I love having a flocked Christmas tree.
In 1978, I went to several tree lots looking for just the right one. They were pretty but cost more than my budget could handle.
While attending an early Christmas party, my friend Faye said she had flocked her own tree. I thought, “if Faye can flock a tree, surely I can flock one.” After all, my mother told me my first sentence was “Me can do it meself!”
Faye told me that the K&B on the corner of Sherwood and Florida had kits with all the instructions.
The next day, I made a trip to the Kiwanis Christmas tree lot and found the perfect tree — 7 feet tall, the largest my barely 5-foot height could handle. Next stop was K&B to get those flocking kits. After checking the square footage of coverage for each kit, I had to buy three of them. Oh my, this was getting a little costly, but I had come this far — I might as well finish.
I got home, sawed about an inch off the bottom and carefully placed the tree into the metal stand, screwing it into position. Then the fun began!
Using the vacuum attachments along with the flocking kit, the tree was quickly covered with “snow.”
Giving the tree time for the flocking to dry and “settle” seemed to take forever. Finally, time to get the tree into the house.
Lights in place, it was time for the ornaments. As I opened each box, memories came flooding over me. Here were the ornaments bought for our first tree. Out of the original 12, only nine were left. Those glass balls had been too fragile for little ones’ hands. Each box held ornaments that had been added through the years, some bought and many handmade out of paper, felt and cut-out wooden shapes painted with love. It was strange how I could remember and almost see each child as they had shared their handiwork for our tree.
With all the ornaments in place, I thought it was the most beautiful tree yet! A tree filled with love.After adding water to the stand, the only thing left to do was to place the tree skirt around the bottom. As I crawled under the tree, I felt it move. Oh no, the tree was falling! I couldn’t let it hit the floor; all the glass balls would break and my beautiful flocking would fall off!
As I lay on the floor, I grabbed the trunk of the tree as far up as I could reach. I had to hold it up until help came. I knew it was about time for my youngest daughter to get home from school, so I tried to be calm and keep holding the trunk up as high as I possibly could.
Before too long, I heard Rise coming in the door calling for me. “Here I am,” I called. “Under the Christmas tree!”
She stood in the doorway laughing. Next, I heard her on the phone, “Daddy, you have to come home. The Christmas tree fell on Momma and she can’t get out. No, I can’t help her, you know I’m too short for that.”
As she ran out the door she said, “Bette Ann and I are going bike riding; Daddy will be home in a minute.”
Toby was home before long, and, of course, he stood in the doorway laughing as my poor arm was about to give way.
The tree survived with very little damage — just a few broken balls — and I turned the side of the tree with missing flocking toward the wall.
The lesson that I learned was there are times when “me do it meself” doesn’t always work!
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