Fast forward to today; in my home I do things a little differently. Unfortunately I no longer believe that the baby Jesus delivers tree and presents on Christmas Eve. I decorate my tree the last weekend of November so that it is fully resplendent in holiday glory for December 1. I love decorating my house and my tree and I want to enjoy it for the entire 'holiday' month. The tree and Christmas decorations all come down on New Year's day because to me, holiday decorations look sad and droopy after Christmas. Decorating the tree involves Christmas music, wine and yelling at the cat to stay away from the ornaments - she traditionally breaks one every year.
Since buying a house with a big red door a few years ago, the tree-decorating weekend always begins with the removal of my fall wreath from my door and the appending of the Christmas wreath. When everything is decorated I light all the candles and I light up the tree, I sit on the floor and happily gaze at the tree for a long time enjoying its sparkle and I reminisce about Christmases past.
Let the month of cheer begin.