When my husband brought the box with the artificial tree upstairs eight days before Christmas, I protested.
“I thought we were waiting until tomorrow.”
“Nah. Let’s put it up today.”
“Okay,” I responded, stretching out the syllables to indicate my disapproval.
We had bought the tree the previous year. We were able to keep it up just over a week. In that time, Philip had taken apart ornaments, put clothing on its branches, and added other non-ornaments to the tree. “Leave the tree alone,” was an oft-repeated phrase last year. I wanted to minimize my use of it this year, so I only wanted to keep the tree up a short time.
As I sit here typing on the fifth day of January, I can see the tree in my peripheral vision. At first, Philip took the ornaments off, removed the hooks, and then shoved the ornaments back on the branches. He rolled the shatterproof globes on the kitchen floor and down the stairs. I implored “Leave the ornaments alone,” more times than I wanted those first few days.
But this year was definitely better than last. Sure the ornaments have been rearranged, but nothing is broken. The tree has been a source of entertainment for Philip. He’s looking at his reflection in a gold ornament right now.
So, I guess putting the tree up a day early didn’t matter. And leaving it up a little longer is okay, too.