During the holiday season we all impart in traditions near and dear to our hearts. For years I indulged it putting up the Christmas Tree. As my son grew up he took on the role of the Christmas tree dresser. However, he grew weary of this task. Truth be told, he hated the endless strings of lights and the ornaments some of which were quite fragile. In 2001 he informed me of his feelings and he proclaimed that he wanted to know if there was a possibility of replacing this tradition of erecting the pine tree and dawning it with lights and ornaments. Being an open minded mother, I challenged him to come up with a viable alternative. And so he did!
He offered that we should have a palm tree and not a pine tree. I thought his reasoning was our love for South Florida (we were residing in Virginia). However, his idea quickly grew on me…In Bethlehem there were no pine trees! So the new tradition was born. Each year we dress a palm tree which reflects the true meaning of the season. Our tree is dawned as follows:
The Palm Tree: The same tree which stood outside the manger
The red balls represent the blood that Jesus shed
The icicles for friends and relatives around the world who are subjected to the icy winters
The star indicative of the star which shown over the manger
The little cradle (made by my son in 1st grade) with baby Jesus
The Angel who appeared to the wise men and which stood over the manger
The US Coast Guard ornament which represents all the members of the Armed Forces around the world who are separated from their families at Christmas
The burlap cloth (similar to the cloth baby Jesus was wrapped in) is wrapped around the base of the tree
The balls of gold and silver and frankincense and myrrh at the base of the tree which represents the gifts from the wise men
Off to the side of the tree there is a ceramic manger depicting the Christmas scene.
Putting up my palm tree, making sorrel, baking Christmas cake, and connecting with family and friends; this is my Christmas tradition.
To all of my family and friends my the peace, love, and joy of Christmas be with you now and into the New Year