Thursday, December 1, 2011

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories: December 1

(This is post 1 in the Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories hosted by

Prompt: December 1 - The Christmas Tree
Did you have a real tree or was it artificial? How big was the tree? Who decorated the tree? What types of Christmas trees did your ancestors have?

Flocky the tree, me, my mom 
and her awesome pants, 1974 or 1975

We were a "real" tree family of the pine variety. Being from southern California, you just don't go in the woods and get your tree. We went to a tree farm. I think it was in the Lake Matthews area, but I was a kid at Christmas, so those details weren't important. The name of the place was Pine Hill Farms (I think. This remembering stuff is HARD!). I doubt the place is there anymore. It's probably 500 tract homes at this point.

Once upon a time, that place had sloping hills of trees. They also had crafts, food and a hay ride around the farm. We'd spend half a day there, then take our tree home.

Our trees were always around 8ft, and usually crooked. Once my dad washed and set the tree in its stand, my sister and I would get to flock it with aerosol cans of Al Gore's worst nightmare. But then it was fun. My dad would cut the trunk at the base in order to straighten it, leaving a disc of fresh wood. I loved the pine smell of that wood.

When the tree made it into the house, it would be placed in the living room where we'd all decorate it. There the tree would wait empty until the morning of the 25th when there would be presents under it.

The tree usually stayed around until New Year's or whenever my mom declared it a fire hazard.

As for my ancestors, I have no idea what tree traditions they had. That's the price of coming from a small family.

(This post originally published December 1, 2009)


  1. I agree, this remembering is hard. especially when nobody else in the family remembers what i do.

  2. First of all I think your mom still has those pants. I swear she was wearing them on Thanksgiving. Second as a kid I think we had a flocked tree most years (The other years it was an aluminum tree with a shining light on it with the colors of red, yellow, green & blue. Wish I had that tree now.) But we flocked the tree with the vacuum cleaner by putting the hose in the opposite end. I thought you were going to do new memories.

  3. Kona, no time to do new memories, but you are more than welcome to be a guest poster. See me if you want the topics.