By Diane Forrest
One of my favorite scenes in the movie A Christmas Vacation is when the Griswold family heads out to the Christmas tree farm, trek through the woods in search of the best tree ever, then forget to have an ax to chop it down. The next scene is showing the tree tied to the roof of the car, roots and all! I love this because it is exactly something that would happen to me! Eventually the tree, which covers Clark and Ellen with sap, houses a squirrel which causes havoc in the home, and burns down because Cousin Eddie's dog drank the water causing the tree to dry out.
Today is Buy a Christmas Tree Day. There are many different options available, you can go to a tree farm and purchase one like the Griswolds, or you can go to several retail outlets in town and pick out a tree, you can even purchase an artificial tree to keep year after year. You can buy a full size tree, or a smaller potted plant size tree. I like that size for older folks who don't want to do much decorating, but still want the symbol of Christmas in their home or room.
According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, "The use of evergreen trees, wreaths, and garlands to symbolize eternal life was a custom of the ancient Egyptians, Chinese, and Hebrews. Tree worship was common among the pagan Europeans and survived their conversion to Christianity in the Scandinavian customs of decorating the house and barn with evergreens at the New Year to scare away the devil and of setting up a tree for the birds during Christmastime" Records of the first tree in America was noted in 1776. Trees were decorated with lighted candles and fruits, usually apples.
Whatever type of tree you like, if you don't already have one, take some time today to buy one on Buy a Christmas Tree Day, and don't forget to check for hiding squirrels!