The stand

Most people maintain a brief, seasonal relationship with their Christmas tree stand. Set it on the living room floor, clamp in the tree, then throw the stand down the basement stairs until the next year.

Not us. We enjoy our tree stand year-round.

One January years ago, we escorted the tree on its ceremonial walk-of-shame down the hallway, a needly path in its wake. And ultimately, we dumped the tree in the woods. But the tree stand never made it past the front porch. There it sat, gathering debris and rainwater.

I meant to store it properly but weeks and months passed. In the spring I hid an easter egg in its center and in the summer, I nudged it away from the screen door, as I sidled by with a tray of food for the grill. In the fall I didn’t think twice as I set our Halloween pumpkins by the tree-hugging holder. The next thing I knew, the days were short and chilly, the farm covered in frost and it was time to retrieve the stand again.

Christmas came and went and the tree stand returned to its porch perch, to await snow, spring flowers, summer storms, autumn leaves…

Each summer our friends called us out on our redneck-ness. But I didn’t care. When the holidays rolled around, we were ready to go.

Until a few days ago. It turned out that our fancy new porch was furnished only with fancy new furniture. With dismay I noticed the absence of our plastic mascot. Panicked, I pawed through the attic, cellar, christmas decoration boxes. No luck.

Then I stopped to think… think like a redneck. Just because we’d upgraded to a fancy porch with fancy furniture didn’t mean that we’d abandoned our old habits. So I hunted around until I found our trusty Christmas tree stand….

…in the ivy alongside the house. Under our satellite dish. Near the propane tank.

Classy.

In January, I promise that the stand will return to its rightful home.