What does your Christmas tree say about you?
I went on to UsedVic this week to look for more Christmas decorations for our tree (which is fake because my husband is allergic to trees! Boo!) Normally decorating the Christmas tree isn’t that big of a deal to my husband and me but this year is different because now we have a child. It made me realize that how we decorate our tree will become an important memory for our son. Christmas trees aren’t just a decoration, they tell a story about the people…their lives, their loves, their style and their traditions.
For instance, when I was a child, our tree was a mishmash of decorations, each with their own specific meaning or story to tell: the wooden rocking horse that my first and favourite babysitter Terri Zeigler gave us for Christmas and the shiny blue and white Christmas ball covered in cute baby christmas motifs that my parents got for me for Christmas when I was born:
There were the easily breakable multicolored glass christmas balls where at least one was broken each time we decorated the tree and of course the finishing touch in our household was tinsel!!!
We would throw giant handfuls of it on the tree only to have my mother swoop in and straighten them. She learned this from my grandmother who would have her kids put the tinsel on strand by strand, making sure it was straight! Luckily my mom didn’t go this far! Whew!
My parents had also started a tradition of buying Christmas ornaments from places we had gone to for vacation like Disneyland and Mexico. It was so funny because whenever we went on holidays, my mother would make a point of searching out a Christmas store to find that perfect ornament for the tree. And for some reason, everyone town or city seems to have an all-year round Christmas store…go figure. I heard a comedian recently joking that those Christmas stores must count down the days each year till it hits Dec.1st again! Poor guys! At least I know they get some traffic from the tourists!
I remember one year when my sister and I were older, we went to Mexico for a family vacation and my mother couldn’t find an ornament so instead, she tied a ribbon to this bright green plastic foot long beaker that we can bought at a bar filled with margarita! That ornament always managed to find itself a spot at the very back of the tree. (I won’t post a picture of it as the ornaments at the back of tree are only to be heard and not seen!)
All this reminiscing made me wonder how does everyone else decorate their trees, and more importantly, why? I started asking friends and looking online and realized that Christmas decorations are a way for people to express themselves and show their style (or lack thereof). For instance, there are the people who can’t stand the cluttery, mismatched tree of memories like my childhood tree and prefer theirs to look like they were stolen directly from a department store. These people are the interior decorators of the world:
Then there are the trees that are decorated to show what you love. I found these while searching for Christmas ornaments:
Not for everyone I’m sure, but for those Trekies and Disney fanatics out there, these are the perfect additions to their tree! Even my parents have an ornament that may seem odd to most. Our favorite Christmas movie that we watch every year as a family is A Christmas Story. There is a classic scene where the father wins a contest and his prize is a lamp in the shape of a woman’s leg. Absolutely tacky!!! So my parent’s found this decoration for their tree:
Finally there are those people who decorate their trees in ways that may be totally lost on most people:
Obviously this person is trying to tell us that he really likes guns and beef jerky! Bullets and dried meat wouldn’t be my first choice for decorations, but I guess everyone has different tastes!
After searching around, I decided that we will probably follow in the tradition of my parents and begin collecting a mish mash of ornaments that spark happy memories each time we decorate the tree. It probably won’t look like a tree you can put in the mall or grab meaty snacks from, but it will be special because it will be uniquely ours and hopefully be something we can pass down to our son when he has a family.
Coupon tip of the week: Two years ago we bought our first tree but had zero decorations for it. So the day after boxing day I went seaching and bought enough ornaments to decorate our entire tree for under $50!! Most stores that carry Christmas decorations mark their inventory down by up to 90% right after Christmas so if you’re looking for new ornaments at super cheap prices, this is the time to shop! I’m talking beautiful $10.00 ornaments that you can buy for $0.50! You could stock up so that you can decorate your tree completely different for the next few years.