What does it mean? It’s exciting. It’s enticing. It’s smart. It’s forward-thinking. It’s loving. It’s caring. It’s sensitive. It’s beautiful. Preservation is the best. It’s everything, and cares about everyone and the built environment. Share your love of preservation. What would you say?
The end of 2013 and the beginning of 2014 swiftly approaches. A new year brings a fresh start, a clean slate, and good reasons for taking on new challenges. We savor the good, reflect on the less-than-good, and do our best to bring our best selves into the new year. I love a new year.
What are your thoughts on 2013, or your resolutions for 2014? Wishing you the happiest, brightest, and healthiest new year.
Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you have time to relax, unplug, enjoy good company, and spend time around a beautiful Christmas tree. If you’re looking for some holiday entertainment, check out a few Christmas links.
The original 1966 How the Grinch Stole Christmas (watch the entire film for free).
The most recent dialect quiz from The New York Times. (Good family fun, avoiding politics and religion.)
A photo of the first (1931) Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. (Have you been to Rockefeller Center?)
An O’Shea family Christmas tree (with my sister Sarah for scale, before we decorate).
Speaking of trees, did you catch the post on Christmas Tree sale typology?
A delicious cookie recipe: candy cane twists. (Always a favorite.)
Eggnog news story and recipe. (Yum!)
Past Preservation in Pink posts about Christmas.(Shopping to trees, carols, decorations, and more.)
Merry Christmas to you and yours. Enjoy the holiday.
Five winters in, and this is my first Vermont ice storm. So far, most people seem to be spared. Almost one inch of ice blankets northern Vermont today, resulting from an ice storm that moved across the region over the weekend. Some are without power. Some are covered in ice. Lucky ones have snow. And some just have rain. The weather is crazy. On Saturday afternoon, the temperatures in Burlington and Montpelier (only 38 miles apart via I-89) was incredibly different – see below.
Freezing rain continued to fall off and on Saturday and Saturday night, into Sunday morning. Burlington and the rest of northern Vermont was one sheet of ice, especially my street, driveway, and front steps. Here are some photos from the ice weekend.
This week’s round of posting will be Christmas-y. Hope you and yours have fun days planned, safe travels, a warm house and no ice!
Preservationists discuss and observe how space is used in communities, from parks to historic buildings to infill development or more recently, pop up spaces such as parklets and the food truck phenomenon. Use of available space varies by season. Following Thanksgiving, space in and out stores displays and sells Christmas décor, including trees. (Okay, corporate America begins peddling Christmas paraphernalia in September.) Christmas tree sales are common sights this time of year, but are not noticeable for the rest of the year.
Some of my favorite Christmas memories are searching for the perfect Christmas tree with my parents and sisters. Inevitably, it took hours. It was cold. And we always chose a tree that was too big for the minivan and too tall for our 12’ high ceiling in the living room. And, of course, the tree always had some strange shape to it. But with enough ornaments and lights, the tree looked perfect in the end. Most years we cut down a tree at a tree farm, except for off years when trees were sparse and too expensive. Then we’d head to the local garden center and wander around the lot of trees there, standing them up to get opinions and compare and contrast our options.
Where do you buy your tree? Do you enjoy trekking through the woods or do you prefer choosing a tree that is already cut? There are many options if you’re looking for a live Christmas tree. Christmas trees are sold everywhere. Find them at the corner gas station, in the town green, outside churches and schools, outside retail stores, on front lawns, at farmers’ markets, on a farm, in a store, and more.
Christmas sales are operations of seasonal business. Trees are sold in seasonal conversion of flexible space. These spaces come in varying styles and subsets. These are seasonal conversions of flexible space. I offer this typology for your consideration as you are out and about this holiday season.
Type One: Retail Stores
Retail stores selling trees are easy to find. Convenience stores, local hardware stores, garden centers, and big box stores are most likely to sell trees. The format will vary, depending on the subtype.
- Subtype A: Quick & Convenient. Trees will be lined up against the building, with a sign advertising the trees for sale. Choose your tree and pay inside. This would be good if you’re in a hurry.
- Subtype B: Tree Shopping. This type is affiliated with retail stores, from your local garden center to the big box store. With this type, the trees are usually sold within an enclosed area and there are more trees available than Subtype A. You enter through the store and pay inside. You can choose a tree quickly or browse amongst the aisles of trees.
Type Two: Tree Lots
Tree lots are converted spaces, more specifically spaces that do not serve any retail purpose during the remainder of the year. These spaces are simply constructed.
- Subtype A: Tree farmstand. This type can be thought of as a Christmas tree farmstand. A farmer could have trees leaning on wood supports with a sign advertising trees for sale. These trees are locally grown and harvested.
- Subtype B: Streetside tree lot. Type B is space converted in an open lot or open space on a lot, other than a residential property. The lot might be the gas station down the road or the church parking lot. Trees are supported by 2x4s nailed together to form bents, and are arranged in aisles. Work lights or Christmas light strands strung together light these lots, offering a festive glow to Christmas tree selection. Signs advertise trees for sale.
Type Three: Tree Farms
Tree farms, where you can cut-your-own tree or choose a precut tree, come in all shapes and sizes. Some farms spread for acres and acres, baling trees, serving hot chocolate, selling wreaths. Others are small operations without any frills.
- Subtype A: The no frills tree farm. This type offers tree hunters the opportunity to cut down their own trees, probably providing saws and assistance for tree loading, but nothing else. Signs will direct you to the tree farm. Drivers park on the grass and head into the tree farm. Trees are not previously cut.
- Subtype B: The Christmas extravagance farm. – This type of tree farm brings out all the bells and whistles: sleds, wagon rides, Santa Claus, Christmas gifts, a tree baler, hot chocolate & cider for sale. It’s a Christmas outing for the whole family.
Don’t be fooled, however. The size of the operation does not necessarily correspond to the price of the tree. Cost is reflected in geographic location and the availability of trees. What do you think? Do you have additional types or subtypes to add? Perhaps your area of the country is different for Christmas trees. I’d love to hear. Happy tree choosing!
Each year the Governor of Vermont hosts the lighting of the Christmas tree, which sits on the cascading granite steps of the Vermont State House. Everyone is invited to hear Christmas carols by schoolchildren, listen to a few words by the Governor and then enjoy the decorated interior of the State House with cookies and cider.
Montpelier was graced with a balmy 45 degree afternoon on December 5, 2013 and many Vermonters joined Governor Peter Shumlin. The carolers were children from Westminster, VT.
Thank you to Governor Shumlin for hosting the Christmas Tree Lighting. And to the staff (fellow preservationists) who decorated (David, Tracy, Thad and volunteers) – the State House looks even more beautiful this time of year. What a lovely way to begin the holiday season. Merry Christmas!
It’s Thanksgiving morning, and in the O’Shea household we’re busy watching the parade, drinking coffee, baking, talking, and hanging out, enjoying one of the few times per year when all of us are together. Morning sunshine in this small 1957 suburban ranch house – my childhood home – is always a loving place to be, no matter how old I am. No matter where you are – your own home or the home of friends and family, I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving Day. Take time today to give thanks and count your blessings.
Last week we began talking about home (here and here), and many readers left comments discussing how they think about home. Everyone’s thoughts were interesting to read, and collectively they show the importance of home and similarities between us all. Check tomorrow for more.
Happy Thanksgiving. Thank you, all, for being a part of the Preservation in Pink world and a part of my life. I’m grateful to live in such a wonderful time and to know, whether in “real life” or social media life, all of you.
Previous Thanksgiving Day posts:
To those who served the United States of America and our citizens, thank you from the bottom of my heart. We in America live the good lives we do because of your sacrifice and your patriotism.
If you see a Veteran today, thank him or her.