“Way back when”, we spent our first Christmas in our new old house with a very, very young daughter and no insulation in the rafters.
It was a plan that, in retrospect, wasn’t really all that well thought out.
It was cold.
We went up into the woods behind the house that first year and cut a sad little sapling…..brought it inside…nailed a couple of boards to the base of the tree….put a few decorations on it….and put it up where our loft is now.
It was a pathetic little tree….but it was a good tree.
It was our first Christmas tree in a house that no one should have been living in.
It was camping right by the road.
It was a place that a man doesn’t move his young wife and baby daughter to….no matter how optimistic and naïve he is.
You just don’t set things up to be hard like that if you have much of a plan….unless you have a plan to live out in the country and don’t have much money.
Then you can call “goofy ideas” a “plan”….and just roll with whatever happens.
I think that we must have given our neighbors something to talk about.
Now….things are more comfortable….and we go somewhere else to buy a tree that has a better shape….that’s fuller and isn’t something that we could make fun of.
It’s a real Christmas tree.
We’re surrounded by woods….there’s trees everywhere I look….but there aren’t any that look just right to use for a tree at Christmas.
There aren’t any that look the way a Christmas tree should look.
It’s kind of funny/strange to cut down all these trees, anyway.
The ones we buy aren’t any more meaningful than the scraggly little tree that we had that first year.
They’re just better looking.
The Christmas story that I remember is a pretty humble little story, anyway.
It’s grand….but humble.
A manger! A barn! A bunch of smelly animals! What a way to start a miracle!
There wasn’t anything perfect about that scene….except what happened…at that scene.
We have a nice tree now….and we can dust off our Nativity set if it gets a little dirty.
What we bring to Christmas is really the important thing, anyway, right?
Having a scraggly little tree….or a grand spectacle of a tree….doesn’t really matter if we look at it with the wrong set of eyes.
That must be why the birth of Christ took place in such a humble surrounding.
I don’t think I could relate if it happened in a castle or something.