Monday, December 15, 2008

Oh, Christmas tree . . .

Last year, we didn't really have a Christmas tree at all, unless you count that little two-foot fake thing in a gold-painted styrofoam pot that I stuck on the dining table. Thanks to my mother's illness, we had no time to shop, no time to even drag out the little laser tree, certainly not a spare minute or the energy to decorate. Christmas was a total dud. This year, I said I wanted to do it right. Kiddo had admitted to feeling let-down by the lack of tree, decorations and gifts in 2007. And, none of us wanted to sit around feeling our losses; instead, we wanted to focus on the magic and beauty of the season. So, we decorated the porch. Hubby kindly bought a tree that fit my specifications. There are things under the tree.

The one thing that's not quite going my way . . . decorating the tree. I had this visual image of the colors, the style, the glistening light bouncing off crystal and blah, blah (primarily because I'm accustomed to nobody else having any interest). Before we even finished putting the second strand of lights on the tree, kiddo had thwarted my plan by hanging up a dozen candy canes -- nowhere close to that little decorating dream of mine. Just as I'd adjusted to the idea, he showed up in the office with a candy cane in his mouth.

"Wait!" I said. "You can't eat the decorations!"

The long-suffering teenager gave me that look . . . you know, the look, and said, "But, you didn't even like them. You called them . . . what was the word?"

"Umm, chintzy?"

"Something like that. You asked for it."

I suppose I did. So, now, the question is whether to just wait for him to consume the decorations and then start over with the pretties I really wanted to put on the tree or give up and watch as the tree is slowly stripped. I'm still thinking.


  1. LOL! Just the mental pic of him walking in eating the decorations made me giggle. Good luck with it. We didn't put up a tree for fear Daisy would eat the decorations.

  2. Andiloo,

    Kids and puppies have a great deal in common, come to think of it. Good thinking. I'd skip the tree; Daisy's still awfully young and the last thing you want to do is pay to have ornaments removed from her internal organs.

  3. Lol. If you have a real tree the candy canes tend to start tasting like it in my opinion so they go straight from the box to my mouth!

  4. Tink,

    I would not be surprised if my kiddo continued to eat the candy canes long after humans with tastebuds began to balk. He'll eat anything It's distressing.

  5. I've been puppy-sitting my daughter's two, darling but rambunctious miniature dachshunds for the the last 3 days. They managed to get several ornaments off the tree before we rescued them (the ornaments). Luckily, they were wood so we didn't have to worry about the puppies. Over the years my husband has carved some beautiful ornaments. They are all on much higher branches now.

    I'll bet your son has those candy canes eaten soon, so you probably don't have long to decide what to do with the tree. LOL

  6. Well I have to say that if the rest of the tree looks like that picture, then it's gorgeous! Seriously...can you blame a teenager for wanting to eat all of the ornaments when they're edible? lol...teenage boys will eat it if it's there for eating no matter what it is. I speak from past experience :p Hope the Christmas spirit is coming to you this year Nancy!!

  7. My mom is all about the chintzy Christmas tree (I can't wait until I can decorate my'll be classy, which my mom calls soulless, lol) and we always have a box of candy canes up there. We're not allowed to eat them until after Christmas, although occasionally we sneak one anyway. ;)

  8. LOL. But the candy cane did make a nice picture. You could do a half and half tree! ;)
    BTW, I love your colourful, festive header!

  9. I'm glad you're decorating this year. I'm sure it's a beautiful tree, too.

    We've decided to skip the whole decorating thing. I've put two wreaths up outside and put my wintery snowmen up on the mantle and a couple on the coffee table, but that's it. Doesn't make much sense to do it just for the two of us, especially with the long hours I'm putting in at the bookstore. In some ways, it's kind of liberating to skip it this year. I'm sure I'll be set to go next year, say, sometime around October! :)

  10. Anonymous6:26 AM

    Put both up there - I love candy canes mixed in with ornaments. My family acts indifferent to all the trappings of Christmas, too. One year I threatened not to decorate and they got upset. That's the one year I got help, too.

  11. Keep thinking! You have got to stay ahead of him!

  12. Just put the pretties around the candy canes. Then you're both happy, right?

    p.s. I love LOVE your Christmas banner.

  13. Anonymous9:04 AM

    heehe! sorry for laughing :) but that was so funny :)

    U r so like me.. i have these mental images too... that are heavenly shattered by my sis/beau/mom/ dog... :D

  14. Maybe you could replace the candy canes with real decorations as he goes eating them? :P I'm more like Ladythink. Candy canes (and chocolate Santas) go straight from the box to my mouth.

  15. That's funny. My four-year-old wants to eat the candy canes off our tree, too but I won't let her. I found them in a box of last year's Christmas stuff and the thought of year-old candy is ick.

  16. Booklogged,

    Thank goodness the pups didn't eat your husband's carvings! I've been reading puppy horror stories at Colleen Gleason's blog; I think you got off easy.

    I'm slowly hanging other ornaments on the tree, but I think you're right -- it won't take long. Teenage appetites are bottomless pits. LOL


    That's pretty much what the tree looks like, at this point, and I like it -- actually, I wish he'd just leave the candy canes alone, now that I'm used to them! But, yeah, teenage boys and food . . . forget it. I haven't located anything that fits my mental image of classy decorations, anyway, so maybe I should just get a second box of candy canes and replace as he eats.

    Thank you! Happy holidays to you, Chris!!


    Our trees have always been a little on the chintzy side because I have no style and we tend to hang a lot of ornaments handmade by children, so I was trying to be different. Oh, well. I'll keep working on it -- maybe order some things early, next year. That's funny that you sneak the candy canes, too!


    I'm considering the KISS decorating method -- keeping it simple by just grabbing another box or two of candy canes. They do look okay, just not what I'd planned. Thanks! I took that photo of the lights, yesterday, and I'd been thinking about changing my header to something Christmasy.

  17. Les,

    I think we all desperately needed to decorate, this year -- even the guys seem enthusiastic, for once. I felt kind of liberated by our miniscule decorations, for a couple of years (we used several mini trees in a cluster, at least twice, rather than buying a large tree or bringing in the artificial) but now I'm back to wanting to go all out. And, it's kind of nice. I'd forgotten how much I love Christmas decorations and how they brighten up the house.


    I've got a blend, at this point -- that handful of candy canes and some little bird ornaments I've collected. I may mostly stick to candy canes, though . . . I'm thinking. That's so funny about the family protesting and then helping out. We used to put on Christmas music and decorate the day after Thanksgiving -- my attempt at building a tradition. But, each year the guys became less interested, so we went to kind of a minimalist Christmas. Last year was such a mess that I think we all really needed to surround ourselves with the look of a real Christmas, so the guys have done much better than usual.


    I'm thinking hide a couple of boxes of candy canes and slip one on the tree each time another disappears. He definitely keeps me on my toes! :)

  18. Nikki,

    I'm growing used to the idea and have stuck a few of my own decorations around the candy canes. Yep, looks fine.

    Thank you! I just took that photo, yesterday, and decided it looked right for a Christmas header. :)


    It's okay; you can laugh. I'm used to it. LOL

    I think I'm just going to have to work early on fulfilling my little mental image for next year and let this year go. It took me a while to adjust, but the kiddo is so happy with his candy canes that you can't help but feel like they're worth leaving alone. Next year, though . . .


    I'm not really a hard candy person, so eating candy canes off a tree kind of makes me cringe. But, I'm considering just replacing them as he eats them. It looks nice and simple; the look has grown on me and I can always do something different next year.


    Ewww, that does sound icky. Good luck keeping your 4-year-old away. I could never keep my kids from the food items. Kids just like to eat, period. LOL

  19. lol. I remember those days. There are always candy canes on our Christmas tree and when we were kids we were always walking off with them! My mother wouldn't get too thrilled because I guess they were for after Christmas, but we didn't listen all that well, I guess.

  20. lol-too funny-eating the Christmas decorations. Hmmmmm, what to do-not knowing. If he's having fun maybe let him eat them and replace them with the pretty decorations you wanted in the first place. I'm almost done with my tree. A few more decorations to go yet. I'm lucky that my dog couldn't care less about the decorations. He'll nose them once in a while but that's about it.

  21. We always used to hide candy canes on the tree on the day before christmas, and then when the little kids came to visit they would have to hunt for the candy canes. Now that we've moved house, we haven't even got a tree yet. It's a bit sad, really.

  22. Kailana,

    It must just be a kid thing, although I don't think I ever managed to sneak any when I was young because my mother had little felt horse's heads that the candy canes slipped into. Woe betide the youngster who removed a candy cane. There was evidence left behind! LOL I just actually bought some more. I figured if that's what the kiddo wants, we might as well go all out and do a candy cane tree. :)


    I mulled a bit and decided the best option was to just get more candy canes and let the kiddo have fun. I've got a couple of other decorations I'm going to throw on the tree, but I'm not going to take it too seriously. We're happy just having a tree at all.

    You are definitely lucky to have a disinterested dog. :)


    That's a cute idea! I like! Last year was our dud year because of my mother's illness, but we actually had gotten pretty bad. We've either used a 4-foot laser tree or a cluster of little mini-trees between 12"-18" tall rather than bothering with a tree that required decorations, for several years. I've decided we definitely need to start doing Christmas right, again. I missed the pretties.

    Moving house does throw things out of kilter. I hope you find the time to at least put up a simple tree and toss the candy canes on at the last minute. :)

  23. I'm soooo glad you are decorating this year, Nancy. It really does help with the mood, doesn't it? We actually have 3 trees, and I totally decorate the one in the living room the way *I* like it. No presents under the tree yet,tho...the 3 heathen kitties would've unwrapped them all by now.

  24. Tammy,

    There is no way in heck I could fit 3 trees into my little house, but if I had the space, I'd go totally overboard just for the joy of it. Good for you!

    My cats never unwrapped, but they did go after the ornaments. I guess Miss Spooky is getting too old to play with them. Sunshine never did outgrow the fun. She was a little nut, and very entertaining. We had to pick up more than one tree after she scrambled up inside it or attacked an ornament.

    Neck rubs to the little heathens!

  25. I stopped putting candy canes on our tree because they DON'T get eaten. Not a big peppermint fan. For our first tree year, we went to Target and bought a big bin of red ornaments and now we have a little bit of silver, but I can't bring myself to put up any other colors. So we have a mostly red tree. I should really post a picture.

  26. Trish,

    I would never eat them, myself. I'm not really a big fan of hard candy -- although that See's peanut brittle Carrie gave me was to die for. Peppermint . . . nah, not my thing.

    I'd love to see your tree! I'm thinking we need to go through our ornaments and toss out the junk. I used to buy really chintzy stuff and I'd like to get a lot of glass ornaments, now that I don't have little kids to destroy them.


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