Wednesday, December 5, 2007

No Over-Commercialization Here!

My husband likes to go out in the woods (so very Park Ranger of him) and find a Christmas tree. Well, needless to say, they are not what I grew up with. I grew up in a home not very far from my grandparents in Mississippi and I LOVED Christmas time. Right after Thanksgiving a beautiful tree would be delivered to my grandparents home. Granddaddy Roy would call me and say, "come on over, it is time to decorate the tree!" This is very special because I lived in a house full of boys and this was something special that just he and I did every year. Of course, my grandmother, Bay, sat and directed our every ornament placement. But, as the woman of the house, I understand that now.

I did not realize at the time that people actually went out and cut trees down until in junior high when Bay and Roy were getting a little progressive and decided we should go to one of those Christmas tree farms and "experience" picking out and cutting down a tree. Oh the memories... my brother who shot me with the BB gun was allowed to carry the saw, or should I say chase me with the saw. Bay, the proper Mississippi lady, just looked at me with that "are you being a proper lady" look. He was chasing me with a saw!

Even the Christmas tree farm trees are perfect, like the ones you see in magazines. So, fast forward to my first Christmas at the mountain park. I was so excited, I was going to get my own Christmas tree! Well, Big Buckaroo thought paying for a tree is ridiculous. So, he kept promising that we would go get one. Well, it got a little late in December and after dinner in town one night he saw the trees at Big Star were on sale. So, our first Christmas tree came from a small-town grocery store. It was gapped up a bit, but I was so in love, all I could see was that my big strong man had made my Christmas tree wish come true. Now looking back at the pictures, I have different thoughts. The same thing happened the next Christmas, same Big Star, bigger gaps.

Then, the cutting your own tree down years began. Although I was (and am still) in love with my husband the newness of Big Star Christmas trees had worn off. We had just moved into a newly built home and I had visions of sugarplums dancing in my head. What is going on in my head usually does get me in trouble. So, I thought alright, maybe we will go out and cut down a tree just as beautiful as the ones that Bay and Roy used to get. Delusional! That first tree might have had about 7 branches on it. And, they did not get much better the next few years after that. Last year was our first year at this Park and they cut down numerous trees to be decorated in the historical homes. These are some pretty sad trees also, but they are actually what they would have had in the mid 1800s. So, maintenance guy Bo brought over two trees for me to choose from last year, oh, these were the left over trees. Meaning, they were not even good enough to be in a rustic 1800s log cabin. So, I chose the one that had 9 limbs, I was moving on up. However, all nine limbs were on one side of the tree. No problem, I just put it in the corner. So, this year when Big Buckaroo said that there were not any extra trees at the Park, I was relieved. That relief did not last long as he said we just need to go walk around (our house is on 8 acres) and find one. UGH! We eventually found one, he cut it down and it is now in my living room. It is probably the best tree we have had in years - that is not saying much of course. So, Little Buckaroo and I decorated it yesterday. I let him choose the decorations, very hard for my Martha Stewart personality. But, I want him to have fun memories of decorating the tree with me just as I have of decorating with Roy. After he went to bed last night, I did move some of the ornaments up a bit on the tree since they were all at his eye level or below. (Martha control freak)

I am learning to accept and love these parts of my life, I still have tendencies to want to be Snoopy with the pretty lights and baubles that win the decorating contests, but then I look at my Charlie Brown Christmas tree and remember...

I am one blessed wife and mother (with more branches on my Christmas tree than I have had in years, ye-haw!).

Here is this years tree undecorated, lots of light coming through where branches should be.
Idea for people with little ones -since I decided to go rustic with decorating the tree, I put it in a big bucket (oh, Big Buckaroo just corrected me, this is a wash tub). This not only adds to the rustic feel, but also makes it harder for little ones to get close to the base and knock the tree over.

Here is a picture of the tree decorated.

One more picture for the day. Since many of you think I am desperate for friends because of my PW post (satire folks), I just wanted to reassure you that I do have friends in this rural area. This is my sweet friend who is more of a fish out of water than me. She grew up as a debutante in Miami! She is a wonderful Godly woman, wife and mother of two sweet, beautiful girls. I am so blessed to have her in my life.

Salmonella! Yuck!


Mapper said...

I like your tree! I will email you a little Christmas tree tidbit about my life later.
Nice to meet your chicken friend ;)


PS... my blogroll got screwed up when I switched to my new design and somehow now PW is above you! Gotta look into that one! PWroo should be on top! hahaha (I actually think it seems to be going random??)

Stacie said...

What a beautiful tree. I love to hear your tree stories too. The idea of putting it in a bucket is really cool, I'll have to remember that for another time. I'm getting good Christmas ideas from you!

chicken friend said...

chicken friend here...LOVE your tree..and you and your stories!! Thanks for swimming out of the warm miami water with me!!!!!!! OOOO the desert is so dry..but the Lord is so good to give us bright shiny jewels in the DESERT!

Inside the Philosophy Factory said...

I just found your blog and love it!

Your tree looks a lot like the ones we cut in northern MN for my mom. My mom is a nurse, works a lot and has never made a big fuss over Christmas -- so, if we wanted a tree, we had to find one on the way up to her place. So, when we'd enter the true north woods -- where people don't think it is weird to stop and cut down a tree -- we'd watch the ditches for an appropriate ditch tree. They never worked out very well, but they were always fun...

Some of her neighbors are much more serious about their trees--- their secret is to go out in late October -- before it snows, and mark the top of their perfect tree with a blaze orange ribbon.

JessicaB said...

I think your Christmas tree is very pretty. It is unique. Lil' Bum and I decorated our tree and I also moved some of the ornaments when she was sleeping.

I thought your little tribute to PW was very cute and I bet she was flattered. Nothing about it made you seem desperate. You were just having fun.

Wonderful World of Weiners said...

That is one sparse, but loved, tree!


Rachel said...

Such a wonderful read!!
I love this story, so full of life and love and memories.
Love the tree, and your adorable salmonella playing friend :-)
Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the wonderful tree story. That was very sweet.
I like your tree. You did a great job with what you had!

Looking forward to learning more about your holiday decor.


Mapper said...

I want an "Ask Chicken Friend" session ala "Ask Marlboro Man" that they are buckin for on the OTHER PW site ;)
Seriously, we need to get Chicken Friend a better name, and a blog of her own. I bet she has other hobbies besides poultry products!


Julie Beth said...

Darn, I was really hoping you were serious about being PW's new best blog friend. Then that way I could campaign to be your new best blog friend and you could introduce me to PW. Hee hee! ;)

I really love your idea of saving a peice of each Christmas tree trunk. Wish I would have done that for our family. I do have a really cute photo of Mr. Boy Scout triming our second Christmas tree's trunk with the 3" saw blade of his Swiss Army knife.

Nicole said...

thanks for stopping by!

I LOVE YOUR TREE. i am too ashamed to show pics of my hand-me-down 80's fake mess, but I aspire for something in a wash tub someday. very cool.

Anonymous said...

How pretty! I love the "wash tub" :O) idea!!