Putting up the Christmas tree is a firm tradition in our household. In the first week of December (yes, I know it’s not in keeping with the ’12 Days of Christmas’ thing but I’m impatient), we put festive tunes on Spotify, enjoy a glass of Bucks Fizz and spend an evening transforming our humble abode into a winter wonderland.
When I suggested putting a date in our respective diaries to put the tree up this year, Adam retorted with: “Well you can do it by yourself; I’m not helping this year. Last time, you got annoyed because the kids put the decorations on ‘wrong’ and stressed us all out. You get mean when we put the tree up!”.
After protesting a little bit at this ‘unfounded’ accusation, I realised that he may have a point. I vowed to relax and let go of the Christmas tree reigns so that we could enjoy the relaxed family day that it’s supposed to be.
Over the years, I’ve flitted between having a fake tree and a real one. As much as I adore the look and smell of a real tree, I just can’t justify spending £70+ on something that’s going to end up left in the back garden from 28 December and (quite literally) throwing money away, not to mention the hassle of disposing of it and having to sweep up needles every single day.
Our trusty fake tree was looking less than perfect and had lost a branch or two over time (due to three cats climbing it and me hastily packing it away) so it was time for an upgrade. Determined to have an idyllic evening of festive fun, we opened our brand new tree from Balsam Hall with great enthusiasm. They’d also kindly provided us with some stunning glass baubles and a tree skirt.
The tree itself is an artificial 6.5ft European Fir and you’d be hard-pressed to tell it apart from its natural counterpart! Made up of True Needle™ tips (71%) to give a realistic look and Classic Needle foliage (29%) for fullness, it was unlike any other ‘fake’ Christmas tree I’d seen before.
Each section of the tree was neatly tied up with red ribbon to protect the delicate branches during transportation and Balsam Hill even provided us with a storage bag and two pairs of protective gloves to use whilst putting the tree together. I thought the gloves were a bit OTT…until I unpacked the tree!
The True Needle branches meant they were also rather prickly so the gloves were actually a very practical addition. I was also relieved to find that the tree came in just four parts and was incredibly simple to assemble. Between the kids and I, we managed to put it up within the hour.
As much as festive decor trends change every year and the cool frosted/Scandinavian look is very modern right now, I have a love affair for all things vintage and have never really strayed far from the classic reds, golds and greens when it comes to decorating our home and Christmas time.
The colours are timeless and always remind me of Hollywood Christmas movies. Glass baubles are my big indulgence and I have a small handful of beautiful treasures that I’ve collected over the years. Sadly, most of them got destroyed when our youngest cat scaled the tree and it toppled over, shattering my beloved baubles. Yes, I genuinely cried as I swept up the pieces off the floor…
Balsam Hall gave me a choice of baubles to adorn our tree and after hours (literally hours) of deliberation, I settled on the Christmas Cheer bauble set. This included one base set containing 35 decorations and a 12 piece enhancement kit.
When selecting these baubles online, I was so excited that I repeatedly showed Adam the same pictures over and over again until he asked me to stop. Bah humbug!
I got home from work to find that the parcel had arrived within a couple of days of placing the order and actually gasped when I opened the boxes of baubles.
They were absolutely exquisite and crafted to perfection. The intricate, hand-applied details made these baubles a real work of art; they wouldn’t look out of place in a luxury hotel lobby or boutique restaurant.
Thank you again Balsam Hill; you’ve made our Christmas extra magical. Now I just need to figure out how to cat proof the tree this year.