Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Christmas Traditions

As with most families, we have Christmas Traditions, tried and true things we do every year. And I am not just talking about drinking too much egg nog and telling Aunt Flo what you really think. No, No, No. We have fun traditions.

One is to drag the kids, my mom, my step dad and ourselves to a local tree farm. We go there on a quest for the perfect Christmas tree, preferably as big as we can find. Most years the tree we bring home, hits the ceiling and bends, and when we undo the netting around it, it spreads out kind of like that big tree from the Christmas Vacation Movie, (a must see movie every Christmas). The bigger the better. So what if I have to repaint the ceiling every year.

Unfortunately for us, the tree farm we always go to, seems to be running out of the big trees. This year we trudge through the snow, through what seems like acres and acres of not quite right trees. Toting small children, wearing fourteen tons of warm weather gear, armed with a hack saw, are all dangerous ingredients if you ask me. Between trying to find the perfect tree and trying to NOT loose my very small children in the VERY large tree field, we finally come to a location with large trees. After discussing the merits of about six trees, driving my husband nuts because I just can't decide which one is destined to be this years tree, we find a nice tall, fat round, nicely shaped tree. My husband excitedly gets in there with his big hack saw and chops her down. TIMBER!! Me " But wait honey, isn't that one over there nicer??" I can just feel his glare from beneath our chosen tree. He tells me to walk out of the tree farm with my eyes down so I don't have tree remorse.

We wander back to the main area to pay for our find, and to have them shake the sillies out of it before wrapping her up tight with white netting. Another family, who has a smaller tree, tries to claim our tree after it is netted up. My brother settles it by simply taking our tree from them, and handing them theirs. Ah, Christmas cheer runneth amok at the ol' tree farm.

Tree is secured in the van, we go inside for hot apple cider and cookies. A simple fun tradition. However, add a two year old and it becomes a test in sanity. Hot apple cider and two year old's do not mix well. And when the inevitable tantrum ensues, ahhh, Christmas Traditions. Thankfully its my two year old this year having the tantrum, and not me.

When we get home the fun really begins. How many men does it take to set the tree up in its tree stand. Apparently three this year. After three adjustments, mass of tools, and I am sure I heard a few cuss words from amongst those branches, the tree is secure in its new home. Its tall and does need a "bit" trimmed off the top to fit on our angel. (Always a requirement for our tree) There is only one small problem with our beloved tree. The needles are so sharp, its like decorating a pin cushion, with the sharp points sticking out. The kids and I don mittens, looking like goofs, and decorate our tree with vigor. (Okay, really the needles actually are so sharp we are getting pricked even with our mittens on and it takes forever to get an ornament to remain hanging without getting pricked to death) We only break three this year. And luckily, since the tree is in front of the window this year, we have to decorate the entire thing. Every last prickly needle. After hours of this torture, we stand back and admire our work.

All the trouble is so worth it.

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