Twelve Days of Christmas!: Trim the Tree

One of my favorite activities of Christmas is trimming the tree. Even if trimming a tree consist of just putting lights on it. Funny little fact about me, I never actually knew what the phrase “trim the tree” meant until recently. I always referred to it as “decorating”. Anytime I heard someone say “trim the tree,” I just thought they meant to take a pair of clippers and literally trim the tree. I’ve only ever had artificial trees so the phrase just never seemed to apply to me. However, one night I was sitting in the living room and wondered what does this phrase actually mean and I learned something new!

Photo credit: Disney

I’ve evolved with trimming my tree since my childhood. My tree doesn’t just have lights on it, but ornaments too! I may have evolved a little too much, because I suffer from Christmas tree OCD. Have you ever seen an episode of Friends? There’s one episode that starts with Chandler walking into Monica’s apartment and sees everyone decorating the tree. He mentions that he was stunned that Monica would even let them decorate with her tree, which is when everyone takes a step back and someone mentions that the tree is missing something. That’s when Monica turns the tree around and the audience sees that she decorated and entire side of the tree the way that she wants it. Monica in that moment, is me.

Sam Winchester decorates his tree with air fresheners. Photo credit: CW

I am notorious of redecorating Christmas trees. It started the winter of 2012. I came home after being gone for a weekend and found the Christmas tree up in the living and it was already decorated. Only it wasn’t decorated right in my eyes. I didn’t mind for a few days but ultimately I cracked and asked if I could redecorate. There were just too many of the same ornaments in close proximity to each other, and some ornaments just don’t go on a Christmas tree. I only held out for as long as I did because I didn’t want to upset someone get asked, “What was wrong with the way that it was?”

I didn’t know I would be faced with the same situation again, a year later. Only this time I was away at school when the tree was put up for decorating. I came home and immediately my eyes go to the tree. Yeah there were a few of the same ornaments here and there but the biggest problem: they didn’t fluff out the branches. Fluffing out branches is what gives your tree a body. The way that this tree looked really irritated my nerves. I gave it a day before telling my mom I had to fix it. Of course that meant needing to take all the ornaments off and then putting them back on. You could say I killed two birds with one stone by doing that.

One of the best Christmas movies ever!

You would think that was behind me, but I still find myself “fixing” my uncle’s Christmas tree when I show up to his house for Christmas. It’s sort of has become a running gag. His wife is always asking, “Are you going to redecorate my tree?” I told her that they should just wait until I show up before they decorate their tree, but his wife can’t wait that long. Which is ironic since my uncle was part of that household who would wait until the day before Christmas to put up the tree.

Cary Grant trims a tree

Last year I decorated my little tree with my man and he didn’t do a bad job. I didn’t have to do any rearranging of the ornaments. This year I had my brother assist me with putting up the tree. First thing I asked my brother to do was help me fluff out the branches but he claimed to be bad at it. Despite his doubts, my brother still helped me. Of course, I did have to go over his work and make sure he did everything right…he didn’t. At one point he muttered, “I hope Lisa isn’t like this when we get our own tree.” All of his comments just made me laugh. I’m at the point where I embrace my need for having a tree that is decorated just right.

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