Our tree light dilemma appears to have been mostly solved; Hugh changed out a couple million tiny bulbs and the problematic strand is now 99% functional.
Unfortunately, the minute that problem was solved, we noticed that a large section of lights in the middle of the tree was dark. Because, of course.
Hugh gave the branches in question a solid smack and the lights blinked back on. Obviously, this does not bode well for the longevity of the tree.
Indeed, as I sit here typing this, I steal an occasional glance at the tree, and, I have to admit; the poor thing has seen better days. There are bare spots, where the branches are no longer flexible enough to stand up tall, and the shape of the tree is less triangular than it is irregular. I know that it will look fine once I get the decorations on it, but, I have to wonder; how much longer do I make something look good on the surface when it is so clearly broken at the core?