For me, the holidays always elicit fond memories spent with family. I remember one Thanksgiving in particular, the last with my grandma and grandpa before they both passed away the following year. It was the one time we were all together, knowing that grandma would soon be taken by lung cancer. It's funny to think about what makes a memory. Her gravy and green peas are at the top of my list. Mom never could quite make them the same. This past Thanksgiving we spent the day just with our little family. As a military family, we sacrifice the closeness we would like to have with parents, grandparents, sisters, brothers... The convenience of dropping the kids off with grandma and grandpa for a date night, driving over to my sister's for a play date with the cousins, or even just a Sunday get together. So I surround myself with pictures to feel closer to them.
This year I knew I wanted to incorporate family into our Thanksgiving tradition. And what better way than with photographs. I had a wallet size picture printed in black and white for each extended family that we were missing and hung them ornament style on a simple arrangement of flowers. Since they were tall, and because I had a lot of pictures to hang, I flanked the table with two of these arrangements. As we sat down to a candlelit dinner, I loved being surrounded with the visual reminders of the memories we made during special holiday's. The arrangements are still on our table, serving as a subtle reminder to me to look for those small actions in my life this holiday season that will create the lifelong memories for my own boys.
Hopefully this inspires you to incorporate your photographic memories into your holiday décor and I would love to see or hear what you come up with!