Tree Hunting

Peter finally convinced me this year to go up North and cut down a Christmas tree. I have always been opposed because his plans involved me sitting in the back seat with a squirmy, crying  kiddo while getting motion sick for 5 hours while he sipped hot chocolate, sang along to Christmas songs and drove his oh-so-precious truck.

He agreed to move the location to a much more reasonable destination and went the first day permits were available to ensure that we got the right area. The plan was that we would drive up just north of Payson, get our tree, eat a picnic brunch and head back while the munchkin napped. When I told our friends Beth and Grant of our plans, the wanted to join. So now we would have a party for our Griswold style tree hunting. We were certain it would be a disaster, but hopefully a hilarious disaster.

Sadly, Mother Nature had other plans. She decided to dump 2 feet of snow on the usually dry area the day before our trip. After looking at the web cams and the road conditions, we decided it wasn’t safe to risk an accident or getting stuck. So we opted for church, breakfast and tree hunting at a lot with our friends.

PW and I each can’t remember the last time we had a real tree. We have an awesome, pre-lit version that is so easy we just always go with that. But the live version is pretty great – we bought from a local nursery and the thing might as well have been cut down by us it’s so fresh! Here are the highlights:

Getting her in place.

Uncle Grant ATTACK!!!

Aunt Beth 🙂

Straightening it out…again. It only fell over twice.

Ta da!! I was trying to get tricky with my camera to get lots of light, but it didn’t quite pan out…

Who is that teenie, tiny lady?!

Old School

From the time I was little, I remember Mame had this on her dresser.

I’ve actually done a good job of making a photo ornament for each year. I love looking at all of them!

The Holiday Home Goods Parade

I have a very large family and we get together often. But they’re almost all informal and involve food that doesn’t require utensils and paper plates. But for the holidays, we like to get a little fancier. The problem is that collectively, we have enough plates, silverware and cloth napkins for everyone. But alone, we come up short. So for each holiday there is a parade of items that travels from one house to the host house for use. I’ve pillaged my mom’s supplies for so many years of Thanksgiving’s and Easter’s, I don’t even  need a list of what I need to borrow and she usually just has it all out for me. 10 plates, the spare silverware, serving pieces, bake ware, a table-cloth or two and always the really pretty folding chairs all make their way to our house. It’s not that I don’t have these items myself, it’s that I don’t have enough for 18 people and 5 kids.

This Christmas is no exception. The folding chairs are in the back of the car already. Linen napkins too. My pretty silver shell dish is awaiting shrimp cocktail for Christmas morning and a spare “giant” table-cloth (we describe the length of the various table cloths that my mom and I own not in feet, but by the length of the table. I.E. “with one leaf in or with all three leafs in”. We have really big tables) is ready to go. And so the parade of items makes its way back across town. It just wouldn’t feel like the holidays if someone wasn’t walking in with chairs under one arm.