The Christmas Tree Thieves

This is the story of a Jennie and her husband who, once upon a time, went to a Christmas Tree Lot and purchased a lush tree of respectable size and girth. This was the Christmas tradition the Jennie had followed since… well… forever.

But the following Christmas, the husband, having grown much bolder during a year of living with his princess, suggested a change in plans. Trees are expensive, he said, and we live in the Land of the Pine after all, and I own an axe and saw, so what if we took a little walk in the woods?

(Of course, this not being a real fairy tale, and J not being a real lumberjack (although he is OK), “the woods” was actually a strip of scrubby pines and prickly bushes separating our town home community from an office complex.)

Dressed all in black, with the Jennie walking a confused but excited dog as a cover story, and the husband stealthily hiding the tools under his winter coat, our adventurers headed into “the woods” under cover of darkness. They stumbled a bit, they searched far and wide, they left a trail of crumbs (also called dog poop), and then they came upon their prize: a sapling, five feet tall, thin and lopsided, and utterly redolent of that Charlie Brown mystique.

The tree’s trunk was so frail that one blow of the axe and three strokes of the saw brought it down. There was much giggling as the prize traveled back through the neighborhood on the shoulders of our giddy treasure hunters, with the now-sap-covered dog prancing delightedly alongside.

Every year since, the Saia Christmas Trees have come from the deepest, darkest patches of “the woods” owned by the state. Every year since, they have shone with the special combination of adventure, colored lights, and hilarious pathos that transform a stolen scrub pine into a new tradition.


…and with that, to all a good night. Tip of My Tongue (oh, how I love third person) will be taking a blogging break until mid-January. I’ll be reading a bit, because you who continue to publish during the winter holidays impress and delight me, but I will be renewing my stock of story magic for use in the New Year. Until then, may all your 2014s start off as glowing and full of possibility as fresh snow under a full moon!


24 responses to “The Christmas Tree Thieves

  1. That’s what makes Christmas special – those odd traditions that you share. Congrats and have a great Christmas. And thanks for your support – it really means a lot to us beginners.

    • Merry Christmas, Tim! The odd things always are best, aren’t they? I was talking with a friend the other day about how my best stories arise from misadventures. And as for the support – I echo back to you everything you said! I am also a beginner, and one who’s very happy to have met you and be part of each others online community. πŸ™‚

  2. That’s amazing and makes me think of my Grandmother! She has dementia and when it first came about she would tell the same stories over and over.. one of which was how my Grandfather was in Korea for their first Christmas and when he returned in Spring she decided to go to a park with a friend and chop down a proper Christmas tree. They hid it in the backseat of the car– which was lucky because they were stopped by a police officer. They got away with it after all. She’s an amazing lady!
    Thanks for jogging that memory out– have a great Christmas, and enjoy your break!

    • Aussa – I think awesomeness must be inherited, because I can *picture* you doing that. Do you happen to look anything like your grandmother? If you ever want to tell stories about her and your grandfather, I’m all ears! (Or eyes, as the case may be…) Merry Christmas!

      • Aw, I really should tell more stories about them! I don’t look like her at all, unfortunately. I take after my father’s side of the family (the backwater crazy side, that is). My Grandmother was petite and classy where I am brash and lumbering. But I suppose I have a bit of her spirit πŸ™‚

  3. Merry Christmas Jennie πŸ™‚ I hope one day I will have a real tree again (we used to when I was a kid) until then I have a plastic monstrosity that I debate every year whether I should be bothered putting up and decorating. Which I inevitably do anyway. Because any excuse for Christmas carols and dressing my cat up in Christmas outfits warms my heart.

  4. I love the tale Jennie – I just knew you were my kind of people. πŸ™‚ I’ve really enjoyed connecting with you this year and look forward to your 2014 stories. Happy New Year! ~Terri

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