First of all, you have to drive around and find a perfect one that is still at a decent price. We did pretty well this year, I'd say, because our tree is beautiful and it didn't break the bank to buy it! After buying the tree, you then have to lug it up to the third floor, leaving a trail of pine needles behind you. This is to ensure everyone else living in the complex can know that you are real tree people. Then comes the time to get it into the stand, and following that comes the unavoidable "it's leaning to the right..."and "No...forward...no...back" discussion until it is arranged just right. For us this year, that discussion also included fishing line (our tree was too tall to stay up straight without a little extra assistance).
After all of that comes the fun part, right? Wrong. The lights have to go on first. And lights are the man's job. OK, so that is horribly sexist, but that is the way it goes. Chad calls Christmas tree lights the bane of man's existence. You know how women got stuck with the whole child birth thing after the oust from the Garden of Eden? Well, according to Chad, Christmas tree lights, even though unmentioned, were given to men.
We've had something go wrong with our Christmas tree lights every year, but this year probably tops the cake. I had to go buy new lights three separate times. Finally, Chad talked to his Dad, and it turns out...you're not supposed to string a gazillion 100 bulb light sets together. Even though this is cheaper than buying the 400 bulb sets, don't give in. You will blow fuses. And thus, the whole tree will go dark when you plug that last set in. Anyway, after Chad adjusted things a bit, he saved me from ANOTHER horrendous journey to Satan's Five and Ten to return things, and the tree was lit and ready to decorate.
So. After a week-long fiasco of trying to get the tree lights to all stay lit, we finally have our tree up and it is beautiful! Chad was very patient as always and even though it took a lot of time, it is straight, well-lit, and nearly fully decorated (it is still missing the star...I think it's somewhere at my parents' house where we've been storing all of our Christmas stuff). Anyway, here it is:
As a disclaimer, I took these photos. Obviously, if Chad took them they would be better. But, I wanted them now, so I took them myself.
Here are some photos of the other decorations we have around the condo:
Garland and WillowTree Nativity on the bookcase. Also, they aren't Christmas decorations but please notice the lovely "Family" blocks made by yours truly at Enrichment last month.
Stockings hung by the chimney with care...or from the shelf between our living room and kitchen, because we have no fireplace.
Table with Christmas place mats and my adorable magnet board I made last year in the background (where all of the Christmas card photos go when they come!)
I LOVE CHRISTMAS! It is going to be so hard to get myself to work over the next couple of weeks. I am so ready for Christmas vacation!