It's the first Christmas in my new apartment, and I wanted to decorate, as Mama C. always decorated the house for every possible holiday and season.

It's a tad overwhelming, but the biggest decision of all was what kind of tree to get.

Now, I'm not living in some kind of palatial estate, so no matter what type of tree, it was gonna be small. I'm talkin' 3-5 feet. I was seriously considering this guy:

This always makes me laugh. I still might get it. (Target)

Growing up, we always used a fake tree. I've never known anything else, so I suppose I don't know what I'm missing out on with a real one. The pine smell, I suppose?

The thing is, real trees kind of seem like a huge pain in the arse. First you gotta go find one you like, then you gotta cut it down, lug it home, put it in water, make sure the sap doens't get all over the floor, constantly vaccuum up pine needles, water it everyday so it doesn't burst into flame...and then of course you have to actually decorate the thing.

I was also recently told (thanks Jackie!) that spiders lay eggs in Christmas trees and then when they come into the warm house, they hatch. Is that true?? Because OH MY GOD I WILL FREAK OUT RIGHT NOW.

*deep cleansing breath*

That all seems like a little too much to deal with on my first go around, so, fake it is. Luckily Mama C. donated some extra lights, ornaments, bows, and other goodies to the cause, so when it came to shopping, I had a decent base to work with.

I bought my 4' foot fake Christmas tree from Rite Aid. It was on sale -- 9 bucks. I picked up a couple extra ornaments, some tinsel, and it was off to the races.

The final product?

My first Christmas tree! (Laurie Cataldo)

It looked a little sparse at first, and Duzzy was kind of laughing at how ridiculous it looked, but with a little love, I think it turned out pretty darn cute. (Yes, that is Kermit on the star.) And more importantly, it's mine ours.

As for the authentic pine smell? I bought a scented candle. Nailed it!

Do you decorate for the holidays? Share your tips below!