Apparently, it’s a German thing.
Prince Albert, the beloved husband of Queen Victoria brought the first tree over from Germany in the 1840s and made it super popular in good ol’ Britian- so they say. Others however are confident, that it was in fact Queen Charlotte who established the tradition in the late 1790s-1800 but guess what: she was German too. I guess, we really do like our Christmas trees? Having an ever-green plant in the home, is a custom that can be traced back way before the 1800s- back to the Viking, Roman times and beyond. Some people believed that it would protect them from evil spirits, ghosts, illness etc. and saw it as a sign of everlasting life.Whatever people believed and still believe, it is a tradition that has certainly caught on and is expressed so very differently from home to home.
My family always decorated the tree with a mixture of old Christmas ornaments that were passed down from generation to generation, homemade ornaments that we had made ourselves and eatable decorations such as chocolate rings or gingerbread hearts.
Can you imagine decorating your tree with 4 little kids? Nightmare.
As with all things, we might want to spend a thought on where our trees come from, how we could make it more sustainable and make sure, that we don’t ruin mother earth for our sparkle shenanigans during this time of year.
There are actually quite a few options out there, so here is what I found!
1. Christmas trees in pots
Isn’t that a lovely idea? That way you can reuse it ‘alle Jahre wieder’ (every year ) plus
no transport emission ever again. Who has a green thumb now?
If you have a garden, this is really a great option and the best part: You can name your tree and pass it down to the next generation.
How about Sarella for a name? (you think I’m kidding?)
2. Rent a Christmas tree
Say what? I guess this is the 21st Century after all.
Rented Christmas trees are reused over several holidays, which reduces environmental impact (avoid them landfills) and is not that crazy expensive either.
3. Recycle your Christmas tree
Ok if neither of the above is suitable and you opt to buy a tree I would encourage you to get one with the FSC logo on it. This organisation looks out for our forests and all the wildlife in them. They really do care, so why not consider? you can still recycle your little beauty after it had enough of your silly dances. There should be specially arranged drop off points or tree Collections in January- well at least here in the UK. Check with your local authorities, it’s pretty darn good.
4. Fake Christmas tree
I proudly admit that I have one of those. They are reusable, easy to bend (uww I like ‘em flexible) and best of all they don’t require my none existent green thumb skills. Until I learn how to look after a plant successfully my fake tree will stay. Who’s with me?
5. Go WILD Christmas tree
How about dressing up your palm tree or any greenery you have already got in the house? Go batshit crazy!
If you are in need for inspiration, google:
“funny Christmas tree alternatives”
Whatever you go for, show us your glorious greenery!