Step One: Go to the woods and pick out the tree. For some of us, the woods are in a lot next to Costco that was a pumpkin patch a few weeks ago.
Step two: Decide on a tree. When you have found the perfect tree, take a moment to stand in awe and reverence and sing the hallelujah chorus, which goes something like this, “Hurry and get it on the car; there are no bathrooms here and we’ve got to go.”
Step three: Get it home. Assign one of the kids to stick their hand out the window and hold the tree onto the car, just because it freaks them out and is funny. Then feel guilty and tell them they can let go of the tree and admit that it will not fall off the car.
Step four: Decorate tree. Curse chandelier that is in the way of your pictures.
Step five: Find tripod. Dust it off. Attach camera. Set your shutter speed low, about 3 seconds or longer. Set your iso fairly low, under 500. Set your aperture to expose your shot correctly. (by the way, if you set your aperture to a high number, like 16, then your lights will have a starburst look to them. If you set it more open, at 4 or lower, then your lights will be more of a glow.) If you don’t know how to shoot in manual, try shutterspeed priority and just set your shutter speed to a slow speed and your camera will do the rest. (all lights are turned off except the Christmas tree lights)
Step six: Add some people to your photo. Tell them to hold really still. Openly mock anyone who cannot. Laugh a lot.
Step seven: bask in the Christmas glow.
And ask yourself, why can’t we be like Christmas trees, and the fatter we are the better we look?