Our beautiful 7.5ft pre-lit tree died. Meaning we threw it out after last year when we plugged it in and only a small section of lights worked, not to mention the lower branches that had been lovingly chewed on by our dogs down through the years. We concluded it was more of a hazard and it was time to say goodbye.
It was a good thing at first because it made more room in our garage, but then as the calendar started creeping around towards December again, we were pressed to decide what to do for this year. We decided to use our teeny-tiny desktop tree. The one I bought at Hobby Lobby for five bucks after christmas one year. Then perhaps when the holidays are over we can get another normal-sized tree, one that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.
We had already decided that this was the year we were going to give up the perfectly matchy-matchy tree. The one with the coordinated sparkling snowflakes of white and silver and the blue and white ribbon strategically wrapped around the tree. The glowing ornaments and the silver star on top.
No, this year we were planning to start the “kid” tree… The one where they decorate and use all their own ornaments. The ones that Nana has bought them every year, as well as the felt penguins they made at church and the paper candy canes they glued together.
It’s kinda funny because when I was in high school I would dream of the day I could put together my own tree, fully equipped with symmetry and coordination. A statement of my kin to Martha Stewart. But for the last few years I have been anxiously awaiting the mismatched lopsided tree to don my home.
So we pulled out the teeny-tiny tree and set it in the middle of the living room and got out our small cardboard box filled with our little handmade and gifted ornaments from the past few years. The computer played some sweet Pentatonix harmonies. And the kids pilfered through the box to discover each new treasure.
They ooo’d and aww’d over each one while their pudgy fingers tried to hang them over the prickly branches. It was like opening gifts, one right after another. Their eyes sparkled with wonder and the excitement was all over their faces. I’ve always loved the tree decorating, but this year has been exceptionally delightful.
I know there will be a day I get to come up with a cute theme and go shopping again for matching lights and ornaments. But for now, (and probably the next decade) I’m going to relish the beauty of this mismatched tree. And while ours is just a teeny-tiny one this year, I have a feeling it’s going to get much bigger and much fuller as our family grows.
What does your tree look like this year?