For me, setting up the Christmas tree signals the beginning of the holiday season. However, this year, I’ve decided it would be too risky to decorate a tree with all my treasured ornaments. Unfortunately, Charlie, our Labradoodle puppy, is still in charge over here, and I know she would delight in nothing more than plucking a sparkly bauble off the tree, running around the house with it (me chasing her!) and then trying to figure out how to eat it…a disaster just waiting to happen!
Instead, I’ll have to get creative to get that festive vibe in our home. So far, I’ve purchased small fresh evergreen and lemon cypress trees. Their branches are too fragile to hold glass ornaments, but they are short enough that I can use them on the dining room table and in areas we pass frequently. The Paperwhites and Amaryllis should be blooming just in time for Christmas, adding to the beauty and scent of the season. Candlelight adds atmosphere to any occasion, and fresh flowers will be in abundance.
Luckily we have four spruce trees in the back garden that we see every time we come and go. There are hundreds of mini lights strung around them lighting up the garden…which is quite magical.
Along with all the other shortages we are experiencing this year, it appears that real Christmas trees may be at a premium too. Extreme weather, mostly heat, has affected tree farm production, and, of course, the delivery of the trees is a problem too. Over the past several years, young adults prefer real trees to artificial trees…adding to the demand.
*There is a part of me that mourns for all the trees in a Christmas tree lot. I can’t help but wonder what could have become of them if they were left to grow a natural lifetime. And I can hardly think about the majestic “perfect” mature trees that are cut for the White House or Rockefeller Center (lighting was last night) just to display for a few weeks. I know, I know…these trees are grown for just this purpose…what can I say I’m a tree hugger!
For hundreds of years, Christmas trees were topped with stars (the Star of Bethelem), angels, and glass finials (a church sphere pointing to the heavens). All of these had religious significance. In recent times, trees are often decorated to complement the interior decorating of your home, “themed” either by subject or colour and the tree topper reflects that theme.
*The last few years that CC on Whyte was open, I couldn’t even find a star or angel tree toppers to include with the Christmas inventory, much to the disappointment of many customers.
My Christmas tree is always nostalgic. It’s a collection of time…ornaments that have special meaning to me…some were gifts from family and friends, many others purchased while travelling, and some are the baubles that graced the trees from childhood that my mom gave. It’s a memory tree, and I’m always emotional when I decorate the tree…in a happy way. For several years, I’ve topped my tree with a crown from CC (another memory), which seems appropriate for the gold, sparkly tinsel tree.
If you are so fortunate to have inherited the family heirloom Christmas tree topper, your tree reflects the past and present.
Whatever form or style your tree takes, I hope you are having fun getting ready for the season. Christmas is only a few weeks away!