the Christmas Trees
There are many theories as to why fir trees fill our houses at Christmastime. One of them dates back to the Celts, who represented every month of the year with a tree, and fir trees were for the month of December.
Later, the Christians adopted this idea to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Another legend has it that during a journey to Germany, Saint Boniface cut down an oak tree that the pagans venerated and a fir spontaneously grew in its place. It was viewed as the likeness of God, and many people believed that this perennial tree symbolised the Creator’s eternal love.
But regardless of the explanation for
why we use firs as our Christmas trees,
in Spain this practice began when the
Duke of Sesto decorated his palace on Madrid’s
Paseo del Prado with a Christmas fir tree.
One hundred and fifty-one years later, we in Spain join people all over the world in decorating our own Christmas tree at home.
Decorating the tree with ornaments dates back to the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in Europe. An apple, which used to crown the trees in reference to the tree of paradise, was replaced with the star that guided the Wise Men to the manger in Bethlehem, and today this spherical piece is remembered with the traditional Christmas ornaments. The bows represent family unity and the lights symbolise God.
At Cristine Bedfor, we suggest decorating your tree as sustainably as possible, always trying to respect the environment and adhere to the three R’s: reduce, reuse and recycle.
Decorate your Christmas tree in a sustainable way
1. The tree should be natural, planted (not cut down), and when Christmas is over, you can replant it in your garden (but make sure it’s a local species and will survive). If not, get in touch with your town hall, as they always have a tree collection and relocation service.
2. Use LED lights. Trees used to be decorated with walnut shells filled with oil that they lit, or with candles, but we don’t recommend this option. Let’s give the firefighters a break around the holidays!
3. Reuse old objects, mementos or photographs to decorate your tree and breathe new life into these ‘forgotten’ objects which have meant so much in our lives.
4. We suggest searching for old remnants, painting and cutting out bows from recycled materials, unused string you can paint, garlands made of popcorn, nuts, wildflowers or pasta.
5. Nestle eucalyptus boughs in the Christmas tree branches to enjoy this species’ characteristic scent.
It is important to create a unified colour scheme and ensure that the decorations all make sense. But the most important thing of all is to enjoy this time with your loved ones from the very start.
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