This is our first Christmas tree we've had - in this house or as a family. We decided to have a real, living tree for a few reasons. It was something we did in my family, when we were children. I remember seeing it get bigger each year :: a wonderful way to notice the changing of the cycles and the growing of our lives/selves. Also, we wanted something that could be special to care for, look after, tend to. Every day it is Ari's special job to remember to water the tree. We have to clear up the dropped needles and seedpods. And then, to have this wonderful real tree in our house feels immensely special for me. Growing up in the bush we didn't have trees inside our house so much (except bonsai trees), seeing as how we lived in a very outside-in house. Nature always came in, if we wanted it to or not. And now, while we have flowers and seedpods and sticks and things, we don't often have real trees growing in our house. Sometimes we may have an orchid plant - which in a way is like a growing flower arrangement.
We choose a Daintree pine (Gymnostoma australianum). It's so pretty, with such lovely shaped seedpods (almost like many-armed star-shaped atoms) and furry little 'flowers'. The tree is almost classic Christmas tree shape. It will grow healthily and happily in a pot.
Our decorations are simple, and all handmade. Steiner-style angels, and stitched felt stars. It is my wish / aim to make something new each year to add to the tree, or collect things that are special to us. Rather than just buying a heap of plastic decorations and throwing them at the tree. It's quite an understated look. Actually, I really like it. I think this year Ari was maybe a bit too young to assist so much, or he didn't want to, so mainly Sam and I did it. We tried some lights, but they didn't really match. We do have one 'not-handmade' decoration :: this lovely little one that came from my holiday traditions swap from Tonya. (She also made us a beautiful looking wreath, which we are waiting to receive from Australian Quarantine).