It’s been a week of wrangling with the Christmas tree at our house. Multiple strands of new lights were strung carefully on the tree for big impact, but here and there malfunctions and blackouts occurred. On the third day we still don’t have fully functional lights, which is problematic mostly because until that is resolved, nothing else goes on the tree.

In light of that (no pun intended) I thought The Christmas Tree might be a good launch pad for today’s FF. So…

1) Real tree, or “fake?”

2) White or colored lights?

3) When do you put up and take down your tree?

4) Tell us about your favorite ornament (share a picture, if you can).

5) What goes on the top of your tree (again, share a photo, if possible)?

Bonus: Are there traditions about decorating your tree that you’d like to share?

Be sure to link to your blog page where we can visit your Friday Five and say hello!

20 thoughts on “Friday Five: Oh! Christmas Tree!

  1. This is the year of the infestation, so no tree or decorations this year..we have to pack up for the first of three treatments, but its fake…been that way since I was a kid. I’ve had a few real ones and one live one when I pastored in the Dakotas. Done mostly colored lights. Tree gies up right after Santa comes down the street after the Macy’s parade. My favirite ornament is my Christopher Radko AIDS snowman that cost a mega donation thatI didn’t have to AMFAR one year. The second one is ( and it was my first when I got it before the snowman) is my Maxine ornament that says: “is that a blinking light or am I having a hot flash” that I got post hysterectomy in ’92. The top of our tree is an angel and being a pastor, there are angels in our house (!!). Tree comes down post Epiphany/tres reyes.


  2. Love the Maxine ornament! I hope your treatments go well and that there is another way to incorporate some Christmas symbols in your celebration, whatever form that takes. Thanks for playing!


  3. 1) Real tree, or “fake?”

    Fake! It’s one of those ones with fibre-optic “needles” and it lights up with the colours constantly changing. It’s getting old now – hope it still works this year.

    2) White or colored lights?

    See above.

    3) When do you put up and take down your tree?

    It goes up on 15 December (this is my husband’s birthday, and we can’t have Christmas until we’ve had that; similarly, we can’t have his birthday until we have had the anniversary of his mother’s death on the 10th). I put it away on 12th Night (6 January) if not before.

    4) Tell us about your favorite ornament (share a picture, if you can).

    Not applicable. But back in the day, when my parents had a real tree every year, there were glass “icicles” left over from my mother’s childhood which were always hung on the tree, plus a few modern plastic replacements!

    5) What goes on the top of your tree (again, share a photo, if possible)?

    Again, not applicable to us, but for many years my grandmother made a “fairy doll” (a small doll which she dressed in net and tinsel) to go on top of the tree. She died in 1996, at the age of 101, after many years of decline, but her last doll – don’t know when she made it, but certainly not within ten years of her death, and probably before that – still always goes on the top of my parents’ tree, even though they now have an artificial LED one. But the icicles and the fairy doll go on it….

    Bonus: Are there traditions about decorating your tree that you’d like to share?

    Not in my family.


  4. 1. For years it was real – until I was in my first church. I had a live tree in the stand with water in it and had called my parents very excitedly to tell them “I did it all by myself and with no twine mounting it to the wall to hold it upright” – when it promptly fell over and water went everywhere! Although I love the live tree concept – being a pastor means hauling up the fake one from the basement.

    2. Colored lights already on the fake tree!

    3. Usually around the second Sunday in Advent through Epiphany.

    4. It would probably have to be the Hallmark ornaments from the movie “A Christmas Story” -my favorite being the leg lamp ornament that – when you push the button – lights up and you hear quotes from the movie like “It’s a major award!” Pretty funny…

    5. Sometimes an angel – other times a huge bow with ribbons that cascade down the tree (used when I want to get my Martha Stewart on).

    Bonus: Not really a tradition but a memory: My Grandpap was a real character. When my Mom and her siblings were kids the tree was NEVER decorated before Christmas Eve. Well, this one year the tree was all decorated and my Grandpap had done a little too much celebrating and he got a pop gun out and shot out the lights on the tree; Grandma was p.o.ed to say the least!!!
    My Mom also swears that when she was growing up – a few days after Christmas – the tree would go down to the curb where it would be picked up by the Russian Orthodox families to celebrate what she called “Russian Christmas”. Early recycling perhaps?


    1. I love the idea of sharing a a tree with someone whose religious observations vary from ours on the calendar. Sounds prudent! The family of my godparents also put their tree up on Christmas Eve, and left it up until Epiphany. It was an early lesson to me about church seasons. Can you offer a tutorial on the bow with cascading tendrils? I’ve always wanted to try that.


  5. 1) No tree. We always leave first thing Christmas morning and are gone for several days. Plus, we have a house full of cats, and a tree unattended in a zoo like that would be tipped over and strung all through the house in a matter of minutes. When we lived in Oregon we used to go out to “Hagg’s Tree Farm” and cut our own tree, then carry it home in the back seat of our old Nova.

    2) When I have a tree, I prefer colored lights.

    3) When we’ve put up a tree, we put it up when we get it, and take it down either after Old Christmas (Jan. 6) or when it gets to dropping leaves to the point that it has to go. Years ago when I still lived with my parents, we’d take the old tree, tie a cinder block to it, take it over to the lake where we had a cabin, and throw it in, and it would provide habitat for bass.

    4) I have a little ornament that came from my grandma’s Christmas tree. It’s shaped like a lantern, hexagonal in shape with a colored back and clear front, and inside is some kind of figure, a teddy bear or an angel or an elf or something. It’s been awhile since I’ve had it out.

    5) I have a couple of angel tree toppers. One is a Renaissance-looking thing, rose and dusty blue with a gold wrap around her. The other one is dressed in white satin and lace. That one is out here at the church right now on top of one of the trees here.

    Bonus: I always put a cat in my nativity scenes, and have one that I put in the main nativity here at the church. People here expect it now, because I’ve been doing it so long; and it gets packed with the nativity if I don’t get there quick enough to grab it and put it back in my office. There’s a legend about how the tabby cat got its markings: Seems the baby Jesus was fussy, and Mary was at her wits’ end trying to get him settled. Then one of the stable cats came over and climbed up into the manger, next to the baby, and purred until he calmed down and went to sleep. Grateful Mary reached over and patted the cat’s head, and ever since all tabby cats have had an “M” on their foreheads.


    1. I love your story about repurposing the tree for the bass. Just pure genius, and wonderfully “green.” I’d never heard the story about the cat in the manger, but it’s lovely, and sounds just right. Thanks for playing!


  6. 1. A cardboard Christmas tree in the twins’ room which is three-dimensional and serves as an “old world” holiday Advent calendar. It has 24 small cardboard “ornaments” which are hung each night leading up to Xmas. It is toddler-friendly too.

    2. No lights…but we enjoy our neighbor’s decorations, especially on our walks to and from daycare when the weather is wintry but mild.

    3. I put away the decorations and such just before I return to work…or just before Epiphany.

    4. No favorite. But I smile whenever I unpack a small, Swedish style red mailbox with a bluebird on top. It says “Post.”

    5. Again, it’s packed away– but it is a crocheted angel, stiffened, and created by some craftsperson at a Christmas craft fair.

    Bonus: No traditions, per se, but love to play the song by Boney M called, “Mary’s Boy Child.” I never tire of hearing it.


We hope you'll join the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.