Poles traditionally don’t put up the Christmas tree until a few days before Christmas, as opposed to Americans, who seem to start getting ready for Christmas before Halloween. This is especially true in shops. On the other hand, Poles tend to leave their trees up until the end of January.
This late set-up, late pack-up habit undoubtedly comes from the Catholicism that permeates Polish society. Christmas day is only the beginning of the Christmas season, and accordingly, having the tree and decoration up during the season and not simply before it.
We work something of a compromise in our home: we decorate a couple of weeks before and keep it a couple of weeks after. Eventually, though, the time comes: we put on some carols for one last time and take down the tree.
The Girl, happy to have her dancing space back, spins in joy.