Well, this year we decided to do something we’ve never, ever done before – wait until the last possible minute to buy and put up a Christmas tree, which was Saturday, December 23rd, as we didn’t want to shop on Sunday, Christmas Eve.
Now normally we drive to the local tree nursery and pick out a big, beautiful 7-8 foot Frasier Fir the first or second weekend of Advent. Twice we even bought a potted tree, which we planted in our yard in the Spring. Of course potted trees are a bit more expensive, like $200 compared to the $100 for a cut tree, but then you have the benefit of a lifelong tree in the yard.
Anyway, it is then our tradition to let the tree sit until Christmas Eve, when we all decorate it together before Midnight Mass. This year, however, we wanted to enter more fully into the season of Advent and not be bothered with a tree, until necessary. The result?
I have never been so excited to get a Christmas tree! It was so hard to see all those beautifully decorated trees in the windows of everyone’s houses! Let’s face it – Christmas trees are so festive and cheering. Who wouldn’t want one up all year round? (Well, maybe the dead pine needles would deter some…) And the children were positively giddy when we drove to Menards to buy one. (The local nursery was not open.)
The selection, however, was as one might expect. There were about 15 absolutely dead trees. So, we picked out the least looking dead one and drove home, still very happy with our Charlie Brown Christmas Tree. After all, this tree just needed a little love – like Linus’s blanket wrapped around its base or some sparkling lights and shiny ornaments. And it turned out all right, as you can see by the picture.
But there was another reward for waiting. We only spent $2.13! Unbelievable.
And there is even one more, unlooked for advantage to purchasing a really dead tree. You see, we need not concern ourselves with watering it. I mean, we do have it sitting in water, but it hasn’t soaked up any yet.
Now, let’s just hope this tree makes it until Epiphany without completely falling apart. (Oh that we lived near a Christmas Tree Farm, so that we could get a fresh one, which might last until the Feast of the Presentation on February 2.)
But will we do this again next year? Yes. The wait was worth it, even if only for the sheer excitement of the thing.
And while we’re talking about Christmas trees, everyone knows that the best song to listen to while decorating your tree is Brenda Lee’s Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree. Well, unless you’re German, then maybe you’d prefer Nat King Cole’s O Tannenbaum?