O (Non-Traditional) Christmas Tree
Despite not being much of a ‘Christmas Person’, I was uncharacteristically keen to get the Christmas tree up this year: mostly because I view it more as a giant light than as a specifically “festive” decoration, really. When we took it down last, er, March, the living room looked really empty and bare, and everyone who came to the house walked in and immediately went, “Awww, where’s the tree?” So this year I had it up at the start of December, and I’ll probably leave it there until April this time, if I think I can possibly get away with it. (Without the baubles, obviously. I mean, take away the baubles and it actually IS just a huge light. That’s what I keep telling myself, anyway.)
(Aside: when people describe themselves as ‘A Christmas Person’, I always picture a giant, tinsel-bedecked human form, with mince pies and gifts gangling from every limb, and an angel balanced on top of its head. I find them somewhat sinister, these ‘Christmas People’. Actually, once I finish that book I haven’t actually started writing, I think I might turn my hand to horror and write one called Attack of the Christmas People. “They were hoping for a happy holiday season. They weren’t prepared for… the attack of the Christmas people!”)
Christmas tree aside, however, I haven’t been feeling particularly festive. By which I mean, “not even remotely festive”. That’s not unusual for me, of course – as I said, I’m NOT a Christmas Person, (In the movie version of Attack of the Christmas People, I’ll be one of the Scrooge-type characters who valiantly tries to fight off the Christmas People, before being driven mad by the endless repetition of Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want for Christmas’, and last being seen attempting to throw myself off the top off a Christmas tree …) but this year I feel like December has pretty much passed me by, while I’ve been sitting at my computer, cranking out January-themed blog posts, with only a few breaks to frantically (and badly) wrap gifts and worry about whether we’ve bought enough of them yet.
(This year’s theme is iridescent paper, and bad wrapping…)
“Christmas just isn’t the same when you’re an adult,” Terry complained last week, and we had a short discussion about how the process of preparing for Christmas is so all-consuming sometimes that it completely eliminates the “magic” of the season. We were thinking about some things we could do to try and regain that feeling – I’ve noticed, for instance, that I seem to be the only blogger on the internet who isn’t roasting hot chestnuts, watching ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ and drinking mulled wine by the open fire, while feeling full of the joys of the season – but almost everything we come up with was met with the same objection, which was that I still had 15,000 blog posts to write, and couldn’t possibly spare the time to fill my heart with Christmas cheer, don’t be silly. (I WILL take some of that mulled wine, if you’re offering, though. Although, if you could just miss out the ‘mulled’ bit and make it regular wine, that would be even better…)
Anyway, that should hopefully change as from today, because last night I scheduled my final post for ShoeperWoman, which leaves me free to lap up all that festive cheer, steam-clean my house a few dozen times, and write this post, which I’ve been meaning to get round to for days, but I was too busy writing all of those posts for the first week in January. It’s honestly the ONE downside I’ve found to full-time blogging, seriously, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to complain about it every chance I get…
But back to the tree! Because we’ve gone the non-traditional route with our giant tree-shaped light, we’ve kept the decorations fairly minimal. We also wanted to make them a little bit personal, too, though, so this ornament belonged to my grandparents:
(“I mean, I THINK that one came from their tree,” said my mum when she handed it over, alerting me to the fact that I’m possibly attaching sentimental value to a totally random Christmas bauble…)
This one was purloined from my parents:
These two were gifts from Terry’s mum:
And this one… er, I bought this one in Sainsbury’s last year. It has no special significance, other than that it’s a MAGIC REINDEER, OMG!
This year we re-positioned the tree slightly, to have some of the branches hanging over the back of the sofa. It’s particularly nice at night (which I totally didn’t photograph, obviously, because indoor photography isn’t my forte at the best of times, let alone when it’s dark…), when it makes slobbing out on the sofa feel a bit like being in a magical fairy land. Which is nice when you’re watching teenagers take class A drugs on Skins, don’t you think? It’s what Christmas is all about!
So: I have eight days in which to turn myself into a Christmas Person, and I will do my best. I point-blank refuse to listen to Mariah Carey, though, and you can’t make me.
[P.S. When I posted a photo of the tree on Instagram, I got a couple of questions about it: it was a gift from The Range last Christmas – they don’t seem to be carrying this exact tree this year, but they do have a nice selection of trees anyway.)