Deck the Halls

A very special angel

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One of Bronwyn Woolman’s very favorite Christmas decorations is “Angie,” a Christmas tree topper.

“My parents were married in the 1940s and for their first Christmas together they purchased an angel tree topper,” said Bronwyn, a long-time resident of Alpena. “There was a Christmas song that the Andrews Sisters made popular in the 1950s titled ‘Sweet Angie, The Christmas Tree Angel.’ My parents name their tree topper after her.”

The tradition in Bronwyn’s family was to go out as a family, pick out a tree and then her father would cut it down. The tree was brought back to the house where her father spent time on the porch cutting and sawing branches off to get the tree to fit in the tree stand.

“If you have ever watched the movie, ‘The Christmas Story,’ we kids were like Ralphie and stayed out of earshot as our Dad struggled to get the tree and the stand to fit,” Brownyn said.

After the tree was hauled indoors, Bronwyn or one of her siblings would have to find a white sheet to represent the snow and wrap it around the base.

“Dad would then string the lights – big bulbs – around the tree, and my brothers and I would start decorating,” she said.

The last crowning decoration to put on the tree was Angie.

“Every year we took turns, with Dad having to lift us up so we could reach the tree top and set Angie in place,” Bronwyn remembers. “With two brothers, we always kept track and knew whose turn it was. The lights would be turned on and Mom would be called to come and take a look. Mom would walk in holding her cup of coffee and pronounce the tree ‘perfect.’ And everything was!”