The Christmas Tree – #CIJParty 2018

Contributor post by Mairi from mairidesign

One cold winter’s night, Martin Luther was walking through a pine forest near his home in Wittenberg when he looked up and saw thousands of stars glinting jewel-like among the branches of the trees. This wondrous sight inspired him to set up a candle-lit fir tree in his house that Christmas.

Long before Christianity, however, people in the Northern Hemisphere used evergreen plants to decorate their homes to celebrate the Winter Solstice. This was celebrated by the Egyptians, the Celts, the Vikings and the Romans, who decorated their homes and temples with green palm rushes or evergreen boughs in honour of their gods and to symbolise everlasting life.

The modern tradition of decorating trees indoors began in Germany in the 16th century. Open-air plays, telling the story of creation, were performed on Adam and Eve day, where the Garden of Eden was symbolised by a ‘paradise tree’ hung with fruit. The church banned these practices, considering them acts of heathenry, so people collected evergreen branches or trees and brought them, secretly, into their homes. On these, families would hang lit candles, gingerbread, gold covered apples, roses made from coloured paper, wafers and sweets.

This eventually reached the shores of the United Kingdom, when Queen Charlotte, the German wife of George III, set up the first known British tree in 1800. She held a large Christmas party for the children of all the principal families in Windsor and set up a yew tree in the middle of the drawing-room, illuminated by small wax candles, and decorated with baubles, fruit and presents. Christmas trees then became fashionable in English upper-class circles, where they formed the focal point at children’s gatherings.

mairidesignmairidesign_victoria and albert 1846 christmas tree
It wasn’t until half a century later, that the tradition took hold. In 1840, Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert, imported several spruce firs from his native Coburg. Each year, magazines would describe the royal Christmas tree and print illustrations of the Royal Family around it, popularising the custom of setting up trees, which became commonplace in British homes.

Over the Atlantic, in the 1880s, Woolworth brought the magic of Christmas tree decorating into American homes. After a visit to Europe, F.W. Woolworth began importing holiday ornaments from Lauscha, Germany, the small village where hand-blown glass ornaments originated.

Response to the affordable, miniature glass toys was tremendous. More than 250 million ornaments were being imported to the United States from Germany, Japan and Czechoslovakia. But, as war broke out, it became difficult to export ornaments from Germany. In 1939, the American company Corning began producing ornaments on a larger scale, using a machine originally designed to produce glass bulbs.
Nowadays, in the U.S.A., 35 million Christmas trees are sold annually, with an additional 10 million artificial trees, and 300 million Christmas trees are grown in farms around the world.

So, each Christmas, as you decorate your tree, you can recall the origins of this festive custom and delight your family with stories full of holiday spirit.

Sources:

https://www.zmescience.com

https://www.historytoday.com

https://www.whychristmas.com

http://www.peopleticker.com

Tree Decorations – #CIJParty 2017

Post contributor from Julie at EveryoneLovesGifts0

When it comes to Christmas time everyone loves to decorate their tree. I know when I was younger I was not allowed to decorate the tree as that was my Mum’s job and something she loved to do. More so the tree had to be prefect so no little fingers are allowed.

Now I have my own daughter, she decorates the tree with my husband but they always need my approval to see if I like it!

With this blog I thought it would be a good idea to get a feel of other Christmas tree decorations out there, let your imagination run wild and have fun with it. After all, Christmas is a time to family and fun.

First up is my Christmas Tree (pleas excuse the background this was before we decorated). I have always had a fake green tree yet I liked the look of a black tree. It is usual and not something you would consider at Christmas, yet I love the look of a black tree.
That being said as it is black I wanted silver and white to go with the tree so the decorations stand out. So that being said I went with silver glitter decorations and white feather boas to make it look like snow as falling. To complete the look I went with white twinkle lights. (PS, excuse the Christmas hat at the top, my daughter insisted that stays).

Dscf5320

My Christmas Tree Decoration

I love this Christmas tree, it looks classic yet modern at the same time with twists of ‘snow’ at the bottom. I love all the different Christmas decorations that hang off the branches, this tree feels magical to me.

2076465861_6edb01a5d5_o

Fun Tree Decoration

Although this is a real Christmas tree, the decorations are simple, to the point while looking classy at the same time. The colour scheme stays the same with gold and red decorations while you can see the twinkling white light in the tree.

6412404511_eb7c112f38_o

Classic Tree Decoration

Decorations that feel fun and magical for the Children. I love this look of decoration, I know this may not be everyone’s cup of tea but if your children have a little Christmas tree themselves, why not look for a decoration like this? With lights behind this decoration it is sure to make a magical tree for them.

5242768448_583c87f484_o.jpg

Fun Decorations for Kids

I love decorations like this. On a Christmas tree you can see it is bright colours, yet with glitter snowflakes on the balls it gives it a warm/cool feeling inside as well. This on a tree with similar decorations would go perfect together.

christmas-decs-708x398

Glitter Snowflake Tree Balls

Traveling To The Christmas Tree Farm And Picking A Tree

Here’s a very popular family tradition of traveling to the Christmas Tree farm and picking up our very own Christmas trees for the holiday season! Let’s read all about it with Jenn!

JENNIFER Me A Really Long Time Ago“Christmas traditions are something I look forward to every year, that and getting to find (or make) the perfect gifts for everyone. In fact, I am so obsessed with traditions that one of my brothers makes fun of me saying, “If we do it once, it’s a tradition.”

But the rituals of this time of the year bring back so many good memories for me and help me connect with the present and look forward to the future. I often find myself focusing on these types of things to cope with the different stresses and events of my life. The people I’ve lost, the distance between my family back home and where my husband, kids, and I live, and the realities of being a military wife.

One of my absolute favorite traditions is one started by my parents as newlyweds that has continued to the point that now their children are following the tradition with their families! We are from Minnesota, and so we all get bundled up and pick several Christmas cookies from a super-secret stash that has been in the freezer since Thanksgiving.

We then pile in cars and drive up to the same tree farm that they have always gone to and we pick out a tree for each family. This involves lots of running around in the snow (if there is any) playing catch, and discussing the merits of long and short needle trees. Once we find our trees we then use Dad’s saw to cut them down and throw them in the truck, and while the employees of the farm prep our trees for the ride home, we set to completing some other traditions.

JENNIFEROur First Tree In Our New House

Some of us take a look around the little shop they have for our yearly ornaments, while everyone else heads to a picnic table by a little pond with fish to feed. Then, we all sit around eating the first cookies of the season and drinking hot cocoa. Then we head home to put up and decorate our trees.


JENNIFER My Husband & Our First Tree

This was always the official start to the holidays for me growing up, and when I moved away from home to be with my husband, I vowed I would find a way for us to follow the same tradition, even if we couldn’t go to the farm with everyone else.

So we still pick one special day and save our cookies until then, and instead of going to a tree farm we set up and decorate several artificial trees around our home. I usually try to call some of my family. It’s hard to keep it together and not be too sad, but I am always grateful that my husband, kids, and I can be together and still have this tradition, albeit a little different than everyone else.

There is something comforting about knowing that even with miles separating me from my family (and sometimes my husband) that traditions like these still exist and keep us connected. And I suppose, that’s really what I like about traditions at the holidays, the connections we make to each other because of them.”

JENNIFER Baby Bry's First Christmas   JENNIFER Me, Very Excited About My Stocking

Happy Holidays!
From Jenn Fisher And Family

il_570xN.370788808_w2d5

Thank you so much for sharing your Christmas story with us, Jenn.

Go early for your Christmas Trees this year to get the best selection !

Please send some love to our fellow teammie and visit Jenn’s shop at :

https://www.etsy.com/shop/LovesYouStationeryCo

iusb_760x100.9878697_px7u

Thank you for joining us today. Stay tuned for more Christmas stories to come!

See you next time! – by A Gift Of Nature
Air Plant Terrarium Christmas Ornament A Gift Of Nature