The Christmas tree is vertical and all the lights are functional! It is a Christmas miracle!
Last year there was no such miracle. The lights didn't work, so after I fiddled with them for a few hours, I stared at the tree with my angry eyes for a while. Then I cried for a while, occasionally peering at the offending tree with one swollen eye to see if the miracle would materialize, and the lights would pop on, like the wondrous star above the Baby Jesus. No such luck. But really did not expect it. My Christmas lights do not lead the wise men to Bethlehem, or announce to the world the birth of Son of God, but are only symbols of said miracle. By leaving the lights out, the Lord was telling me to stop being a whiner and be grateful for my two goods hands and accessibility to cheap lights at Walgreens.
So the busted white lights were ripped from the tree with wire cutters (4 hours, even with Jake's help. Occasional sob still escaping my heaving bosom), then replaced with my favorite gaudy colored lights that no one but me likes anymore (8 hours, wailing starts anew about hour 4, but this time mostly due to pain in lower back). Then I had to decide whether the abrasions on my hands and arms needed professional medical attention (decided, no, just gauze and neosporin), and I put on the ornaments (3 hours more).
Tommy was 6 months old at the time and didn't enjoy being put down, so this whole process took about 3 days. Even when I was done, I was not completely satisfied, because fake trees make me a little sad. Plastic trees are like plastic boobs: They look nice from far away, but if you get close enough to get a handful, well, it isn't quite the same (I've learned lots of things from Seinfeld re-runs). Don't get me started on plastic grass. AstroTurf in the yard is declasse.
This year, though, I'm starting to feel differently.
I'm in love with this 10', multi-colored, plastic beauty!
And since I had 2 extra days blocked off on my calendar for weeping, wailing, gnashing, and light stringing, I can now use the extra time to buy and decorate a little tiny real tree to put in the family room, surf the internet to see what I missed by not shopping on Cyber-Monday, and then blog about all of it. I'll post pictures of the tree when she gets all gussied up with her dangly bits and what-nots.
So, do you prefer fake or real? (Tree comments only, please.)