In this ode to the tree, I’m sharing two of my favourite Christmas trees today! Many families enjoy cutting a tree themselves for Christmas, and there are a few places where you can still do that in the Barrie area. However, most people shop for ready-cut trees, just the right height and species. One of my favourite real Christmas trees ever is the Norway Spruce. This tree is so full and, with its slightly drooping branches, wonderful to decorate.
However, I have found that the ease and less mess of the pre-lit, hinged tree that enters our room from a box for the last number of years is so much simpler.
Have You Heard?
First up, lately, I’ve read that there will be a shortage of Christmas trees this year. Apparently, the masses are being instructed to purchase their trees earlier this year or be ready to compromise. Tree farms are struggling to keep up with increased demand, and adverse weather events have limited the amount of fresh, live trees available this season. This makes it even better that I already own a beautiful “put-away” tree.
Loving that this particular tree is pre-lit, I can pay more attention to the fun of decorating. I know many families with two or more trees in their homes, with one being a very posh themed tree and the other a family tree with ornaments collected over the years.
Oh the Memories!
That family-style tree is the one I love. Treasured ornaments, both hand-made and gifted, find a special spot on the tree. In our home, we also have fun with the ‘pickle’ ornament; the ornament will be carefully hidden, and the one who finally spots it will get an extra little gift.
I keep the garland simple and use gold, silver and glass bead ropes intertwined through the branches. I remember being so excited the year that our family was gifted some beautiful tartan ornaments in our family colours. Another year we inherited some delightful antique ornaments from a friend. My most favourite of all, though, are those made by my Mom and kids. My Mom is very artistic and, over the years, has added much character to the tree. The children’s ornaments gave me many years of memories before being gifted back to each when starting their families.
Solving the Tricky Topper
Such an easy tree! The only thing that has always been a little tricky was getting the topper to look right. That seemed to be a problem for a long time until we came up with the plan of permanently attaching it. Now it’s easy-peasy. The tree is simply put away with the topper in place.
We like to spend an afternoon decorating the tree with the family all there to pitch in. It’s a moment of excitement to see the awe on the youngest faces as the lights turn on. There’s Christmas music playing with hot chocolate to share. It’s moments like these that memories are made of.
Finishing up with the tree, we always place down a beautiful hand-made tree skirt and fill the space that usually holds gifts with toy families of carolers, a community of nutcrackers and a miniature sleigh full of Christmas candies. Of course, we will move those to other parts of the room on Christmas Eve.
Just About Done
The Nativity scene in our house dominates one small antique table, where alongside the advent calendars, it becomes a significant spot for the entire season. I just need to finish off a few things on the mantle, where we place the most precious of Christmas treasures, and then we’re holiday-ready, except in the kitchen, of course.
Written By: Jane Laker
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