How long should a Christmas tree stay up? I asked a few friends that question, and the answers varied.

My superstitious friend said that if you leave your tree up past midnight on December 31st, you will be dragging all the bad luck from the prior year into the near year.

A religious friend cited Southern Catholic tradition (at least in her household) of not taking down Christmas until the date of the Epiphany, a day that Catholics recognize God in the form of Jesus.

Another friend (a man, and very much a bachelor) asked, in response, "Tree?".  (Bachelor? Enough said!).

There were two opinions that admitted to removing the Christmas ornaments and replacing them with Mardi Gras decorations and leaving their tree up into Lent (a period of penitence observed by Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists and other Christians). Conveniently enough, purple is considered a Lenten color as well as a Mardi Gras color!

And yet another friend in on the conversation sided with me, as we probably were taking our tree to the street on the same day!