Monday, December 10, 2007

Faking It

When I was a young girl, my family would trek to the Christmas Tree farm, search out the perfect tree, cut it down and cart it home for decorating. It was always such a blast. Then one year, my Mom decided she wanted a different kind of tree. Not the kind you cut down, but the kind you buy from a road side stand. It was a different breed of Christmas tree altogether - short needles instead of the long we were used to and lots of space between branches (hey, I am not a botanist; I don't know the names of the trees). Hmmmm... I didn't like that development one little bit.

Eventually, the elegance of the new kind of tree she bought grew on me. I stopped resenting the fact that we didn't cut down the tree together. When I moved out on my own, I started buying the same kind of tree. Then, horror of all horrors, my Mom bought a fake tree! How can that be? Why would she do such a thing? I was never very happy about it, but like the last switch, this one grew on me too. I never succumbed to buying myself and artificial tree, but I saw the sense in her buying one for herself. We have tossed the idea around, but spending a lot of money up front really isn't an option.

We were planning to get our tree this year over the past weekend. I called the hubs before I left work on Friday. I asked him if he minded if I just stopped and bought one on the way home. I wasn't crazy about the idea of walking around in a foot of snow searching for a tree. He wanted to do this, not because it takes me forever to find a tree but because it only costs $10 for a tree at that particular farm (why??? b/c the guy never prunes them, so a perfect one is almost impossible to find).

Hubs: fine, but don't spend more than $200.
Me: What kind of tree do you think I am going to buy?
Hubs: Just go ahead and buy a fake one.
Me: Hmmm....okay.

I spent almost 2 hours searching for the best artificial tree I could find. I started my journey in KMart - after all, Martha Stewart is the queen of all things tasteful, so she must have a nice tree. Yep, she does, but they were more than I wanted to spend. I moved on to Home Depot - ughhh...they have a bunch of crap trees there. Then I went to Wal-Mart - again....crap. I went back to KMart. I searched the trees again and found one I liked. I checked with the tree stocking guy on the price of the one I liked (yes, he was a special guy just doing trees). It was a $250 tree, but starting the next day it would be $150. There were only 4 of those trees left, so I went to customer service to ask whether or not I could buy something that day and bring the receipt in the next day for credit if it went on sale. Yes, as a matter of fact, that is an option at kmart, so I bought the tree and got the $100 credit the next day.

Guess's the perfect tree. There aren't any needles to clean up, I don't need to worry about watering it, I don't need to worry about it drying out, I don't need to string lights, and the branches are strong enough to hold my heavy ornaments.

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