We've got the tree up. Nearly all of our ornaments are tied to extended family. The kids reminisced about making some at their auntie's house, and the memory came back to me, more complete than their simple recollections. They made the ornaments at my big sister's house the first year we were in Montana, while shopping for presents online, which my sisters paid for so that my kids could participate in the cousin present exchange despite the fact that we were dead broke. And they did all this while Doug and I were on a date that both of my sisters had paid for and insisted that we go on. All of this came when we were at one of the most stressed, depressed points in our entire adult lives. That was far from the end of their generosity as we muddled through and then began the process of getting back on our feet.