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Old 11-26-2018, 06:57 PM   #21
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Funny story, years ago I went to a tree farm and bought a nice tree for $20. My dad was with me and being a cheapskate, told the salesman he only wanted a 3' tree. The guy wacked off the top 3' of a $20 tree and charged my dad $20!
That would look weird with 2" dia. or so of cut off trunk showing at top, no point. How could you attach top star or whatever?
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Old 11-26-2018, 07:14 PM   #22
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We always used to cut a tree. When DW was 8.9 months pregnant, we cut a tree for our first house. Three hours of walking in 6" of snow in central Mass., and still falling, dragged it back, got home set it up, decorated the next morning. Can't imagine why she went into labor the next day?

Finally went fully artificial about 10 years ago (used to have one of each). We love a real tree, but have gotten used to the "other kind".
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Old 11-26-2018, 07:55 PM   #23
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The first couple years that we were married we bought small live evergreen trees... root ball and all. We used them as a Christmas tree and then planted them in the yard.

My back hurts just thinking about it.
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Old 11-26-2018, 08:08 PM   #24
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"The Christmas Tree Problem" is a classic Industrial Engineering problem. Given various demand curves, you need to define an optimal pricing strategy. Obviously, they're not going to be "on sale" when everyone wants one (demand is high).


My high school buddy's dad was as cheap as they come. He'd wait until Christmas eve, then go to the lot and pick up a scraggly dry tree, usually for free because everyone had left the tree lot. Then, they'd decorate it on Christmas eve (that part I like), but they kept the tree up until Easter! What a fire hazard!
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Old 11-26-2018, 09:00 PM   #25
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I've always had a real tree, both as a kid and as an adult. I remember as a kid feeling sorry for other kids who only had an artificial tree. Even as an adult I've never minded the extra work involved.

I remember 30 years ago we were making a long distance move in December. We drove to the new house a few days before Christmas with a few suitcases and cats. Due to scheduling and weather, the moving truck wouldn't arrive with our stuff until the 28th. So we were basically camping out in an empty house. Among some odds and ends left in the garage, we found an empty 5 gallon paint bucket. We found one of the last small trees at a local tree lot, propped it up in the bucket, and hung a few last day sale decorations on it. So while we didn't have any furniture, we spent the nights before the movers came on the carpet in front of the fireplace and tree.


In some later years, some friends had a few acres and grew Christmas trees as a hobby. Every year they would invite a bunch of friends over for a pot luck brunch, and then the guests would get to cut a tree to take home. We miss that since moving away.
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Old 11-26-2018, 09:34 PM   #26
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At the old house we needed landscape trees so we’d get a balled tree and plant it in the spring. We had one that remained dormant for two years. We did that about 5 years. Now we usually have a live tree, sometimes two. We pay about $50.
The local Lions Club suspended their Xmas tree sale fundraiser this year. Never happened before. They say they couldn’t find enough quality trees to meet their goals due to fewer trees being planted during the financial crisis.
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Old 11-27-2018, 06:46 AM   #27
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Had one of these given to me about 40 years ago. Still use it today. Maybe one day I will get my money's worth out of it.

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Old 11-27-2018, 07:01 AM   #28
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My wife has been trying to talk me into an artificial tree for years. I am stubborn when it comes to Christmas traditions, so we will be getting a real tree again this year. I did buy one of those nostalgic ceramic bulb trees for her!!
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Old 11-27-2018, 09:25 AM   #29
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We moved to Monterey, CA from the Northeast in 1970 so I could go to the Defense Language Institute there. I was a lowly paid LT(jg) in the Navy. My wife and I had grown up in New England where Christmas trees were always abundant and prices did not seem exorbitant. Whether it was California in general or the Monterey Peninsula in particular I don't know but the trees seemed incredibly expensive! I don't remember exactly what we paid but it was big bucks for us and it was pretty scrawny. We referred to it then, and still do almost 50 years later, as the "Christmas Stick". Funny how we remember that "tree" much more than most of the nicer, taller, fuller ones over the years.

Merry Christmas whether you're of the natural, artificial or "none" persuasion.
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Old 11-27-2018, 11:11 AM   #30
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We stopped buying fresh trees. Hardly fresh. Trees showed up at our local grocery store last week. No doubt they were cut a few weeks ago. So how old are they and how dry will they be over the Xmas period. Charlie Brown variety-about $30 USD. Cannot imagine what our preferred Scotch Pines are fetching this year.

We decided to cut our own because the children liked it and because of fire hazard. We did to buy a dryed up tree that had been dead for six weeks. Have you ever seen a dried up Xmas tree go on fire? It is like a roman candle. Very scary. We later moved to an artificial tree. Same reason. Fire hazard. Plus DW did not like cleaning up the pine needles for weeks afterwards.

Some people around our home already have their trees up and exterior Christmas lights ablaze. Seems strange to us. Ours go up around Dec 15-20 and come down on Jan 1 or 2.
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Old 11-27-2018, 11:26 AM   #31
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I love having fresh trees, but allergies started requiring artificial ones several years ago. We told our kids it was an "alternative" tree. Our decorations usually go up the first week of December. I so enjoy the holidays--music, decorations, lights, etc.!
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Old 11-27-2018, 12:52 PM   #32
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When my daughter was a little girl, we had a very high, arched ceiling in the living room. I'd buy a 14' - 16' real tree, bring it home, cut off the trunk and put it in water to keep it fresh, erect it in the living room, and decorate it. My late ex was usually at sea through all of December, so normally I did all of this all by myself.

I always got the kind of tree that smells so wonderful.... is that a Douglas fir? I don't recall but I know one when I see it, and that is the kind I would insist upon. They don't last as long and drop a few needles even when watered, so they are a bit of work to keep after. I would only have it up from around December 15th-20th through the 31st. We never had an artificial tree. Just not the same.

Anyway, my dear daughter loved those trees, especially when she was little! And how could I not feel the same, watching her happy smile and glistening eyes. I have some wonderful memories of listening to Christmas music, baking Christmas cookies together, and sitting by the beautiful lit tree with her, wrapping presents or reading Christmas children's books together. Each ornament had a meaning. Other than the homemade ornaments, we bought one special ornament every year after looking all over town together for just the right one.

But now, let's face it, I'm older! It's a plain fact and no amount of ignoring it or hiding my head in the sand will make that go away. I'm 70 and no kids live in my house, and the only guest I ever wish to have here is F (and he is not a big fan of Christmas). I don't feel sorry for myself for having no kids around, but it does make it seem pretty pointless to go to all that trouble to put up a tree. If I want to see a pretty Christmas tree and get in the Christmas spirit, I can just look at other people's Christmas trees.
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Old 11-27-2018, 03:10 PM   #33
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My local Costco has 7-8 feet Noble Firs for $50.
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Old 11-27-2018, 03:18 PM   #34
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But now, let's face it, I'm older! It's a plain fact and no amount of ignoring it or hiding my head in the sand will make that go away. I'm 70 and no kids live in my house, and the only guest I ever wish to have here is F (and he is not a big fan of Christmas). I don't feel sorry for myself for having no kids around, but it does make it seem pretty pointless to go to all that trouble to put up a tree. If I want to see a pretty Christmas tree and get in the Christmas spirit, I can just look at other people's Christmas trees.
Whew! Thought I was the only one. We do have a gas fireplace that is lovely. I too used to decorate everywhere, bathrooms, bedrooms, had lighted deer in my front yard, 7 ft tree and all the little trinkets everywhere. Now? Just not there. Lost my mojo for a Xmas tree and all the trimmings. I do enjoy everyone else's decorations.
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Old 11-27-2018, 07:51 PM   #35
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We always get a real tree, and we always go cut it down ourselves. Living where we do, it's not difficult or expensive to cut your own tree, either on public land or land owned by one of our friends. We get a smaller tree these days than we used to, but it's still a real tree (usually spruce or balsam fir). We will probably continue to do this as long as the grandkids are around for Christmas (grandkids usually go with us to pick out and cut down the tree). After that, my guess is that we will just skip the tree entirely, as I can't see us ever getting an artificial tree - wouldn't be the same.
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Old 11-27-2018, 10:12 PM   #36
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We have had a real tree for many years except for the 3 years that we were in the Middle-East and then we had an artificial one. Love the smell they bring to the house for the 6 weeks that it is up. Definitely keep it well watered. I still use the GE lighted ice Christmas lights that we had on the tree in the 60s.
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Old 11-27-2018, 10:39 PM   #37
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With DW getting pretty ill over the last two years, we have slimmed our Xmas tree needs down from an 8' cut fir tree to a 4' artificial tree that stays decorated and kept in a closet when the holidays are over. Less for her to do and me also.

It works and that's all that counts. As long as we continue to be the main home for the Xmas celebration with the kids, DW is very happy. I think that is changing as the "youngsters" and their offspring get older and have their own family traditions.
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Old 11-28-2018, 05:17 PM   #38
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...we have slimmed our Xmas tree needs down from an 8' cut fir tree to a 4' artificial tree that stays decorated and kept in a closet when the holidays are over.
That's what we do too. It is kept in a basement storage room with a plastic bag over it to keep any dust off, then it gets dragged out for a few weeks and back into storage again.
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Old 11-28-2018, 05:39 PM   #39
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Whew! Thought I was the only one. We do have a gas fireplace that is lovely. I too used to decorate everywhere, bathrooms, bedrooms, had lighted deer in my front yard, 7 ft tree and all the little trinkets everywhere. Now? Just not there. Lost my mojo for a Xmas tree and all the trimmings. I do enjoy everyone else's decorations.
Our last house had a real fireplace. Current digs has a three sided gas unit (that works when power is out). Like the real Christmas trees, I don't miss that real fireplace. While not efficient, the gas fireplace will cook the house if I let it. Real ones are warm if you are nearby, while sucking the heat from your house right up and out the chimney.

I also swapped out my wood burning chimnea for a gas fire pit thingy a few years back.

Seeing a disturbing trend here, but I'll blame DW somehow....
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The Christmas Tree
Old 11-28-2018, 08:32 PM   #40
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The Christmas Tree

Our artificial tree is folded and on wheels and stored in a closet. I just wheel it out, unfold it, and DW adds the ornaments.
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