Chuck The Christmas Tree

Patchen Tree Farm Family photo semi-success!

A preamble seems necessary here. Why? Because these photos involve a fringe-y skull poncho, and if you’re 1/18th as excited about this thing as I am, we need to discuss it.

The 360 Cashmere poncho pictured here is, to my mind, one of the most spectacular purchases I have ever made. I bought it because I spotted it in a store (Bella Rosa, in Los Gatos), restrained myself from purchasing it on the spot (as I am a firm believer in stepping away from the credit card for a minimum of three days when making an expensive and potentially regrettable purchase), and then went home and actually dreamed about the freaking thing. …Because apparently I have nothing more important to dream about than cashmere skull ponchos. (Trying not to be judgy about my own middle-of-the-night reveries, but hey, if we can’t judge our unconscious minds, what can we judge?)

So I woke up next-level obsessed with the thing, did a little googling to figure out whether it might be available (and on sale or on consignment) anywhere else…and you know what I discovered? This precise piece is actually, literally not available anywhere else on the planet. I found similar styles – this one was closest- but this exact piece? Nowhere (save for one or two resale sites where it was no longer available). So obviously that went ahead and made up my mind for me.

And now I own a fringe-y skull poncho.

So Now Let Us Commence The Real Post

The actual point of this post is “Christmas trees.”

For years now (ever since I did this ridiculous dancing video featuring a faux tree that Kmart had sent over for one of my very earliest sponsored posts), Kendrick and I have been firmly in the Fake Tree camp.

Growing up my parents were all about getting a real tree, and I’d always found the idea of a fake tree sort of depressing…until I reached the age when it was me who was responsible for cleaning up after the various disgusting things that happen to animals in the proximity of (apparently delicious) pine needles. Also, “stringing lights” also ranks up there with “athletic shoe shopping” for me. It’s boring; it goes on way longer than it should; I don’t want to do it. Also trees are expensive, and that fake tree sitting in your garage? It’s ll nice and free and stuff.

But my friend Alisa finally convinced me to do it. “Your children,” she said, “deserve to know what a real Christmas tree smells like. THINK OF THE CHILDREN.” –>Guilt.

Or, more accurately, she convinced me to do it halfway. We would still put up our go-to pre-strung (and free) Christmas tree, and then shell out a few bucks ($30, as it turned out, but it very nearly was $70 due to a tricky little price minimum that had escaped me, and that the very kind checkout clerk waived when he saw the sad little branch being dragged toward him).

That sad little branch, of course, is Chuck. We brought him home in our neighbor’s truck, stuck him in a borrowed tree stand that we had to shore up with masking tape because Chuck’s itsy little trunk didn’t reach the very smallest settings, and tried unsuccessfully to convince him to stand up straight. Then we covered him with “special” (unbreakable, but also special) ornaments so that we could turn our kids in his direction whenever they felt like doing a little tree-touching.

He sits in our corner, all asymmetrical and sparse and sideways-leaning, bedecked with a wood-framed photo of Lucy and Virgil, a handful of felt animals Francesca gave the kids last year, and a single string of borrowed rainbow lights. He makes our entire house smell like Christmas.

And so I’m going to have to say it:

I love Chuck the most.

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