Artificial, yes, I can not believe it, our Christmas tree this year for the first time in 25 years is artificial! And...I love It!
In our early years of marriage, John was in graduate school (we had very little money), we would go into the woods and cut a cedar tree. They did tend to look like a Charlie Brown Christmas tree but I thought they were beautiful! Once he was gainfully employed, we began buying "real" Christmas trees.
Last year, we were surprised as we examined how much money we spend on Christmas trees. Surprised, not so much at the price, because they are not all that much more than in Alabama. Our surprise came as we tallied what we spend not only per year, but the price multiplied by "x" number of years. It is amazing how your perspective changes as your financial situation changes! (There are no woods here in west Texas to cut cedars!) This realization made us begin to look at artificial trees. When we build our house to overlook the vineyard, our ceiling will be high enough to accommodate a 12 ft. tree, so that is what I had in mind as we looked. Deciding to wait for a real deal, we again purchased a live tree.
While visiting our second oldest son after Christmas, we were shopping and found an amazing deal on the artificial tree pictured. Well, actually, it is not all pictured - the lower two sections are still packed away as the ceilings in this rental house are 8 ft. As you can see, there is no room for the star on top which is bent over a bit at the top.
I do miss the fresh pine scent that is lacking in the artificial tree. But, I know that fresh scent can be obtained with candles - I am waiting for a great deal or better yet, a freebie! Regardless, the children had loads of fun decorating. Our tradition is for the top ornaments to be the children's "First Christmas" ornaments. You can not tell from the picture, but they are there! From there, they put other special ornaments that grandparents have given them. And, each child knows exactly where their ornaments are - they are very selective in their choice of spots!