I went out this afternoon and cut a tree of my own for the first time since I was grown. I went for years without a tree at my place, and my parents (where I spent holidays) had an artificial one after my mother got allergic to them. I said I'd never have a tree that wasn't a cedar, so I couldn't buy one. When I bought a house in North Carolina, I had my first tree of my own: very small, and cut without permission from somebody's hedge of variegated pyracanthus, where a cedar wasn't going to last long. Then, when I moved back to Kentucky, one of my friends and I would go tree-poaching. We'd find a fence row with a lot of little cedars in it, and she'd drive slowly back and forth, and we'd decide on one, and I'd hop out with the pruners and nab it and throw it in the back seat. Then, after she died, I couldn't bear to go tree-poaching without her, so I haven't had one until this year. You can see even with my phone camera that it stood up to a lot of wind--I tried straightening it up in the bucket, but it wouldn't cooperate.