Saturday, December 17, 2016

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”

~ Epicurus


I overhear a conversation in the grocery store: two people talking about the fact that neither of them put up a Christmas tree. It reminds me of another conversation earlier in the week where a young woman told me that she, and most of her friends, don’t put up trees either. Later, a discussion on Facebook reveals that it’s not uncommon–although those in the “decorate and put up a tree” camp are aghast at the idea. I wonder if it is reflective of a turning toward simplicity or a symptom of busyness and overextension.

I consider the small tabletop tree we went to years ago–the prelit tree that, predictably, burned out this year requiring me to pry the lights off (no easy task) and purchase a LED strand to use instead. It never occurred to me that the convenience of prelit trees came at the cost of planned obsolescence. I’ve been considering going to a non traditional tree for next year–a Charlie Brown branch tree with just a few lights and a bauble or two–but maybe I’ll join the “no tree” crowd instead.

A few years ago, when I was admiring a Christmas display in a store, the thought occurred to me that I could enjoy the pretty things simply by admiring them where they were instead of accumulating them for myself. Next week, weather permitting, Gerry and I are going to resurrect an old tradition we once had and take a stroll down our Main Street popping into some of the specialty shops just to look.

Some other simple things I enjoy this time of year are:

  • Musical specials on PBS.
  • Looking at my Christmas stocking–the same one I’ve had for my entire life–and imagining that first Christmas when Mom and Dad bought it for me.
  • Butter tarts–a delicious Canadian tradition.
  • Boxing Day, because it’s a no-pressure day of rest.

Today: canning cranberry jelly.


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
  1. This year, to simplify things, the tree is all we did do!

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Cathy. The common theme seems to be: simplify. I’m all over that, you?

  2. I haven’t put up a tree in years. I do love Christmas trees, but I don’t get any company, and it seems a bit too much bother for me. And I gave all my ornaments to my kids. I have a very small metal tree decoration that I put an ornament on every year now. The ornament was given to me by a grandson. That’s the bulk of my decorating. I love to see pics of others’ trees.

    1. My kids have most of my ornaments too. It’s cool to see their trees adorned with them every year.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.