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Bucking tradition

I love tradition, but there are times when feeling bound to it can become cumbersome. That's why, after years and years of cutting down our own Christmas tree, we found ourselves shopping trees at a trailer alongside the highway this morning in a barely relenting fog. And in fact, it turns out that isn't such a bad way to go. The variety of trees available was mind boggling, and not only did they shake and bale the tree for us, but they also secured it to our roof rack. Plus the smell was phenomenal. Walking through a tree farm is pretty, too, but the smell amidst so many already cut trees is a powerful thing. It made Christmas come alive the way only a Yankee Candle can, even in the fifty degree drizzle.

Plus PLUS, we finally got to ask someone, strings of illuminating bulbs overhead and all, "This isn't one of those trees where all the needles falls off, is it?" and have it fit. Really, I heard my dad ask.

Of course, bucking tradition only goes so far. Even surrounded by so many choices we still came home with our beloved scotch pine. Now, after a day of countless frustrations over hundreds of little lights ("the lights, they're not twinkling"), and scratchy needles, and worn out batteries, and impatience and nagging, that little scotch pine, green and pungent through it all, stands happily lit in the corner by the fireplace. The stockings are hung, half the outside lights are up, and finally it's beginning to look like December around here.

Now the challenge remains: how to balance school with the mile-long to-do list staring me in the face and distractions up the wazoo? More on this tomorrow (if there's time, of course).

"The first ornament of Christmas!"

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