Who knew Skid Row could be such a worldly place! All it takes is decorating my little Christmas Tree thanks to a tradition I started.I love to travel! I get antsy if I don't board a plane or get into my car and drive to a different time zone. To me a vacation must involve luggage and a destination. It gives me something to look forward to and while I am away it gives me a chance to recharge my batteries. Because I am such a horrible packer, I never have room for souviners. So years ago I started a tradition. I mail myself a postcard from wherever I am. I love having a postcard with a postmark from a faraway place in my photo album. I always date them and put a little tag of who I am with or who I met on my travels. I also buy a magnet for my fridge. I love looking at my fridge and seeing all the places I have been. And the final thing I do, which can be kind of tricky in some places is to buy a Christmas Ornament. When I was in Costa Rica I spent the entire 10 days in the jungle on the Pacuare River so it was quite a challenge to find my ornament. I saw it in the airport right as I was boarding the plane. There was only one. It was a sign. It was meant to be. Now when I see that little tiki hut that says, Costa Rica 2009, I am reminded of my solo adventure through that country. Every year when I unpack my tree, I am reminded of all the fun I had, all the adventures, the friends I traveled with, the crazy night I had with my sister in Cabo and so much more! This year I had so many new ornaments from my travels to put on the tree. I had the Mickey Mouse Santa that I got at Disneyland last Christmas Eve. I got an this purple Octopus in Roatan, Honduras this spring.

Kate McGwire Photos

I picked up a Santa cruising in a boat on Lake Coeur d' Alene over the 4th of July. I have a basket of blueberries that says Priest Lake, Idaho from my golf trip,. I have a scenic ornament of Lake Pend Oreille from my trip to Sandpoint over Labor Day. I think my most favorite item of the year though is my Denver Broncos Ball that I bought two weeks ago at Mile High during the Kansas City butt kicking. My tree of many places is like a trip around the world in one afternoon all from my living room on Skid Row.

Happy Holidays~Kate