We’re real tree kind of people. We love nature and the outdoors, and like to do things ourselves. Just the type of people who go out every year and cut their own Christmas tree, right? Ummm. No.
Well, there was that one Christmas when we lived in the country and went out and cut a tree. It was a hemlock, if I remember correctly, and more of a bush than a tree.
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Both Mike and I grew up with the tradition of putting the tree up on Christmas Eve. And during the years that our kids were growing up, that’s what we did as well. When our kids were ittle bittles, their first sight of the decorated tree was on Christmas morning. Since there wasn’t much money for presents, it was like the tree was their present, and they were truly delighted.
The lack of funds is what drove our other Christmas tree tradition. We didn’t shop for our tree until the day before Christmas and for many years, we never paid more than $5 for a tree. Going to a tree farm and cutting our own would have been much more expensive.
We’ve been empty nesters for quite a while now and the two of us just go to the nearest vendor that sells trees, and pick one out without much fuss. Gone and back in a half hour.
Mike thinks I’m losing it. I actually hinted at not getting a tree this year, and I just wasn’t in the mood to make the giant wreath that’s been part of our Christmas tradition. There’s a local farm where we sometimes go to buy maple syrup in the late winter, and they sell Christmas trees as well. But I didn’t know that they take you out into the fields in a horse-drawn wagon. Hearing that definitely helped to revive my Christmas spirit.
So, this past Saturday we headed to the farm, and it was such a delight. Our daughter Jessi, and our granddaughter Bella and a friend of hers joined us. (You can read about Bella here; it’s a story that always brings a tear to my eyes).
The farm was just a farm. I mean that in the best possible sense. Not a manufactured “experience”. A real farm where the trees are grown organically, where chickens and sheep are raised, and maple trees are tapped for syrup.
And I could breath. And not feel suffocated by Christmas pressure.
Afterwards we went home and made hot chocolate. The girls drew on the chalk board, and we built a fire in the yard and roasted hot dogs. Altogether, a good day.
I have a feeling that we’ve just started a new tradition!
For more ideas and traditions, check out these posts:
And one of my favorite Christmas stories . . . Why the Chimes Rang by Raymond Macdonald Alden
What’s your favorite Christmas tradition?
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