Our Christmas Ornament Tradition

Every year as I’m placing ornaments on our tree, I get a little nostalgic.   I can so vividly remember the little apartment where we celebrated our first Christmas together.  We didn’t have a tree so we bought a cheap one from Target – and it’s still the one we use today!  We had to buy ornaments too because we didn’t have any of those, either!  From that moment on, I decided I would get us an ornament every year to mark each milestone of our relationship as it grew.

Today, I’m sharing some of my favorites that we’ve collected over our last seven Christmases together.

Our First Christmas, 2013


This one makes me laugh the hardest. I bought this 2013 Hallmark ornament for Justin with plans to put a photo of us in it. Well we never got around to it that year… or the next year, or the next year, either. At this point, the “tradition” has become to hang the empty ornament on the tree and giggle about how nobody prints photos anymore.

Christmas in the Apartment 2013
Just for fun, here’s a photo of that first Christmas tree in our little apartment! (Though I didn’t officially live there until the following July!)

Our Second Christmas, 2014


Justin’s high school mascot was an owl, and he’s liked all owl things since I’ve known him. I thought it was only fitting to get him this ornament of two owls symbolizing us, and as a twist on a pair of turtle doves.

We added a little more Christmas decor in 2014.

Our Third Christmas, 2015

IMG_3970We took our first vacation together to Florida in August of 2015, where we picked up this ornament from Anna Maria Island.

IMG_3979Inspired by my mom who collects Precious Moments, I had this ornament made for us in 2015.

Our Fourth Christmas, 2016

IMG_3971In 2016, we got engaged and bought a house – all in the month of May! I bought the engagement ornament from Etsy and had it personalized with our engagement date. I think the first home ornament is from Hobby Lobby, if I’m remembering correctly.

IMG_3982The Barbie ornaments were a Christmas gift from my Aunt Nicole & Uncle Paul, signifying our engagement just 7 months prior. They have the same set on their tree that they received when they were married, and are among their favorites on their tree every year. I love that they got us the same ones – just with dark hair, of course.

Our Fifth Christmas, 2017

We got married in 2017 (apparently I really like the design of us riding in cars), and due to Hurricane Irma, we rerouted our honeymoon to Las Vegas!

IMG_3983This handmade ornament was a wedding gift from some family friends. So sweet!

IMG_3975This ornament was a gift from Justin’s sister, Becky. She customized it with one of our engagement photos!

Our Sixth Christmas, 2018

IMG_3974In May of 2018, we finally got to go on our original honeymoon, to the Bahamas! We stayed at the Sandals Emerald Bay Resort, and purchased this ornament from their gift shop.

We also had our first two losses this year. Baby Peterson lost 1-30-18, and Baby Boy Peterson lost 10-1-18. Oh sweet babies how we miss you so much. You might think it’s a little morbid to commemorate these losses on our Christmas tree, but the fact is, they were such a big part of our year, and our lives overall, that it was no question for us.

Which brings us to this year… Our Seventh Christmas together, 2019!

image0We kicked off our year with unfortunately another loss. Baby Boy Peterson lost 2-2-19. This ornament is wooden and painted blue.

image1But about six months later, we conceived our miracle baby girl! The backside of this ornament has our 19 week ultrasound photo.

image22019 might be hard to top, but I have a feeling 2020 is going to be our best year yet!

I will try to share some photos of our holiday home decor soon in a separate post. This one is  getting too long, and I’m sure you’re all tired of reading by now! 😉

Wishing you all a happy and not-too-hectic holiday season!

Do you have any holiday traditions, or favorite ornaments in your collection? I’d love to hear about them!



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