Ted returns the 13th of December and on the 14th we leave for a family vacation, returning on the 19th (would-be thieves/burglars, don't bother stopping by. We have nothing you want, I promise, unless you are as enamored of my new $40 ice bucket as I am). Anyway, we wouldn't realistically be able to get a tree and decorate until the 20th, which seems a little late. Also, putting up the tree, decorating it, and setting up the creche and all the other holiday crap we have accumulated over the years is no joke, especially for someone who is as lazy as I am. So the idea of doing it all only to have to take it all down less than a week later was pretty unattractive (I know you are supposed to leave the tree et al up for 12 days, but as soon as the morning of the 26th dawns I find everything Christmas-related incredibly depressing and I am currently able to keep an even emotional keel only with the help of enormous amounts of medication. I really don't need anything extra dragging me down right now, thank you very much.)
All of which is a long way of saying that I took the day off of work today and we went to get a tree. Then we put that sucker up and decorated the shit out of it. It's the earliest I've ever gotten a tree, and there's something nice about getting into the holiday spirit so soon. Also, Ted and I managed to get the tree into the stand and upright without swearing at each other even once, which is a definite first and something of a Christmas miracle. It looks pretty good, too. Here is it with just the lights and gold beads:
Then we decorated, which is always a delicate exercise, as I care which ornaments go on the tree and we have plenty that I would just as soon never see again. I solved this problem to some extent last year by getting the kids small, fake trees for their rooms. Now I can pawn off all the ugly ornaments on them because children are dumb and don't know any better. But they still want to help with the big tree, and Ted gets mad when it appears that I care more about what the tree looks like than I do about my sons' Christmas experience. Go figure. But it all works out in the end:
Festive, right? Now about that drink...