More than anything else, I loved the tree and the rituals associated with it.
In my family, we always got a fresh, live tree whenever we could, one week before christmas (this is actually my mother's birthday, and as she came from avery large family who couldn't always afford a gift so soon to the holiday the tree was always her 'birthday tree'). During the week before christmas, our house was always filled with the smell of pine needles and baking cookies.
In Danish, merry Christmas is "god yule".
In Danish tradition, the tree is hung with crystal, and little animals woven from straw, and candles. The danes celebrate on christmas eve, when the snow covers everything and the nights are long and dark. After the evening feast, they go to the tree and light the candles hanging from the green branches. Then, in the firey gloom, families join hands and dance around the tree, singing songs of joy and celebration.
Even before I came to grasp any real understanding of my attraction to the occult (and even if it sounds awfully pretentious for me to say it like that), christmas - particularly the tree - always held a special magic for me. Regardless of what it is called, Christmas, winter/summer solstice, or yule, it is precious to me even now.
Today I set up my little plastic christmas tree, a few days late, albeit. I don't have many decorations, but I made do with what was on hand. I've loaded photos for you all to see, if you'd like. :)