My Christmas Tree 2017 - a Volunteer Cedar that grew too close to my fence


As I look at my life I'm reminded of that old nursery rhyme, "Solomon Grundy" which stands well as a comment on the brevity of life.

Solomon Grundy,
Born on a Monday,
Christened on Tuesday,
Married on Wednesday,
Took ill on Thursday,
Grew worse on Friday,
Died on Saturday,
Buried on Sunday.
That was the end,
Of Solomon Grundy.


It seems like we spend the first part of our lives accumulating things and the last part in getting rid of them through a process we now call "down-sizing." I guess all in preparation for our final downsizing to a handful of dust. Mercifully I haven't become as morbid as my Great Aunts who put relatives names on masking tape and then stuck the tape to the bottom of objects throughout their homes. Thus when they passed, everyone would have assigned mementos to take home after the wake.  

However, for at least the past 10 years and perhaps longer, I've been telling myself that I'm not having a Christmas tree that year.  There is no point as I have no children at home, and most of my grandchildren are of the age when they prefer to stay in the privacy of their bedrooms with their electronics.  Still I persist in finding an excuse to acquire a fresh Christmas tree, although I've made a few concessions along the way.

To date, there has never been a Christmas in my life without a fresh cut tree in my home.  This year (2017) was no exception.  My excuse was that I must have one for the annual Loving Garland Green Holiday Party in my home.  [I've used that excuse now for the past five years.]   

However I came closer than ever before to not having a fresh tree this year.  In case you are one of those with the fake trees, you may not have noticed but the price of Christmas trees has gone through the roof this year.  Just about the cheapest one you can find will cost $54.  I can remember when that price could have purchased a tree so tall that you would have to trim the top in order to fit the star on the top of the tree.  Well, no more.  It would cost over $100 to have such a tree this year.

With the firm decision to not have a tree in mind, I did make a concession and put some lights in my yard for the first time in my life.  I noticed that it was not without positive influence as a week later, my neighbors on either side of me also decorated their homes with outdoor Christmas lights.  Like  me they too have never had lights in their yards either.  HMMMMMM  I'm not saying but that reminded me of my father who often told my mother (to no avail) that we were absolutely not keeping up with the Joneses. {Remember that expression?]

Then yesterday when I was taking out the trash in cleaning preparations for the Christmas Party, I looked at the volunteer cedar coming up through my fence with a new appreciation.  As the old cliche goes, I killed two birds with one stone:  I satisfied the Garland Code Compliance monitors by removing unsightly wildness from my yard while at the same time attaining my fresh-cut evergreen for 2017.  I put it in a homer bucket with plenty of water, covered that with my Christmas tree skirt and set on top of a large empty plant pot turned upside down.

At first, I had the high-flown principles of having a "natural tree" and determined to decorate with branches of holly, rosemary and pine cones but that resolution did didn't last long.  By early afternoon, in addition to all the natural decorations I had added lights and other Christmas decorations from years past.

The party was a huge success.  It was a potluck with the best food ever--Much of it wholesome and tasty but all of it tasty.  A great fellowship with great friends.


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