Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Tree Wrangling and other Adventures


This week for Jingle Bell Rockin' I'll be giving away a $5 Starbucks gift card and a deck of Ellora's Cave playing cards. Please leave a comment for a chance to win. Natalie will announce all the winners on Friday!



Most of my Christmas memories involve crazy mishaps and often a Christmas Tree is part of the equation. I'll never forget the first Christmas tree my honey and I put up. We'd been married for several years before we broke down and did the whole tree-trimming thing. Our son was nine months old and we decided, like many brand new parents, to go crazy for Christmas. It was our first Christmas with the little guy and even though he'd have no memory of it, we were determined to do it up right.

We bought a live tree, did the whole prepping thing, soaked the end in a big bucket of water and I got all the decorations on it. I thought it was beautiful. Big. Yes, we overdid it in that arena too. Most of my friends will tell you that I overdo EVERYTHING. I double recipes when I don't need to. I buy two of everything at the grocery store. I've often wondered if there's a pill for that. Anyway, we bought a HUGE tree and I decorated to the max. Some ornaments were gifts from my mom but most I'd shopped for. Stuff for the perfect KID Christmas tree. So the tree is up. Lights are strung. Our little house looked lovely. At least I thought so.

One afternoon, I was sitting in my living room and Ben was crawling around in the mountains of laundry I was folding while I watched my favorite Soap. At one point, I took a break from my chore, picked up my little guy and held him on my knee while I got lost in the action on the tv. Suddenly, I hear a slight whishing sound and watched in stunned silence as the tree began to shift. It was such an odd moment. Kind of like slo-mo or something. I just sat there like a dumbass as the tree started to go down. I didn't move a muscle but said quietly...well, baby, there it goes.

The tree fell in a sweep of sound. Everything crashed and rolled. Water was freakin' EVERYWHERE along with pine needles, bark and various other crap. My walls were splashed, my carpet soaked. I managed to wrangle the tree back into place with lots of huffing and puffing, while fighting back my son who wanted to 'play'. What a freakin' mess! The damn tree was bigger than I was. By the time my honey got home, I was a frazzled basket case.

Years later, we went the artificial route with our trees. While both kids were still at home, I had one set up in the living room. It was my habit in those days to stay up late and read while the place was quiet. I loved that. One night, I sat at the kitchen table reading a Sandra Brown book. I don't remember the title of it but I was so lost in the story that when I looked up, I noted the time. Three AM. I decided to hit the sack, closed the book, turned off the light and staggered through the darkened house in search of my bed and in doing so, walked right into the Christmas tree. It was like being attacked by an eight foot monster. The tree fell on top of me, ornaments crashed to the floor and shattered loudly. Lights came on as everyone rushed from their rooms to see what the hell Mom had done NOW.


Yep. Christmas Trees and I have a history. Once they are up, I love them. Love looking at them and watching the lights shine on the ornaments. It's the putting them up and taking them down that turns into a nightmare. Years ago, my husband and son, realizing that I frazzle easily, adopted the tradition of taking pics of me as I decorate. My honey gets a particular kick out of taking shots of my ass and I'm arranging this or that. Oddly, my daughter and I were looking through photo albums some time ago. I needed to find a decent pic of myself for something or other and my daughter goes...Mom? Why is there nothing but pictures of your butt in here? Aw, what can I say? The men in my life live to torment me.

I decided long ago that I have a love/hate relationship with Christmas Trees. Think I'll start simply getting a nice poinsettia and call it a day!

34 comments:

Brindle Chase said...

*lol* You're too cute. Ya know, Walmart sells those little, 10 inch xmas trees and they are already lit and decorated!

Anny Cook said...

The year we were married five years, our friends gave us a surprise party for our anniversary. During the party, I peeked out the window and JUST HAPPENED to notice a for rent sign across the street. We were desperately looking for a new apartment...

A week later (in the midst of an ice storm) we moved in. All of that to say we already had the tree up and decorated. I had to take it down, transport it to the new apartment and put it back up 'cause we had little kids, you know? Had to have a tree...

But there were presents I didn't find until summer...

Amber Skyze said...

Maybe you should stay away from large trees. :)

Linda Henderson said...

Yes, I've had a tree fall too. One year our cat decided to play in the tree with the ornaments and he batted off most of the balls and broke them. He also decided to play with the garland and tried to eat some and of course it made it sick. So not only did I have to clean up broken ornaments but cat puke too. YUCK! My kids are grown and now I use a 4 foot prelit artificial tree.

seriousreader at live dot com

Madison Scott said...

LOL. Isn't it funny when something like that happens and you just sit there watching, knowing you should be doing something? LOL.

I love Christmas trees. I've been pretty lucky none have fallen.

Oh, I have a story though. When I was a kid we had a cat and called her Mama Kitty. One time she was crawling in the tree and my sister yelled, "Mama! Get out of the tree!" with the window open and someone walking by. lol. It was funny.

Anonymous said...

LOL

We've just put up our tree today.

We always have a real tree with real candles although there are electric lights too. It's looking really pretty with red and gold baubles, white angels and some golden bells on top.

Valerie
in Germany

joder said...

Christmas trees can be very dangerous. As a child, and a few times as an adult, household cats have been our trees worse enemy. From chewing on ornaments/light strings, to pulling the whole thing over and crushing ornaments, Christmas trees are unsafe around cats.

For me personally, I was trapped in a Christmas tree for an hour a few years ago..........Got your attention, don't I? I'm a quadriplegic and was trying to remove ornaments from my tree, when I lost my grip on my wheelchair and landed on it. I couldn't get up, so had to wait for my home health aide to come. I know it sounds horrible, but I can laugh at it now. After all, how many people can say...Help, I'm trapped in a Christmas tree. See, it's got you smiling!!

Happy Holidays to all of you!

joderjo402 AT gmail DOT com

Jane said...

We've only had fake trees. We live in an apartment and it's hard to put up and dispose of a real tree.

wendy said...

My son love to torture me from the time he could crawl got in to everything he was to smart for a toddler when he was almost 2 yrs. old I was in the bedroom cleaning didn't know he woke up he went in the kitchen got the chair and got in the cabinet got the flour and sugar dump them on the floor took the spay nozzle and put a inch of water on the flour with the flour and sugar but that wasn't messy enough for him he went into the living room and was taking tree ornaments and throwing them in the kitchen floor thats when I herd him it was a god awful mess thats when I put a bell on his wrist when I put he to sleep.

Tess MacKall said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

THE MEN IN YOUR LIFE LOVE TO TORMENT YOU---OR MAYBE YOUR HONEY JUST LOVES YOUR BUTT. TOO FUNNY, WOMAN.

Walking into that Christmas tree damn near brought me to my knees thinking about it. I can see you now with a Christmas tree lying on top of you. OH GOD.

Merry Christmas, Reg.

Jen B. said...

Oh boy! That's a riot! I am lucky, Christmas trees do not attack me. I was thinking about getting one of those tree stands that spins so I can see the tree from all sides. I have pretty much given up on that since everyone keeps pointing out that technology hates me. with my luck the tree would end up looking like something out of a bad horror movie!

desi said...

That is sweet that your husband did that. He likes your ass alot. Me and trees have a love/ hate relationship too. I hate decorating the tree. My husband is so anal about spreading it all out and making the decorations even. I love to have the kids do it I think it is fun for them while i sit back and watch.

Kammie said...

Funny story! I just have a small tree that stays decorated year around. I just carry it downstairs and bring it back up when its time. lol

Regina Carlysle said...

HAHAHHAHA @ Brindle. I have some of those at my front door. Way back in the day, they didn't have prelit trees so every other day you were dashing off to wal mart to buy more or getting fuses. Jeez. I HATED that!

Regina Carlysle said...

Oh my GOD, Anny. I mean it's always exciting to move into a new place but having to re-do the Christmas tree is just TOO MUCH.

Regina Carlysle said...

Yeah, Amber. I like the miniature tabletop versions. The kind Brindle mentioned. That would be perfect.

Anonymous said...

Linda, this made me smile because it soooo sounds like my kind of fiascos. Honest to God. So far we haven't had the cat go goofy over a tree but I have defintely heard of that happening. Too many shiny things.

Regina Carlysle said...

HAHHAHHA. Madison, that's SOOOO funny. Just imagine what people thought. LOL.

Yeah, that slo mo thing was crazy. I KNEW I should get up and try to stop it but I was just frozen.

Regina Carlysle said...

Valerie that sounds so beautiful. With the candles it reminds me of the trees in the 1800's. So very elegant.

Regina Carlysle said...

Ohhhhhh Joder! I can't help it. I'm imagining your frantic call....Heeeeeelp I'm in the Christmas Tree. I'm sure at the time you were in quite a mess and it's good you can look back now and laugh. Laughing is a good thing.

It's kind of like all those pics of my butt in the photo album. Used to make me really mad and now I just laugh. I don't take myself as seriously as I once did. LOL

Regina Carlysle said...

Jane, we once did the live trees because they are beautiful and just smell so good but I'm slightly allergic to the branches when they scrape along my skin. I'm pretty fair and I would end up with these ugly red marks that lasted for days! We finally gave up and started doing artificial. Much easier to deal with and no fire hazard.

Regina Carlysle said...

OMG, Wendy. You poor thing. LOL. What a damn mess! Yep, that boy needed a bell. My son and his little buddy once found a big bin of fireplace ashes. I had them out by the trash can. These little dudes carried the pail into the garage, pour that ashy shit everywhere and hosed it down. Talk about a mess. It was on the walls, all over our cars and ashes had turned the air dark as mud. Can I say I'm glad my kids are all grown up now?????

Regina Carlysle said...

It was like a big, sticky,prickly monster Tess. I actually think I yelled FUUUUUUUCK really LOUD. My honey untangled me from the tree, my nightgown was up around my butt and the kids were chortling. Glass was freakin' everywhere.

Susan said...

OMG, I love the description of the first tree falling, so funny and I know just what you mean by the odd moment.

I've gone the cat vs tree, with the tree losing every time a number of years. Never did find a solution (unless you count the coyote eating the cat :-( as a solution) to that problem.

Molly Daniels said...

LOL:) Two or three years ago, after the tree was decorated, the hubby began to move it back to its place. We admired it....and five minutes later, after I'd moved into the other room, we heard our daughter cry out, and the sound of a crash.

Youngling immediately pipes up, "It wasn't me!"

One of the tree stand's legs had broken, causing the tree to topple. That year, we wired it to the wall, until another stand could be purchased!

As an adult, I only like the artificial trees. I hated the live ones we had growing up; those sharp pine needles had me HATING to decorate and take down every year!

Sherry said...

The way you describe the tree falling and you just watching was so funny. I've been lucky I've not hard my tree ever fall. I put my tree up other day I almost didn't put it up because I live by myself and I wasn't sure if it was worth the hassle or not. I never like how my tree looks either I always think it needs something.

sstrode@scrtc.com

Regina Carlysle said...

Desi...my honey BETTER LOVE MY ASS! snicker!

Regina Carlysle said...

Kammie, I would SOOOO love to do that. Something tiny that I could just set on a table somewhere. Talk about de-stressing your holidays!

Regina Carlysle said...

Ummmm Susan? Did you say a coyote ate your cat? That's ONE way to keep a Christmas Tree intact! Sorry to laugh but damn woman, that's bizarre as hell!.

Regina Carlysle said...

"It wasn't me!" OMG Molly, that's too damn funny and so typical. Yep we gave up on the real ones too. I just looked like a pincushion after decorating every year. And then there was the year, I accidentally wadded up my $1500 watch into the tissues I used for wrapping ornaments. It got gathered up and tossed in the dumpster. I vowed to never own another expensive watch after that. siiiigh.

Regina Carlysle said...

Yeah, what's up with that Sherry? Every year I look at the tree and think I MUST get more ornaments. Every year I add a few and I STILL think more more more. A nice poinsettia. That's what we need. And I honestly would NOT do a tree if I lived alone.

Regina Carlysle said...

Jenn B, I almost missed your comment. LOL. I get the 'bad at technology' thing. Sooooo much. I feel so fortunate that our tree already has the lights on it because I have screwed those up so many times in the past. As to the spinning tree? That sounds neat but scary. With my luck it would spin wildly out of control and smack somebody in the head.

Natalie Dae said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAAAAAAAA!

:O)

Zina Lynch said...

Yep, Christmas trees are dangerous Will Robinson...I had one fall and land right next to the baby's head while I was nursing her and I tried to saw a finger off twice trying to shorten it to fit in the house.
Zina