Six years ago, hubby and I packed all of our things and left Syracuse, NY. I arbitrarily chose the DC Metro area. We were both working in the theatre (he was acting and I did costumes). Both of us applied for apprenticeships/internships at DC area theatres.
Hubby was accepted as an acting apprentice at Round House Theatre. Now, as you know, apprentices and interns are not paid very well, if at all. Luckily he did receive a stipend, but probably would have made more money if he got a job flipping burgers. I was able to find employment at a soul-sucking insurance office.
Needless to say, we were quite broke. Cost of living here is much higher than Syracuse. But it was ok, right? Because it didn't snow 8 months out of the year. And the cultural melting pot didn't consist just of Polish, Italians, and some other European culture. (No kidding, someone told me that Syracuse as a melting pot due to those cultures. I'm knocking Europeans, but it's only one continent.) Oh, and since we were newlyweds, so we had love. Cute right? We couldn't afford much, but we didn't mind.
Our first Christmas, I barely remember. I remember freezing our asses off because our apartment had horrible heating. We had to turn the thermostat up to 80 degrees to get our apartment up to 70 degrees. Not to mention it was a high heating bill.
I wanted a live Christmas tree just like we had done in Syracuse every year. We visited this big red barn there and bought our Charlie Brown Christmas tree. The barn had the nice fancy, pretty trees, but we went down the reject aisle to pick our tree. It was fun tradition, and we usually found a decent tree for $5 or so.
I was shocked that live Christmas trees in our area were so expensive. I couldn't justify buying a tree for $30+ only to throw it out in 3 weeks. So we went treeless.
Until on Christmas Eve (we didn't fly home to visit our families). On the drive home from the movies that night, I noticed the Christmas tree lot near us had been vacated. Whoever ran it, had moved out BUT they left some sad unwanted Christmas trees.
Hubby reluctantly kept watch while I picked out one of the unwanted trees. He was terrified of getting caught, but I guess he loved me enough to risk getting arrested. To my credit, it was late, around midnight or so. He even helped me
He dragged into our apartment, pulled out our Christmas ornaments, and we decorated the tree together. Now we had a Christmas tree.
Gotta love my hubby. He puts up with my crazy impulsive ideas.