Who We Are

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Serene Scenery Sunday

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me, Zim, here with photos of things that make us here at Ao4 Headquarters feel all warm and fuzzy inside!  Ready to get started?

Nothing makes me feel more in my Zen of Zim Zone than freshly fallen snow.

IMG_2920e new boot tread
Mom's foot print

The treads on my mom's new boots make mighty cute prints, don't they?  We'll come back out later, but let's take a look at my favorite Christmas tree!

Every year, we put up a few trees.  My favorite is our patriotic tree!  It features American and military-themed ornaments.  It's a great reminder of all the places Mom and Dad lived, of friends, of family, and of all the members of our military who are serving all over the world.  You could see it in the background of one of the pix of Davy yesterday - remember I told you we'd get back to it!

It sits between the living and dining rooms.

DSCN4688e Living room into dining room

DSCN4684e Dining room into living room

Let's go in for some close-ups!

DSCN4683e eagle ornament
Eagle at the top!

There's our national symbol - an eagle - at the top of the tree.  Or almost at the top!  Above that is one of Dad's old Army dress uniform buttons!  There are several of them tied all over the tree:

DSCN4680e Mike's uniform button

One year, when Mom was doing some research for a historical function at Fort Riley, she learned of the tradition of tying uniform buttons to Christmas trees.   The practice dates back to at least the mid-1800s - a great military family tradition from the frontier days!  Following in the footsteps of military wives who came before her, Mom now loops ribbon through the shanks on some of our dad's brass Army uniform buttons and even some of her dad's buttons and ties them to our tree!  Here is a button from her dad's (our grandfather's) uniform he wore at West Point:

DSCN4677e Dad's West Point button

There are also ornaments Mom made from some of Dad's old uniforms on the tree:

DSCN4681e BDU ornaments

Mom used to make ornaments every year (like the ones above) and give them out to friends and neighbors.  I'm sure she only used uniforms Dad had worn out.  Right, Mom?  Mom?

Moving right along ...

Please remember the members of our military and say a prayer for them.  Some are serving far from home, some in extremely dangerous places, and I just know they'll appreciate your prayers.

All this military talk brings me to my final photo for you.  There are very few things that help me find my inner peace than the successful construction of a really cool snow fort!  Here's the best I could do with our snowfall the other day:

IMG_2927e Zim
The Zen of Zim Zone;
me in my really cool snow fort

I hope you feel a bit more serene!  Have a wonderful Sunday!

Play bows,


  1. Hey Zim can I come and play with you in your fort? I have discovered that I love playing in the snow.


  2. Oh Zim and Dave... your patriotic tree really.. LIGHTS US UP. NO KIDDIN. THAT is just marvelous. We had NEVER heard of that decorating with the buttons thingy.
    As you can tell from the NEVER TO BE CHANGED look of our blog... we think being patriotic and HONORING those that ARE or HAVE served is very much IMPAWTANT to US.

  3. I love love the patriotic tree!! The buttons are oh so cool. What a wonderful tree. And yes we always keep our military members in our prayers at this time of year and each and every other day.
    Zim I would love to come and play and stand guard in your fort. I can even bring you some more snow to build it up real strong. We are scheduled for another dumping on Christmas Eve. I will sure to be thinking of you and Dave as the white stuff falls.

  4. Yay, Zim! We're glad you were able to build a fort! way cool :) We really like your patriotic tree. The button ornaments are a great tradition. Our mom wishes she had one of her dad's Air Force buttons. Have a snow-tastic Sunday!

    Pip, Smidgen, Minnie, HOllie

  5. Dear Zim and Dave, I love your Military Christmas tree and the mini-quilts your mom made from pieces of fabric from your dad's old uniforms. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!
    Wags, Noreen & Hunter

  6. The military button idea is so cool. We love it. We think of all our guys n gals out there and wish them well on both sides of the pond. Have a super Sunday.
    Best wishes Molly

  7. Wonderful tree, cool Button ornaments. Like Cara said, very heat tradition.

    and finally that lovely final picture with the SNOW. Plus....
    cool footprints on your moms shoes.


  8. Cool footprint. your house looks so festive!
    Benny & Lily

  9. YOur military tree is awesome. What a beautiful way to remember all those who have/had served our country.
    Can't believe you have multiple trees....our silly mom just put up our Charlie Brown tree today!!!
    Merry Christmas and thanks for your service. :)

  10. I need to see if I can find some of my Dad's old buttons - that would be kind of neat way to remember him at Christmas.


  11. We are praying for the military members and families back home.

    That is a super great snow fort. My snow is almost gone but luckily, the bad neighbors who didn't shovel still have LOTS OF ICE. Tonight, I took Master ice skating. I'm fairly certain, the whole neighborhood heard us coming as he shouted, "WOAH!" to cheer me on.


  12. Those prints sure are cute. We are so thankful for all inte military.

  13. Hi Zim!! That's really neat!! Your house looks so comfy,warm and festive!! Warm wishes to you and hi to Dave!!


  14. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

    Loveys Sasha

  15. Your patriotic tree is just beautiful and the handmade ornies are such wonderful memories!
    We love your mom's boot print!

    Love ya lots,
    Mitch and Molly

  16. Anonymous6:06 AM

    What a lovely tree!

  17. What a very unique tree!
    Very cool snow fort as usual Zim! Glad you got snow!
    Hope you has a very Merry Christmas!
    ~lickies, Ludo!