Friday, December 12, 2008

O Christmas Tree O Christmas Tree la la la la la.......

(Not my tree)

Did you know Germany is responsible for the Christmas Tree aka Yule Tree? I told you they discovered Christmas ...okay maybe it was the tree, but what is Christmas without a tree?! According to tradition of the Christmas tree, you can date back to 16th century Germany, so there you have it! In some accounts, Martin Luther is credited with coming up with the idea after seeing the night stars through the branches of a pine tree on a walk home, and decorated a tree with his family with candles and silver and gold tinsel.

I find it interesting how different cultures and countries decorate their Christmas trees. Katelyn and another American, Andrew are the only kids in her class with a tree up already!

In Germany, traditionally the tree is put up on the 24th of December and taken down on the 7th of January, though many start one or two weeks earlier, leaving it outside until Christmas eve. Many still decorate with real candles on their tree! I opted for lights that look like candles and they look very cool, and not a fire hazard at all! Traditionally the trees are decorated with apples, candy, nuts, cookies, cars, trains, angels, tinsel, family treasures.

Really not so different from many of our traditions today other than the timing. I think for Americans, if you are putting up a fake tree, its the weekend of Thanksgiving and for real trees somewhere around St Nikolaus day December 6th. According to custom here in Germany it is bad luck to put up before St. Nikolaus Day. And the Evergreen tree represents a fresh start to a new year!

What ever your tradition may be, I so enjoy sitting in the dark most mornings, with my coffee and Christmas tree glowing, with Frank Sinatra's Christmas music playing in the background!

Happy Tree Decorating everyone!

4 comments:

preppyplayer said...

We finally finished decorating!!! It looks so nice, but a lot of work. Poor kevin decorated most of the tree. He kept saying " this isn't how I pictured it, decorating alone." as Becky and I lay on the couch watching him...
We would tell him, "more in the front, no! put it there!" It's a wonder he put up with it.

t.t. Millers said...

The boys tried to help me decorate our tree. I ended up with one section of while balls, another with blue balls and a clump of snowmen decorations smack in the middle! I've slowly been moving them around so the kids don't know!! :)

Ina J Offret said...

Re the Frank Sinatra CD...there is an awesome CD out there with the entire Rat Pack singing carols, Sammy, Dean and Frank. Love it! Love your blog, Frau. Have a happy weekend West Family! xo

Ina J Offret said...

PS happy weekend to the tt Millers, I peek at your blog now and then