that one tree

I am a Christmas tree junkie. I have put up eight trees in one house before. I’m making no promises that it won’t happen again in the future. (Sorry, Boo!) From my years as a florist, I hold onto a sense of lavishness in such things. From a combination of cost per investment, fire safety, and uniformity of shape, I stick with artificial trees. Plus, I pile on so many decorations, the only thing typically left visible of the tree is the triangular outline.


This is the biggest artificial tree I have ever owned. It is a seven and a half foot GE pre-lit tree. It is a thrift store find, marked down to twenty-five dollars with a seventy-five percent off clearance for holiday items. Best tree ever! That said, I have lost a few strands since putting it up this year. (A Black Friday deal on LED light strands from Lowe’s gives me the opportunity to relight the tree after the holidays for a more efficient tree.)

This is what I call my everything tree: no theme (except glass ornaments), every color. I added multi-color LED light strands and some fancy frost globe lights at the start, and I’ve been adding to it after each thrift store stop that finds more ornaments.

The only plastic on the tree are 60 gold ‘drippy’ style icicles that offered a nice effect. Twisted tin icicles would be the only other non-glass ornaments on the tree. I think there are one hundred of those. Beyond that: hundreds of glass ornaments from over the years: many, many of them thrifted or found on post-holiday clearance.

As the mantle in the front sitting room gets permanently set for a forever display, so too is the front room tree setting into a permanent look. I have never been that sort of holiday decorator. Everything has always moved around, recombined into different schemes and color palettes, but now the biggest tree is set for a traditional look, and my husband’s ST:TCT will be a constant theme. That gives me numerous other rooms to shift and change, and that will do. (There is still the challenge of working a train set somewhere into the mix.)

I thoroughly enjoy the idea that such a grand and festive thing comes out of discarded, resold, repaired, restrung things. It breathes excitement into my life as it fills our little wabi-sabi cottage with the glimmering spark of the holidays.

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