemary the same now! I had never heard those references. I will have to remind my mom and dad not to get rid of all of their ornaments – they threaten to not put up a tree every year, but still do it – kind of funny how the fake tree gets a little shorter every year though! Your vintage ornaments look beautiful all laid out so we can gawk at them!

  40. December 2, 2012 at 9:17 pm

    Very lovely. Vintage Shiny Brites are my favorite.

  41. December 3, 2012 at 11:07 pm

    I am SO glad I didn’t miss this!!! I have never heard these legends and am so happy you shared this! The ornaments are a beautiful collection. Your plates are beautiful as well. XO, Pinky

  42. December 6, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Beautiful table and ornaments! I posted http://www.sewsweetvintage.com/2012/12/upcycled-denim-christmas-stocking.html and doily tree to the picket fence:)

  43. December 7, 2012 at 12:18 am

    Great photos of your vintage ornaments love everyone of them! Hope you are having a great holiday season, Laura

  44. December 12, 2012 at 12:40 am

    Just beautiful! Thanks for all of the “legends”. I hadn’t heard those before. You have a beautiful collection of ornaments.

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  46. March 4, 2013 at 10:50 am

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  47. Tammy Coulbournr
    November 28, 2013 at 8:49 am

    I have vintage ornaments that once decorated my grandmother’ Christmas trees, and possibly my great-grandmothers. I display them by placing them in Fostoria bowls, cups, and small serving pieces that once belonged to these two women. I also have and display what remains of my grandmother’s plastic nativity figures which I played with when I was a child. All these things are priceless to me. Thank you for sharing your vintage pieces!

  48. Gloria Straka
    November 28, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    Loved your vintage table settings and the Rosemary tree . Now I am going to have a Rosemary tree for Christmas!Wasn’t aware of the story about Mary’s cloak. Loved your post!

  49. Tiffany
    December 6, 2013 at 1:24 am

    I absolutely love this!!!!

Thanks for your comments~ they make my day :)

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