Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A tale of the perfectly imperfect tree

It was our third-annual tree hunt. This has quickly become a favorite tradition, even if my favorite people to share it with were home with sickness. We missed you, Goodrich Family. It certainly was much colder this year (35 degrees) than last year (72 degrees), but the adventure was still there.

{Read about the tree hunts from 2011 and 2012.}

Years ago, my late father-in-law planted some spruce trees near his country house because he thought would make good Christmas trees. They've long grown taller than wasn't suitable for a Christmas tree, but, really, they make good Christmas trees. They just need some trimming ...

Yeah, that top half of the tree is our tree, actually.

My husband likes to use a chain saw. Notice the fallen dead tree in the background. Yes, he tended to that detail for his mom.

Mission complete. And then my husband went to shoot at some targets while the kids and I went inside to drink my mother-in-law's homemade hot chocolate. Yes, I drank some. I know, I don't do hot drinks, hardly ever. But for the second day in a row, the coldness got the best of me and I truly enjoyed a warm cup in my hands. And, hello, it was real hot chocolate.

Oh, yeah, so the finished tree ...

It's perfectly imperfect. The top had to be trimmed more once we got it in the house. It's basically sitting in the middle of part of our living room. The bottom, already droopy limb has too many ornaments on it because that's where my boy wanted them. I prefer white lights, but decided to use what we had that would actually work. Yes, there are more lights on the front right side that anywhere else, especially the top back left of the tree. And it's impossible to put either the light-up star or cloth angel on top.

But I love it. 

My perfectionist-leading, Type A self looks into the living room and sees the imperfections. But I hear my kids talk continually about how beautiful the tree is and watch my son usher my mother-in-law in because she must see the tree. The kids hung most of the ornaments. And my husband was patient with the stubborn partial-lit strands of lights.

This is our tree. It's perfectly imperfect. 

We'll gather the gifts for people we love under it. The kids will continue to show it off. I'll probably sweet up some fallen needles and water the oversized plant in my living room. We'll talk about the ornaments that represent stories and places and people.

I'll glance into the living room for the next month and be reminded that, like the tree, life is perfectly imperfect. It's the moments we don't expect and the ones that don't go according to plan that we're faced with moments that could bring us the most joy. Seems appropriate that even our Christmas tree helps me close out the year with the message of embracing imperfection I've been learning and hearing this year.

Truly, those colored lights help me not be able to walk on by without noticing the beauty. I want to be like that in life too.

I'm linking up with Jen Ferguson's Soli Deo Gloria party, where embracing imperfection is encouraged, and with Jennifer Dukes Lee's #TellHisStory because this tree certainly represents God's story in my life this year.

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  1. I looove your tree! Thank you for sharing a wonderful story!

  2. KristinHillTaylor11/27/2013 9:54 PM

    Thanks, Dionne.

  3. Beautiful tree, beautiful story, and beautiful family. I love the character in the tree and I can just imagine the joy on your kids' faces as they decorated :-) Your story really made me smile. Thanks for sharing.

    Kalonda www.holymatrimommy.com

  4. KristinHillTaylor11/28/2013 8:18 PM

    Thanks, Kalonda! Happy Thanksgiving. :)

  5. Oh how did I miss this. LOVE, LOVE your tree. So much fun. You may just convince me to go get a real tree instead of putting up our fake tree. I need some things to stay the same...but in other ways I need to try new things this Christmas without the hubby around. You make me smile!

  6. KristinHillTaylor12/16/2013 2:08 PM

    Somehow I'm just seeing this comment. I'm glad you didn't miss this crazy tree - it's definitely my favorite Christmas decoration this year. :)

  7. Dear Kristin, please tell your husband to put that chainsaw down and promise never to use it again based on what I have just seen.

    Merry xmas