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My sister Jen fell in love with the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s. She related to Audrey Hepburn’s character Holly Golightly in the movie, and she became obsessed with everything Audrey Hepburn and everything Tiffany’s.

My sister Jen couldn’t afford to buy anything at Tiffany’s or even get anything engraved there like Holly Golightly. She loved to shop, though, and in her short time here on this earth, she did manage to acquire a couple of items from Tiffany’s. One item was a “Return to Tiffany” heart charm bracelet that, I believe, she bought for herself, maybe on her trip to New York with a friend, most likely purchased on credit. She was also given a silver Tiffany necklace from a friend.

After my sister died when she was only 22, I too became obsessed with Tiffany’s. My sister was murdered about a week before her 23rd birthday. Her case remains unsolved to this day. When you lose someone so suddenly and in such a terrible way, you desperately try to find ways to stay connected to that person, at least that was what I did. Jen loved Tiffany’s, and so therefore, I loved Tiffany’s, and I would look for little ways to keep Jen’s memory and the things she loved in our hearts.

When my husband and I got married, we started a tradition in memory of Jen. We began buying one Christmas ornament from Tiffany’s each year. We’re both teachers, so actually trimming the tree with “decorations bought at Tiffany’s” was a bit of a splurge for us, to say the least. But one Tiffany ornament a year would not break the bank, and it was such a special tribute to Jen.

This year we bought our 14th ornament. We picked out a light green Christmas tree in bone china to add to our collection. Every year it is exciting to pick out our ornament and wait for it to be delivered in that little blue box. My daughter, who is in college now, loves to get in on the choosing of the ornament. After all, those ornaments will all be hers one day.

In 2019, we had a mishap with our Christmas tree. We had just finished the decorating and had been sitting in the living room enjoying the beauty and coziness of it and watching TV.  Suddenly, the whole tree crashed to the ground. It was an awful crash, and several of our irreplaceable ornaments broke, one of them being a Christmas ball ornament from Tiffany’s. The next year we bought two ornaments, one for 2020, and one to replace the one we had lost in the 2019 Christmas tree debacle. I always thought that situation was a bit of foreshadowing of the year that was to come in 2020. We all remember how that year turned out.

“Come and trim my Christmas tree, with some decorations bought at Tiffany.” Just like the classic song “Santa Baby,” that’s what we do now, one year at a time in memory of Jen. I love that tradition, and every year when I look at my tree, I’m reminded of that girl who was “crazy about Tifany’s,” and it makes her a part of our Christmases still, every year.