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There are definitely worse problems to have around the holidays and while artificial trees look beautiful, there's something about seeing other people enjoying finding, chopping down and setting up their own real, Michigan-grown Christmas trees that leaves a little bit of a longing in your heart when you can't have one.
Why Not a Real Christmas Tree?
For some people, it's a preference. Some don't want to deal with the mess, it's too much work, too expensive, they don't have the time, etc.
There are plenty of reasons someone would choose not to have a real Christmas tree, and they're all totally valid. However, when you've always wanted one and can't have one due to something like allergies, it hits a bit different.
Growing up, we always knew my mom was allergic to pine so we always had an artificial tree. Then one windy day I was walking into a local bakery and got SMACKED IN THE FACE by a pine tree branch and my face started breaking out in hives.
Whenever I am around pine trees, I have your normal respiratory reactions, the stuffy nose, dry eyes, etc. But when I touch it, I itch from head-to-toe.
One summer I helped out cutting down trees on a neighbors property, not realizing it was pine, I was sweaty, my pores were wide open and I itched for three whole days.
Michigan Christmas Tree Traditions
Going to one of the many Michigan Christmas Tree farms, picking out the perfect one, making a whole day-long adventure out of it all seems so fun. There are people who even go out into Michigan National Forests all "Christmas Vacation" style and chop down their own tree in the wild (with a permit, of course - CLICK HERE for more info).
There are songs and movie scenes and television episodes all about going and finding that perfect tree and it is one of those true, Michigan Christmastime experiences that I feel I have truly missed out on.
Our tradition is to pull our artificial tree from the basement, put it together and decorate it while burning a pine, balsam or other tree-scented candle to still get the "vibe."
Sure, it's out own tradition and I love it. However, there seems to be a certain part to it all that doesn't have the same allure.
My sister got to have her first real Christmas tree this year, she just got our mom's animal hair allergies, and I'm so happy at least one of us gets to experience it!
Ways to Still Feel Like You've Had The Experience
If you find yourself in the same position I'm in, there are some ways you can make your artificial tree feel just as magical and special.
Visit a tree farm, keep your distance from the actual trees themselves and get some cute photos with the family, your friends, or significant other. Fake it 'til you make it!
Decorate with those trucks carrying trees in the beds, they've been trending on all kinds of holiday decor in recent years. You can at least show off you appreciate the aesthetic and the experience without actually having it for yourself.
You could also do what I do, make a day of trimming your own, artificial tree. Light up some candles, get the holiday tunes going, drink some (spiked) hot cocoa and enjoy even being able to have a tree.
Lastly, you could really zero-in on the artificial tree "thing" and get yourself one in a funky color, style, etc. Who says all trees HAVE to be real to be beautiful?
However you celebrate, however you decorate, don't get too down on yourself. Enjoy the holidays how YOU want to enjoy them...especially if that means being able to breathe correctly and only being itchy from your ugly sweater and not your tree.
CHECK THEM OUT: 100 years of Christmas toys, gifts and fads
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