Song-a-day Holiday: Day 5 – O Tannenbaum
Happy December 5th,
Are you feeling the holiday spirit yet? I am starting to get there. Today we went to cut down our Christmas tree. Picking out our tree is something I’ve looked forward to every year for as long as I can remember. Living in Florida we often got our trees from a grocery store parking lot, but we always made a night out of it, going from place to place and looking at tons of trees until we found the right one (at the right price). It wasn’t until I was older that Susie and I began cutting down our own trees, a tradition I like even better.
This afternoon we headed out to a local tree farm with Jackson in tow, all of us bundled up against the cold, though it wasn’t snowy. We walked quite a way before we found the right one. Then I set to work cutting it down, feeling oh so butch. It wasn’t until the tree was on the ground that Jackson took a real interest in what was happening. Up until that point, he’d mostly been people watching. He took great pride in “helping” us carry it back to the car. He also “helped” get it in to the stand, even breaking out his toy screwdriver to adjust the braces. He then crawled around under the lowest branches calling it his “Kiss-mas tunnel.” It’s fun to see him getting excited about the trappings of the holiday even if he doesn’t fully understand them yet.
Tomorrow we’ll have friends over to decorate (they are Jewish and join in on some of our holidays. We’ll return the favor by kicking off Hanukkah at their house on Friday). Jackson will get to hang ornaments and help string popcorn. We’ll make crepes for dinner and sip hot chocolate and joke about Harold Angel, fulfilling so many more of our family traditions.
At some point I will take one more tradition from childhood and sing my own very off-key rendition of “O Tannenbaum.” I won’t be able to sing the whole thing in German the way my grandmother would when her grandkids gathered around her tree, but I will try, and then I will blend into the English version, at which point Susie will join me. Then later in this month when I see Grandma I’ll have her teach it to me again, a whole 12 months before I’ll have the opportunity to sing it again 🙂 Still, it’s not so much the words that count so much as the memories that go with them.
So here, for you to enjoy tonight I will share “O Tannenbaum,” first in German, then in English, neither of which, thankfully, were sung by me:)