It seems that quite a few of you want me to bring back the â€œdebatesâ€ â€“ so here you go! I love to hear your thoughts on those light topics that everyone gets really riled up aboutâ€¦ know what I mean? Like whether itâ€™s okay to toss dog poop bags in other peopleâ€™s trash cans or whether you should close the shower curtain or leave it open.
Can you believe itâ€™s almost the holidays? I am so excited! I love the holiday season.
Fun story about those sweatersâ€¦ We had a Ugly Christmas Sweater party to attend a few years ago, and I left my sweater-finding until the last minute, so I ended up buying those sweaters from Dillards for like, $45 each or something absurd. As a result, we *MUST* wear them every year to maximize our money (regardless of whether or not we have an Ugly Christmas Sweater party to attend). Also, I think that photo ended up on CNN or Buzzfeed last year. Hah.
Anyway â€“ so. My favorite part of Christmas is (by far) having a Christmas tree in the living room. Itâ€™s so cheery and beautiful.
I was raised in households that highly valued â€œrealâ€ trees â€“ my parents never, ever considered fake trees for their homes (I think fake trees now are probably MUCH nicer and more realistic than they were in the 1990s anyway). So I grew up thinking that fake trees were kind of weird. And I really loved the experience of going to pick out my tree and always thought it must be so sad to just â€œunpackâ€ it from a box.
But now that Iâ€™m an adultâ€¦
Dude, I hate. hate. hate the hassle that comes with real trees. Sure, itâ€™s fun to pick them out, but getting them on the car, through the door, and into the stand is a headache and a mess. I hate how the tree drops all these needles (because no matter how good I am about watering it, my tree always dies really, really fast). The worst part is taking all the decorations and lighting off (again, needles everywhere!) and dragging it to the curb (I end up with all these scratches on my arms and walls).
So this year, Kristien and I have been talking about getting a fake tree. Fake trees look SO real these days. Sure, itâ€™s not as exciting as a real tree butâ€¦ it sure seems easier. And less messy.
My calculations say that it would take 7 â€“ 9 Christmases for a tree to pay for itself. Thatâ€™s a long time! It would vary according to the price of real trees in your area and how nice of a fake tree you purchase.
What the heck are fake trees made out of? This site says PVC plastic, which can release lead and toxins into our homes and landfills (although most manufacturers say the trees are safe). Oh, and once we toss it, that tree will live in the landfill forever.
Fake trees are a bigger fire hazard than real ones (source).
A real Christmas tree is an American product; a fake tree is usually imported. About 100,000 people are employed by the growth and sales of Christmas trees (source).
Real trees are biodegradable and can be recycled. Right now, over 350 million Christmas trees are being grown in the USA. For every tree cut down, 1 â€“ 3 are planted (source). However, real trees are treated with pesticides, which can pollute local environments and watersheds (source).
Fake trees and real trees may have the same â€œcarbon footprint.â€ It depends on how long you use the fake tree â€“ the breakeven point to make a fake tree â€œgreenâ€ is 7 years.
So â€“ what do you think? Real tree or fake tree?
Other fun little controversies:
The Thermostat Wars (still happening in my house)
The Dog Poop Debate <â€” still my favorite, hah.