This evening, I have the opportunity to participate in a gigantic holiday blog hop in partnership with Hometalk.com and CountryLiving.com. There are so many people participating in this, each with their own unique ideas for decorating and creating this Christmas season. I'd love for you to take some time to visit some of these talented bloggers. The hashtag for this event is #homeforchristmas so you can use this throughout social media and on Hometalk.com to find additional participants in the event.
Children everywhere grow up doing everything they can to catch a glimpse of Santa leaving toys beneath their Christmas tree each holiday. Kids stay up late to wait for him and sneak out of their bedrooms hoping to find him in the living room.
This was never something that I needed to do, however, because Santa would visit my house on Christmas Eve night to give me some presents early. Sure, there were still surprises from him on Christmas morning under the tree. But I was lucky enough to get a personal visit every year not long before going to bed. I could sleep in peace knowing that he would be back.
Of course, I got older and I realized that Santa didn't really leave presents under the tree....that was my mom and dad. I found out that the Santa that visited my house each Christmas evening was actually my uncle. And he didn't show up at my house riding in a sleigh driven by reindeer, but rather a car driven by my aunt. Every year in his realistic Santa suit, he'd show up not just at my home, but at the houses of his grandchildren and family friends to bring a bit of cheer to the holiday.
This was one of those wonderful childhood memories to look back on and smile. Those pretend Santas at the mall never interested me because I knew the REAL Santa. The opportunity to "meet" Santa and get presents straight from his bag was an incredible gift that I'm sure I didn't appreciate as much at the time as I should have. I'm incredibly grateful to my aunt and uncle for including me in this experience.
In addition to having the opportunity to get a personal Santa visit, I was also lucky enough to have parents who would snap pictures each and every year of this special time. This Christmas, I decided to turn one of my favorite images into a large black and white image to hang on the wall. When pictures are done in black and white, they make such a big statement hanging on the wall. Now that this picture is done, I'd love to go back and do some more old Christmas pictures and create a whole holiday gallery wall.
Staples Copy & Print has a really simple system for accomplishing the task of transforming photographs into wall art and other photo gifts. After spending time searching back through my old holiday photos, I found this one of me waiting patiently for Santa to unload his bag. (I'm sure underneath the patience wasn't there, though!)
After scanning the picture into my computer at a very high resolution, I uploaded it to Staples Copy & Print. It was there that I transformed the photo from color to black and white. The process was easy and before long I got a package at my door holding my framed picture to hang on the wall.
And I was very pleasantly surprised to see that even though I had originally scanned a small 4x6 picture, I was able to turn it into a 16x20 inch print with no signs that it had been enlarged. It is important to create a high resolution picture (meaning that there are a lot of dots per inch to make up the image) if you plan on enlarging the picture at all.
The photograph is now hanging over my fireplace mantel decorated for the Christmas season.
This Christmas, I am trying to find ways to incorporate my favorite memories and special details into the holiday season. This photograph hanging on my wall puts a smile on my face every time I look at it. And it is something that can be kept year after year to keep the memories alive.