The tree is gone. Ryan is devastated.
We started removing ornaments yesterday afternoon, and finished the job while Ryan was asleep. When he walked into the living room this morning, he stared at the naked tree in absolute horror. "Back on da tree! Back on da tree!" he screeched.
"I know, it's sad," I replied. "I get sad, too, when it's time to get rid of the Christmas tree.
He found the nearest box of ornaments and started hanging glass balls at his eye level on the comically-bare branches. I managed to distract him from the Charlie Brown tree with a little pine needle clean-up.
This evening, it was time to take the tree down to the curb; Ryan is now in mourning. Fortunately, the pine needles strewn around the apartment will provide us constant reminders of our tree for months to come.