Kids: This is kind of weird…
Maki-san: It’s not weird! It’s traditional!
Me: Covering a bare tree branch with styrofoam balls, plastic fish and dice is traditional?
Apparently so. The decorations used to be mochi (squishy, chewy rice cakes), but apparently styrofoam isn’t as messy. There was an impromptu decorating session in the lobby this afternoon, including a bunch of fifth graders who had come in from sledding to warm up in the library. Then we tied the poor branch to the ceiling.
Of course, no sooner was it up then were people wondering if we had hung it upside down – branches down, rather than up. There was a brief, fierce debate, including Googling and wondering if we should hang one branch one way and the other the other way. Finally, someone determined that it was traditional locally to hang it branches up, so we began the long process of flipping it over.