Appalachia Christmas

When do you take your Christmas Tree down?

When should you take the christmas tree down
How long do you leave your Christmas tree up? I’m usually in a hurry to take mine down. We almost always put it up the weekend after Thanksgiving and by the time Christmas is over I’m more than ready to have my house back to normal. Not to mention I’m tired of sweeping up fallen needles. We use a live tree so the needles are always shedding by the time the big day arrives.

The girls and I helped Granny take her tree down today. But since it was a small table top tree it didn’t take no time.

Frank C. Brown has this advice for taking down your tree:

  • take Christmas decorations down before the month is out or misfortune will come to the house
  • never leave the Christmas tree up over New Years or it will bring bad luck
  • it is bad luck to take Christmas decorations down before Old Christmas (Jan 6) or to leave them up afterwards
  • Christmas decorations left hanging after 12th night (old Christmas) bring bad luck

I’ve not been in the mood to take down my decorations this year. As I walk through the house I think “Oh what’s the big hurry I’ve got as long as I want to take.”



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  • Reply
    David Templeton
    December 28, 2017 at 7:07 pm

    I sure enjoyed Nancy Schmidt’s comments. Back in our family days, when the seven of us kids and Mom and Dad celebrated Christmas we always had a cedar tree from the field, We still call those cedar trees growing out in the field and countryside “Christmas trees”. It’s a good feeling to know that folks still take those trees in for Christmas trees. Her notes on Christmas season tradition was good reading. Thank you, Nancy … Happy New Year!

  • Reply
    June Jolley
    December 28, 2017 at 3:25 pm

    Well, seeing as how I never got it put up…………….

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    During my childhood, our family usually put up the tree within a week of Thanksgiving and took it down by New Years. Both events were family activities accompanied by treats and hot cocoa or hot spice tea with Christmas carols played during set up. My husband’s father waited until Christmas Eve because he could usually get one for free as the Christmas tree lots closed down then he decorated the tree himself. The tree went out within the following week and, unfortunately a lot of their ornaments went with it because he was always in a hurry to get it out. You’d think that would take care of the needle drop problem but trees which have sat in the lot that long are usually shedding quite a bit.
    As we established out family traditions, purchasing the tree soon after Thanksgiving and letting my husband choose the tree prevented squabbles among the children since we usually shopped on husbands birthday so he chose the tree. We’ve been very loosey goosey about taking the tree down, especially since the kids have families of their own and we never know when (or if) we will be together as plans are in a constant state of flux!!
    This year we had a lovely Thanksgiving with all the kids and their families and some other extended family here; the kids decided to take their Dad out to buy a tree at a tree farm as we did when they were children – a delightful day. Then, several family emergencies happened and the tree sat in the shade in the front of the house with husband religiously watering in and spraying it down. It finally came in the house about a week before Christmas, Christmas eve as string of lights went on, more “distractions” and now part of the kids and the extended family are planning to join us after New Years for gift exchange – add a couple more health and house emergencies and I’ve decided that this year, as whoever shows up opens their gifts they are going to put the bows and ribbons on the tree and then we will take the group picture in front of that. There’s been lots of good this holiday season but this is one holiday season that I’m ready to say good-bye too – – just don’t know exactly when that will be!

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    December 28, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    Oh, I forgot something. The neighbor lady has some of those moving lights (I call them tacky lights) shining on the front of her house. One of them is out of place and projects onto the end of my house. That’s the sum total of my outside decorations. She’ll probably take them up some time in April after the old man who mows for her runs over them.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    December 28, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    We didn’t put up a tree. My wife was not able and I was not willing. Christmas moved to my daughter’s house this year, TEE-HEE! So, other than a few Christmas cookie jars and candy dishes there is nothing to put away.
    Guess how much candy and sweets I have eaten so far this Christmas season. None, zero, O, nought, nothing, nil, zilch, nada. Ain’t you proud of me!

  • Reply
    Nancy Schmidt
    December 28, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    We cut a pasture cedar and have it up late to middle Dec. …… by celebrating the “12 Days of Christmas” we then take it down after Jan 6. (We try to keep in mind that Advent is for preparing ones heart, and house, not yet for celebration.).
    The bad luck part of the tradition comes from way back in England. Check out Robert Herricks poem about “the End of Christmas”. In it is recalled that the very end of the whole Christmas season is on February 2, Candlemas. ( in the USA we have morphed this day into Groundhog Day somehow,). I always check around the house that day, usually finding a sprig or 2 of something prickly, and usually hooks stuck in a rug , maybe a tin with something quite stale in it.
    Our Christmas is somewhat strung out through the early winter but we love it so, and it’s only once a year. Nancy Schmidt

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    I’m kinda like Miss Cindy, I don’t put up a tree anymore either, since my girls moved out and went to College and later married. But I well remember how it use to be.
    My neighbor, a catholic from Michigan, use to decorate and leave it up thru January. Both him and his wife are dead now, but I miss Slim an awful lot. They use to live in the Thumb part of Michigan. He had 10 girls and a dud. Perhaps that’s why he stayed at my shop alot.
    At his Viewing, I met most of his daughters and the boy, and the older girls said “Dad thought
    a lot of you, he mentioned you often.” …Ken

  • Reply
    David Templeton
    December 28, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    We decorate and light our Christmas tree on Christmas Eve and it we never take it down until Twelfth Night has ended.

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    December 28, 2017 at 11:39 am

    After New Years dsy

  • Reply
    Jane Bolden
    December 28, 2017 at 11:00 am

    My grandmother who was born in 1899 said it should come down before New Year’s day. Bad luck to leave it up after New Year’s eve.
    Lawrenceville, Ga.

  • Reply
    wanda Devers
    December 28, 2017 at 10:29 am

    Started yesterday.

  • Reply
    D Thomas-Wilton
    December 28, 2017 at 10:10 am

    My family always decorated the tree on Christmas eve. It comes down on twelveth night.

  • Reply
    H Lee Mears
    December 28, 2017 at 10:04 am

    I haven’t put up a tree in 18 years but when I did, we took it down Christmas Day after the dinner/supper, which one we had. . IT was OVER and I wanted rid of it all and everyone was usually still around to pack and take to basement or attic. The only year I left it up was for a Jr Woman’s Club New Years party on NYeve and we lost whole house to fire on Jan 6th. Even my Buick went up, freezer of food to feed family of five and I got out with no shoes on , no purse and no cat. He finially ran out door hour later!! The windows even melted. It was a terrible time since temp was 8* and it started snowing the next day and boys school was out for 9 weeks. Blizzard snow!…. But we made it!
    I had on pajamas, panties, boys had pjs ,one boxers, husband had pants, tshirts shoes, no socks. He did get his company car out but not mine, of course. So many family treasures, baby books w/ teeth & hair lost, broke me. All Grandfathers RR things & thousand papers /Bibles for history and photographs. Heart break.
    I say, take it down early . Wasting elctricity too if you don’t.

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 10:03 am

    I keep my tree up through Epiphany, Jan. 6. It’s an artificial tree, but it sheds when I set it up and when I take it apart. I usually put mine up the second weekend in December. I just enjoy sitting on the love seat and looking at it lit up, and all the decorations. I have three generations of decorations. Two were on my mama’s tree when she was a child, some are from the tree when I was a child, some are from my daughters’ childhood, and others I have collected since I was married almost 40 years ago. Some are ones my daughters made in school, and some my youngest daughter made as an adult. Everything means something.

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 10:00 am

    Have to come down before New Years or bad luck for sure. It will be difficult to improve on Blind Pig, but I’m sure you have some well thought out enhancements.

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 9:39 am

    I actually know folks who cover their artificial tree in plastic and haul away up stairs for the next year, if we still had one that’s what I’d do, but most enjoy the whole gathering around the tree to decorate, we’re more into enjoying everyone else’s tree, leads to more time for others things more important, which equals less stress and that’s what we’re all about these days.

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 9:16 am

    My tree lights seldom ever get turned on after Christmas Day. It’s too cold to be dragging all the big stuff out to the garage, but I’m working on getting the totes full of collectible and sentimental decorations carried upstairs. I love putting the tree up and hate the job of taking it down.
    Don’t make us wait too long to hear about the changes you are working on!

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    December 28, 2017 at 9:14 am

    Ours is already down as of Tuesday. It isn’t a tradition, just that my wife is ready for clearing away. We do have a white pine wreath on the front door that is easy to forget about. Since I made it guess I’ll take it down.
    Only three more days in 2017. Gone so fast.

  • Reply
    Ed Karshner
    December 28, 2017 at 9:10 am

    We leave our tree up through Old Christmas. My great uncle told me that if I’m going really “old ways” I can leave it up until Old Christmas but it has to be down by January 13. January 12 is Old New Years. He said my Great Grand Parents used the week between Old Christmas and Old New Years to take apart the old year.
    We are going to do that this year.
    I’m excited to see what you have in store for Blind Pig!

  • Reply
    December 28, 2017 at 8:25 am

    We always leave out tree up until Old Christmas. Looking forward to find out what you have in store for the Blind Pig!

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    December 28, 2017 at 7:58 am

    Tip, I don’t put up a tree, I just come to your house and enjoy all your lovely decorations with absolutely no effort on my part!

  • Reply
    Eleanor Loos. Columbia Station OH
    December 28, 2017 at 7:53 am

    The tree in my oldest son and daughter-in-law’s home will come down today.   Mine will wait a week or so.  I have  only two tiny two-footers, but I so enjoy the lights that they’ll remain for a bit.  Christmas is a beautiful season, and you, Tipper, contribute to the beauty each day.

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