Many of you put up Christmas trees in your homes and /or offices. Where did the ornaments come from? Do they have special meaning to you? Do they bring back fond memories? Do they tell a story of places you have been? Do you follow a theme for your tree decorations? Would you like your tree decorations to tell a story, follow a theme, or bring back memories? Do you know someone else that might enjoy an ornament from your cruise (maybe a new-born baby in your family, a client, a friend, a relative)?
Your answers to these questions may be the basis for starting a collection while on your next cruise vacation or perhaps adding to an existing collection. The picture here shows a few ornaments that we purchased while on past cruises. We collected an ornament from each port we visited.
You have several options when starting an ornament collection. Most ships have a selection of various ornaments in the gift shops onboard. You'll usually find a selection of "logo" items including ornaments in the shape of the ship. They may also include ornaments for the various ports of call.
When you are on shore, you can purchase ornaments from various locations. Often, you'll find a Christmas store in town. You may even find some hand-made ornaments that some local vendor has on display.
A little pre-planning will help your shopping experience. Decide what type of ornaments you want to search for before your first purchase. Ideally you'll want to be able to add to your collection on future cruises so that you can continue to enjoy your new project. A lot will depend on where you are starting from also. If you already have a "vacation destination" theme started (it doesn't have to be cruises only) you could either add a ship ornament or an ornament from each port. If you currently have Disney ornaments on your tree, you could look for Disney ornaments in each port.
A collection, such as this, gives you a purpose for your shopping excursions during the cruise. Later, when you display the ornanments, you'll recall the cruise (perhaps remembering the places you went, the people you met, even when and where you made your purchase).
Do you like the idea of starting or adding to a collection? Do you know someone else (on your gift list) that has a collection? If the idea of collecting ornaments doesn't get you excited, perhaps some other collection might. Here are some more ideas:
Building a collection of destination or ship magnets is another easily achievable possibility while cruising the high seas. Shown here are two collections - magnets from each port and magnets from ships we've been on.
I've written an article about collecting magnets on my website. You can read the entire story there.
There are many other ideas for collections from ship / ports of call including: spoons, thimbles, keychains, shot glasses, postage stamps, pens, plates, coffee mugs. The possibilities are endless.
Your mission, should you wish to accept it, is to pick a collectible item and either start or add to a collection during your next cruise. Keep the memory of your cruise alive by building a collection that whenever you view it, you'll bring back those fond memories.
Feel free to comment about your collections.