Monday, December 19, 2011

trees that smell like trees

When I was growing up, our Christmas tree was always freshly cut. Freshly cut, and then flocked and covered in pink lights, pink bows, and clip-on pink birds. To paraphrase a four year-old we once knew, it looked like a flamingo threw up in our living room. Granted this was the 70's and 80's, and granted we were a household of girls, girls, girls, but pink? My aesthetic sensibilities of today recoil, but back then I loved it all -- the colors, the fluff, and most of all the smell.

Ahhh, the smell of fresh pine. Forget cinnamon and nutmeg -- this is the smell of Christmas. Even entombed in gallons of flocking and pink.

When we first got married we didn't even discuss the option of a fake tree. No, we just took a week's worth of grocery money and headed to the tree lot on the hill. Some years we bought trees, others we cut our own on some desert property my dad had. But we always had fresh pine for the holidays.

Then we moved to Indiana.

For seven years we made do with a student-housing-mandated-fake-tree, but only barely. Fake trees, it turns out, don't smell like pine. They smell like plastic. All the simmering cinnamon sticks in the world can't make up for it.

So imagine just how thrilled we were last year to make our way back to pine. And not just any old pine, but family-picked-and-cut-pine from the Forest Service property up the canyon. It felt so good to dig out the saw and hatchet again; so good to get up in deep mountain snow.

So good to have a home that smells like Christmas again, and a tradition reborn.

1 comment:

  1. Gorgeous pictures.
    I hope this will be our last year of having to use a fake tree.
    I sighed when I took it out of our storage closet.