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Movies, dining and things to do / Spokane and North Idaho

Holiday spirit: Yours for $1

For as long as I can remember Christmas Tree Elegance has been a part of my holiday traditions. My mom used to take me to see the trees when I was in grade school. When Kegan was growing up my mom would join the two of us and we'd have a three-generation gawk fest.

As our families grew so did our wandering group of holiday hopefuls. We'd meet at the Davenport for lunch or cocoa or a glass of wine and then stroll around the mezzanine. Along the way most of us got tired of never receiving that "You're a Winner!" call, and other things — like shopping and basketball — started taking precedence over the trees. And although I've continually sworn to give up hope and hang on to my money, I just can't stay away.

One year I bought a single ticket … and that proved just as unlucky as the years I'd purchased 25. But as I dropped my tenth and final ticket into the barrel this year I realized something: Secretly I hope I never win. Because I want Christmas Tree Elegance to be a constant reminder of that little-kid feeling I used to get on Christmas morning. That fizzy feeling of pent-up possibility. That I-studied-the-Sears-catalog-for-hours-and-circled-the-stuff-I-want-most-in-all-the-world-and-I-just-know-I'm-gonna-get-at-least-half-the-stuff-on-my-list-because-I've-been-half-good-this-year anticipation. That fleeting sensation of pure satisfaction.

I guess the true reason I'm OK with not winning is that I just don't want to deal with the after-Christmas low. Those little zingers I'd get after I'd torn through every package and felt like the luckiest girl in the world, but still couldn't stop myself from wondering why I didn't get more. I don't want to be that girl again. I want to be the girl who never gets everything she wants, and likes it that way. Because once you have everything you've ever wanted, well, what else is there?

There aren't enough $1 tickets in the world to replace unabashed expectation. But I'll try every year, regardless. Because that's just the kind of girl I am. 

Don't miss your chance. You can buy $1 tickets for the 12 trees at the Davenport until Saturday evening, and for the six trees at RiverPark Square until Sunday evening. Click here for more details.