Maybe we are the only couple in the world who end up singing, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year,” through gritted teeth as we put up our Christmas tree. Maybe no one else is bothered by having to crawl under the tree to tighten those evil screws AGAIN because the tree moved in the stand, and now it’s crooked. Perhaps I’m the only one who can’t stand getting under there every morning to water that lovely tree and emerge with needles in my hair and sap on my clothes.
That was our story until a few years ago, when we spent probably the best $15 ever on this:
This monstrosity is the best ever tree stand, purchased after Christmas at 75% off. A plastic foot pedal fits into the front and turns the gears which tighten a cable around the tree trunk. One person can hold the tree steady and tighten it in the stand all at once, while standing!! And it holds 4 gallons of water. No more crawling under!!
Such a silly, little thing, and yet what a difference it makes. You see, when you combine an engineer, who must have everything in straight lines and right angles, with a liberal arts major, who looks at the big picture with all of its flaws, every little bit helps to keep the peace. No one wants to fight over the Christmas tree. It’s just that everyone has their expectations, whether it’s precision strings of lights perfectly parallel around a perfectly conical tree, or the natural randomness of lights woven around and through the branches of a fluffy, non-artificially shaped tree.
Darling husband and I have been married for 18 and a half years. That’s more than a few Christmases trying to get the decorations up while keeping on speaking terms. That tree stand would have been worth it even if it hadn’t been 75% off.