Ethan's Mom Madeline, little Ethan & his Dad, Robert
I've been wanting to photograph these for years. They were stitched by my Mother-in-Law, Madeline, in the late 70's. Aren't they so amazing? To be over 30 years old, I think they look pretty good! We always laugh every year when we decorate her tree at all of the super old ornaments she has - half of them literally falling apart. By the time we're done, their tree looks like quite the eccentric sight. But that's what I love about my in-laws' tree every year. It has total personality.
And even though half the ornaments are falling apart, it's because most were handmade! Either by Madeline herself, Ethan and his sister when they were little (yes, she still has PAPER ornaments they made, these things are still holding together!), or ornaments friends made for her.
Apparently bugs even made their way through many of these ornaments. I'm so glad she salvaged them. I think they are beautiful in all of their raggedness. You can tell a lot of love was put into these!
She did three sets featuring, The Nutcracker characters, the 12 Days of Christmas Song & The Wizard of Oz. Some of the characters are missing and I honestly had a hard time identifying some of them. I'm not super familiar with the Nutcracker characters, so I had to do some Googling. So I'm thinking, in the photos above from the top row and left to right there's 9 Ladies Dancing, maybe the Sugar Plum Fairy?, a Partridge in a Pear Tree and the Nutcracker's Spanish Dancer?
And below, we have (from left to right) top row: 8 Maids a Milking, the girl in pink - I'm not sure?!, The Nutcracker's Arab Dancer, bottom row: the Nutcracker, Chinese Dancer...
And then we of course have the Cowardly Lion and the Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz. I wonder what happened to Dorothy and the Scarecrow?
I tried to find the original patterns for these on Etsy Vintage and Ebay but didn't come up with anything. I think Madeline has the original pattern still, I need to see if she can find it.
I have to say that when I was first dating Ethan, I was thrilled to find a crafty kindred spirit in my one-day-Mother-in-Law. She's pretty awesome and I'm lucky to have her. Gosh, how many movies have they made centered around mean, crazy Mother-in-Laws!? I got such a sweet deal. She's not only super crafty, but super sweet to me and our boys. We're all pretty lucky to have this lady in our lives.