<–Das ist unser Weihnactsbaum. It is the first year together we have had a real Christmas tree. It is the first year I have ever owned a real tree. For those of you who have never owned a real tree, and for the entertainment of those who have, I offer a few pieces of advice. 1) In order to get the tree to fit in its stand you must cut off the bottom branches. 2) Not owning a handsaw is not a good enough reason to use a hatchet in order to cut those branches off. Several misplaced shots, a floor full of fallen needles, and one small but noticeable gash in the linoleum later it came to me that pruning sheers would have done the job far more efficiently. But hey, this is the price you pay for trying to make your wife happy…and do so quickly (see, I just blamed it on my wife even though this whole ordeal is due to my own lack of patience). 3)_________________________ (this blank is reserved for the destruction that will ensue due to the potential for Jazz (our Jack Russell Terrier) to be a terror.
I have also learned a bit about the power of tradition. December has been a bit overwhelming for the Cerone family, and we came very close to not putting up a Christmas tree this year. Mary Beth came right out and said, “I don’t see a point in doing it…it’s already so late in the season.” But I could see how much she really wanted one. It has nothing to do with “the Christmas spirit” or materialism. Traditions can be a beautiful thing. They make us feel comfortable. Breaking with tradition can leave a deep uneasiness. It makes us feel as if we are “not at home.” It has always been fascinating to me how powerful symbols and tradition can be.