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Putting up the tree
A Woman's View
Judi Tabler color mug

Up She Goes

Many years ago, I broke an old tradition.

I couldn’t help it. 

You see, I grew up in a church where we weren’t supposed to celebrate Christmas until the end of Advent. In other words, no tree until Christmas Eve. So, said our pastor, “you probably shouldn’t put up the tree until then!” He was nice about it. I think he actually knew deep down that the parents didn’t stand a lick of a chance enforcing this advice.

My mother finally relented, agreed that we could put the tree a week before. Since we only decorated the real thing, we customarily chose a short-needled pine tree every year, and it shed needles after about a week. Often, George, our black and white cat, would use it as a scratching post, thus causing the tree to slant at a 30 degree angle.  

When we looked for a tree, we tried to find one with a straight trunk. One year we hadn’t looked closely and didn’t notice the curved trunk. We hauled it home, sawed and removed branches, but we couldn’t make it straight.

The trunk bent in such a way, that it balanced somehow. George left it alone. 

Artificial trees hadn’t made their strong debut yet, and besides, anyone…I mean ANYONE who would stoop to such a level as putting up a “fake” tree was a true defiler and rebel.                          

So, cut to 2019. My how things have changed at our house.  

Live trees? Great. They are trimmed and shaped. I have nothing against Christmas stockings, nor live trees; but I don’t go there anymore.

Nope. Artificial tree. Lots of lights. Up and done. What do they say in sports? “One and done.” “Up and done” is my favorite expression.

Remember Alvin and the Chipmunks?  They sang about “Christmas time is here, time for joy and time for cheer ...” Well, MY cheer is getting the decorations up.

It’s different today. We as a society don’t just put up a lone tree. We decorate scores of trees; and not only that; yard lights, moving Christmas themes, yard decorations of all kinds, wreaths, and of course, mangers. Mangers with camels, wise men, a star, sheep, lambs, Mary, Joseph.

No wonder we have to get a jump on all of this.

And isn’t it fun!  Isn’t it great to be free, to just have fun, and yet, enjoy the splendor of Christmas without our tongues hanging out. Oh sorry. I guess we do get a wee bit exhausted.

Kidding! Hope you get your tree up soon.

Judi Tabler lives in Pawnee County and is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune. She can be reached at or juditabler@awomansview.