Saturday, December 1, 2012

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories 2012

And so it begins, the Advent Season of 2012.

December 1 – The Christmas Tree
Did you have a real tree or was it artificial? How big was the tree? Who decorated the tree? What types of Christmas trees did your ancestors have?

I remember a mix of real and artificial trees.  Most of the real trees were when I was younger.  I remember the tree stands that had a bowl for water built in at the base.  I probably remember that because I was down at that level and snooping under the tree!

Later my family would get artificial trees, partly to avoid the annual cost of going out to buy a tree, partly to reduce fire danger, and probably partly to reduce cleanup of dropped needles.  My folks still have an artificial tree, and in fact my mother stated a few days ago that she dragged it out and put it up, still decorated from last year, saving her time and effort this year.

For most of my adult life I have had artificial trees for most of the reasons above.  The current one has been with us for a decade or so.  What I like most about it is that it has fiber optic strands embedded in it, and a light in the base, so it's pre-lit when we unpack it.  No tangly strands of lights, no testing to see which bulb(s) are burned out...

However, one year we did to the whole traditional thing of going out and finding a tree (we did use a tree farm, not a neighbor's yard!) to cut down and bring home.  We wanted the kids to have that experience at least once.  So we did get to experience the dropped needles, the watering of the tree, etc.  One plus was the wonderful pine scent in the house!

Generally, though, I would personally be fine not even having a tree.  I think the tree and all of the trappings are just one more thing taking away from the real reason for the Christmas season, the "Christ Mass", the celebration of the birth of Jesus.

The Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories (ACCM) allows you to share your family’s holiday history 24 different ways during 24 days in December! Learn more at

This and all other articles on this blog are © copyright 2012 by Daniel G. Dillman