Real tree or fake tree? It's a question that every family who celebrates Christmas (and puts up a tree, I guess) has to answer. I had never really thought about it, honestly. We had a fake tree all but one year when I was growing up, my grandparents had a fake tree, it was just what people did. Sure, in all those Christmas movies they go to the tree farm and pick one out, cut it down, and haul it all the way home on the roof of their cars but that was just Hollywood, right?
Since graduating college five years ago (Oh my gosh has is really been that long??) I've been away from home every year. One year I put up a mini fake tree but the others I didn't bother. I mean, if I wasn't going to be home it seemed kind of silly. This year is the first year that I've stayed in my house for Christmas. The first year without seeing my family. When I found out I wasn't going to see my family for the holiday it was rough. Christmas is my favorite holiday and I have a lot of preconceived notions about how it "should be". That was hard to take. So, needless to say, a tree was a MUST have this year.
I started looking online for fake trees and found that there was a large selection of pre-lit trees. That's a whole other story! I immediately knew I didn't want one of those because what do you do it your lights go out? You have these lights on your tree that don't do anything and then you have to buy lights anyway. I was just going to get a normal, plain-o, unlit tree. Then my mom asked me how the cats would do with a tree. I was in such a tizzy to make my house Christmas-y that I hadn't actually stopped to think about that part. Oops.
We ended up deciding to get a real tree to see how they did with one before shelling out a ton for a fake one. So we spent $30 on a real tree over a $300 fakie. I figured that if it didn't work out we would only be out a few bucks. So how has it worked out, you ask? Not as bad as I thought it might go, actually. Pepper has totally left it alone. Penny, who we were really worried about just climbing inside and making a home, has just been curious. She liked to lie under the tree and watch the lights, swat at the low hanging (shatterproof) ornaments and garland and occasionally nibble on the tree. She's drank the water out of the tree holder a few times and played in it but she has never tried to jump up into the tree or knock it over. I would call it a success!
We got our tree from a lot, not a farm but it is real nonetheless. We read online that you're supposed to saw off the end of the stump, then put it in the tree stand with water. Travis hadn't banked on that and wasn't exactly excited to have to try to find his saw. But he succeeded and we moved the tree inside to the living room, shedding pine needles the whole way. That was fun to clean up!
So if you find yourself asking the age old question- real tree or fake tree? I would tell you, honestly, either. The smell is divine but the needles are kind of a pain. My cats seem to be doing relatively well with it.
What do you think? What do you have to do to make it seem like Christmas in your house? Do you put up a tree? And of course- real or fake?