Christmas is right around the corner and everyone is gearing up to celebrate it with gusto. Gifts in bright packages, twinkling lights, singing carols and the smell of baking permeating the house are all things associated with the holiday. Amidst all this how can one forget the tall and standing icon without which any Christmas celebration is incomplete – The Christmas Tree.

The Evergreen trees have long been associated with life and immortality. They have been thought to have magical powers because of the very fact that they are green all the year round. So, unlike any other tree. Hence, they were also thought to keep away the evil spirits. A common belief is that when Christ was born in the peak of winter, at the dead of night, all trees miraculously shook their snow and grew new green shoots. Therefore, Christians use the Evergreen trees as a sign of eternal life with God.

The credit of starting the tradition of using a Christmas tree goes to Germany.  It is believed that one night a German preacher, Martin Luther, was walking through a forest. He looked up and saw stars shining through the branches of a tree. The sight was so beautiful that he went home and told his children that this sight reminded him of Jesus Christ who had left the shining beauty of the heaven to grace the Earth with his noble presence.

Many 19th century Americans were not comfortable with the idea of Christmas trees. This is mostly because these trees were pagan symbols which were not acceptable to Americans. The Pagans, to remind them of spring, used branches of the Evergreen trees to decorate their homes during the winter solstice. Sometime during the 1830s, the first Christmas tree arrived in Britain. They gained popularity when Prince Albert had a Christmas Tree set up in the Windsor Castle in 1841.

In the beginning, the Christmas trees were decorated with edible ornaments and candles. But today, it has become a glittering beauty, a sight to behold. Beautiful ornaments and lights in distinct colors bring out the best in the tree. The presents below are just icing on the cake.