Growing up in the Northeastern suburbs of Philadelphia afforded our family a beautiful live Christmas tree. The pine trees were locally grown and harvested. It was our family tradition to purchase a tree on Christmas Eve morning, father insisted on waiting. Looking back, the waiting was a wonderful excitement builder. This tradition carried on even after my brother and I moved away. Every year on the morning before Christmas, we went with Dad to pick out the tree and went home to help decorate it, except for once. Well, almost once.
One year we arrived to finds an artificial and barren white tree in the living room. “So what do you think,” my dad asked. “You are joking right? Isn’t that Grandmas old tree? This is no good dad,” my brother bellowed. “Let’s go get the tree!” Of course, it was snowing, freezing cold, and late in the morning. To make matters worse, I eight months was pregnant. On the way my brother announced, in rebuttal to my complaints about the weather, he would pick the Christmas tree to insure a quick transaction. He knew I would ask to see many trees before making a decision! Well, things just did not work out that way. To make a long story short the attendant showed nearly every tree on the lot. My brother was freezing which prompted, “Just pick one I’m freezing!” Every tree I chose was too expensive. Finally, the attendant blurted out, “Lady you can have any Christmas tree at your price so long as it is the next one I show!” As you can imagine the tree was gorgeous, perfectly shaped, and extremely fragrant!
Living in Florida has changed the family tradition. Of the past twenty-five years, there were only two years a real Christmas tree was purchased. Please do not get the wrong impression about what I am saying, many Floridians purchase live Christmas trees. In my experience with live trees, the pine needles fall off in droves and are horrible if you have pets and/or children. Moreover, they really are not as fragrant. For our family, an artificial christmas tree is the tradition!
Do you prefer a live or artificial Christmas tree?