Monday, December 03, 2007

A Partially Pre-Lit Christmas

Saturday was 'Holiday Decorating Day' for our family... It went something like this:

Husband and daughter make their way into the depths of the crawl space under the basement stairs in order to retrieve the countless boxes of holiday decor. With happy hearts they carry said boxes to the staging area (ie. living room, family room, kitchen and all areas around said locations.)

First things first, my husband, daughter and son work on removing the artificial Christmas tree from the bonds of its massive box. The tree goes up in three separate pieces and as it's assembled the whole family works to spread the wire branches with precise uniformity.

After all the tiers are in place and the branches well spread, the tree gets plugged in to reveal half of its pre-strung lights have failed. This is when the two engineers (husband and son) take over. Looking at bulbs, checking fuses, removing bulbs, replacing bulbs... Then a decision is made... Let's head out to the 'Depot' and grab some lunch on the way.

Following a quick burger & fries at the 'King' we 'pardon' and 'excuse' our way through the crowds in the Holiday department at the Depot. Everyone in our family intent on trying to find the perfect solution to our half lit tree woes. I say, "Let's just buy more strands of lights." Son, who for some odd reason believes there's an endless supply of ready cash available from a mystical leprechaun living under my bed says, "I think we should buy a whole new pre-lit tree." Daughter, spends her time searching intently for new lights to match the new colors of her bedroom to decorate her own personal tree (wretched excess?... Sure!... More crap to clean up after the holidays?.. Definitely!) Husband, spends his time searching out unique solution and finds it in the Light Keeper Pro! All this whilst my son (who I finally manage to convince that the leprechaun has packed his bags and moved back to Ireland) and I argue over his new brainstorm of purchasing several new packages of lights, because his plan is to remove all of the pre-strung lights from the tree by manner of cutting the dead strands off the tree and then restringing the entire tree with new lights... He thinks this should take about 10 minutes to achieve. Once again, all I wanted to do was buy a couple of strands of lights and just toss them over the dead areas of the tree... BUT NO, that would look just plain awful... Tacky in the very worst sense... How incredibly offensive it would be to have a tree with dead lights buried beneath the brightly lit ones... OH, WHAT WAS I THINKING????

Fast forward to two hours later... The scene involves my husband, my son and my daughter on the floor together 'neath the tree... They have an assembly line of sorts going... Systematically removing each light in a strand on the tree and replacing it with a whole new bulb from a new pack of lights they purchased. The $17.95 we spent on 'The Light Keeper Pro' was apparently absconded by its creators leprechaun, as it didn't really help relight much of the tree, as small part, but not much.

Eventually with sore fingers and great perseverance the three of them managed to get the majority of the tree lit... Sure a section was unlit but as my son put it, "If we just turn the tree a little in this direction, you can hardly notice it." At that point I was like, "Ya, sure, whatever."

Later, the same evening our friends came over and following dinner together we sang carols and decorated the tree... As is tradition, once the tree was fully decorated we turned off all the lights in the house and admired the 'mostly' glowing tree in all its splendor... And as they say, "It was good."

Last night, as we milled around the house doing what families tend to do, all the lights on the top 1/4 of the tree blew, right along with my Christmas spirit. Because now, not only do we have a once again, half lit tree, but we also have a myriad of boxes filled with various holiday trimmings which we never had time to get to, laying all over the main floor of the house. Not only that, but none of the outside decor was attended to, so that's still laying all over my living room. I guess today, instead of getting anything else accomplished, I'm going to find myself alone with my half-lit tree, trying to muster enough Christmas spirit to get all this other crap sorted and displayed. My husband tells me it's hard for him to understand my negative attitude towards this whole situation... He says, "Didn't you see us all working together as a family?" "The kids completely involved in the process of getting the tree lit?"... "It was wonderful to have them so much a part of the tradition of the holidays"... "Isn't that what you always wanted?" Well, ya but the tree still looks like crap... And for some reason it's really, and I mean REALLY affecting my holiday spirit.

It hardly goes without mentioning (but I will anyway) that one of the pre-lit boughs I bought for the banister a couple of years ago has blown in the same fashion as our pre-lit tree and really, at this point, I could give a shit.

By the way, any comments you may have about how fortunate I am to even HAVE a tree, a banister, a house... Just keep those to yourself... I'm currently wallowing in self pity, loathsome attitudes and downright cranky Scroogy Grinchness... And to top it all off it's really windy outside today and there's nothing I hate more than WIND... Oh, that and half lit Christmas trees.

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Blogger lime said...

i won't mention the tree, the banister or the house, but yer lucky to have afamily who helps in the decorating. no one here wants any part of the tree.

10:56 AM, December 03, 2007  
Blogger Margee-Martha-Marsha Pick-One said...

SEE, now I just KNEW somebody would post a comment reminding me of how lucky I should feel... And I just KNEW it was going to be you Lime... And just as I feared, it's making me feel all smooshy and *blech* dare I say grateful... I really should just go back to bed and try waking up on the other side.

11:26 AM, December 03, 2007  

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