Coming to a theater near you

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life42 Comments


We have a shameful secret tradition in our family. Every year, following Christmas, our tree seems to stay around in the yard a little longer than, oh… most people would prefer.

We think of it as yard decor. In the winter, we prop it up in the thick snow. In the spring, we make comments like, "Man, that is a really dead tree," and when summer rolls around, we burn that mother to the ground.

I am a horrible film editor, but I made this so we finally have a document that answers the question: what if your Christmas tree could live forever.


p.s. I have zero skills as an iMovie editor, but that's never stopped me yet.

Burn That Mother Down from Cathy Zielske on Vimeo.


Cathy ZielskeComing to a theater near you

42 Comments on “Coming to a theater near you”

  1. #2

    This is hysterical! First, I have never known anyone to keep their Christmas Tree around until July. Second – I really wish we had a real tree instead of an artificial one so that we could set it on fire in our back yard too! Oh the HOA would have an absolute fit and it would be awesome!! Wonder if I can convince my husband to go with a real tree this year? lol! Thank you for sharing this! Totally made my morning!

  2. #3

    Whadya mean you have no skills as an iMovie editor! That was frickin’ awesome…I do believe a star is born!

  3. #6

    This is great. You should have a burning party. I do have one question though? How does Dan feel about shirtless video going viral?

  4. #9

    It appears to be a long road for the tree. I mean you drag him home and decorate him so nicely. When the holiday is over, he just sits in the backyard waiting patiently through a long MN winter and obviously spring as well and a bit of summer. And then it comes……all 25 seconds of torture. Poor poor tree. HA!

  5. #12

    Love it!!! We will be burning ours down later this month. You have inspired me to make a movie out of it! πŸ™‚ FUN! I love that there are other crazies out there like us!!

  6. #13

    My neighbor just put hers in the recycling a week ago. Darn I could have made the B-movie version. Loved the ‘credits’ bit. πŸ˜‰

  7. #14
    Kathleen S

    Always wondered what you did in your spare time. Ever thought of the volunteer fire department?

  8. #17

    Your family is insane! And I mean that in the most complimentary way. lol. Your blog is the only one that always makes me laugh. That was hilarious!

  9. #18
    Mary from Chicago

    I don’t know if i’m laughing harder at the video, or at Marge’s comments! All I can say, Marge, ifs DITTO! I want to be a Zielske neighbor!!!!

  10. #19

    Hahaha! That is AWESOME! We also have live trees (a 9 footer and a 15 footer) every year. But we always take them to either a Forest Service burn pile or one of the lakes where they’re looking for new fish habitat. Your way looks much more fun.

    Best “disposal” story: our first year together our tree was so pathetic we set it outside to haul to the burn pile the next day. When we went out the next morning, it was gone. The wind had blown it away!

  11. #21

    That is too funny!
    Our tree lives on in our yard as well only in a slightly more useful fashion … we cut up the branches and put them under our blueberry bushes (makes the soil ph better for them) and then bury the whole trunk in the raised beds for fertilizer. Makes me feel better that the poor little thing has some use after being so sparkly and special (yeah, I’m weird like that) πŸ˜€

  12. #24
    Kristi Sikora-Blankenship

    This made me laugh so hard I watched it twice. Holy Crap that sucker was ON FIRE! πŸ™‚

  13. #26
    Angie K

    We do this every year, too! We make ourselves feel better that we are feeding the hungry birds in the winter and early spring. Then we plop that bad boy in the firepit and our pyromaniac selves giggle and squeal like little kids.

  14. #28
    Kary in Colorado

    Hilarious! Good thing you live in Minnesota though–they’d have hauled you off to jail here in Colorado! We don’t take kindly to anything burning this summer (or last).

  15. #33
    Beth R

    You have mad skillz as a movie editor, dont listen to the haters. This was one scary movie yet I had to watch it twice! Love the music and the credits. The only thing that could get me to MN in the winter is if we could be neighbors. You are like organic prozac, no need for meds when your blog makes me laugh every time I read it.
    Burn baby burn !

  16. #34

    I thought you said you had no skills?!?! This turned out awesome! πŸ™‚
    I hope Dan doesn’t mind the shirtless video out there for all to see πŸ˜‰ And I noticed a head pop into the video for a moment too!

  17. #38

    Hysterical! Great music, great commentary. I laughed even harder when the cameraperson got behind the gas grill for protection….yeah, like that would help. LOL. Thanks for the laugh!

  18. #40

    Love the tradition and video. But everyone missed out on what it sounds like! We’ve burned ours to and the best part is the noise it makes as it goes up! We do ours at night too…more dramatic! lol

  19. #41
    Sandy E-B

    Wow Cathy, not only have you influenced my scrapbook design skills, but now fire skills too? I’m inspired to start our own family tradition! Too funny – just the laugh I needed this morning!

    P.S. I must admit I was a little nervous watching how close that fire was to your garage, but with Dan at the helm of the hose, I figured it would be a happy ending… well, maybe not so happy for the poor Christmas tree!

  20. #42

    Exactly what I was going to say Kary! The FD would’ve been there in seconds and there would have been illegal burning charges!

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