I love Christmas. I love Christmas trees.
I don’t love that an innocent tree, a tree that has never hurt anyone or anything has to sacrifice its life to decorate my home.
Up until this year I had a small artificial tree that I have used all of my adult life. When I was a kid, my parents would pack my brothers and me into the truck and we would go pick a real Christmas tree as a family. We always did this at night, and almost always paid one of the guys to put the tree on our vehicle. Next, we would go home unload said tree and commence decorating, which always involved tinsel. Yuck. I know, tinsel probably conjures up sugar-plum fairy memories of childhood and such, but lets face it, it’s pretty darned messy stuff.
When I first moved out on my own, my future mother-in-law (I suppose that now she’s actually my present mother-in-law) gave me the artificial tree she had used for years. I was so excited to get this little tree and start my own traditions. I loved the Christmas traditions that I grew up with, but I felt like getting my own tree was a sort of right-of-passage into adulthood. I got married (to the little fake tree’s previous owner), got a dog, bore children and we bought our first home, all the while bringing the little tree along for the ride. I would guess that the tree was probably 20 years old at the end of it’s fake life.
Did I forget to mention that the tree was about 5-feet tall? Yep, 5-feet. When I was a child, our trees were always huge and real. My husband grew up with a small and fake one. I love him and I loved that tree anyway.
When we moved into our first REAL home in the fall a few years ago, I looked forward to decorating our new abode in all of it’s glory in anticipation of the celebration of the birth of Christ. We brought out the Christmas decor boxes that travelled with us from a 650 square-foot duplex that we were renting and I took the little, old tree out of it’s tattered, ragged, original, old cardboard box and assembled it. That was the last Christmas the little tree spent with us. We have 9-foot ceilings, so our tree became even smaller than it already was. It was now a joke of a tree as opposed to the sentimental little tree that had come so far.
I let the little tree experience Christmas in our new house with our daughter and brand new baby son, who decided to come a few days after the 25th. Then I donated that tiny little sucker (the tree, NOT my son) and we bought a new, fake tree, which broke when we tried to assemble it this year. Mr. New Modern fake tree lasted through 2 Christmas’. So, we ran out and bought a real tree, just for this year. The price tag said it was $29.00 and that it was 6 feet tall, but it was all wrapped up so we weren’t exactly sure. My deal-hungry hubby stood his 6-foot plus frame next to it and concluded that it was actually about 7-feet tall. My hubby tied it to the top of my SUV, loaded up the kiddies and we brought it home. When he snipped the wrapping, a massive, massive Douglas Fir popped out like an upside down umbrella. I think this tree has to be about 7-feet tall and 6-feet wide. Whoa! The smell! The needles! The majesty of a real christmas tree! Oh my!
Next Christmas we are going to go back to an artificial tree, but this one will be pre-lit. Ho-Ho-Ho!