We always have a tree fresh-cut for us, and engage willing friends, neighbors, and family members to get it inside and stabilized. We use a 3-pulley system to hoist it into a 7-gallon bucket and position it straight.
Little tree stands will never do! We have 3,100 lights on it, but some failed after it was fully decorated. Decorating it takes several days and many trips up and down the ladder. It is a 25-foot walk around the tree. De-decorating it also takes many days, as you might imagine. When it has been fully “undressed” we clip all the branches off into little pieces to use as mulch in flowerbeds in the spring. Finally, the main trunk exits the house as a nice (but heavy) “stalk.” Then, we’ll do it all over again next year! Keeps us young for sure.
Submitted by Sharon Johnson and Donald Koop