The Perfect Tree

Imagine a twelve foot Christmas tree with four feet cut off the top and bottom. That’s right, imagine something resembling a rotund shrub. Then imagine several strands of lights on the shrub and a fuse blown in the last chain of lights so that none of the lights work. Then imagine a lone ornament hanging on the shrub. You got it. This is our tree in all its glory.

Standards are slipping and the old me that might have tried to hold onto them for dear life doesn’t seem to be here this year. Instead, I’m enjoying the silly truth that our holiday tree may well look like this through to New Year’s Day Valentine’s Day Easter when we cut it up and place it on the perennial beds. Dead lights on a fir ball. It has a certain ring to it, doesn’t it?

I figure if anyone else in the family really minds the tree’s new look, they will open the big box of ornaments at the foot of the tree and start to decorate. I have my reasons for being too weak to decorate the tree myself. Reading Delia Smith’s Christmas Cookbook in which her timetable for the holidays begins in October really took it out of me. It’s probably dangerous to laugh that hard. It was also very grueling to get those chocolate coins ready for the kids stockings and convince the stockings that they are going to LOVE being a size 2 stocking and not a size 18 this year. It’s a lot of work to be the fashion consultant for four Christmas stockings. I may have to lie down on the couch in front of the fir ball tonight and read some more humorous literature. Martha Stewart’s Christmas cookbook should do the trick.

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