With Christmas right around the corner, I am sure many of you are picking out your tree this weekend. I don’t know about you, but we always look for the biggest tree we can fit in the room. It has to be very tall and wide, almost like you would need a chainsaw to get it out. There is nothing better than the intoxicating smell of pine as it fills a room!
Once the netting is removed from the tree and the branches fall in place, I am instantly taken back to my childhood. We would go as a family in the freezing cold, in 2 ft of snow, up hill both ways kind of search, through the woods just trying to find the perfect tree. Me being the oldest of 4, I had to follow closely to my father while he would point out what he thought was the perfect tree about 100 yards ahead. Of course, when we got to the tree that I thought he was talking about, he’s say “No, not this tree. That tree over there” and he’d point off into the distance and make us walk another 100 yards. I swear he would do this to us 5 or times, each time with us crying “Not again!”. With my younger siblings moaning and groaning in tow, I now know he was secretly trying to knock us out so we would sleep good that night.
Once we found the perfect tree, even more exhausting than the hike getting to it, was the cutting it down and dragging it out. We were cold and wet, wondering why we have to go through this every year. Why couldn’t we just put up a fake tree and be done with it? I don’t know too many families that dragged their 4 kids into 2 ft of snow in the woods just to get a Christmas tree.
Once we dragged the family tree back to the parking area, me never just packed up and left. Dad would stop and build us a fire and we would sit underneath an orange floral comforter that seemed to come out of no where. Till this day, I can still picture us huddled together roasting hot dogs and whole potatoes, that we would devour from working up such an appetite.
I’m sure you could guess that by the time we all piled into our old maroon Chevy Impala, we were knocked out. Dad was able to drive home in peace, unlike every other car ride with 4 kids in the back seat. Mom was always the quietest on the trip. Her job was keeping us warm, dry, and fed. Dad did all the hard labor with the tree and the fire, and occasionally had to carry which ever one of us couldn’t handle the hike back. It’s only looking back as an adult, as parents together, they gave us the best Christmas memories….
Wishing you and your family, a joyous and blessed Christmas and holiday season.