…Christmas time is near. The Jacaranda trees in Sydney seem to be blooming early this year, most probably due to the warmer weather we experienced in late spring. I love the purple hue of the flowers as they adorn the tree and then fall to the ground to form a plush velvet carpet. As that old australian carol says, the blooms usually coincide with the beginning of the christmas season. Like the Jacaranda, christmas has bloomed early in my house much to the disgust of my friends and family. I put the tree up last weekend when the husband was away as a surprise because he wanted a tree and I didn’t. Apparently I have broken some cardinal rule about christmas, “No trees before Dec 1st” Its bad luck? I would have much preferred to DIY some sticks in a jar with a few decorations, but he insisted on having a proper tree. I didn’t want one because taking down the tree is such an effort and they can be tricky to store. I recently discovered while baby sitting that one year olds like to pull on trees and eat the decorations (Thanks Chops). If you are putting a traditional tree up, make sure its stable and not going to topple if pulled on by small people. Place small decorations that could pose a choking hazard on high branches. Decorating on a budget is fine, (my entire tree with decorations cost less than $50) but tinsel is not okay, ever. If you are like me and you don’t want an actual tree, or if you need a kid friendly version, try some of these alternatives available for purchase or create your own masterpiece!