Every Christmas I find myself with the same dilemma. Should I invest in a real tree or would it be easier to resurrect the artificial one from the darkest depths of my loft space? This year the decision will be complicated by the fact that my artificial tree has finally given up the ghost after several years of service. A few branches have fallen off and it is looking far too sorry to use.
If I am going artificial then a new tree is order but I will probably be festering over the issue until the last minute!
The Beauty of Nature
Naturally, all other things being equal, it is hard to argue against a real tree at Christmas. They look fabulous and that wonderful aroma of pine filters through the house and adds something that little bit special to proceedings. They look so grand when they are decorated and let’s face it, they are the very essence of the festive season.
An Inconvenient Truth
Sadly, however, all things are not equal, at least in my home. My rooms lack a sensible place to put a tree and so a real tree of a significant size does tend to get in the way. Last year I allowed myself to get a little over excited at the Christmas tree farm. I bought a wonderful specimen which would have graced a Victorian mansion but it totally took over the living room of my somewhat less than grand residence and blocked any view of the television from half of the room. As there is little else to do on Christmas day but watch the television this was inconvenient to say the least.
One of my friends is probably still suffering from neck pains, so awkward was the position he was forced to adopt in order to see around that tree! Served him right though because it was he who talked me into the thing in the first place! He will doubtless launch another campaign in favour of a monster spruce this year but I have a more practical idea.
What I need is a tall and slender tree which will still be a striking feature when decorated but which can be accommodated in the corner of a room without taking up too much floor space. Sadly real pines and spruces tend not to grow conveniently into my required form. Perhaps a hybrid could be created to cater to the modern lifestyle. Until someone achieves this feat an artificial tree is the way forward in my home, at least for the main event.
My latest plan, and I think it is quite brilliant, is to have a secondary, smaller real tree somewhere in the house to get the benefit of the aroma without taking up the entire living room. Job done! Sadly you just have to know that when I arrive at the farm to choose my tree those wonderful Norway Spruces will be tugging at my heart and unless I am physically restrained, I will probably be cramming another enormous monster into the 4X4!
Sally Stacey is a professional writer and small business owner who finds the festive season a bit of a challenge.