By now the tree is up, but let’s pretend for the rest of the article that it isn’t. So here’s what the tree looks like in it’s packaging. Interesting story here. I was helping a customer where I worked to her car and she had a couple of these things that she picked up at Family Dollar when they were clearing out their Christmas stuff post-Christmas. I mentioned wanting to get one and she just gave me this one, which saved me a trip. That was nice of her. As I recall the other box came with something other than candy canes as a tree decoration. I really haven’t seen any like this since so I really lucked out.

Over time I was able to find other decorations and even a tree skirt that fit this 2 footer. But now it’s time to set it up. The hard part is finding a place to put it in my small space, and currently this is the best spot, with R2-D2 to protect it. So let’s get it out of the box already.

Looks like I left it in the box too long. Actually, this is one of those artificial tree where you can pose the branches any way you choose. I like that, it makes the tree look a little different from year to year. Not that I would remember if I had it the same since it is only up for a month a year.

I edited the picture the best I could.

The lights that came with the tree I put in one of the snack containers I mentioned in last week’s article. They’re pretty good lights, but a couple of them are burnt out and I keep forgetting to get replacement bulbs. Hopefully on my next Christmas trip or regular shopping expedition I’ll pick them up. They’re a bit harder to find than the ones for your average tree. Not too many people have 2 foot trees. This also made finding decorations difficult.

Artoo does not approve of my work.

I also wouldn’t mind finding some new lights. This set is one string but it’s designed in a way that you have to find the center light and then wrap the two ends around the tree. I can never get it to sit right to my satisfaction and whether that’s a design flaw or a me flaw I couldn’t really say. (Lord knows I have plenty of flaws.) Also, none of them are blinkers and I like having a few blinkers along with some steady lights. I don’t even know if blinkers are produced at this size, but I at least want some lights that are easier to set up.

These lights don’t have an off switch so if you get one I recommend a plug switch. You can find them pretty much anywhere they sell extension cords or power strips. If you have more than one light you probably have them set in one power strip or you may have that button that you plug it into and step on to turn the tree off without having to bend down. For my little tree this is all I need so I don’t have to keep plugging and unplugging the tree every night. Just flip the switch and pleasant dreams.

"That's looking better, kid."

The bow came with the tree and hides the fact that the top is designed to wrap around the topper, or at least that’s what it looks like to me. The topper I picked up at a store and while I was hoping for a star I settled for this kind, which also came in silver coloring. (Not actual silver and that’s not real gold.) However, the garland I picked up in silver and I thought gold would look better on top of the tree so I went with that. It’s actually set on a spring that goes on top of the tree and then a long piece goes around the topper. That keeps it in place and hides most of the spring which makes it look nice.

I didn’t even know they made skirts for a tree this small. The first year I set it up (a year after I got it) all I could find was one for a 5 foot tree, but the next year I found this one. The camera doesn’t pick up the pattern on it which looks real nice. You may not think it needs one since it’s artificial and doesn’t lose a lot of needles, but it covers the stand and just makes it look nice. Plus it’s easier to set my gifts.

I already wrapped the gifts for my action figures.

Actually, I would like to set up the tree where I can have my action figures or Transformers around it for the scene. I also want to find a little manger and maybe a train (although I don’t have room to set one up in this spot), which would probably be the same origin as these gifts–decorations for a larger tree. I picked these up in one of those crafts stores and just cut the strings off. They make a nice bonus decoration for the little tree, but I don’t think there’s anything inside them.

The rest of my decorations I keep in regular storage boxes like this one or one slightly larger. Again, not as many people have these little trees so you may have to hunt through the Christmas decoration section to find them. Mine I found at Big Lots and K-Mart. Some are little wooden things with bits of sparkle paint and others are these little star-like thingies. Different types of decorations are just as important as different depictions unless your really into uniformity. Me, I’m more of an artistic type and like to break up the look a bit. I also used the candy canes that came with the tree, but I only use a few since with all the other decorations I don’t have room for all of them.

Even our little R2 unit is ready for the holidays.

Overall I’m pleased with the end result. The tree is produced by a company called “Merry Brite” and if you find one at a decent cost it’s a good little tree. Don’t settle for what comes with it, though, because all you have are the candy canes (or whatever other variant they produced), the bow, and the lights. The other decorations you have to find yourself but they do make them. Also remember to check the length of the garland. I have to use two mini-strings to cover the tree. (Now I just have to learn how to wrap the darn things around it so it doesn’t look terrible.) A few extra touches and you can have a tree just as good as the big ones for a small space.

So that’s the tree up, now I have to set up my nativity. OK, that’s up, too, but we’ll forget that until next week. 🙂

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