DFH Volume 1 Issue 25
From time to time I receive a comment to an article which must be shared with you. This month’s is a doozer. My proofer, Izzie, is on the verge of insubordination and being fired for her telling it like it is. She didn’t suck up to the boss like so many employees do, and what the bosses expect. However, I thought maybe her courage might also get your juices flowing, and you may want to join in the insanity and controversary. Come on people! Let me hear from you on this and future articles. What follows is the letter which started all this baloney.
IZZIE HAYES WRITES:
I would never say you’re “doing it all wrong,” but this sweet old lady-of-93-Christmases cherishes this glorious holiday, with all its rituals and traditions, more than most and has perfected a sequence for taking the work out of decorating the tree!!!
- Starting with “The Nutcracker suite” to get the creative Christmas juices flowing is a fine choice. (I personally favor Handel’s “Messiah”—at full volume—including “The Hallelujah chorus.”) Anything but the perennial “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.” In any case, it just isn’t Christmas until someone yells, “Can you crank that thing down?!?”
- You wrote, “First came the ornaments. . . next came the lights.” No, no, no, Mr. Editor! Decorating your tree that way is a make work project and a sure-fire disaster There’s a much easier choice. If you eschew the cut-your-own tree farm or consider the pricey-but-puny offerings at the lot by your gas station beyond your consideration, you might go to Lowes or Home Depot or even Wal-Mart. There you will find stunning artificial trees with built-in light systems, either all white or all colored or alternating between the two. None of the annual struggle with tangled strands of half functional lights!!
If traditional is your thing, step #2 still comes after “The Nutcracker!” Get the strings of lights out of storage (preferably some new ones). Wrap them throughout the tree—high and low—some close to the trunk of the tree and some out on the branches. Then sit back and admire the gloriously festive tree before you.
- O.K.—Now! Bring out your precious ornaments for the final step. No more getting them messed up by the removal of strings of lights!
Christmas season is my time for excesses, but putting strings of lights on my tree after the tree has my choice ornaments in place is not one of them. Two choruses
of “Deck the Halls”… “ and a very Merry Christmas to all of you.
I am not Scrooge!!!!
I love you. Izzie
Reply To my favorite employee:
I’m not so sure you’re a sweet old lady yet…you’ve still got a lot of fabulous and mischievous kid, and spunk, left in you. Please accept that as a compliment! Don’t ever lose your youthful spirit.
Alas, we’ve (Jim Dayton household) had an artificial tree for as long as I can remember. Even the Paul Dayton family had an artificial tree after about 1975. Anyway, my family has had an artificial from about 1980 to present. The description of decorating the tree dates from about 1976 till they left home. Viva la tinsel! Viva la “bubbly” candles! It’s a less glitzy celebration when the kids are gone.
I bet we did the sequence of decorating it your way on points 2 and 3. It was so long ago I can no longer remember. One thing I do remember. It was a very joyous occasion for each member of our family. We looked forward to it year after year. One of my kids has carried on the tradition (partially). She has an artificial 10’ tree and prefers that each family member participates in decorating it. She’s partial to good taste now, and the tree is beautiful.
Now the Jim and Judy family has a new tradition. Judy buys a Hallmark ornament for each of the grandchildren each year, something very personalized to symbolize an important event in their life that year. For example, my granddaughter, who won on the National Cheerleading Championship team, gets a cheerleader figurine this year. Judy has another tradition we as a family love. She writes a poem for each family member for their main gift, which the recipient reads when they open their present. Each poem is personalized to fit the gift and/or the person. I have a book of her poems. And don’t forget to add the mistletoe and holly. And most importantly… we never forget why we have this season. God fulfilled his promise to send a Messiah to be the ultimate sin sacrifice for all humankind. “Happy holidays” is not in my vocabulary; “Merry Christmas” is!
Merry Christmas, Your boss.