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The Shooglenifty Tree
Our Christmas tree this year has… personality.
Our Christmas tree this year has… personality. It’s not quite a Charlie Brown tree, but it’s definitely not a farm-grown tree, either. I found it at the Marshfield General Store where about a dozen trees were leaning against the store’s front porch. It was not a display so much as it was a pile-up — as if someone chucked them out of the back of a pickup truck like bales of hay and left them where they landed.
I went in the store and asked the clerk behind the counter, “How much for the trees?” He told me, “Fifteen bucks.” Fifteen bucks - whatta deal! Last year our tree from down the road in Plainfield cost 42 bucks. I paid the man, found a tree that seemed nice, squeezed it into the back of the van, and headed home.
In the living room, I quickly saw why the tree was so inexpensive. It was wild and ungainly — nicely tall, but without much there, there. Its long branches swooped out in front of where I usually sit on the couch (I had to lean over to see the TV). I deduced that cutting a couple of feet off the bottom would remove the worst offenders. It worked. Now we like the tree a lot. Ample gaps between the branches offer habitat for the ornaments. Now, it’s a cheerily lit nature reserve for wee creatures!
Sue and I always put on music while decorating the tree. There’s something about how music puts one in just the right frame of mind for opening the ornament box. Twenty years of shared memories stir and awaken as we sift through the layers and liberate the little treasures from beneath crepe paper and bubble wrap. Each item offers a story as it’s lofted up to find its niche in the tree amongst the lights.
One of our favorite bands that we always play more of during the holidays is “Shooglenifty,” a six-piece Celtic/folk/rock band from Scotland. ‘Shoogle’ is a Scottish word for shake, agitate, move around, and ‘nifty’ means dextrous. Originally founded in 1990 with the iconic Angus Grant playing fiddle. After Angus passed away, the band reformed with the wonderful Eilidh Shaw on fiddle.
We just love these videos. I hope you will as well.
Happy Solstice everyone!