On the aforementioned trip to Sunrise I also bought some nice fresh evergreen cuttings to festoon the outside of our house with. Sweet husband helped put up the lights (a long time ago, but let's not dwell too much on that) so now we are all properly gussied up for the holidays.
Evergreen trees were originally a symbol of life in winter. Their branches were thought to have special powers because they never were barren, as other trees were.
Actually evergreens do shed their needles, they just don't do it all at once.
Another, very charming, myth I found goes as follows:
"Many years before the birth of Christ the peoples of Europe hung evergreens above their doors during the winter for they believed that the woodland spirits wandered about in the cold. They hoped that by offering them shelter within their homes, they would receive good fortune and health."
Isn't that a fun thought? I can just imagine a shivering little brownie curled up in the crook of my wreath. It's pretty cold out though, maybe I should invite it inside to nestle in the paperwhites instead.