Thursday, December 1, 2011

Family Christmas Trees: Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories Dec. 1, 2011

Last year I wrote about our artifical tree's when I was growing up,-particularly the silver aluminum tree with the four color light wheel. This year, I was thinking about some of the memorable trees we had when my children were young. My mom was the type of person that would get an idea in her head and until she was able to make it happen, she was on a mission! (I have to admit I take after her when it comes to that.)

Somewhere in the mid 1970's, Winnie the Pooh and Friends were very popular and of course the little one's were all crazy about Pooh. Mom was tired of trying to come up with a suitible tree each year so she decided to get a large life-like tree at Sears. Since most of our ornaments were passed down from Grandparents and my older brother's Christmas's, they were pretty thin and worn. She thought that if she was going to get a new tree,  she should get new ornaments. Then, she decided that if she got new ornaments, she would want them to be something that could be passed down to the grandchildren. Unfortunately, it was getting very close to Christmas, and the possibility of getting enough ornaments that would be special enough to hand down was proving to be difficult. Not only that, she wanted to make sure that they would all be able to have the same type of ornaments, so no one would be slighted. It was quite a problem until we walked into the Christmas department of our local Sears in Fort Collins Colorado.

In the middle of the floor was a beautiful tall, perfectly formed artificial tree, decorated with lights and what seemed to be a hundred Pooh and friends plush ornaments! In addition, there were little gingerbread men and houses and little colorful felt baby animals. It was perfectly beautiful. Problem solved! Mom proceeded to work her magic and would not be defeated even when she was told there were no ornament sets like those on the tree because most of the Pooh characters were excess small plush toys that had been nestled carefully within the branches.

Not to be denied, my mom used her very best barganing skills. She asked the Manager if he had thought about how much trouble it was going  to be to take down that tree and restock all the toys after the holiday. Within 15 minutes she had made a deal to purchase the complete display tree, lights and ornaments (and a few larger stuffed Poohs for good measure). The only stipulation is that we had to wait until the week of Christmas before we picked it up.

Oh did I forget to mention that we had to remove the tree just as it was with out disassembling it?

Here's where charming the Son-In-Law comes in. Since My  husband and I were the only one's with a pick up truck, and we worked the night shift, my husband was elected to take mom to Sears and pick up the tree. What a sight it was, driving down College Ave. with a huge tree covered in plastic with Pooh and the boys just "Hanging Around"! After the tree was unloaded, mom supervised while everything was put in place and the lights were lit.

All I can say is that it was magical when the kids saw the tree they were (almost) speechless. Before any arguments over ornaments could break out, mom sat them down and explained that after Christmas, she would let them take the ornaments down and count them evenly into four groups so each family could have a Pooh tree for their house. And yes, there were more than enough animals for us all to have a full tree. Like I said, Magic.  We still have some of the ornaments that have survived and been passed down and they always remind me of that special one of a kind Christmas tree.

I spent this evening trying to find some pictures of the ornaments in old Sears catalogs and I was only able to find a few. So I will add them here. And if you close your eyes and let your inner child imagine a Magical Tree of Pooh might be able to see it lit up in front of the fire on a snowy Colorado Christmas.

I hope you all find a little Magical wonder in every Christmas season. God Bless.

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