christmas treeWhen it comes to selecting the perfect Christmas tree, each family is different. For some, it's almost necessary that you get an eight-footspruce to fill that big empty space behind the living room sofa. For others, small-scale living means a short, wide tree is perfect. But there's one thing that families across the nation most certainly disagree on: real trees vs. fake ones.

In my family, it was a bridge we overcame once my brother and I went off to college years ago. While we loved going out together to chop down the tree and the decorating session that followed with the smell of fresh pine wafting through the home -- it wasn't practical once my parents were tackling things solo. Mom and Dad both suffered trying to snag the tree on their own, and soon enough, both of them opted for fake fabulous models from Home Depot. (Believe it or not, they both really do look real.)

So what are the pros and cons about opting for fake over real trees? Read on to find out:

Pro: A fake tree doesn't drop needles like your real tree. Well, depending how long you own him for. (Also, the Christmas trees I deal with are clearly male.)

Con: Fake trees don't have that amazing pine smell. (*Subtext to this, you could always snag yourself a Yankee Candle Car Jar and hide it nearby.)

Pro: It's a one-time expense. Is it just me, or does it seem like the price of freshly cut trees goes up exponentially each year? For the same price as some freshly cut trees, you could buy a fake one to last you for at least 10 years.

Con: You lose the experience of doing it yourself. If you have kiddos, I'd say this is a major bummer. Because let's be honest, there's just something special about setting aside that one day to go get the tree, sip on hot chocolate, and cheer when the saw goes all the way through and the kids yell, "Timber!"

Pro: You still have the same in-house decorating experience. Even better, you don't have to let the tree sit outside to "fall" delaying the whole thing. With a fake tree, it's as easy as taking it out of the storage box, plugging in the lights, and voila!

Do you and your family choose a real tree or a fake one?


Image via Emily Abbate