Tree up?  In the attic?  Still in the field?  Or not making an appearance this year?  My theory is that if I’m going to the work, it’s gonna be up as long as possible (and I meant the tree, dirty-minded friends)!  I know that leads to the whole real vs. artificial debate (again about trees, not Viagra), but at my house, there’s really no debate.  I hate getting sap out of the carpet and needles out of my pillowcases or my barcalounger where I’ll find them in July of 2014! I want my tree up more than 2 weeks, and I don’t have readily available and willing manual laborers to carry said tree.  Therefore, bring on the artificial flavors, baby!

But here’s what I’m wondering:  how does tree decorating happen at your house?  Which phase are you in? 

Are you in the college beer-tab-chain-garland on a 3 foot tree with a token present for your roommate phase? 

Have you graduated to the I live alone and nobody’s gonna see it but dammit I deserve a nice tree phase? 

Or did you go straight to the newly married we have a 55 inch big screen but a 2-foot-tree is all that will fit in our apartment and all we can afford era? 

Maybe you’re in the we have young kids so our tree is covered in a 2×3-foot area where the kids could reach time. 

Or have you hit the times where you’re leaving town or no one is coming over so you are back to the small tree with tasteful decorations, just enough to call it Christmas and not be looked upon as a Scrooge but not so much that you have to take the time to put it all away after Christmas

But maybe you’re in my last category – maybe you’re right in the thick of things with the biggest damn tree you could find with all the decorations and lights and extra holiday trappings that make you a solid candidate for the Clark W. Griswold neighborhood award.  And if you are in that group – woo-hoo!  Post a picture.  I wanna see it!

I doubt it needs said, but I love Christmas.  I love how everybody has their own ways of doing things.  Some people make cookies and leave the tree to the kids.  Some people put on a little Christmas music and get schnockered with a bottle of wine while they decorate.  Some pull out the tree and throw on the ornaments just to cross it of their holiday to-do list.  And some of us are sentimental and reflect on each ornament as it goes on the tree about where it was purchased or who gave it or why it has a place on the tree.  I have no idea who those poor saps are.  Not a clue in the world (but you really should see the gorgeous retro ornaments I inherited from my grandma).  But everybody has their opinions about what makes a tree look nice.  There are those that have to have the matchy-matchy traditional gold and red bulbs and those that have a theme every year or those that collect Hallmark ornaments, or Elvis memorabilia, or Precious effing Moments ones, and there are those that can use an eclectic mix and have a masterpiece.

What I am most baffled by are the people who can make any Christmas tree look fabulous.  I feel like you could give them a Dinner Impossible Challenge type situation called Christmas Tree Impossible where they have to trim a tree with a cow pie theme (shit piles to us farm folk) and it would turn out beautiful.  Are you one of those people that can whip up some paper ornaments, slap ‘em on the tree, and it looks like a well-crafted piece of art?  Some people just have it in them to be elegant, tasteful, and classic. You’d think that would mean stuffy, but people like that can even do whimsical.   I’m fascinated by people that can take the ugliest shit like avocados, old socks, or fake fish tank algae and evenly distribute it on the tree so it looks dressed to the hilt, ready for the HGTV runway.  While some of us, well, some of us were just meant to be some version of redneck, I guess.  The bottom line is that some of us just don’t have the breeding for proper Christmas tree maintenance, I guess.  I’ve read all the guides.  I’ve watched more than my share of HGTV.  I’ve studied the masters, but well, my tree always turns out like Skipper.  You know – Barbie’s friend, Skipper.  Everybody chooses to stare at Barbie.  It’s just a fact, and Skipper, her loyal sidekick, no matter how much she tries, just can’t measure up.  Thus, everyone knows Skipper has a “great personality” and can throw a good party, but sometimes Skipper just wants Ken to put his balls on her tree instead.  Yep, I said it.  And there you have it.

So happy “tree-trimming” to you sophisticated types and happy “decorating” to you poor suckers like me!  Lucky for us though,  Santa’s willing to show up either way!