“It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…”
So, goes a lyric of a popular Christmas carol goes. But with the last day of Christmas last week it’s now beginning to look a lot like the new year is as the old!
Well, let’s look back quickly to this merry Christmas season just passed through pictures. The look of Christmas? Well, the most popular signs are jolly old Saint Nicholas/Nick (Santa Claus), gift shoppers filling parking lots & lines to the cash register, year-end Christmas parties, and, probably the most visible sign of the many signs & traditions of Christmas…Christmas Trees! Even the birth of the baby Jesus of the Christian faith is not seen or heard as often as the aforementioned signs! (“Christmas? Jesus Who/What??”)
It certainly looks like we dress the part in the Pasadena area! Christmas is after all a national holiday in the USA so it should kinda feel like it! You can find official Christmas Trees in the White House and the USA Capitol building in Washington DC as well as City Hall here in Pasadena. The United States’ National Christmas Tree has been lit each year since 1923 on the South Lawn of the White House.
We see Christmas Trees spring up in/on residences, churches, at commercial, as well as government, & public spaces. When you’re purchasing/renting a residential or commercial and plan to put up a Christmas Tree do you consider how your tree will look in it? It’s a very important consideration for some but usually not given thought to at the time!
But, let’s stick with the basics. If you’re a native of North or Latin American countries, you probably know about Christmas. Those from countries whose cultural/religious foundations are chiefly something other than Christianity may be less familiar with what I’m saying! For them I’ll just briefly say this: Christmas is the day most Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ the founder of Christianity – some others recognize Christmas in January. However, December 25th is NOT the birthdate of Jesus Christ! Scholars simply don’t know.
These times we live in…
Anyhows, lemme get back to the reason for this season: Christmas Trees! Why a tree, what does it represent, etc?
Very briefly. Trees becoming Christmas trees as we know them, representing Christmas and the birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem appear to be traced back to the Renaissance time of the 16th century. Early Germany, and perhaps German Protestant reformer Martin Luther himself, are usually credited for its origins. It become popular first with the Protestants from the Reformation, and then the Catholics some years after can’t resist the Protestant temptation and welcome the trees themselves!
Learn more about Christmas Tree history than I can say at these links:
Ok, enough of my small talk. Here’s a small sample of my photos from around town which show you what I’ve been talking about here:
The official Christmas Tree of the city of Pasadena CA in the rotunda of Pasadena City Hall. Mayor Terry Tornek, prior to the city Christmas tree lighting ceremony which draws hundreds annually, must be imitating me to take a turn as photographer of a couple of Christmas carolers.
The Christmas Tree of the new Walt Girdner Photo Studio & Gallery in the Pasadena Playhouse District
Christmas trees usually stand topped with an angel or a star symbolizing the Star of Bethlehem at the top.
The huge new Plaza Pasadena building @ 680 E. Colorado Blvd wasted no time in showing its Christmas spirit
The Bogaard Parlor in the Madison House, the World Headquarters of Pasadena Heritage
Christmas in the renovated, historic Hotel Constance.
Flower Pepper Gallery & King Taco in Old Town Pasadena. The Christmassy view from within the gallery out across the street to King Taco’ tree.
A behind the scene look through the window blinds at the Christmas Tree atop the Wrigley House/Tournament House on South Orange Grove Avenue, headquarters of the Tournament of Roses Association
The unique French Macaron Christmas Tree of Euro Pane Bakery & Café! BTW, Euro Pane has some of the very best French Macarons around and at a hard to beat low price. They’ve been featured on the local KCBS news, and name The Best by LA Weekly a couple years ago.
1st United Methodist Church of Pasadena
One of the very first and oldest churches in Pasadena. This is it’s 3rd location in the city since the 19th century.
Just a small sample of the Christmas Trees in Pasadena. So, if you display a tree think about how it will look in your new home. For now, Christmas season is over. And what’s the look of Christmas now passed? Christmas Trees, of course…stripped naked, tossed dishonorably onto the streets and into our alleys. Considered now rubbish to be picked up as trash or for mulch. Well, it’s beginning to look like the new year is as the old. One day displayed on a pedestal, the next tossed aside as trash. I guess it’s just wait ‘til next Christmas or next year!
Have a Happy New Year, and, Stay Thirsty My Friends!