Real or fake christmas tree?? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 10:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We've always had a real christmas tree in our house since I can remember. I love the smell, feel and tradition of searching for the perfect (precut) tree on that chilly december night. But with the last few years, I've had tremendous guilt at the thought of this tree having to die to be an ornament for us. I'm not vegetarian, so it seems hypocritical to me that the killing should bother me, but when I wander into the woods behind our house where we dispose of the dead tree, I see a graveyard of brown, lifeless trees from past years. I know they are shelter for little animals, but still, it makes me sad. A fake tree just doesn't seem the same though, even if I do sprinkle pine EO around for that christmas-y smell.

This year we'll decorate the pine tree outside with peanut butter/birdseed covered pinecones for the animals, but I'm stumped as to what to get for our inside tree.

What do you all do??
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#2 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 10:56 AM
 
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We've done both. I love real trees, they're so beautiful and smell great. But more messy. You don't have to just let them die you know alot of places recycle them at a christmas tree drop off after the holidays, tat's what we usually do.
We've also had artificial trees but they are not as nice to me and I don't like the prep work but if you have a really good(like $100) then they can be just as Grand. And of course you don't have to take care of them. We are at my moms this year and she always does artificial.
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#3 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:04 AM
 
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I grew up with a fake tree; now I prefer it. I burn a holiday smelling candle.
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#4 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:07 AM
 
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Real, definitely real.
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#5 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:15 AM
 
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We have a family tradition from my childhood...day after Thanksgiving we always tag our tree. The first year we were in our house, we got a balled and burlapped.. but it sadly passed away this Spring.. lasted about 6 years though. I am not sure this year what I am going to do. I want artificial I think, but the kids will want to pick out their tree as always.. I will let them decide. I do work in a garden center that sells some beautiful extremely real looking artificial trees, so those of you that are leaning in that direction...they have a lot more choices than years ago, and other than the smell, after they are decorated, and even before, they look exactly like a real tree.
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#6 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:17 AM
 
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..... and no needles to sweep up which is why I am leaning that way
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#7 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:18 AM
 
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I like real trees even though they are a big mess.
I would be content with a fake one if it was like the one my Mom now has. Lights are already attached and the thing turns around on its stand!

DandelionCrown~
You could always plant a new one each year you buy a real one.
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#8 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:26 AM
 
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I grew up w/a real tree and had always loved one~going and finding one, the smell, etc. But, my entire family has such severe allergies to it, so now we have a fake. And you know what.......I love it! As others mentioned, no needles to clean, saving a tree, its healthier for us and in the long run, it saves us $$.

Warmly~

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#9 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:34 AM
 
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I don't get the saving a tree idea. That is what they are grown for. Do you eat vegetables? One day in your digestive system and they are down the toilet, except for their vitamins. A tree lasts a few weeks!

Do you ever buy cut flowers, or grow them in your garden and cut some? A tree is just a big decorative bush grown for your holiday and spiritual pleasure and enlightenment.

--former florist
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#10 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:47 AM
 
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Fake. Then it's always a nice shape, you know it fits, and there's no mess. My next one with be prelit!
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#11 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 11:58 AM
 
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every year we go to the tree farm near us, and select and cut our own tree together.
we've been cutting our own since i was a kid. when the season is over (around our house, that's usually early february... )
we get it chipped to sustain our other trees and shrubs around the house.
it's really the tradition that makes a cut tree more special for us. the kids love to help pick the perfect one.
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#12 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 12:05 PM
 
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Real are just tooooooo expensive. We bought a fake one about three years ago for $30 and we'll use it again this year.
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#13 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 01:20 PM
 
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Real. I like the challenge of finding a really good tree, complete with imperfections. I also love the smell. That said, we had a tiny fake tree last year to avoid the hassle of toddler tree toppling. We let ds enjoy his Grandmommy's tree! I don't know what we'll end up with this year.
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#14 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 01:24 PM
 
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we have a fake tree I feel it is safer.

Christina

Mom to  Rachel 15 Kimberly 12 Chloe 10 and Nathaniel 8
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#15 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 02:20 PM
 
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We have always used real trees in my extended family. We always celebrate at my grandmother's big house, which has a ridiculously high ceiling, and we always get a tree that goes all the way to the ceiling. We can fit, you know, a full-grown tree in there.

It has always bothered me, though, cutting down a tree every year. Cutting down trees is really the last thing people need to be doing in this day and age, with the environment in the state it's in. Poor air quality, soil erosion, greenhouse gasses, don't get me started. So in my own little nuclear family we have started a new tradition. Every year, instead of cutting down a tree, we grow one. We plant a seed on Arbor day and keep it in a planter inside. When the holidays roll around, we decorate our little seedling. We also decorate a big tree outside. When the next Arbor day comes along, we plant the tree outside and start a new seed in the planter.

I don't think the rest of my extended family feels too guilty about cutting down a tree every year, because they own a hundred acre lot, and over the years have planted hundreds if not thousands of trees on it. I think everyone should try to plant more trees than they cut down, and the best thing, of course, would be to just plant as many trees as possible and never cut any down.

HATE HATE HATE fake trees!

-Alice, SAHM to dd (2001) and ds (2004) each of whom was a homebirth.jpg, who each self-weaned at 4.5 years bfolderchild.gif, who both fambedsingle2.gif'd, who were bothcd.gif, and both: novaxnocirc.gif.   Also, gd.gif, and goorganic.jpg!

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#16 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 02:21 PM
 
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We get a real potted tree each year and plant it the next year. They are smaller, but you still get the smell and the girls love to take care of their tree once it is planted outside. The key to survival is to only keep it in the house for a few days. Then put it back outside in the cold (it's usual climate) until ready to plant when the ground is ready. I have never had a problem with it being in a pot for a couple of months. If you can't plant it at your own house, then take it somewhere or plant it on someone's land. I guess, it you want a big tree, it really is not an option.


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#17 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 03:00 PM
 
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The one for our living room is around 18' and the one for the sunroom is around 12'.

We go on the National Forest near here (dh works for the NF), and we always have beautiful trees.

We also gather cedar boughs, and I make swags and wreaths (with big red velvet bows) for the four posts on our front porch and on either side of the garage door, and on our guest cottage. All our buildings have natural cedar siding, so they look especially pretty.

The tree in the living room is decorated with ornaments from both our families (we must have over 200), some of them are over 100 years old. Multi-coloured mini lights. Lots of tinsel. A velvet tree skirt I made in deep burgandy with lace edging that my great-grandmother brought over from Ireland in the late 1800's.

The tree in the sunroom is decorated with red satin balls and gold ribbon garland. We use the satin balls in there in case any fall, as the floor is tile! That tree is decorated with white lights. We bank small poinsettias all around it. It has a red and gold velvet tree skirt.

This year, our 5 year old son has asked for his own tree, so we'll be getting 3 trees this time around. He's already started making ornaments for it! It will be in his room, probably a 4'. I am in the process of making him a "Finding Nemo" tree skirt!!

The large trees, in case anyone starts raving about their size and age, aren't all that old. They come from an area that dh helped plant 20 years ago!!

My parents got an artificial tree several years ago. It's gorgeous, but I'd never have one. When my parents are no longer alive, I plan on donating their fake tree to the local senior center here in our small town (it is a REALLY nice tree, Dad paid a lot for it).

Leslie
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#18 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 03:04 PM
 
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We all love real trees ~ the imperfection, the smell, the tradition ~ BUT, like Lisa Marie, I've got a boy with serious allergies. He sure never complained as his nose ran the entire month of December, but I felt horribly guilty. I scrimped and saved to buy a really nice artifical tree ~ 7ft tall, three pieces, with the white lights already on it. With a pine candle burning, people have often mistaken it for real The bestest part is being able to leave it up thru the entire month of December (until January 6)without fear of fire.
We also decorate our outdoor trees and shrubs for solstice, so we get a chance to honor the living decor, as well.

~diana

~diana google me: hahamommy. Unschooling Supermama to Hayden :Super Cool Girlfriend to Scotty . Former wife to Mitch & former mama to Hannahbear
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#19 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 03:04 PM
 
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we do fake

husband has allergy to mold on the real ones.

real ones are fire hazzards anyway.

i like to use the same one every year, it brings back nice memories.
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#20 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 04:20 PM
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We always get a real tree, it's a family tradition to look for our tree together.

I have difficulty antropomorphising the tree.

I feel guilty 'sacrificing' the tree, but dh points out, it's irrational.

I "feel sorry for' the poor shabby "Charlie Brown" tree that no one wants but, again, dh asks me if I feel sorry for the brocolli or salad greens that no one buys in the produce aisle.

I usually get dh and some of my children to choose (I have a couple of sensitive souls who have inhereted my oddities.)

I really love having a real tree and couldn't bear the thought of a plastic tree in the living room.

Debra Baker
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#21 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 05:01 PM
 
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We have always had real trees until last year. We decided financially, it was wiser to "invest" in a really nice artificial tree. So, we got a great one and loved it. It was easier maintenence and clean up was a breeze. Now we don't have to pay for one again!
But, it doesn't smell like "Christmas", so we buy a huge fir wreath and put it inside and it makes the whole house smell wonderful. We get the wreaths from the Christmas tree farm. They are made of the extra branches that people cut off of the bottom and they're really cheap.

The best of both worlds!

Paige, mama to three girls, (10), (8) and (3)
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#22 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 05:17 PM
 
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we always have a real one. my family always had real ones, but my inlaws do fake. it feels better having a real one, but they are too expensive. we keep saying we will get a fake after the season when the prices cut, but we never do :

the last few years, dh has come home with a tree. a free tree. I dont ask. I dont wanna know where he gets them. (we live in the city, so my guess would be one of those 'business parks' or developements that go up all the time all around us):

my mom told him last year he shouldnt do that, because they spray them with some substance that smells bad or turns your hands a funny color if the temp changes drastically, she saw it on the news. I had a difficult time telling her the news may of been telling fibs.

he is the civil disobedience type, not that I am making excuses for him. ugh. if he believed in a hell, he would probably be going there
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#23 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 05:44 PM
 
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We do a real tree. We pack a lunch and lots of warm clothes and got up into the mountains in the snow to find a tree along the roads. The forest service just cuts them down anyway. It just cost I think $5 for a permit. So much fun!
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#24 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 06:29 PM
 
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i love real trees, but we use an artificial one.

l, <>< wife to my sweetie, proud mama to 3 cubs, 2 who clw & 1 that i i ep for . baby was evicted early by induction due to severe pre-e/hellp syndrome
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#25 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 08:25 PM
 
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Gotta be real, we cut it out of the grove on our property.
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#26 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 08:36 PM
 
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Real, always real.

Where we live, they collect them and shred them so the city can use them in landscaping projects. They do not end up in the landfill.

Ilaria mamma to Owen, Caroline & Patrick .... loving life as expats in Asia intactlact.gifnovaxnocirc.gifuc.jpgnamaste.gif
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#27 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 08:43 PM
 
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Just going by what you are stating in your post.

Your comments:

"the last few years, dh has come home with a tree. a free tree. I dont ask. I dont wanna know where he gets them. (we live in the city, so my guess would be one of those 'business parks' or developements that go up all the time all around us)"

How nauseating to think he feels it is acceptable to steal a tree, and that you condone it ("I dont ask. I dont wanna know where he gets them."). What kind of values does this teach your children?

Someone else HAS paid for those trees. They are certainly not planted as freebies for people too cheap to purchase (or, to cut, LEGALLY). Does he feel that it is somehow correct to steal these, simply because they are planted by large businesses or developers?

By the way, your Mom's comments aren't off the mark. Many places DO spray their trees with chemicals to deter theives from stealing them. Hmmm, I wonder why they have to do that? Maybe your husband knows?

So, your husband is the civil disobedience-type? Most people consider "civil disobedience" as protesting for your beliefs. What has this to do with illegally obtaining a Christmas tree?

Never heard out-right theft called disobedience. Would he use this excuse in court?

Yech.
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#28 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 10:14 PM
 
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She doesn't know that he's stealing; she's guessing. I think it's obvious from her post that she doesn't condone it. She doesn't say she approves, she says she doesn't ask, because if the answer is what she fears, she would disapprove. This is the opposite of condoning it. I don't think any of our partners are perfect. I'm not defending him, but there are worse faults.

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#29 of 51 Old 10-30-2003, 10:40 PM
 
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OT Response: to my accusers yes. I dont ask and dont tell (a popular concept) when it comes to some of his pranks/highjinks or horrible criminal activity, in this case . :LOL it gives me plausible deniability (for the police questioning)

he is usually pretty harmless, i think i will just throw any hope of instilling good values and morals out the window and still let him around the kid:

Thank you Devrock, there are worse things i could imagine a father doing so his kid has a fancy light up tree like all the neighbors.


now if he showed up with a loaf of bread, i could see hanging him.

If the future of my family and its 'salvation' or incarceration wants to be discussed further, we should open a WHOLE new thread (not because we need that much help, but because i dont want to get this off topic) or you could berade me in a pm format
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#30 of 51 Old 10-31-2003, 01:21 AM
 
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MelMel, check your email.
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