Saturday, 1 December 2012

Wine, Tears and Christmas Trees

We all know by now that I am a high strung type A personality.
Imagine Christmas in my ‘everything perfectly matching’ mind.
Got a mental image?
Good…lets begin.

Perhaps this confession could be added onto the ‘Parenting Fails and Therapy Pot Post’, but I think in the spirit of Christmas, it can stand-alone. Don’t worry; I have a special therapy pot strictly reserved for any holiday-inflicted trauma.
It’s a Santa Clause. Nice festive touch if I do say so myself.

My Christmas tree has a theme. It has morphed over the years and as a result Pier One loves me. Your welcome Pier One employees for your Christmas bonuses, it’s always my pleasure.
Sometimes the tree has been only red, other year’s red and gold, then silver and red.
The last few years it has been silver with an excessive amount of white lights.
Only silver.
So fricken pretty. I can’t stop staring at its perfection.

I spend a lot of time and energy executing such perfection. I start with the lights and then stand back to squint to see where the gaps are.  Don’t laugh!  Try it, squinting works!
You are staring at your tree squinting right now aren’t you? Told ya so. Go fix the light gaps.
Next is the flawlessly arranged garland made of glass crystals as to reflect the illumination from the perfectly placed lights.
More squinting. Perfect.
Then I add the largest ornaments first, all matching in a symmetrical pattern down the center and sides of the tree. Sometimes I use a tape measure.
Followed by the smaller ornaments, each one matching it’s counterpart on the opposite side.
Kiss my ass Martha.
It is glee for me. Pure glee. Like Christmas…oh wait.

Let’s be clear. Kids homemade ornaments just don’t match. I don’t care how sweet the fruit loop garland is or how long it took you to glue all the stale macaroni together to make a crappy pasta angel.
It’s not silver, ergo it doesn’t match.
By the way girls, the hot mess of pink glitter on the pre-cut foam snowman was a piss poor effort.  If you want to at least try and achieve tree status please add silver and a little creative energy.

When the girls were old enough to ‘help’ (please decipher as ‘hinder”) decorate the tree it was a shit show that ended in tears.
For them and me, but mostly for me.
They were ruining my perfect tree with their homemade pieces of shit works of art and had the audacity to just hang them randomly all over the tree. They were all just clumped together on the branches they could reach. 
I could do a better job three sheets to the wind, with my eyes closed and tossing ornaments for sport across the room.
COME ON!! REALLY?? Do you have any tree pride???
Well I do, take your arts and crafts and short stubby arms elsewhere.

Ok, after the first two years of the tree being a family affair and me having to drink just to make it through, then undo their work when they went to bed and tell them the next morning the dog ate their ornaments right off the tree; I came up with the brilliant idea to get them their OWN tree! 
Smart right? I know.

It took everything in me, but they were each allowed to choose any colour of tasteless tinsel (ok, I hope I have not offended anyone, but really? If you still have tinsel please email me directly and I can provide on the spot Christmas Decorating Counseling).
In addition, the kid’s tree has…gasp…multi-coloured lights that (breath Jessica) flash in an odd sequence.  I know, hideous right?
The piece de résistance you ask? Why it’s the tacky angel dressed in faux white silk holding a flashing “candle” proclaiming the birth of Jesus from atop the gaudy tree.

Each year after my tree of perfection is complete, we now have a family time where I do not actually take over (shocker I know) and we sit back and watch them have at it. They love it and are so proud as they carefully hang each one of their macaroni messes in satisfaction.
More often than not it ends in a fight between the three of them telling each other what to do. I have no idea where they get their bossiness from.

It’s a perfect solution; they get their tree to 'decorate' (I use that word very loosely) and it’s in the upstairs family room so no one ever sees it. J

Each one of their crafts is kept in a special box in the basement, but more importantly they are safe in my heart attached to my memories.
Just not on my tree.

Everyone is out right now. Babysitting and sports leaves me a very rare quiet night at home by myself. A glass of wine (or a ‘bottle’ish whatever, let’s not stress on the details this time of year is hectic enough) my tree and me.
I may weep I’m so happy.

Last years tree and two beautiful young ladies!
I will post a pic of this years perfection asap:)  


  1.'s like you're my SISTER!!
    Macaroni angels and foam snowmen and --gag--crooked popsicle-stick picture's enough to make one HURL, isn't it?
    I've never told anyone this before...lest I be judged as the cold and unfeeling type...but the cat's out of the bag now, and I'm relieved to have been part of it.
    Merry Christmas Darling, your Silver Tree sounds like a DREAM!

  2. Just embrace it!! Anything with popsicle sticks doesn't stand a chance.
    Thanks virtual sis!

  3. Hi from Czech Republic ! You are wonderful mama:)
    I do love your blog, because I know it so good ...
    I have five children.
    Thanks for your sense of humour.

    Blessed Christmass to you and your family !

    1. Czech Republic...WOW!!!
      Five children....double WOW.
      Thank you!

  4. Oh. My. Goodness. Up until today I have read your ramblings in silence. Just a quiet blogger stalker checking in occasionally. This post literally had me in tears as I attempted to read it aloud to my 15 year old daughter. I wasnt sure I would be able to finish.

    Keep up the hilarious posts. I look forward to them now. (By the way, the squinting thing works like a charm)


    1. I love stalking!
      Squinting IS brilliant eh?
      So glad you you can laugh with me!!

  5. Your post definitely had me chuckling away - love your sense of humour :))
    When my girls were wee they used to decorate the tree and I just let them do it. Now they don't want to do it (can you believe it?) so I will have to do it again. Oh well!!!
    Love your last year's tree.

    1. My older girls were no where to be seen while I was tree trimming this year. They walked upstairs and announced"nice tree". WTF?? After all these years of stress and I get a "nice tree"?
      My youngest helped passing me the ornaments. Smart girl. It was actually a lovely bonding time with her.

  6. Hi Jessica!
    Long time since I've popped by. Been very busy, christmas stress you know. Once again you discribed a scene that could have been taken from my life. So I guess, I am sister with both you and Leanna ;-) My tree is always white and sparkling. And yes my darling creative kids has their own colorful and tacky tree. They are happy, I'm happy. As for the daddy in the family, he has no say in chrismas deocorating. He just do what he is told to do. Hey, it is easiest right? He is very good at haning ornaments and garlands in places I dont reach.
    Have a great day! / Cingeling

    1. Ok, please don't think this is weird, but I was worried about you:) I just said to my husband the other day that you (one of my biggest fans:) hadn't commented in a while and I was hoping all was ok for you! Your comments along the way have meant so much to me and I was so glad to "see you" this morning!
      Enjoy your white sparkly no kids tree!

    2. Oh how sweet of yoy! Everything is fine with me :-)Just been very busy. But OMG, I really did spell bad in my "above post". Sorry for that. I tend to write very fast and post quick.For some reason, someone in my family just has to shout MOOOOM, everytime I try to sneak a little time to myself and enjoy a good blog ;-)Like now...
      Thanx for thinking about me! Big hug!

  7. Green, red and gold, that's me, and no slutty angel on the top with a branch up her rear - just the star. Positively NOTHING made of plastic to be seen anywhere. Tree stands near a wall, but all deckies MUST be just as good round the invisible back, or I get upset. I usually get my own way, except on one fundamental detail - my partner goes to buy the tree before I'm aware or ready for it, and we inevitably get a lopsided monstrosity which needs propping up in every direction, and is a bit bald on one side. Sigh.
    Have a lovely Christmas, your first as a celeb!

    1. Ok I need to confess that my tree is shhhhh....artificial. I love the smell of the real deal, but can't stand the messy dropping needles and potential and inevitable lop-sided-ness!
      The slutty angel with a branch up her rear made me actually laugh out loud!!!

  8. I admire anyone who has mastered the art of selecting an apt title, Jessica: good for you! You had me smiling from the get-go and that in and of itself is the essence of good writing, to capture the reader's attention immediately.

    The other key to weaving a successful tale is of course, to make your audience anticipate every word with equal vigor. I couldn't wait to get through this one and I was a little sad when it was over.

    By the way, you selected a beautiful pic to close out this holiday tale. Of course, it helps to have beautiful subjects, right?

    A job well done. I hope the wine went well with the quiet.

    1. WOW!! Such wonderful compliments about my writing!! I really appreciate it!
      Sometimes this blogging thing is hard. During 'the strike', I had something so concrete albeit accidental, to write about I need to dig a bit deeper.
      Good thing my life allows a comedy of errors at any given time:)
      The always was a lovely!

  9. The tree looks beautiful and love that your glass of wine might be more "bottle-ish" ;)

    1. I have wine glasses that can fit an entire bottle...that way people can't judge me, after all it's only one glass:)

  10. Jessica- thank you for totally making my day- and my argument! While my family thinks my drinking during the holidays is a bit excessive, I have proof I am not alone- ha! As for my perfect tree, with my matching ornaments, ribbion, with that mocking angel (she is just a little too perfect and may just get replaced this year!) my children learned early (like before they could walk early... ) that mommy needs that part of Christmas to be perfect, just perfect (my perfect). I've known forever Martha is a moron and I totally rule her! Thank you for once again writing excatly what is going through my head.

    1. Excessive...pfftt, whatever:)
      I like that I can read your mind and write what you are thinking about...does it creep you out at all?

  11. So far I've only had time to read the letter to Santa and the bit about your Christmas tree. It took me longer than usual because you had me laughing so hard I was crying and couldn't see the words! This is funny stuff, J. You do have a gift of storytelling. I would go so far as to say you are the "Erma Bombeck" of the new millennium (that's a compliment)! I look forward to reading more when I have some time.

    Have a Merry Christmas!

    PS: I've been squinting at my tree for decades. It really does work!

    1. Erma Bombeck!!!
      I am honoured to be even in the same sentence as the wonderful Mrs. Bombeck!!
      Have a wonderful Christmas..from your fellow tree squinter!