Wednesday, December 8, 2010

My Obsession

All who really know me, know that I am totally obsessive about my Christmas tree. Not as bad as I once was (when each decorative element needed to go on in a precise order, in a precisely specified place on the tree – angels on the top, un-breakables on the bottom, etc.) I have mellowed a little. Still, I have amassed a formidable collection of ornaments. And they all have to go on the tree – just not in a particular place.

There are still a few ornaments from the early marriage trees -- some made by or evocative of the kids.

One year, I bought dozens of miniature instruments – trumpets that could actually make noise (they don’t any more) and curly French horns.

Then, way back when I was still married, I went on a business trip with my husband and, while in New York, saw the ornaments in the United Nations’ gift shop. Appropriately, they reflected most of the world’s cultures. And so it began. At first, landlocked – in Detroit, then in the Chicago area – I sought out baubles reflecting the nations of the world. Later, after my divorce, I had a job that took me to more than twenty different countries – all of which (even Turkey) have token symbols on my tree.

Then I decided the tree should be about light – so I gathered in reflecting ornaments. Then I decided it was too anthropocentric and birds and animals joined the holiday gang.

Because I put my tree up the weekend after Thanksgiving and often do not take it down until Epiphany, I have an artificial tree. It’s safer. When I bought my first pre-lighted tree (my sons no longer living close enough to string the lights) only all white lights were available. This year, for the first time, I found a multi-colored lighted tree in a catalog. I decided I was old enough. I gave the (deteriorating) one-note tree to Habitat for Humanity and now have a full-spectrum celebration.

And I have cut back a little. I only bought one (count it, one!) new ornament and actually gave away several vintage decorations.

My new Technicolor pagan shrub was a little tricky to put up but there was a number to call for assistance. My first tree requiring tech support! One of its advances is a remote control. When I go downstairs in the morning, I just click a little button and SHAZAAM – the tree and all its memories shines into my living room, and into my heart.

It may not be a magnificent obsession but it’s mine and I love it.

1 comment:

  1. I love the idea of a remote control to turn on the lights. I do love Christmas tress and lights.