It's good to be back.
My ideal Christmas tree: It showcases a combination of beautiful glass ornaments amassed from post-holiday megasales at ABC Carpet, sentimental favorites from my childhood, and handmade pieces gathered from travels. I hang them evenly around the tree, with the ugliest ones in back (sorry, wooden dog kicking a soccer ball). A funky, glittery metrosexual-approved silver star crowns the top. White lights only. No tinsel: Shudder.
Nate's ideal Christmas tree: It showcases stupid joke ornaments hung three or four to a branch to make "stories," as he calls them. The hand-stuffed William Shakespeare humps the sugarplum fairy. The ballerina straddles the pen. The black angel babies from Target protectively surround the Washington Redskins logo. And the "Keep Abortion Legal" NARAL bumper sticker that somehow ended up in the regifting bag one year gets a prominent spot right in the front, in a passive-agressive display of rebellion aimed at his devout mother who's never even been within a 6 hour's drive of our tree.
"Not everything has to be about jokes!" I yell.
"Why not? It's my holiday anyway," he always shoots back.
"Your holiday? Your holiday? You don't believe in religion. You're the first person to remind anyone who will listen that Christmas is pagan and that Jesus was born in April."
"So? You're Jewish."
"So was Jesus."
There is no winner here. Except perhaps the dog who ends up getting into the Christmas cookies while we're busy reshuffling ornaments when the other's back is turned.
This year, we did not have a tree. Various events conspired to keep us from getting one until the Tuesday before Christmas. Divide the cost of a Union Square Greenmarket tree by the number of days we'd be here to enjoy it before heading out to see the family, it would come to roughly $137 a day. Eh, I'd rather spend it on Teuscher.
However we did make the time to make Christmas cookies--in the same spirit that we decorate the tree.
Perhaps you can even guess whose is whose?
Various trees, stars, stockings, bells and candy canes