What’s on your Christmas tree?

I recently read this article by Alison Barnes in History Today. It describes how Queen Charlotte (Prinny’s mother) introduced the Christmas tree to England by setting one up at Windsor in 1800. It was decorated with “bunches of sweetmeats, almonds and raisins in papers, fruits and toys”. I wish I could locate a picture!

The article lists several examples of Christmas trees during the Regency and states that the tradition was “firmly established” by 1818, although information I’d read before indicated that Christmas trees were not that common during the Regency. The article goes on to say that by 1860 nearly every family of means had one. This makes me think that Queen Charlotte started the custom but perhaps it was Victoria and Albert’s famous tree of 1846 that made it universal.

Our own tree is a hodge-podge. At one time I had this vision of a designer tree and so I started a collection of blown and cut glass ornaments and made a bunch of crocheted snowflakes. But life evolved and so did the tree. I still enjoy my glass ornaments and my snowflakes, but I’m happy to let them share space with others: stuff my children have made (Q-tip snowflakes decorated with craft store “jewels”, Vaguely Identifiable Things made out of pipe cleaners and beads), my husband’s sports ornaments (featuring the Mets, Giants and Rangers), and a Star Trek shuttlecraft that plays a holiday greeting from Mr. Spock. It’s all good and I don’t miss the designer tree at all. 🙂

Do you have a Christmas tree? What are your favorite decorations?

Happy Holidays!


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10 years ago

Our tree is also a hodge-podge, however, in the past few years we have started to put up several trees. The main tree in the parlor is victorian. We have a tree in the family room where we put up the ornaments we have collected over the years, including those the children have made. I have little trees in other rooms around the house. Our new ornament for the main tree this year is from the cathedral in Savannah, GA. We just returned home from there this evening. Nice city. We hope to go back soon.

Have a wonderful Christmas Everyone.

Elena Greene
10 years ago

Pat, it sounds like fun to have multiple trees!

Happy Christmas, everyone!

10 years ago

My tree is also a hodge podge, but I like it that way. To me, Christmas is all about sentiment, and many of my decorations have sentimental associations – even down to a small plastic bouzouki sent to me by a Greek exchange student after she returned to Greece many years ago.

I also love real trees ‚ there is no scent that spells Christmas to me as much as the fragrance of fresh-cut pine. Multiple trees sound amazing, Pat. The scent would be wonderful.

All the best to the Riskies for Christmas
Anne Gracie

Elena Greene
10 years ago

Anne, I love the smell of a real tree, too. I know it’s expensive or impractical for a lot of people, but we are lucky enough to live close to a small tree farm where we can cut down our own balsam fir.

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