To tree or not to tree?

It’s the holiday season and that question of parents with small children has come about again this year.

“To tree or not to tree?” is the question for the holiday season.

You might ask why I have trepidation about having a holiday tree. You might be calling me the “Biggest Grinch west of the Mississippi.” You might think I’m just too lazy to put up a tree and all of the decorations.

I guess before all these suspicions creep in let me explain. There is a 22-month-old in my household that would love to get his hands on it.

Last year, he was a little more busy and too young to understand orders to stay away from things. That’s why we went with the smaller tree that was higher up in the living room. It’s a trick many parents use when they feel a full-sized tree at ground level won’t survive the holidays.

After all, the little guy was dubbed the “Duke of Destruction” in a column I wrote about him in the past.

Well, with age he has gotten less destructive and is more willing to take orders – two things in favor of bringing a full tree back. I’m pretty sure that he wouldn’t topple it over this year if we told him to stay away. That’s not to say he would totally stay away from it – as I’m sure curiosity would get the best of him. With all the lights and sparkling things on a tree you can’t blame him for at least investigating.

It’s a fine line parents have to balance – between the safety of a tree and the wish to enjoy the holidays to the fullest.

I think we are going to choose “to tree” this year, though that decision will have to be made by the boss in the family. And that boss is sure not me.

UPDATE: The boss said we can have a full-sized tree though the breakable ornaments will be put near the top of the tree to keep them safe from small, prying hands.

Hooray, Christmas in all of its tradition will come to my house after all. I can’t wait to start turning some Christmas records as we decorate that tree as a family. That will have to wait until after Thanksgiving though, no rush on it just yet.

Reporter Andrew Potter is a Tuesday columnist for the Times-Republican. The views expressed in this column are personal views of the writer and don’t necessarily reflect the views of the T-R. Contact Andrew Potter at 641-753-6611 or