Last month I was contacted by the team at Ocean Finance who asked me if they could gift us some money to help decorate our home for the festive season. Obviously it wasn’t too difficult to decide to say yes, but the more difficult question was what to spend the money on?
Initially I thought about buying reusable advent calendars for Alice & Theo, but the reviews of the ones I found online were mixed and I started to wonder if filling them every year would be more of a chore than a pleasure!
In the end we settled on something which was going to be enjoyed by the whole family, not just the children – a real Christmas tree!
Jim and I have never had a real tree in the whole time we have been married. Partly that’s down to the places we have lived (there aren’t many for sale in Cyprus!) and partly it’s because we have a very nice and perfectly respectable fake tree in the loft and therefore buying a real one seems like a bit of an extravagance.
This year we are hosting the whole family on Christmas day, so it seemed like a particularly good reason to make this the year we bought a living tree. Jim spent a disproportionately long time researching the different types of tree and forbade me from buying one locally because I wouldn’t know how long it had been sitting around!
After toying with the idea of getting one delivered, he actually went out late one night and bought a Fraser Fir after Theo had gone to bed, smuggling it back into the house and getting it ready to be decorated in the sitting room. Theo came down the following morning and got a lovely surprise and wanted to start hanging the decorations before eating breakfast.
The decorations on our tree are the same ones we use (and add to) every year. There is a distinctive Canadian theme with Mounties, bears, beavers and cowboy boots all hanging from the branches and the tree isn’t topped by a star or a fairy, but by a moose. Not any old moose though… This one is called Chris…. Chris Moose.
This is the first year that Theo has really felt the Christmas excitement and it’s lovely to have an excuse to go all out with the decorations. I think we are pretty much the last people I know to get our tree up, but it’s lovely now it’s here.