Sunday, December 21, 2008

It's Almost Christmas

While the states I used to live in are being covered with a blanket of snow and subjected to brutal temperatures, it has thawed out here.

We walked across the road and into the forest to see if there was a tree around that may be suitable for poaching. There wasn't one. We came back tree-less. All the trees near us have grown so BIG. They were shorter than the grass when we first moved here. They must be dangerously close to 20 feet tall now. It did smell very piney despite the lack of small trees.

Now that the temperatures have gone back up to about 7 and 8 C, we are back to dealing with mud. I claim that mud was invented here in our corner of Southwest Scotland. I defy anybody to say otherwise. The mud in the woods today was the particularly slippy and sticky variety. We had to rinse our wellies off when we got back despite giving our footwear a good rinse in puddles on the way home.

Later on in the day, The Man of The Place went out and returned with a real beauty of a tree. He is such a successful forager. It smells so wonderful!!Lower branches had to be snipped for neatness.I held the tree straight while TMoTP bolted it securely in place.

Then we decorated it. We never have a coordinated tree like one sees in department stores. We have a family Christmas tree. It has ornaments that were given to us as gifts from friends who are far away. We have ornaments from childhoods, including one that Henry made when he was five. We have ornaments that I brought with me when I moved from the US and some flashy newer ornaments purchased a few years ago. Shiny!George calls this one "the holy hand grenade".

To cut the tension that always come from competitive tree decorating, somebody puts the tinsel on their head and makes a glam wig of it.

When all the ornaments that can be put on the tree are there and all the chocolate ornaments have been tied on, it is time to cover the entire creation with tinsel. You can not throw it on in big clumps as Henry demonstrates in the above photo. It must be draped across the branches evenly!There is always one casualty. This year it was an old bauble that bought the farm. It was my fault too. I dropped it because I thought it was hooked onto a branch. It wasn't.
There! It's all done. The stockings were hung by the fire later on in the afternoon.

Now the only other Christmas task that is left is the cards. I've written out the ones for the people in the village, but I have yet to do the cards that need to be posted. I figure that if I get them in the mail before Christmas, I'm onto a winner and doing better than I have in Christmases past.

Ho ho ho you all!

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