Thursday, December 24, 2015

Inch Ninety-Seven: O Tannenbaum

Thank heavens for good friends. It was my good friend Margo, commenting on live Christmas trees, who said that she and her husband had learned over the years that rather than agonize over which tree looked the prettiest or had the best shape, just pick one and take it home. Once decorated, the tree would look just fine.

I took her comments to heart this year. By last Sunday night, I was able to report to Margo that our tree was up. We had picked it out in record time ("How does this one look?" "Looks good.") and moved it into the house Sunday morning. By nightfall, Christmas had arrived. 

The deed was accomplished by two exhausted, weary, one of them sore and limited in activity (I had a port put in last Friday), aging (sometimes rapidly) adults who realized after a long weekend of concerts and rehearsals (mostly Warren, of course, but I accompanied him to a Sunday performance in Mansfield, Ohio, an hour away) that if we didn't do anything Sunday night we would not get the tree decorated at all. AT ALL.

The tree is shedding needles voraciously. If you walk by it, it sheds. If you twitch while sitting in the same room, it sheds. That's okay. While it shed, I spent an hour opening ornament containers (i.e. large plastic tubs full of stuff) and pulling out a handful of things—let's do this one, not this one this year. There were lots of ornaments in the second group. We hung them up (Warren taking the bulk of the hanging duties, as I was culling ornaments) until Warren suddenly said "I am exhausted and can't hang any more ornaments." At that point, we had just three stray ones left on the couch, and I put those on. Lids went back on the containers and 
we were done.

And you know what? The tree looks just fine. Especially with the tree lights lit and the room lights dim in the evening. (Did I mention that one string of lights bit the dust when only half the string lit? And that we made do with the remaining strings we had?) So thank you, Margo, for the "just pick a tree and it will be fine" advice. Because in the end, it is just fine.

And the front door wreath this year? 
The raffia wreath on our front do

We bought some roping when we were out buying our shedding Christmas tree. We have a wreath frame made of a coat hanger and Warren lashed some of greenery to it. (The rest of the greenery was tied to a former timpani head that broke last year and is now repurposed into a most excellent outdoor wall wreath.) A good friend sent us a gift basket that was tied with raffia. We eased the tie off and it was headed to the trash when I realized that with one snip it would make a folksy bow with streamers. Warren made it the next day or so and it too looks just fine.

So here we are, the day before Christmas, decorated with bits and pieces of our daily life.

And you know what? It looks fine. Just fine. 

The wreath made from a former timpani head


Darla said...

Quite nice, just fine is as it should be. Wishing you a Happy Holiday.

christina neumann said...

That is funny, as we used to spend hours looking( arguing) about what tree to cut. At a Christmas tree farm. It was always over the next hill. This year we got a forest service permit for $10, it was snowing. We picked almost the first tree and you're right once we got it home it was fine. We did have to cut half off the sides as the snow weighed it down so once it dropped it pouffed up up to a very WIDE TREE. Ehh so what we slapped on a strand of lights and viola. It was just fine.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I thought you were Jewish! You know how Jews celebrate Christmas? Chinese food and a movie. it's in the Old Testament, LOL!

Only kidding, April, celebrate all the holidays you wish...they are all good!

Wishing you good health and happiness during the holiday season and the upcoming year.

Warren Hyer said...

In this house, the full spirit of all the holidays visits us.

Anne said...

Our "just fine" tree started raining needles the week before the holiday. The morning of Dec 26th, it was on the front lawn. ALL of the needles were gone. I think I am going against all of my beliefs and getting a fake tree next year.