I’d like to think the idea came to me rather brilliantly. That may or may not be true, but to be quite fair, the timing wasn’t particularly brilliant at all. The idea itself, however, may or may not be brilliant, as I have yet to try it out, but I’d like to think it is.
I might as well start at the beginning. I was putting the last few ornaments on the Christmas tree so that we could put the boxes back in the basement. It occurred to me that a Christmas tree’s appearance says a lot about a family. After coming to this conclusion, I turned to stare at ours.
I have to say that it was mostly my fault. I’d done a good portion of the decorating, and apparently I’m not particularly adept at spacing ornaments out properly. In addition, it may be my fault that half of our tree looks like a Hallmark advertisement. Okay, so it’s totally my fault. I am the one who decided to hang Finding Nemo, Star Wars, The Wizard of Oz, and Harry Potter ornaments on the tree, not to mention what could very possibly be every Winnie-the-Pooh ornament known to mankind. There are also photographs and a couple of the traditional glass balls, but even these are outnumbered by Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. I may have had a bit of an obsession as a child, and therefore we now have ornaments of Rudolph sitting, standing, and flying in ceramic, plastic, and metal. Clearly, I still have this obsession, because I proceeded to hang all of them. This happens every year.
At any rate, I was sifting through a large box of ornaments, passing over gingerbread men, angels, and Santa Claus decorations in search of a wooden pig when it came to me. Actually, the thought hit me at the exact second I was setting aside a purple-and-silver icicle ornament in order to get at a plastic-and-metal muffin the size of a softball. (It now hangs between It’s a Small World and a plastic cherry Lifesaver.) What if we decided to decorate using tea?
After all, the Christmas tree has representations from many parts of my life – books, cats, photographs – but there’s nothing on it that represents my passion for tea. My original thought was to hang tea bags on the branches, but that was nixed for obvious reasons. They would smell nice, but beyond that it didn’t really sound like a good idea.
Then I had another idea – what about glass (or plastic) spheres filled with loose-leaf tea? I know that these empty ornaments can be purchased at craft stores, and if I could find a tea that smelled strong enough, it would be both beautiful and nice smelling. Conceivably, an entire tree could be decorated with these ornaments, in the many colors and shapes of loose-leaf tea. And the best part? After Christmas was over, the leaves could still be used.
I haven’t attempted it yet, but I think it would be fun to do. Perhaps not this year, though. I think there are still a couple of Rudolph ornaments I need space for.