Instagram would have us believe there was a whole lot of Christmas tree decorating going on at the end of November, however maybe you’re like the rest of us and wait until the advent calendar doors open before you put your Norway Spruce up. The trees are decorated in the Coleman and Soeno households and while one of us is keeping it real, the other is most definitely faking it.

Team Real {Lisa}

For me, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a real tree.

Rich and I differ hugely in our approaches towards Christmas decorations but this is the one thing we agree on. The tree has to be real. It’s all about coming in your front door to be greeted by the scent of proper pine. There’s nothing like the feel of actual foliage between your fingers when you’re placing those baubles. The presents just wouldn’t be the same if they weren’t ‘decorated’ by a couple of pine needles that have made their way under the sellotape. And I don’t even mind that I’m still hoovering up the odd spiky little leaf in July. It takes me back to Christmas Day and puts a smile on my face.

The one time we faked it was Christmas 2014. We had moved house on 20 December and there was just no point in splashing out on a real tree. So for one year only we broke our self-imposed rule and went faux. I’ve just scrolled back through my iPhone photos to remind myself of this plastic-fantastic sham of a tree. Let me tell you folks, I would’ve been kicked off Instagram if I’d shared a picture of it. Despite all the twiddling by me, it was an exact triangle and all the branches were just too regimented. Nope, give me a perfectly-imperfect real tree any day.

However the best thing about real Christmas trees has got to be the whole experience of picking one out. Rich and I go to the same Christmas tree farm that he’s been going to since he was a little boy. Every year I forget to take my gardening gloves and get prickled half to death, every year we try to limit ourselves to the ‘non-drop’ variety but end up falling in love with a ‘dropper’, and every year I get the fear that it’s not going to fit in the car.  And every year the finished potted and decorated entity makes me feel like a kid again.

Team Faux {Lauren}

I first starting faking it several years ago after a rather unfortuante incident with a real tree. James and I returned home to find the floor under the tree dotted with small unidentified specs and as our eyes scanned across the room we saw more dots. WITH WINGS.
Pulling back the sofa we didn’t need to be David Attenborough to realise we had some form of wildlife infestation in our two bed terrace. They were absolutely everywhere. I threw the tree in the garden, decorations and all, went on a mass cleaning frenzy and vowed never to have a real one again.

I have broken my vow on several occasions. The first year we moved in to our cottage we splashed out on a Blue Spruce when we hosted Christmas. I can’t lie, it looked amazing, the aroma was beautiful but it dropped horrendously and I felt so sad in January when there was a very expensive dead branch cluttering up our tiny garden.

Last year I bought a small potted tree for our snug. As it was tiny I did a thorough inspection to check there were nothing untoward inside. I would like to say I tended to it all summer and it will be coming inside again this year but it’s looking a bit worse for wear. I think I’ll pop some lights on it and leave it outside the front door instead.

Our faux tree is one my parents gave me many moons ago and I love how short and stout it is. I am not a fan of a skinny malink tree. In the past folks have thought it was a real one, although admittedly they’ve probably had a few drinks by then. It’s actually the one we used to have at home when I was growing up so it’s well over twenty years old. At less than five foot It’s absolutely tiny but every year I pop it in a crate or a wicker basket and know I’m not going to be subjected to a fly infestation. You can keep your daily hoovering I’ll just have to rely on the scent of candles and a glass of mulled wine to get that tell-tale Christmas fragrance instead.

Do you fake it too? Or are you more Team Real?

P.S. On a similar festive note, over on Rock My Family today we’re talking about the age at which kids stop believing in Santa. Pop over and join the discussion.

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