Despite having only a few Christmas trees to select from in the paddock this year, I am very happy with the tree we were allocated sight unseen. And really, thank god we weren’t turned away at the gate (as were some. Reminds me of that Seinfeld episode with the Soup Nazi, who refused to serve some hapless potential clients, thus furthering his own popularity as ‘to be served’ signalled ‘to be good enough’. Not that we were ‘good enough’ – we just happened to have heard of the hail damage and so rang a few days beforehand to ‘bags’ a few trees).
In fact, this year’s Christmas Tree has enabled me, for the first time, to be glad we have a small house. Our tree, every year, is squashed into a narrow-ish space between the sideboard and the fireplace. This year the positive effects of such confinment means that the tree still looks incredibly luscious and full.I spent my childhood longing for a real christmas tree (the same way I also longed for a swimming pool). I’m not sure why – perhaps it’s because of the way the smell of fresh pine invokes immediate happy memories; perhaps it’s because that wonderful smell overtakes the house, in an evocative way; perhaps it’s the novelty of having a real tree inside the house… Who knows how the brain of a young girl works? Mum and Dad’s excuses for our fake plastic tree, year after year, were – ‘real ones are too hard to get rid of’ (we lived in Canberran suburbia); ‘real ones don’t last’ (really?!); ‘we don’t have a trailer’ (that’s true); etc. So, as an adult, having the opportunity to go to an actual Christmas tree farm year after year is not one I will ever turn down lightly, trailer or no trailer, hail storm or no hail storm. In fact – “hear ye, hear ye, I hereby pledge to always have a real Christmas tree in my own home”.
The morning after this year’s Festivus, I got our new tree into the loungeroom quickly, fastening the fishing wire around its trunk and tying it to the wall to prevent the whole thing from toppling over into little grasping hands. Then the boys and I tackled what was left of our Christmas tree decorations. In past years I have tried all sorts of decorations which have slowly hit the dust, including those annoying Christmas balls which look so pretty but you only have to look at them to shatter them.
Finally, however, I have worked it out. For me, it’s no tinsel. Forget the tinsel. That can go somewhere else. I want to be able to see the real tree. The lights can stay. I have decided however that I want home-made decorations by friends and children (hooray for pre-school!), are well crafted, or come with a memory of something lovely. I am going to try and collect one very special decoration every year, so that by the time I die my christmas tree decoration box will be my legacy to future generations of my family – either that, or it will end up on Ebay and sold for a paltry amount.
Oh, and there will be no plastic.
So, here’s our tree for this year. It’s an annual work in progress. Ah, Christmas Tree Festivus. Bring on 2014.
I wish you all a wonderful festive season, and thank you sincerely for taking the time in your busy lives to read our weekly blogs, which we so enjoy writing. Looking forward to continuing on with you into 2014, come what may!