Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

December 17, 2012

Christmas Tree

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

Finding a Christmas tree in my boyhood was always a very special time.  In our part of the world, very few commercial trees existed.

We could go into a larger city and see Christmas trees for sale.  They were called “live” trees and not artificial ones.  With our family, and all the folks in our town, locating your own tree was a special hunt.  Many people had spotted a certain tree during the year, and hoped that no one else had spotted it.  Then a few days before Christmas the “capture’ of your tree was scheduled.

For me, we did not pre-hunt for our tree.  We simply began the hunt on the day that we expected to cut down and bring home the tree.  There were a few cedar trees scattered in the woods, and we thought the cedar was the only tree that was appropriate for Christmas.

When located, the tree was cut with an axe.  Once we had carried the tree from the woods to the backyard, the bottom was cut with a saw to be as level as possible.  Then a wooden stand was made from scrap lumber to affix at the bottom.  The tree was always perfect from our perspective.

My grandparents did not care for a cedar tree.  My grandfather only wanted a pine.  He desired the pine smell over all other trees.  Going with him was always a special time.  He would take another man with him who worked for him.  We would go through his woods looking at hundreds of pine trees.  My grandfather was alway looking up.  He would look at the tops of pine trees.  He felt only the top of a pine tree would meet his expectations.

Finally, he would spot the top of a pine tree.  The man with us would climb the tree and saw the top off at the spot where my grandfather instructed.  The top would come crashing to the ground.  It would be wide, tall, and heavy.  It was an ordeal to drag the tree home.  It was even more of a challenge to get it through the wide front door.  It would be measured to make sure it was not too tall for the room — but my grandfather wanted it to reach the high ceiling.

It would take a much larger stand for it than with out smaller cedar tree.  It also required much more in decorations.  The decorations were simple.  There would be popcorn strings, paper chains with various colors, pine cones with ribbons, and the many contemporary decorations.  The strings of lights had very large bulbs.  It was unique to say the least.

It seemed when I finally got old enough to be the one to climb the tree, my grandfather still felt I was too young.  By the time that he would realize I was old enough to make the climb, he had become too feeble to make the exploration into the woods.  He was still very inspective about the tree, however, when we would bring it home.

As I saw a tree today, I was reminded of this special time in my life.  The Christmas tree may have many symbols to various people, but for me, one of the meanings of the tree is a time with my grandfather.  I have said before, memories are precious.  We need to constantly make memories.  Memories are so much a part of life.

Of all the memories of this season, I must not let any overshadow the remembrance of what Christmas truly means.  Let us remember that this season shouts to us of God’s great love for us in that He sent His Son into the world that we might have life through Him.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”  (John 3:16)



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