Christmas Tree Wars: Real Or Fake?

December 6, 2016


do you have a real or fake tree

Christmas is such a magical time of the year and growing up the enchantment always began the day we put up the tree. On a snow dusted Saturday morning in December, we would head out, carols playing on the radio in our wood paneled Country Squire station wagon, in search of the perfect evergreen. Red scarves and hats, furry boots and mittens were clipped to our jackets, as we walked through the field of trees, looking for the one so my dad could chop it down and bring it home to light up our holiday.

Perfect.

And a total load of crap.

I grew up with fake trees. 

Two of them actually.

One upstairs, one downstairs.

There were no carols, no mittens and certainly no father with an ax. Frankly, I don't even know where my father was when the tree when up. Probably hiding. 

If he was smart.

Tree day at our house was filled with a lot arguing over who was going to go into the nasty crawl space under the stairs to retrieve the trees and all the other Christmas boxes. Being one of the smallest of four, I got stuck with the pushing end of that job a lot. 

Ick.

Once up, holiday harmony returned and the trees were pretty, but definitely fake. This was the 70's people. Artificial trees back then, were not the artificial trees of today. Flocking was something birds did and I don't even know if tip count was a thing.

Your tree was either fake or real. The end...and in most circles, an artificial tree was a giant no-no and the subject of many uncomfortable conversations as I grew up.

"Real or fake?"

"Uh...fake. My mom just likes that it's easy."'

The response was always delivered with a crinkled nose and some camouflaged version of "that's awful"...like, "Well, we always have a real tree. It just wouldn't be Christmas without the smell."

Fighting words, even if I was too chicken to fight. 

There were definite sides in this war and based on popular opinion of the time, fake was the wrong side.

Just watch Charlie Brown's Christmas if you don't believe me, the quintessential holiday special of that decade. He was supposed to get an aluminum tree, they were all the rage...and maligned as a symbol of commercialism by the lead character and voice of reason. Charlie Brown's real tree, even though anemic and desperately in need of help, represented the true meaning of Christmas.

Santa Ornament

Owning a fake tree was heresy and since we were not the decision makers in our home, we were casualties of the Christmas tree war. 

The playground and bus stop were not pleasant places to be during those divided December days. 

As soon as my sisters moved out, they both got real trees. It was like the were freed from the house of wax we lived in and they could join the land of the living. 

The real people with real trees. 

My brother and I were stuck in the plastic palace for several more years. Even when I got married, I had to get a fake tree. After my dad died, my mom put an apartment in the basement of our high ranch. When my husband and I returned from our honeymoon, we moved in.

"The fireplace is right next to where you'll put the tree. That makes me nervous, can you get a fake one?"

Ugh.

Ok. I was not about to argue with the landlady. (The rent was really cheap and often came with free laundry and dinner during the week!)

A year later we bought our own home.

And our first real tree. 

I was so excited. I could hardly stand it!! I was going to join the land of the living (well, you know, chopped down but...) and for the first time ever answer that perennial holiday question with a resounding REAL!!

It was going to be great. 

Or maybe not so much.

Santa With Candy Cane Ornament

In reality, my real tree didn't quite fit in the stand the way it should, so it was crooked. It was infested with tiny spiders that would hang down like Charlotte's babies, only without the talking and not nearly as cute. The ornaments fell off every time my cat decided to climb the trunk, which was all.day.long. There were pine needles on the the floor and puddles from watering for weeks. We couldn't put it up until December, because it wouldn't last until Christmas and I keep the lights unplugged most of the time, because it was dry and I didn't want it to catch fire. 

But the smell...that real tree smell?? 

Yeah. 

It made me wheeze so badly that December 26 couldn't come fast enough. 

I had waited 27 years to own a tree like that - to be on the right side of the argument and to have the Christmas everyone else told me I should be having and had been deprived of because of my fake tree.

Yet, like so many other things in my life, it wasn't what it was cracked up to be. 

For me, anyway.

The next year, I went back to the box. It's been about 21 years now and we still have that same tree we bought our first Christmas together. It's the same fire retardant tree my mom asked us to get. It's the same tree my kids yanked on as babies, the same one Santa laid presents around and the same one my kitty slept under and began to climb once the real one was gone. 

I can put it up the day after Thanksgiving and leave it up until March, if I so choose. I don't have to water it, it doesn't shed, it's paid for and (so far) it's been arachnid free.

I wish I had this list at the ready when I was young and in need of a good rebuttal. Of course, today, when I have the courage to articulate my convictions, I don't need to. 

Faux trees are all the rage. 

Fabulous. 

I'm finally in vogue. 

I have two of them actually.

One upstairs. One downstairs.

And neither one of them smells.

Thank goodness!

Do you have a fake tree?



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81 comments:

  1. Oh golly, at first as I was reading, I thought, Oh, wow, Kim and I grew up just alike and then you said that was crap!! My bubble burst. I finally got my real tree and it is now decorated, and will tell you my story next week!!!..Happy Holidays..Judy

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    1. Hi Judy! I can’t wait to hear your story and I’m sorry if I burst your bubble. That first part is how I always thought Christmas was for everyone else, how I dreamed it would be if we were a real tree family ~ and not a boxed Christmas one! It sounds as if you really had those lovely, real tree days…fabulous! :)

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  2. Hi Kim, I love this post and at first you really had me thinking what a picture perfect Christmas growing up for you. haha!! We did have a real tree but every year, I got sick and my parents finally realized I was allergic to it being inside. Outside trees no problem, bring it inside and I was a mess. So my family went for the faux tree and it was that way from then on. My mom loved the less mess and needle cleanup. When we first got married however we tried the real tree again and I did better, most likely growing out of the allergic stage. But what a mess and one year our giant real tree fell over after the trunk shifted from the water soaking in the stand. Broken ornaments all over the place. We raised it back in place, fixed the open areas with more ornaments but it never looked the same after that fall. It was back to faux and been faux ever since. Now I also do two or three trees to enjoy all the ornaments collected over the years.
    Yes, it's faux here and it works just fine.
    Thanks for sharing your story. I enjoyed it!! xo

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    1. Oh boy, sounds like your real tree experiences were much like my own. I guess it’s nice to be able to see what we’re missing, but nicer still to have the choice to decorate with a tree that makes us happy…whatever that may be…real or not. Thanks for sharing your tree tale with us, Celestina! :)

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  3. Hey Kim, I have done both real and fake. The last time with a real tree the trunk rotted in the water and the smell was horrible! I threw it out and went to buy a boxed tree just a few days before Christmas. That was it for me and ever since it is the fake tree that does not require so much work and the nasty smell. There are wonderful pine scented plug ins that create the "Christmas" smell. I also grew up with a fake tree ☺

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    1. Oh no...that sounds like it was no fun at all, Karen...but you get big points for getting a replacement so close to Christmas. I think I may have said that we were done for the year after that! ;)

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  4. Oh...you really had me going there for awhile! Growing up we had real trees...but they were flocked, so not really real. And for many years after we got married we had real trees....we went out, chopped them down as a family, and decorated...because I thought that was fun...and it was for awhile. But after my boys grew up and moved away...we went for fake...something I thought I would never do. And now I wonder why I didn't do it sooner! It is so much easier...And it didn't change Christmas for us in the least. Lesson learned! ;)

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    1. Donnamae, I have always wanted a flocked tree. I keep telling myself that I am going to get or make a small one, but so far, no dice. I hope you enjoy your tree this Christmas...so easy! ;)

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  5. Aluminum trees in the 50s. I too am allergic to pine -Pinesol. pine cardboard that was used to cover other smells in cars etc In 1957 my folks got an aluminum tree and I had my first Christmas without wheezing. BUT electric lights were unsafe. We had a spotlight (on the floor) with a plastic disk with colorful sections. It rotated to show the tree in colors. I liked blue the best. Ah yes, I remember it well!

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    1. I love your story...I read it to my kids and of course, they cannot relate, but I remember a friend whose mom used to light their tree with candles...only on Christmas day, for obvious reasons...but I remember the spotlight, too!!

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  6. Oh Kim. I grew up in Michigan in the 60's so we had a real tree it was a law I think! We would truck out to pick out that perfect Christmas tree and chop it down. There were not YMCA tree lots to drive to and get it already cut. We did have a faux tree in the living room and the real tree stood its ground in the family room. I remember one year I learned in school that if you found and chopped down a Christmas tree with a bird nest in it then you would have luck and good fortune all year long. Once I heard that I told my dad and three brothers ok we need to hunt for a tree with a bird nest in it. I was very insistent we get a tree with a bird nest in it. My dad went along and my brothers moaned and complained about being out in the woods in the snow up to our knees looking for that perfect tree with a nest. Well we finally found one chopped it down and took it home. I was so excited and Christmas Eve night when we were getting ready to go to Christmas dinner at my grandmothers the tree caught fire and burnt down. You know back then they had those big light bulbs and non fire retardant tinsel. Thank God we were still home and the packages were already in the car for my grandma's house. I never lived down that one! From that Christmas on we had a faux tree in the living room and family room!!!!! So not so much luck and good fortune came from that tree we hunted for hours with the bird nest in it!!!! So I love a great faux tree lol! I decorate early anyway so a real tree would not work. Thanks for sharing this with us Kim.
    Hugs,
    Kris

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    1. Ok, I am soo sorry to hear about your fire, that is horrible, obviously, but that story is a classic Christmas tale. My kids were aghast when I read the comment out loud to them...we did not see the fire coming. We saw baby birds, real birds, other animals, but never a fire!! That is some story and a great reason for a faux tree!!

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  7. I do have a fake tree, although it is so old it sheds and the tops tilts. Yes I should buy another fake one but I really hate to spend the money. Maybe next year. As a child we had real trees but I don't miss it at all. I enjoyed your story. :)

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    1. Thanks Debra! I know, after a while even the fake ones need to be replaced. We have been lucky but every now and then when the sales hit, I browse! ;)

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  8. Oh Kim, I can relate. We had a fake WHITE tree in the 70s and somehow as the oldest child it became my job to put the darned thing together on my first day of Christmas break from school--it was not fun! This began my own tradition of putting the tree up immediately after Thanksgiving so there was time to enjoy it before it was time to take it all down again. I do love the fresh tree smell, but the last one I bought at my kids' pleading fell down, dead ornaments and all, early in December! It's hot in Texas and I guess it was cut too early ;) So now I use faux and enjoy the aroma of a fresh wreath! Great post, thanks for the chuckle!

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    1. I'm with you...up early, enjoy it and add a wreath for smell...brilliant idea!!

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  9. I love your story! I had real for many years when we had a wood stove. It didn't last very long...duh! I gave in and got a fake prewired tree. That is now in the attic because the lights burned out and I refuse to put more lights over the burnt out ones that are tightly wrapped on the branches. Back to real and loving it!

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    1. Sounds like you have run the gamut AnnMarie and settled on an option that works for you and your kitties!! ;) Even better!!

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  10. Oh Kim, you make me laugh and laugh.
    We always have a real tree. But our tree is a true Charlie Brown Tree, we head to my parents farm Thanksgiving day and it is tradition to head out and find a tree. We have had some not so pretty trees ... to perfect trees. The trees are not trimmed. They are just fresh out of the woods. :-)

    I loved the story tonight!
    Thank You,
    Carla

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    1. I am so glad that I made you laugh and laugh...that makes my day!! I also love the fact that your trees come from your family's farm. Now that is the perfect Christmas...dreamy!!

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  11. What an incredibly funny but true story, Kim. The spiders would have been enough to have me back out of live trees forever!

    I'm a traditionalist. If we had a faux tree it would royally take a lot of nagging for hubby to put it up and I'm all thumbs. Ha! I go to one of my favorite nurseries that's been in business for over 30 years. They do everything for you. Hubby only needs to move some furniture around and I do the lights and ornaments. I really enjoy it.

    I think we will reach a point where we get an artificial tree. They sure look real! I'm going to hang onto the the tried and true for us for awhile longer. But if I ever see one single spider....

    Jane x

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    1. Oh Jane. The spiders. I still get chills. Your set up sounds great. I make hubby put it up and string the lights. I just add ornaments with the kids...and if I had my way this year, I may have the left them off. ;)

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  12. You are too funny, but I know what you mean. I had a fake tree growing up until last year. My husband and I sold our fake tree and this is our second Christmas with a real tree. I love it and when we are done with it we take it outside to the backyard and let it dry out and use it as firewood. It's great and I don't have a huge box in the garage anymore. I guess when it comes down too it, it's like a love/hate relationship with real and fake. Either way both are beautiful when it's decorated. Merry Christmas!

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    1. Your story is the reverse of mine, Vanessa and I love it!! Plus, I agree 100%, to each his own. Enjoy that tree and your toasty after tree fire!! Merry Christmas!

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  13. The few years we did have a real tree, early in our marriage, I loved it! I loved the smell, how it looked, everything. But we bought a fake tree because we didn't want to spend big bucks every year just buying a tree...we had to buy from a tree lot.

    Since then my husband has developed allergies & my son cannot even walk with 50 yds or so of a tree lot without his eyes swelling up & tears pouring down his face from allergies(his bride even chose not to use flowers in their wedding, only the brides bouquet, because his allergies are so bad)

    I have three trees at home, a 9ft prelit I bought last year for a new screened porch, my mom's little table top tree I decorate every year in her memory & a little table top tree I decorate all in white. Plus I scored a 5 ft prelit pencil tree at a thrift shop this year fo $14! I bought it for our the boys Sunday School class that my husband & I teach. I love how fast & easy the new trees are to set up. I can pop them together in minutes, much faster than setting up our tabletop trees.

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    1. $14??? I want to shop where you shop!! And I get the allergy thing…right there with him.

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  14. For years I had a faux tree. The last one I owned was a pre-lit beauty I bought after my late husband passed away. Dennis and I have only had little table top trees -- last year's tree was from a friend's woods. I don't think I'm going to have a tree this year. Just not a big deal to me for some reason. Odd, I know. Your tree is beautiful, Kim. xo

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    1. Thanks Nancy...and I get it. The older I get the less important the tree becomes, I cherish my other pieces so much more. They hold the memories and represent Christmas to me...and they're a whole lot easier to put out! ;)

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  15. I like to put the tree up early so yes it's fake. However there are so many live trees around even just in my yard that I frequently have to chop or pull them up so I kinda see them as weeds at times.

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    1. A fake tree really does have the edge when it comes to durability. You can leave that thing up all year long if you want…and it sounds like you have your fill of real trees at the ready whenever you need a fix!! ;)

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  16. Hilarious ! Husband and I had many years of cutting down the tree on the side of a mountain with the kids! Hot cocoa , sleigh rides! The whole happy picture! THANK GOD THATS OVER! Ha ! I've had the mini spiders in the tree! The tree won't drink! Lost the tree out the back of the pick up! Sap everywhere! Alleges to the gagy pine smell! The list goes on and on ! lOVE our fake tree !! Easy to piut up! Take down! Easy to decorate ! NO STRINGING lights ! oH YEAH! The only way to go !fake and L o vING IT !

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    1. Ha!! I love your caps, Cindy!! Here I thought that everyone involved in that was having a ball, while I was stuck in the crawl space!! Enjoy your sap and allergy free tree!! :)

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  17. I love the idea of a real tree and we've tried to have one...2 times. Each try lasted a day before we had to get rid of it because of my allergies (wheezing). The hubs won't go for a 3rd try and, really, I don't blame him. Sigh...

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    1. Yeah...I get and it and so not worth it. Your tree always looks fantastic...

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  18. We don't put up a big tree anymore, but back when the kids were little and we did so, we tried a real tree for a couple of years and finally decided "no more"! We had carpeting at the time and we were finding needles until April. ;-) I'm also allergic to pine (not the wheezing, but touching it makes me all itchy and I sometimes break out in hives). We now have a faux tabletop tree that comes all in one piece in a box - easy peasy!

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    1. I love easy peasy, Melanie!! :) Enjoy your tree!!

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  19. We are all about the real tree! 2 of them every year and I diligently water them and sweep any needles everyday. I don't mind because I do love the smell and we always had a real tree growing up. And happy to say, for the most part, our trees are generally arachnid-free. Alec gives them a thorough blow-dry with the leaf blower before they come in the house to make sure. :)

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    1. I love the leaf blower trick...I should share that one on Facebook. You guys are such smarty pants!! :)

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  20. Loved this post, Kim! So cleverly written and it made me laugh out loud! We grew up with fake and real trees. I guess it would just depend on whether or not my parents were up to the care of a real tree. Same thing since I've been married...some real and some fake. For the last few years, it's been fake and I love it. No mess, no watering, etc. The only thing I miss about a real tree is the smell, so I went to Michael's to buy those tree-scented things you hang in the tree. Oh my word...I couldn't stand the smell! I also realized it's probably not good for us to be breathing in fake stuff all day anyway, so back on the shelf they went. Plus, Holly spends all.day.long. under the tree, so that meant she'd be ingesting the smell all day. Probably not the best thing for her. Lol.

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    1. I am glad you laughed, Lisa, that was my main objective with this one. ;) I also agree with the fake smells, I can’t tolerate them with allergies and I often wonder if they’re good for us anyway…sweet Holly under the tree, I love it! :)

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  21. Another one of those posts with fun comments! Growing up we always had a real tree. Now my mom and sister have artificial ones. My trees have always been real. I am okay with the needle issue and have been lucky to not have allergies or spiders. My house is small and with all the dog visitors I have had a tabletop tree the last several years. The Home Depot in our neighboring town sells table size trees that even already have the stand attached which is great for me--a lazy decorator. I did go thru a time where I was wanting a tree in every room and had purchased artificial trees in varying sizes when I saw them at yard sales or on sale for dirt cheap. I no longer put up the bedroom trees but do have a tabletop size one in my kitchen decorated with a kitchen theme and a tall skinny one in the stairwell decorated with photo ornaments made from Christmas cards received over the years.

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    1. I love the comments on this one, Lorri…lots of great stories, including your own! I used to have a tree in lots of the rooms, I am down to two, but if a table top one showed up…flocked perhaps…don’t be surprised! ;)

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  22. LOLOL!!!!
    a perfect post! a great piece of writing!
    all the beautiful trees cut down before their prime salute you!

    I live in a state that doesn't seem to revere trees the same way I do.
    a tree has to be courageous and crazy to try to live where I live. the temperatures are extreme ALWAYS.
    often in the 100's for days on end in the summer. bough breaking ICE storms in the winter.
    and to top it off... huge tornadoes in the spring.
    if one survives all that... there is the constant DROUGHT.
    so...
    ANY tree... even those that are grown to wind up in somebody's living room for what?... three weeks at the most?
    ANY tree is sacred to me. we need their SHADE. and their OXYGEN!
    and to see them thrown on the side of the street after Christmas makes me just sad.
    not hard to tell which side of the coin I fall on! LOLOL!
    I've written a sermon here. so sorry!!!
    and yes. my little four foot fake tree is beautifully pre~lighted and just as wonderful as the real thing!
    with love and Christmas hugs to a fellow believer! :) XOXO♥

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    1. Tammy, I did not mention the environmental factor, but it's true and it's funny...when I finally was able to get that real tree, it was right smack in the middle of the time when that was coming into consciousness. So I was on the wrong side of the argument yet again! Today, I know that a lot of the trees in our area are from tree farms, but I am still happy with my reusable tree....

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  23. Wonderful! You have such a gift with words. I always love to read what you write. You made my day! Fake at our house. A few years we had Charlie Brown Christmas trees and then I would plant them in the yard but not that ambitious anymore!

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    1. I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed the story, Lynn, that make my day!! :)

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  24. Kim I've also had both. And I agree with you on all scores. Love the smell, hate the bother, not to mention the cost of buying a new one every year. Maybe we can get a spray that smells like pine and spray it all over our fake trees? That would solve the problem.

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    1. Yes, the cost, I didn't mention that, but it is an added expense each year, isn't it?

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  25. Hilarious story Kim! I well understand the fake versus real argument and you really had me at the beginning with your "fairy tale" introduction, lol! I'm in your camp, fake really is better, when it comes to Christmas trees, lol!

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    1. I am glad you enjoyed my "fairy tale" Marilyn. It was a fun way to live out the Christmas I saw in movies...but fake is for me...in trees anyway! ;)

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  26. We have a fake, in the past when the kids were small we used to buy real trees and a needle somehow always ended up inside my fingers.I must have some allergy to it for it took awhile to heal and boy does it hurts. I can get goosebumps just thinking about it. No way will I have a real tree. The pile of needles to clean afterwards is a nightmare. I am terrified of getting close to a real tree.

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    1. I don't blame you Angela, it doesn't sound pleasant at all! Enjoy the tree you have now!!

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  27. I just love when you write this kind of post! Sooo right! LOL Can you believe I have never owned a real tree? Well, only the ones in my front yard. :) Growing up in Spain we did not have a tree. My mom couldn't stand them. So every year she decorated our family room with a large and very pretty Nativity set and every year she took us kids shopping to add more little pieces to it. By the time I got married, it was a beautiful and huge set that even had a little river running through it. Our first Christmas as a married couple we were stationed in Germany and my husband and I spent so much money on the gorgeous German tree ornaments that we soon realized we had no money left to buy a tree. LOL We still laugh at that today. Since then, we have owned two artificial trees and one of them is in our family room today. I just rather don't deal with the hassle of a real tree. Enjoy your day Kim! xxx Maria

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    1. Thank you, MariaElena! These are my favorite kinds of posts, too...writing is my passion. I love your Nativity story. What a lovely memory you have and what a wonderful way to mark the true meaning of Christmas. I also love your first Christmas story...a little like that O. Henry story...Gift Of The Magi.

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  28. I got a fake tree the year I got divorced....it was so much easier for me to handle on my own. Now I have a few of them in various sizes scattered throughout the house - and I'm fine with that!!

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    1. I think I could deal with a whole faux forest at Christmastime, Deb!

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  29. I love a real tree, always have and always will. I did buy a small artificial one a few years ago when we moved into our home to put in our upstairs game room. The price of real trees goes up every year and buying two live trees is just a little more than I want to spend.

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    1. It sounds like you have the best of both worlds, Lisa! Enjoy them! :)

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  30. Yours is beautiful. I have faux and real. The faux are not made that well anymore, and it has been my experience that branches break after a few years, and I can't justify buying one of those designer trees, but maybe they last better. The faux is beside the piano and decked out, and the real one goes on the porch with a few strings of battery lights, and that's it. I like both. It's Arizona, so it dries out fast, so I don't put real lights on. xoxo Su

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    1. Your set up sounds just perfect, Su...one of each. Fabulous!! Merry Christmas!

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  31. We always had real trees growing up but since I've been married we've had real and fake, then real and fake. I love the smell too but I like the convenience of the fake trees more. I can get a fresh wreath or a candle if I want the smell.

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    1. A fresh wreath is a great idea...someone else suggested that as well. You ladies are so smart! Thanks for sharing the tip! :)

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  32. We did have real ones when I was a kid, as well as when I was a young married but it's been fake now for a good long time.

    Thanks for the laughs !! :)

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    1. Anytime, Deb...I love handing them out!! :)

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  33. Ok. I must know you too well because I totally knew you were dishin' it in that first paragraph lol. Seriously, growing up where we did a Norman Rockwell Christmas just wasn't in the cards.

    We ALWAYS had a fake free. A white one. With blue balls. Now I have an aversion to blue balls. (So does Fisherman, but that's a whole 'nother story) ;). Consider that our ranch home was decorated with blue provincial velvet furniture, blue carpeting, and plastic slip covers and you'll begin to get a mental picture of what our home looked like. Yup. Italian thru and thru. But I digress.

    We haven't had a tree of any kind in years. I know. Sad right? But when we did they were real. We enjoyed picking out the perfect one right after Thanksgiving and Sarissa and I would decorate it. It was always the perfect mix of sentimental ornaments and pretty ones, with big white poinsettias and ribbon with an angel on top. We kept it in our family room which had a separate thermostat and three walls of Windows. In other words, it was COLD. It lasted a full four weeks with no problem.

    I imagine one day we'll have a tree again. When we are not on the road indulging our wanderlust. And when that time comes I'm thinking it will be fake because we'll probably be someplace warm and for too many reasons to list that will just work better. But who knows. You know what they say...if you want God to laugh, just tell her your plans. ;)

    btw, this post was written so well Kim. It should be picked up by Huffinton for sure.

    Stay warm Kim! It's freezing today!

    xxx

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    1. Doreen, you never fail to make me laugh! I can see your white and blue tree, there were many of those in my neighborhood. My mom was a traditionalist and ours were green, but those white ones would've matched the blue velvet furniture we had much better...and the plastic she kept on it! ;) Yeah...we were THAT family!!

      And thank you for your sweet, sweet words about my words. Made buy day... xoxo

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  34. I loved this post, Kim! For the 10 years we lived in Oregon, my hubby's entire family (all 19 of us) would pile in cars the Saturday after Thanksgiving and drive about an hour into the Cascades to an area that had been designated for Christmas tree chopping that year. It was actually quite fun. We tried a real tree a couple of years after moving to AZ, but they dry out so fast that I was most happy when we bought our first fake, and even more happy when we bought our first pre-lit fake!

    Have a lovely weekend, Kim!
    Warm hugs,
    Carol

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    1. It sounds like so much fun, Carol!! I have to say that when I was finally able to have a real tree, it still didn’t involve the picturesque trip the country. We ended up at Home Depot! Ha!! No great family outing!! ;)

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  35. this is wonderful!!! We always had a fake tree growing up, the same one every year with the same ornaments, in just two colors. I hated that tree and trying to match the right branch to the right hole, lol!!! And unwrapping the lights from around the magazines...no matter how careful we were they were always tangled. I also got a real tree the first chance I got! And I loved it, but hated watering it and I was also afraid to leave the lights on. So now we have a fake tree, with a two color, color scheme....I have become my stepmother, lol!

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    1. It's so funny, isn't it Susanne? I guess the grass is always greener!! I have become my own mother, too...fake is easy and I am just fine with that! ;) Glad you enjoyed the post and thanks so much for leaving a comment!

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  36. Hi Kim!
    Well, we had real trees for many, many years. But once we moved to Texas and the average temperature is often times 80 degrees-we reverted to fake trees. That is except for the little Cedar Tree that I chopped down. Of course it is outside because I think it has spider mites! You see, real Trees are very problematic...
    Great writing -loved this!
    Jemma

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    1. Haha…those spiders are everywhere! Didn’t they get the memo? It’s the wrong holiday! ;) So glad you got a kick out the post. That just makes my day.

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  37. Great post Kim & fun to read! You had the dream & your bubble burst about the real tree. And I know exactly what you mean too. The tree was never straight & what a struggle to get the thing standing upright, whether it was in the tree stand or our way. Our way growing up was a bucket of water-impregnated sand. Getting the tree in THAT...whew...I don't want to go back to that method. So fake it is for us, only now we've gone the lazy way. A small tree that sits on a table that is fiber-optic & we don't even have to decorate it. I love it! So easy. I think I've gotten lazier. I used to feel sorry for people like me that only had tabletop trees. Huh! Now I'm one.

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  38. Oh yeah, forgot to add that we had a pre-lit tree for a couple of years. When we got that, I thought it was the answer to all our problems! Huh! Never had so many problems in all our born days. Hubby struggled with that every year trying to keep it lit, so that when we had an opportunity to get rid of it, we couldn't do it fast enough.

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    1. Florence, I have to say, I used to feel the same way about the little tabletop trees, but they are starting to look more and more appealing!! I bet yours is lovely...and yes...we have stayed away from the pre-lit versions. I would rather toss a string of $2 lights than deal with fuses and bulbs. I hear you!! ;)

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  39. This was hilarious, Kim! But also so completely honest even if I'm sure written tongue-in-cheek--house of wax? I bet not!

    Okay, the big question, real or fake: My father sold Christmas trees, my husband sold Christmas trees so guess what we always had and often two. And a scent? Nothing compared to going to the railroad car the trees were shipped in and the fresh fragrance flooding out when the heavy door was slid back.

    However, I did add a fake one, two actually, in the last few years, but this is the first year we don't have a single tree, or any decorations. A tall white poinsettia is our sole Christmas decor this year as everything is packed for the move. But next year I'll be getting out our artificial one in mid-November, and probably looking for a tabletop fresh one after Thanksgiving.

    Excellent writing, Kim! I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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    1. Ok, well you totally win the classic country Christmas award…selling trees?? That’s amazing!! That sure beats my musty crawlspace. ;)
      And when you mentioned that fragrant railroad car, all I could think about was Frosty The Snowman heading north in his refrigerated car. Now if that doesn’t stir images of the perfect Christmas, I don’t know what does. Thank you for sharing that story, Dewena...and Merry Christmas! xo

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  40. Hi Kim, it varies from year to year with the Christmas tree. Last year I did a fake one and it was easy. This year I'm hosting Christmas so I picked the tree with my teen and we LOVE it! I feel like what ever works best for you is great! :)
    I hope you are enjoying the holiday season as I am, but I'm also just so swamped with everything Christmas that I'm having a very hard time to blog.
    Hope you have a nice week and weekend.
    Julie xo

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    1. I hear you Julie, this season has kept me on my toes...enjoy that tree, the smell and the moments with your teen and family! xo Merry Christmas!

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  41. OMG I'm laughing so hard I almost spilled my drink on the Keyboard. I grew up with fake ones too, Mom and my Baby Bro' had bad Asthma so Real was out of the question. I too got a Real Deal Tree when I moved out... a Real Live butchered Tree in the Arizona Desert... yeah, it lasted about a week before it was a Fire Hazard waiting to happen! Then one year I bought a Living Tree in a pot that you could plant outside later... in a Desert... yeah, met with a similar demise early like the butchered ones, and probably why you don't see many Christmas Pines Native to a Desert, right? *winks* I can relate to your hilarious Christmas Story, we've been Fake and in Vogue now for DECADES, nobody complains... I don't think my Desert Dwelling Grands even know what the Smell of fresh Pine smells like anyway so they don't miss what they've never had, right? I've even gone for Crazy Fake Trees, in Ombre, Sepia, Champagne tinsel... and weird sizes like Pencil Trees... Weird and Wonderful Trees, like you'd see in a Dr. Seuss Book... Love it! *Smiles* Clearly you're a Woman after my own Heart... Merry Christmas from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

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    1. I have never been to the Arizona Desert, but I can only imagine that it would not be forgiving to a pine tree. And a dead one at that! ;) Fake...or pardon me, faux...allows you to take chances and get creative and it sounds like you have really made the most of it!! And as a former kindergarten teacher, you had me at Dr. Seuss!! ;)

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