|Do You Want the Best Christmas Tree Ever?|
The first year of our marriage, we lived in a small apartment with a small, newlywed budget. We were pinching pennies trying to save up for our first house. Our first Christmas tree was a $15.99 Blue Light Special from K-Mart. We loved it and thought it was the best Christmas tree ever.
It turned out to be a good thing the tree was only four feet tall. On December 23, we were surprised to learn we could go ahead and move into a house we were in the process of buying. I would never have decorated our apartment for Christmas had I known we would be moving so soon! We didn’t have a lot of stuff so packing up didn’t take too long. We packed vehicles and transported furniture and clothes to the new house about ten miles down the road. We were trying to hurry because we had a family Christmas gathering to attend that night.
Finally, after several trips, the only thing left was the Christmas tree. Exhausted and pushed for time, I removed all the fragile ornaments. Then, with all the remaining ornaments and lights intact, I carried the still assembled tree to the car and stuffed it into the back seat. That was fun. It reminded me of how the Grinch stole Cindy Lou’s tree and shoved it up the chimney except this was a happy occasion.
|Is the Best Christmas Tree Found on a Christmas Tree Farm?|
Another favorite memory was the time we took our two little girls to the mountains to chop down their first, living Christmas tree. We hiked all over the Christmas tree farm in search of the perfect tree. It seemed like we were never going to find one we all liked. Finally, we were looking at a tree and noticed an empty bird’s nest in one of the branches. The girls thought this made it the perfect tree. Seeing their smiling faces, we agreed. One of the girls gently removed the nest before the tree was cut.
|The Best Christmas Tree Ever|
The next year, my dear family thought we needed multi-colored lights on the tree instead of my pretty, white ones. My husband presented the case that kids need a colorful, fun tree. A compromise was made. If you want colored lights, we put the angel on top. If you want the spastic, rainbow star, we use white lights on the tree. The colored lights and angel were chosen and we thought it was the best Christmas tree ever.
Over the years, the kids’ handmade ornaments nudged my Victorian decorations back into their boxes. A porcelain tea set ornament looks a bit out of place beside a popsicle stick reindeer and handprint angels. There were store-bought ornaments used as well—always brightly painted ones for the children to enjoy.
The tradition has been that every year the children receive a new ornament for their own collection. Quite often, the ornament commemorates something special that happened in the child’s life that year. Soon, the rainbow-lit branches cradled a whole mish-mash of ornaments. And an elegant angel overlooked them all.
|An Angel Overlooks the Christmas Tree|
Do I miss the beautiful, Victorian themed tree? Not at all. One day, those ornaments may make their way back. I may need to use some this year to fill in a gap. My oldest daughter got married this summer. She took her collection of ornaments with her for the newlyweds’ tree.
Over twenty years of collecting ornaments for her—the one that says “Baby’s First Christmas,” the gingerbread house, the Barbie, the grand piano, the scrapbooking one, and so many more.
I believe I’m going to miss her brightly colored ornaments.
What about you? Do you have special Christmas tree memories?