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A Christmas (Tree) Story

Christmas trees occupy a fascinating and emotion-filled square in the quilt of American culture. There are very few holiday symbols that can so easily fill the gap between the pageantry of something like the National Christmas Tree lighting at the White House and the humble expression of celebration represented by a simple “Charlie Brown” tree. The strange and beautiful thing is that both trees represent the same ideas – love, peace on Earth and goodwill toward all. Of course, it was not always that way and <a title="Christmas Trees" href="http://www.atgstores.com/christmas-trees_2330.html" target="_blank">Christmas trees</a> had a rough time taking root (ahem!) as an American custom when it was imported by the Germans in the mid-19th century. Although historical documentation traces Christmas trees – that is, lighted trees erected during the holiday season – back to the 16th century (lighted then by candles), “modern” Americans didn’t find them all that Christmas-y. It was only until fashion-conscious East Coast Americans got word that British royalty was celebrating Christmas with decorated trees that it started to catch on, and by the beginning of the 20th century Americans were trading traditional décor like fruit and nuts for things like popcorn, berries and glass orbs. Then, the lights came on. There was no turning back once the advent of electricity brought the development of <a title="String Lighting" href="http://www.atgstores.com/string-lights-christmas-lights_2717.html?&amp;option0=optionA=263330|18820~Valu" target="_blank">string lighting</a> and the precursor to what we all now picture when we think of a Christmas tree. It’s fun to imagine some old crotchety Ebenezer ranting about all the silly Christmas hoopla, then seeing a tree plugged in for the first time and sheepishly saying, “So … where can I pick up one of those doohickeys, anyway?” Interestingly, the Christmas tree has now evolved into a type of symbol that reminds us of what we love most. The <a title="Ornaments" href="http://www.atgstores.com/christmas-ornaments-christmas-ornaments-and-accessories-hom_2331_oa0205082.html?linkloc=catheader&amp;gpid=795187" target="_blank">ornaments</a> we use, whether to achieve a certain look or to celebrate our histories and hopes, are hung with ceremony as a way to share something personal with those around us – and the tree carries the message. Happy Holidays from <a title="ATG Stores Homepage" href="http://www.atgstores.com/" target="_blank">ATGStores.com</a>, and may all your wishes for the New Year come true.
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