The Important Things

If you read this post you know that we went on Sunday to get our Christmas Tree.  I have always been a big proponent of a live tree.  I know that some people don’t get live trees because of allergies or various reasons, but we always had a live tree growing up and so, for me, that’s what I associate with a true Christmas at home. 

The first year we were married we went and got a real tree.  I guess at the time I thought it was going to be this magical memory that I would always remember but, honestly, now — only 3 years later — I can’t even tell you where we got it.  But I know we got a real tree and it looked beautiful taking over a large portion of the eating area in our small dining/living area in our apartment. 

Our second year of marriage saw us moved home and in our first house.  I do remember going to the Young Life lot and picking out our tree.  I originally wanted to go to the tree farm but I decided that that would be a lot of effort just for the two of us and time was short due to football season.  So we put up our second real tree and only had a few minor problems putting it up.  One being that I almost got my finger broken putting the tree in the stand.  Some period of time after we got the tree up, lights put on, and decorated Jason and I woke up to a loud crash.  The tree had fallen over.  Apparently with the finger incident the tree wasn’t completely in the stand level and so it fell.  We lost some very special ornaments and were able to replace most of them.  I don’t remember any that we weren’t able to replace or that ended up not being that special since I don’t remember loosing them.

Last year I was pregnant and couldn’t put lights on a real tree due to my expanding girth and the lead in the lights.  So, we borrowed an artifical tree from my parents and made do.  Honestly, I was a little glad that I didn’t have to mess with putting the lights on.  It took some of the fun away since there was no Christmas tree smell but I didn’t get sap all over me, we didn’t have to remember to water it, and it didn’t die before Christmas.

But this year, oh this year, was our little girls first Christmas.  By golly, we were going back to a real tree!  Mom and Dad had gotten a new tree to replace their old artificial one so we were going to use theirs on our landing and put a real tree in the den.  When we got the tree home we decided that it would be better in the entry.  Possibly because we might have had to cut some of the top of the tree off to get it to fit in our den and mostly because that’s where the tree was at my house in high school/college and I loved the feeling of it.  Since our last real tree experience had been fraught with disaster we put the tree stand on while the tree was laying on the front porch.  That way we were able to ensure that the entire base was down, level in the stand. 

When we got our 10 foot tree up we noticed that it still looked like it leaned a little bit, but we checked the base and it was totally level on the floor.  So, we secured the tree to the column next to it just to make sure and went ahead with the decorations.  That was Sunday.  I spent the last three days putting lights on the tree during nap times.  I would estimate that I used about 20 – 25 strands of lights on the tree.  I finally finished the lights last night and we had Jason and Charlotte do the ceremonial honors of putting the first ornament on the tree.

These are the only pictures that we have of the tree.  I finished putting ornaments and the bow on around 11:30 this morning.  I mentioned to my mother-in-law when she came to keep Charlotte this afternoon that the angel and bow on the tree made it look even more crooked but I had checked the stand again and it was still not leaning at all.  I figured that the trunk of the tree was just a little off. 
Jason got home.  He admired the tree.  I have to tell you, it was beautiful.  Lots of lights.  Ornaments everywhere from the trunk to the tips.  All sparkly and shiny.  All I’ve been reading on blogs recently is “your tree must have a theme and not having a theme is not a theme” so I decided that my theme was shiny ornaments (not the most original but it’s our family tree, it’s not like I could only put on the red ornaments that we have).  All of our Radko’s were displayed along with tons of other beautiful ornaments. 
So then we were in the den playing with Charlotte and we had just turned to “The Polar Express” on tv when I sat and watched our beautiful tree fall down.  It was loud.  Charlotte got scared and starting crying.  Luca flipped because he didn’t know what was going on.  And Jason and I just sat in devastation.
Thankfully, no one was hurt.  The only things that were harmed were just that, things.  Objects that might represent  memories but not our memories themselves.  It hurts because some of our most special ornaments broke and can’t be replaced like the Rosemary Beach 2008 ornament that we got on our “babymoon” last year.  But still, they’re just ornaments.  Mom and Dad came down and helped us get the ornaments off the tree, the lights off, the tree taken outside, and everything cleaned up.  Since the base was level we have to assume that the tree was top heavy or too crooked and we wouldn’t want to redecorate just to lose more ornaments or have it fall on someone. 
So now we’ve reached the point where we’re going to go all artificial.  Maybe, hopefully, in a few years when the memories of these accidents aren’t so fresh and we’re not so frustrated we’ll go back to a real tree.  But right now we’re going to go find a tree to go in our entry and try and decorate it and start making memories with it.  Because, you know, part of growing up is accepting change.  Maybe my definition of what kind of tree we must have needs to change.  Maybe I needed to be reminded that the important thing at Christmas is the manger and the baby inside of it and how He impacts my family. 
And I should look on the bright side, no more having to put lights on the tree myself!

You Might Also Like

Previous Story
Next Story

5 Comment

  1. Reply
    December 4, 2009 at 11:51 am

    When I saw your tweet last night, it made my heart sad…but reading this post this morning made me cry like a baby. Kudos to you for being big girl, pulling back and looking ahead. Can’t wait to see the new tree all decorated!

  2. Reply
    December 4, 2009 at 6:54 pm

    Bless your heart!! Show us pictures of the new tree when you get it decorated… no rush!

  3. Reply
    Mrs. Jones
    December 7, 2009 at 1:42 am

    I am so sorry about your tree! I understand how precious ornaments are! In the moving process last year, some of my childhood ornaments broke, and I was so sad! Charlotte is going to love her first Christmas. I have no doubt you guys will make it so special for her! Thinking of you. Jessie

  4. Reply
    Hanging the First Ornament
    November 29, 2013 at 2:31 am

    […] can see the hanging of the first ornaments from past years here: 2009, 2010, 2011, […]

  5. […] everywhere to prevent allergies and because I’ve sworn off real trees after our disastrous tree falling incident a number of years ago.  But I’m so happy with the pre-lit garland that I found at Trees […]

Leave a Reply