Hello, Amy. You seem to be in a good mood. The family you live with in the 19th century just brought home a Christmas tree? They set it up in the parlour?
I agree, it does feel like it was just halloween.
But it's now December as you know. So actually the timing for a tree is just about perfect.
You've made some decorations for it? Popcorn strung on string? And there are some candies and fruit to put on the branches as well? And homemade ornaments made of cloth in different shapes like stars and angels? That sounds wonderfully festive.
In the eighteen hundreds when you are currently living, Christmas is becoming a very popular holiday, indeed, and the custom will continue to grow all across Canada until the 1930s, when it will become a most common practice. It was German immigrants who initially brought the tradition of Christmas trees to Canada in the mid-1800s. It had been a German tradition since the 18th century.
In 1841, Queen Victoria decorated a tree in Windsor Castle with her German husband, Albert, soon after the birth of her first child, a son.
There are writings as early as 1531 documenting that fruit and candies were placed among branches of evergreens, but the first Christmas tree in Canada appeared on Christmas eve in 1781 in Quebec when the Baroness Riedesel held a party for German officers. This made sense considering the tradition started in Germany; perhaps Baroness Riedesel was making sure her guests felt right at home.
By 1870, entrepeneurs will start to acquire ornaments from Germany, and will have them shipped to North America to be sold in stores where anyone can purchase them.
Now, in the 21st century, a decorated Christmas tree is an established custom throughout Canada. The business of Canada's Christmas tree production brings in approximately sixty-five million dollars annually.