I love Christmas. Who doesn't? I love the Christmas tree, decorating the house with little tiny lights, lots of candles and poinsettas. I also love lighting the fireplace and filling the house with all the wonderful sounds and scents of Christmas. In an effort to help Mason and his companion still have some of the things that represent a homespun Christmas, we sent them Christmas in a box.
I shopped around for small pre-lit Christmas trees and decorations and found the best deals by far at my local Walmart. They have a large selection of trees in a variety of sizes. Some come pre-lit and some do not. The lights come in white/clear or multi-colored. I chose a four foot pre-lit tree for a mere $20 - tree stand included. It comes in a nice, neat tidy box all ready for me to wrap in brown paper and send on it's merry little way to Ohio. We then picked out ornaments, candy canes, a tree skirt, star and an extension cord because you just never know what they might need. We found a miniature nativity at Deseret Book for $10. We boxed up all the decorations in a Flat Rate box...have I mentioned lately how greatful I am for those? I paid a little more for postage than I normally would have. The Flat Rate box was $10.95 but I wanted the tree to get there on the same day so I paid quite a bit extra to get it there - $16. Last year I mailed everything prior to Thanksgiving so I wasn't so anxious to get it there quick. This year, I'm not exactly sure what happened. I don't even remember anything prior to Thanksgiving. Must be an age thing.
Having served a mission, I remember how hard it was to haul a lot of extra things around with you. Instruct your missionary to NOT take the tree with them on their next transfer. Just take it all down. Pack it neatly and store it in a closet in the apartment. The following year, the new missionaries will be so happy to have decorations that they can use to help bring the Christmas spirit into their homes.