My maternal grandmother had a silver Christmas tree that sat on a table for years. I always thought my paternal grandparent’s tree was big and decorated in a very festive way with lots of presents under it.
We had a real Christmas tree decorated each year until I was about 11, with lights and icicles. I can remember going out to select the tree from a lot and having to water the tree, vacuum all the needles and the wonderful pine smell in our house. In about 1971, my parents said the real trees were too expensive so we went to Sears and bought an artificial tree, which we used for the remainder of the years I lived at home. No more pine smell but also no more needles.
Our cats always loved to get the balls off the tree and bat them around the house so we often had broken or shredded ornaments making it difficult to have any remaining today as an heirloom. However, now I buy at least one ornament each year that I hope will last and can become an heirloom.