A New Christmas Tradition

You’ll see this question posted on nearly every Facebook fan page known to man, “Real or fake Christmas trees?  What’s your take?” or some variation thereof.  This is the single most popular question I have seen this Christmas season.  More than wondering if you are a last minute shopper, favorite holiday traditions or best holiday dish, the Real vs Fake debate has been raging on for weeks.

I don’t really care if you have a real tree or a fake one.  My motto for just about everything in life is “to each his own.”  But before you spout off that it just isn’t Christmas without a REAL tree, let me tell you a little about my family and our own budding Christmas tradition.

My mother is allergic to pine trees.  All of them.  This means that in my multiple decades on earth, I have never had a “real” Christmas tree.  I’ll repeat that so that the words may fully sink in, I have NEVER had a real, as in live, Christmas tree.  Not once in my whole life.

You may well be wondering, after having married a man who had nothing but real trees his whole life, and having not lived in my parents’ home for many years, why I have yet to have one.  My husband and I have talked about it.  We have discussed each year of our marriage, whether or not to go out and buy a tree.  We have always decided against it.

You see, the tree that sits in our living room, the tree that we decorate each year, is a dinky, little plastic thing that has barely survived the years at our house.  And it is the tree I grew up with.  It is the Christmas tree that my presents sat under every year of my childhood.  It is the tree that I decorated every year that I can remember.  It is the only tree I have ever known.  When I was a young adult, living at home, my parents purchased a newer, nicer, more realistic tree.  When wondering what to do with the old one, I asked my mother to keep it.  And for the few years that I lived at home after that, we had two trees, the new one, and my tree.  I decorated it every year, and moved it with me when I moved in with my husband and when we got married and when we bought our first home.  It has been the only tree my husband and I have ever had together and the only one I have ever shared with a significant other.

Each year, we pull out the same boxes that have housed the pieces of that funky, plastic tree, and add to the layers of duct tape already holding them together.  We sift through the boxes to find all the pieces, we find all the bags that hold all the branches and begin the process of assembling our tree.  It’s not a fancy tree that comes pre-lit; it isn’t one piece the folds neatly together for easy storage.  It comes in about a million pieces, with each level of branches numbered, and a Ziplock bag of extra “spiny pieces” in case we have a hole somewhere.  The plastic is shiny, as much of it was in the 70s and 80s, and our hands get sore and raw from jamming the branches into the trunk because of the “life like” ridges in each branch’s brown stem.

But it’s our tree.  And each year, we look at the fancy, recycled plastic, life like, pre-lit, easy to store trees and note that they get less expensive and more budget friendly each season.  But it’s our tree.  And, for all its shiny, plastic surfaces and gaps where we have no extra spiny, pine tree pieces to fill, it’s the only tree I have ever known.  And it’s the only tree my husband and I have ever shared.  And it’s special.

Real trees may smell lovely, but I will probably never know.  For I have a real tree of my own.  A tree that is as real to me as any memory of Christmas morning, that has houses several tree climbing pet kitties, has been through all my first Christmas morning experiences and has even been peed on by one of our dogs.  And I still wouldn’t trade it for that real tree experience.  Because real trees go in the garbage after New Year’s Day, but my tree will quite possibly be with me until my dying days.

So think about the new Christmas traditions that can be started.  Think of all the treasures we all hope to pass down to our children.  Why can’t a family Christmas tree be one of them?  It is in ours.

 

 

About A Girl

A Girl is a 20 something blogger who began blogging in 2008 as a means of coping with a deployment. She is a Veterinary Technician by trade and loves her work in Emergency and Critical Care. She is married to a 11 year veteran of the USMC reserves, whom she meet shortly after he returned from a deployment. They have been married for four years, have three, very bratty dogs, and are currently trying to muddle through the aftermath of a difficult deployment for both.

17 thoughts on “A New Christmas Tradition

  1. I love this! Our tree is fake, although a couple times we have had a real one. We got ours before we moved overseas, we were PCSing in January, to Okinawa, we saw pre-lit trees on after christmas clearance just before TMO came to pack us up so we grabbed one. It’s been to Japan and back, all over the USA, it’s perfect for us.

    • I love it! It makes it special when you have a tree like that. Not that I don’t get the real tree love, but I love the idea of a fake tree that holds special meaning :)

  2. I love this! Our tree is fake, although a couple times we have had a real one. We got ours before we moved overseas, we were PCSing in Janurary, to Okinawa, we saw pre-lit trees on after christmas clearance just before TMO came to pack us up so we grabbed one. It’s been to Japan and back, all over the USA, it’s perfect for us.
    Alana recently posted…P90X3 will be available tomorrow Dec 10My Profile

  3. I love that you have a tree that has so much meaning to you.

    That makes it more real than anything.
    OneMommy recently posted…Choose Energy and Save!My Profile

  4.  Hi, great post. I found you through the blog hop. Please stop  by and say hi when you get a chance.  .Be sure and check out my new Blog Hop that started. It’s Weekly Goals Link Up. It’s a great way to stay on track. Have a great day. :) Now following you. 

    Here’s the link for it if you would like to check it out.
    http://lenettacarnes.blogspot.com/2013/01/weekly-goals-linkup-1.html
    Lenetta recently posted…Wednesday Hodgepodge!!My Profile

    • I’m so glad to know we are not alone! Everyone is always saying how it just isn’t Christmas without a “real” tree. But I would feel like it wasn’t Christmas without my silly plastic one. LOL! :)

  5. Real trees or fake trees doesn’t really matter when you are building family traditions. I have allergies and don’t really care for the mess of real trees but when we are decorating it’s about the time we spend together. You are on your way to great family memories.

    I’m having a PINTEREST Social hop. I’d love for you to hop on over, grab a button and link up your Pinterest. If you don’t have Pinterest it’s ok, come link up your blog.

    http://mydailyphotojourney.blogspot.com/2012/12/pinterest-party.html

    I’m also looking for Pinterest Pinners to feature every week beginning in January. If you are on Pinterest and are interested in being featured come link up! Who knows you might meet some other great pinners and gain a few great ideas.

    http://mydailyphotojourney.blogspot.com/2012/12/looking-for-pinners.html

    Have a crazy beautiful week!
    [email protected] beautiful life recently posted…Christmas Mini TourMy Profile

      • It’s a new week, no worries! We party every Saturday.

        I’m having a HOMETALK Social hop. I’d love for you to hop on over, grab a button and link up your Hometalk. If you don’t have Hometalk it’s ok, come link up your blog.

        http://www.mydailyphotojourney.blogspot.com/2012/12/hometalk-social-hop.html

        I’m also looking for Pinterest Pinners to feature every week beginning in January. If you are on Pinterest and are interested in being featured come link up! Who knows you might meet some other great pinners and gain a few great ideas.

        http://mydailyphotojourney.blogspot.com/2012/12/looking-for-pinners.html
        [email protected] beautiful life recently posted…Color Inspiration #6My Profile

  6. That is really sweet. We have only had a real tree once in our married lives. They are a lot harder to take care of and I like not having to worry about watering my fake one…lol
    Julie recently posted…Shindigz Party Supplies Review and GiveawayMy Profile

    • Yes, I have always imagined real trees being more hassle then they are worth. All the needles on the floor and the watering and the trying to keep my dogs from peeing on it all seem like an awful lot of extra work! I’ll take my plastic tree any day :)

  7. I love this post!!! It doesn’t matter if a Christmas tree is real or fake it’s all about the memories and traditions behind it. :)

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