Saturday, December 6, 2008

I Am a Christmas Tree Nazi, Reformed! (almost...)

Yes, I must confess, it's true. Beginning somewhere early in my marriage, probably about the time that my husband started trying to help me decorate it, I was stuck with this unfortunate nickname.

And as my children were born and as they grew, they learned that at Christmas time, don't mess with mama and the tree.

My poor husband's dreams of a wife who lovingly and sweetly spent time with her children, patiently instructing them on the fine art of Christmas tree adornment, singing carols and sipping peppermint hot cocoa, were dashed at the start of every season.

First, the fight about how many limbs to trim off the bottom to make it perfect.
Then, you must put on the lights on the trees, wrapped around each individual limb for that glowing, almost burning effect. Another discussion begins, on the subject of how many strings of lights are too many .

Then, more opinions offered - the angel or the star?

Next, put the garland OR ribbons on, looped amongst the branches in a very even and organized fashion.

Then, my idea of decorating a perfect Christmas tree is to place an even-numbered quantity of each type of ornament on it, equally spaced.

My husband and kids like the random approach. Just pick up what-ever and put it where-ever. This upsets my equilibrium, and I just end up moving everything around that they put on it. I have even been know to re-decorate the tree completely after said husband and kids have gone to bed. And yes, they noticed. Boy, did they ever!

So finally, the tree decorating was delegated to just mom, and only mom. It had been that way for the past, oh, say 7 or 12 years now.

Then something changed. Something called 7 growing kids with ever-expanding activities, lots of responsibilities, and stress. I no longer had the need for perfection; just the need for completion and contentment among the troops. Last Christmas, the tree missed the mandatory day-after-Thanksgiving deadline by Two Weeks! This year, by only one...

So this year, I relinquished the crown of sharp pine needles that I had bestowed upon myself.

After putting together the ten-thousand piece artificial tree and lighting it, (a huge job in itself), and making sure the angel was placed on top (my husband's preference), I enlisted the help of my sweet 11-year-old Noelle (how fitting; just don't ever sing that song to her) and her two best buddies to finish it off for me. If you can believe it, other than at the very tip-top, I did not put a single ornament on the tree! I let them do it all!

Can't promise that I won't add an ornament here and there, and here, and there, though. Just to give it that motherly touch, you know...


McEwens said...

your tree looks AWESOME!!! They did a great job!

With all boys, well... mine always looks rather interesting,I will leave it at that! Never near as pretty as yours!

Have a great weekend!

susette said...

Oh that's pretty funny how your attitude changed through the years. Isn't it interesting how our priorities change? The tree is very pretty. Good work!!

Melissa said...

I love the tree! We might get ours up this weekend...we'll see. We have an EQ party here next Fri so it has to go up sometime this week!

Messy Jess said...

I love that story! Your kids will tell that one for a long time!

The church building is only a meeting house but a very fine one indeed. I have loved watching it go up. It should be done by the end of March 09

They put the steeple on it this week and it looks very grand and crisp against the blue sky.

There is a reason people are moving to Gillette Wy said our Stake President and so the missionary work from the members is really important right now.

And I thought I lived in the middle of no where! I lived on Nantucket Island and we were considered a twig - not a branch! We met at the highschool.

Lara said...

I'm the Christmas tree Nazi, too. This is the very first year ever that I have allowed the kids' homemade ornaments to go on the tree. Sad, but true. I had a little table top tree I put that stuff on, but now there are too many. Someday, I'll just have to have two trees, for now, I have to deal with mismatched ornaments on the tree.

LyndiLou said...

I love how you wrote this! It made me smile!

The tree turned out great and I'm glad you're ok with the change! :) I hope you can keep enjoying it all with your pokey pine needle crown set aside this year! ;)

Tanner and Andrea said...

it looks so pretty... I love Christmas- we put our tree up a week before Thanksgiving... haha.

Kayla said...

I am in SHOCK! I can't believe my mom actually let someone else, (let alone my little sister and her friends,) decorate her tree. As a child, I would sneak out of bed to watch her decorate the tree. I also remember the heavily whispered and frantic reprimand when I attempted to help...granted I probably was (OK, still am) prone to breaking her delicate glass ornaments. So I can understand why she kept me away from the tree. :-) So anyway, I have had three going on four married Christmas Holidays and have yet to master the art of decorating the tree. My husband always has to step in and make sure things are organized and even. This year though, the tree ornaments are pink. That should keep Shawn at a distance. (He doesn't know yet, don't tell!)
Wish me luck! Love you mom.

Missy said...

This is the first year I let my kids fully help me as well and I didn't have to move any ornaments around. I just pointed out bald spots where they could stick some:) I used to be a nazi too before Dakota came along. She has changed all my energy from ultra motivated to BLAH! :)