As the Christmas Ornaments Turn

When I was growing up my family always had a huge tree with tons of ornaments.  We had the typical colored glass balls, candy canes, and kindergarten macaroni art hanging from every branch. But then we had the special ornaments, our favorite characters who came out to play every Christmas.

Christmas morning. L to R Me age 9, Kelli, my grandmother, Kristin

Christmas morning.
L to R Me age 9, Kelli, my grandmother, Kristin

My sisters, Kelli and Kristin, and I had three friends in particular that we couldn’t wait to see: Snowman (he sat on the sled), Lady in Red and Ernie (from Sesame Street).  Snowman was about four inches high with a plaid snow hat and scarf and drove a bright red sled. Lady in Red was a Victorian caroler girl in a red coat, bonnet and white muff.  Ernie, of course, was just Ernie, blue pants and brightly-colored striped shirt. Oh the stories we came up with about these three!

Kelli and Kristin, help me out if I get some of this wrong…

Ernie was in love with Lady in Red, but Lady in Red did not give him the time of day. Instead she spent her time with Snowman who gladly took her on whatever sled ride she wanted to go on.  Ernie would watch from the sidelines waiting for Snowman to mess up and when he did, he swooped in like the dashing knight in shining armor.

For a while Ernie would earn Lady in Red’s attention and affection. Until Snowman came crawling back on his bottom snowball begging for Lady in Red’s devotion.  Lady in Red always went back, but confused… Ernie treated her so well, but she just wasn’t attracted to him. He was a lot shorter than she was and wasn’t as built as Snowman, but she knew he loved her. And Snowman had a ride, a way to take her around the town and show her a good time.

In the end, Lady in Red could never decide. Every Christmas it was same dilemma, should she stay with Snowman or move on to Ernie?  She was wrought with decision and yet every year she went through the same fight.

Thirty-something years later, I checked back with Ernie, Lady in Red and Snowman but alas they were no where to be found.  My parents had moved about ten years ago and since then the ornaments have been stashed away.  My mother claims they are around somewhere but the last time she checked Lady in Red was destroyed.

I gasped when she told me, but we finally got the end of our story.  After the years of fighting, Lady in Red couldn’t take the stress. All the lies Snowman told to get her back, only to show his true self each and every year and all the times Ernie came to her rescue, but never gave her enough to turn away Snowman, finally took a toll on her.  We know  not of what happened to Lady in Red, whether she ran away from it all or gave herself to destruction on purpose, but we know there are two maybe three sad lives in our box of Christmas ornaments this year.

I did found Lady in Red’s sister on Ebay though, Lady in Crimson and she will soon join Ernie and Snowman looking for her long lost sister.  Will Snowman slink in and win her heart as well or will Ernie finally get a chance at love?  We will find out next year, here on As The Christmas Ornaments Turn…

HA! That was fun.  In all seriousness, I tried to find another Lady in Red and tried to find pictures of Snowman and Ernie, since they are truly buried in my parents’ basement somewhere… my cartoon will have to do.

Scan 100

Lady in Crimson - who will she chose?

Lady in Crimson – who will she chose?

So, did you and your family have any fun Christmas tales?  Or tell me about some of your favorite Christmas toys?  I can’t wait to hear if we are a normal family or not !!  Have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.


*** UPDATE ***

My lovely sister Kelli finally found a photograph of the elusive trio.  Ladies and Gentlemen I present to you now… the real Snowman, Ernie and Lady in Red.




  1. Eryn, I love this blog! Thanks for taking the time to walk us all down memory lane. I’m sorry it has taken so long to actually comment. I have a picture of the “Ménage-a-tree” at home and I believe Kelli tried taking a picture of that. When she sends it to you, you should add it to this blog.

    Lady in Crimson is a good enough subsitute and we can certainly create a past and history for her as well but she is no Lady in Red. She is, by far, too innocent looking. You still have Ernie right? We should introduce them and maybe he can finally settle down with the right woman who will treat him as he deserves…

    As far as Snowman, I think his fate will always remain a mystery…

  2. Oh, E! This is such a classic! (Much better than the drawings on the paper tablecloth at the Ozark House!) My favorite part was “Until Snowman came crawling back on his bottom snowball begging for Lady in Red’s devotion.” And–“He was a lot shorter than she was and wasn’t as built as Snowman, but she knew he loved her. And Snowman had a ride, a way to take her around the town and show her a good time.” Truly a dilemma!!!

    Man, our Christmases seem tame when compared to yours. What comes to mind is that my brother, Pat, always, and I mean ALWAYS, gave me jacks for Christmas. Not that jacks aren’t the coolest, but it did detract from the mystery a little and made unwrapping somewhat uneventful (remember the little plastic “purses” that came with the jacks that you could store them in?) Then there were the two years in a row that my grandma gave Pat a Stretch Armstrong for Christmas, when he was like 16 and 17!! Much too old for a Stretch Armstrong in the first place! A few years back I wanted to buy him a Fletch Armstrong for Christmas (the dog version), but decided it was a little too much money to spend on a joke. As a side note, if you cut Stretch Armstrong up he is made of some kind of black goo that resembles maple syrup. (What else are you going to do with your second Stretch Armstrong?)

  3. Love the addition of the pictures! The snowman looks even more dashing than I had imagined!

    On a separate note, I wanted to say that, after reading your wonderful reviews the other day, I am so proud of you! You worked so hard to improve your craft and it shows in the way people are reacting to “Beneath the Wall.” That’s great!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s