7 April

Decision tree

Here’s a questionnaire to help you build your tree decoration plan:

  1. What kind of tree would you like?
    1. Alive
    2. Dead
    3. Artificial
    4. Abstract[1]
  2. How big should it be?[2]
  3. Do you have it already?
    1. Yes[3]
    2. No
  4. What’s your budget?
  5. Did you have a style in mind?
    1. Baubles and tinsel / Stars and candles / Candy canes and gingerbread
    2. Everything I’ve got
    3. Eccentric[4]
  6. Do you have a colour scheme in mind?
    1. Yes, and it’s lovely
    2. No, I’ll go with the flow
    3. Is “higgedly piggedly” a colour scheme?
  7. Do you have enough decorations?
    1. Yes, in fact, too many
    2. Yes, but I’d like to get some silver bells and some baby Jesuses[5]
    3. No, and I’m looking forward to bauble shopping
    4. No, and I’ll be making my own

I hope that’s helped you crystallise your vision. If so, write your plan down and store it with your Christmas lists.

Sometimes more is more.

Christmas Eve 1970: Christmas Eve is always a hard night for children to fall asleep but it was particularly hard this year because, with the house packed to the rafters with guests, the big kids had been assigned to a tent in the backyard. This would have been an adventure at any time of the year and so we were not inclined to settle down quietly.

Peter used his torch to make shadow pictures on the walls[6] and Bronwyn tried to persuade us to play “Truth or Dare” but it was when Michelle started singing “Ten Green Bottles” that Uncle Bill came out of the house, growled at us, and stood guard until we finally stopped wisecracking and giggling. I snuggled down and was asleep before it got quite dark. (It had been a long day.)

[1] Select this option if you’ll just hang baubles from the hat rack.

[2] The upper limit is your ceiling!

[3] Last year’s lopped pine doesn’t count. (They can’t be evergreens beyond the grave.)

[4] The year after my friend Todd decorated with crocodiles, he borrowed his daughter’s collection of plastic dinosaurs and hung them on his Christmas tree like baubles. When his wife Linda said they looked too cross to be Christmassy, he then bedecked them with little paper Santa hats.

[5] Jesi?

[6] His rabbit was recognisable; his bunyip was not, but he argued that no-one knows what a bunyip looks like anyway.

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