The wee ones were pleased as punch with this year's Christmas tree, and this took the edge off my own sentiments to Dear Husband that what he had brought home was one butt-ugly tree.
We strayed from our usual Thanksgiving weekend tradition this year, as we feared with Thanksgiving being so early our tree would dry out before Christmas even arrived. We planned to get the tree the following weekend. I had seen a sign in front of a local tree nursery that advertised "Live Christmas Trees" and wondered why we had never considered before the option of putting up a potted tree that could later be planted in the yard. Husband and I discussed the idea and decided it was a perfect plan that is environmentally sensitive and financially helpful as we could use it later as a contribution towards the foresting of our five acres. Upon making this decision, Husband took on the task of taking the wee ones to pick it out while I was busy all day with other commitments. I had visions of a perfectly manicured Alpine Pine in a pretty pot in the corner of the family room. I know it was a dreamy ideal. After all, I've never even seen an Alpine Pine around here except for the fake ones, like the one I recently bought at Hobby Lobby for the upstairs living room. But, despite realizing deep down inside that an Alpine Pine was unreasonable, I must admit that I wasn't totally prepared for what I would see in the downstairs family room when I returned home late afternoon.
Dear Husband greeted me at the door all proud of himself and chattering about how he'd purchased a 6 ft tree but it must have been larger because he had to trim the top to fit it under the ceiling downstairs. I felt the excitement in the air with the wee ones running around while I unloaded groceries exclaiming about their adventure picking out a tree with Daddy. Dear Daughter was giving a long narrative about the whole event while Dear Son ran in circles saying, "Trismas tree, yay! Trismas tree, yay!"
Then I descended the stairs amidst all the buzz and rounded the corner. Let me just say that Charlie Brown would have been very proud. After a moment of surprise, my response was a calm and monotone, "Well, that's not quite what I was expecting." Dear Husband was baffled and irritated by my response, explaining how he had purchased the best looking tree they had and that it is a "natural pine tree" and that he thinks it is quite a nice looking tree. I let his words drone into the background and interrupted with, "Well, couldn't we just trim it up a bit and shape it better?" Husband would have nothing of it, insisting that would ruin the tree. I looked at it skeptically and my eyes fixed on the upper half of the tree where there is a good two foot length of tree trunk completely naked of branches. I said, "Well, maybe we could wrap some green garland around that part of it." Husband shot me a look that said, "Woman, you are really annoying me!" and I shut up except to mumble under my breath, "Man, that is one UGLY tree!" Dear Son walked up to it after that and announced, "Ugly!" which is when I realized that I had spoken that last sentiment out loud. I sneaked a sideways look at Husband, who shook his head and displayed a smug look on his face.
The rest of the evening was really quite fun. Dear Son continued to say, "Ugly!" each time he approached the tree with some shiny bauble to hang on it, and I snickered every time. Actually, I giggled to myself (albeit out loud) the entire time that I doled out the decorations to the elated wee ones and watched Dear Husband fight with the lights as he tried to get them to look just right on his Charlie Brown tree. I was having fun, and I was even feeling pleased with the ugly tree. Ironically, the more pleased I became with it, the more irritated Husband became with me.
Despite my visions of a perfectly manicured Alpine Pine being dashed, I think the butt-ugly potted "natural pine" will make for a fun annual tradition. That is, if Husband can handle it again next year.