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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Real Vs. Fake Christmas Tree...

Last year, I saved up a good amount of vacation days to use around Christmas. The year prior to that, I was too busy to take off from work. I told my family that I wanted to "DO IT UP!". I wanted to deck the halls with boughs of holly. I wanted lots of decorations on the front of the house. I wanted decorations to cover every surface on the inside of the house but most of all I wanted a real Christmas tree.

When I was younger, my asthma made things very hard for me. All kinds of random things would trigger a full blown attack. Christmas trees happened to be one of those random things. Now that I am older, my asthma is more controlled and usually a quick puff or two from my inhaler and I am all good (or at least not on my way to the ER). This year though, I was bound and determined to find a real tree so that the smell of Christmas would take over our home.

Our real Christmas tree from 2010
A home to hundreds of baby bugs!!
YUCK!!
We only went to one lot and after a walk through the rows of trees...we found the "perfect" one. We all agreed on it and it didn't cost a small fortune (maybe just a small car payment). We strapped it to the roof of the car. We brought it home. It went into the tree stand with ease (how many people can say that?!). We strung our lights, hung our decorations and stared at it in awe. We had a real Christmas tree! Mommy and Daddy were both going to be off for several days around Christmas. Our holiday was turning what I had pictured in my head into a reality...until Christmas day.

My family came to celebrate at our house for lots of good food, present unwrapping and plenty of Wii playing. At one point I was sitting on the carpet watching my niece unwrap a present when I noticed a tiny bug on the carpet. I thought it was a tick. It wasn't, thankfully. I squished it in a napkin and didn't give it a second thought...until I saw a few more of them as the day went on.

We had a roaring fire that day (remember, I was trying to go for the perfect Christmas setting) so I thought that some bugs had come in with the logs. We moved our copper log container to the garage and again didn't give it a second thought...until the next morning.

We had a bunch of baby bugs crawling all over the floor. By the time my in-laws arrived to celebrate a belated Christmas with us, there were hundreds crawling around (no kidding!). We pulled those ornaments and lights down faster than Speedy Gonzales! Chris took the tree out to our bonfire pit and set it a blaze. I got out the shop vac and started sucking up any and all bugs that I could find. I couldn't rest. I was constantly searching the floor for movement for days! I would even wake in the middle of the night to see if I could catch any of the sneaky ones that knew it was safest to move in the dark! (Yes, the bugs did drive me a bit insane...I admit it!)

Apparently, you should check a tree for eggs on the branches before you purchase it. When you bring a tree in to the warmth of your home it tricks the eggs into thinking it is time to hatch. I never knew this or even thought about it as my fake tree was always care free. If I had known all of this, that tree would have been left on the lot! I can't even describe what we saw on that thing after close inspection. I have the heebie jeebies right now just thinking about it! It was AWFUL!!!

Needless to say, we are back to our good ol', bug-free, fake Christmas tree this year!

Do you prefer fake or real? Do you have any tree horror stories?

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5 Comments:

At November 29, 2011 at 11:27 AM , Blogger Kristin said...

Kristen,
What a nightmare. I got a visual of all those bugs and it creeped me out a little too :D lol
We've always had a fake tree, and while the real trees are gorgeous and smell great. They are alot of work. Plus they pose a fire risk if you don't keep them watered. So i'll take the fake tree. :D

 
At November 29, 2011 at 11:35 AM , Blogger Robbie K said...

i was lol at your predicament but that totally bites for a first REAL tree experience. My dad is a forestry professor so we have ALWAYS had a real tree...and never had bugs :)

 
At November 29, 2011 at 12:45 PM , Blogger Tiffany said...

I have the heebie jeebies just thinking about your bugs!! Double eww! I prefer fake because I can't stand the mass amounts of needles falling off the tree, daily I tell you and that my cat and dogs prefer tree water over anything else.
So after three years of real, we have a wonderful prelit fake tree. :)

 
At November 29, 2011 at 2:51 PM , Blogger Maren said...

Ick... I HATE bugs.

My family has used a fake tree for years and it looks great. Very convenient too, not a problem for me. :)

 
At November 30, 2011 at 1:56 AM , Blogger Grumpy Grateful Mom said...

Hahaha-sorry! OK, still laughing. It just struck me as funny that the bugs waited to show up until the company came...though I don't think I'd be laughing if it happened to me!

Our fake tree is not looking so grand this year, but the thought of tossing it makes me a little sad.

Still, I was thinking it would be fun to have a real tree one of these year. We always had one growing up. But, after reading your story, I'm perfectly contect for now.

 

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