Putting up a Christmas tree at the beginning of the season is a rite of passage for families. It involves all kinds of excitement from hauling out the taped-up boxes full of tree and trimmings and fairy lights to scattering their contents evenly over the dining room floor.
With children, the process is infinitely more difficult and amusing. Especially if you’re just a spectator.
Watching my wife direct operation Christmas tree this evening with our boys was equal parts funny and heartwarming. The decorations seemed to produce an enzyme in the boys that blocked out the sound of their mother’s voice. As much as her intention was to create the perfect tree this year – their intention was to clump the silver balls into one small geographical area on the tree and then put the star on top (or at least as high as they could reach).
The simple truth is that boys and men alike think differently to women and the sooner mothers figure that out – the easier their lot in life will be.
Remember moms, if you’re going to involve your little guys in this process you have to think like a boy.
I think there was a meeting of minds on the project of sorts though where the boys seemed to do exactly as they pleased for about an hour and my wife edited their work in much the same way that one would edit their drawings – that is to say make sure that the stick figures all have arms and legs…and no boogers.
Next year the process could be simplified in three easy steps and the children would still take away from it exactly what they did this year. Step one, put up the tree without decorations. Step two, drape some lights on it and make the room dark. Step three, turn on the lights.
Tick. Tree trimming done.