There are around 60 ornaments hanging from Nanette Schrum's tree inside her Lincolnton home. The beautiful hand-crafted pieces were created by her mother more than 40 years ago. Every year they've been a treasure to the Schrum family, until 2 years ago, when tragedy happened on Christmas Eve.
"Technically he died on Christmas Day," said Nanette, of her husband who had a massive heart attack on Christmas Eve. That Christmas she told her son Brian, she would never celebrate the holiday again.
In 2011, Nanette spent the entire holiday alone in her home. She didn't put up a tree or any ornaments. She didn't put up any Christmas decorations at all.
"We lost my dad and in a way it felt like we were losing my Mom too and it's like, you've got to be a part of this tradition and we've got to find a way to make it come back," said Brian.
In 2012, Brian started pushing his mother to come back to the Christmas spirit. He took her to a tree farm and picked out a tree. He put it up in her house and put lights on it. He called her almost every day to ask if she'd put the ornaments on it.
One day, she called and asked him to come over and bring his camera. She wouldn't tell him why.
When Brian arrived, he saw she not only put up each and every ornament, but she decked out the entire house in the most beautiful Christmas theme.
"Bringing all this out taught me a lesson, that I can celebrate the past but I had to move on to the future. And that's what these do for me," Nanette said, pointing to her beautiful tree.