It happens to me every January. “I’ll leave it up for just another week,” turns into the ever-embarrassing, “Can we just put some hearts on it?”
Taking down the Christmas tree is – I believe – one of the most depressing chores that exists. I have yet to figure out a way to make it fun, or at least not horrible. Having an artificial tree like we do only exacerbates the problem because it doesn’t die and sprinkle needles everywhere. This year I’m bribing myself with Cadbury Creme Eggs if I get it done. Because… you know… the EASTER candy is out already.
When I was in school, my poor mother would take down the tree often on the first day we went back to school after Christmas break. I thought she was the meanest mom of all moms, crushing our Christmas dreams and thrusting us head-first into the bleak and dreary black hole that is January. I would come home to find the presents that hadn’t been put away were left in the bare corner of the living room in a sad little pile.
Now, I sit here on the 21st day of January, almost a full month after Christmas, staring at my unlit but fully decorated tree. Funny how festive so quickly transforms into… lame. It’s yet another chapter in the textbook I’m writing called: “My Parents Weren’t as Mean/Dumb/Unreasonable as I Thought They Were.”
Yes, taking down Christmas sucks. It probably always will, because even though I’m 30, Christmas is still pretty magical. But I also know that spring can’t come until winter is gone. (I also now realize that taking down Christmas without two whining kids around is probably much more peaceful than listening to them begging and pleading.)
And so today, having an unexpected “snow day” off from work, I will pop in a movie, make some hot chocolate, and take down the tree. Not because I’m ready to say goodbye to Christmas… but because I’m ready to welcome spring with open arms!