Every year, the tradition was the same. It started with my dad lugging a giant box of tree parts down the steps. Then my sister and I dove in and created piles. As the air filled with the scent of cookies (which was my mom’s tradition — baking during assembly), we tried hard to make sure every tree piece was perfectly bent. If the tree looked too stiff, it would look bad in photos. Plus, ornaments would be much harder to hang.
This is the scene that plenty of families have never gotten to witness. And personally, I haven’t partaken in it myself in quite some time. My husband insists on a real tree, specifically one cut right at the farm. It’s a nice tradition, especially now that we have a child who’s excited to help out. Still, there’s something that makes the ritual seem a little empty.
You’d probably assume that it’s the other way around. What’s more festive than standing out in the cold, surrounded by identical trees, trying to find the one to take home and decorate? Plus, the smell is fantastic. But even though I like how things are, I still miss the past. Here’s why an artificial tree still makes a lot of sense to me.