I'm sorry; I can't help it; I love Christmas. Just so you'll know, that will no doubt be a recurring theme for this blog over the next few weeks.
I kind of got caught up in reading when I found the Christmas section at Dollar Stretcher. There are some cool articles there and I like the stories that Gary Foreman writes about John and Mary. It's absorbing information painlessly, something like learning fractions by baking a cake.
Anyway, my favorite is right at the top of the "Holiday Decorating
...for Less!" section, called "Oh, Christmas Tree!". John figures out how big of a tree they really need, and they find out... well, go read it. It's a short and easy read.
I use an artificial tree for a few reasons, but the smell of a real tree really makes Christmas special. If you, too, yearn for the smell of the real thing but can't have one, stop by a Christmas tree lot and see if there are any broken branches - even very small ones - they'll let you have. Bring them home and cut a small piece from the ends to release that fresh real Christmas tree scent.