Tag Archives: #itsawonderfullife

The Great Christmas Tree Hunt of 2016


I wasn’t going to put up a Christmas tree … I decorated the house, the mantel and chandeliers, but I wasn’t going to put up the tree. We were going to be gone, in and out, all month. What was the point?

Well, Dang! I missed the smell of pine in the air (and not from a scented candle). The corner where the twinkling lights warmed the winter evenings was dark … I missed it! Then I realized I was missing something else … my Christmas spirit.  I was missing my traditions! The tree … I needed to put up a tree … I needed my tradition of choosing and decorating that tree; watching It’s a Wonderful Life  while adding the lights, bobbles, and glitter to it’s branches and sipping eggnog from a crystal goblet. That tradition sparks my Christmas engine.

img_3963Yesterday, a few weeks later than usual , we stopped at our local Forest Service office and purchased tree hunting tags (10$ each, a bargain anyway you look at it). At home we layered up,  looking a lot like Ralphie’s brother after we pulled on knee-high rubber boots, jackets, snuggy gloves, and hats (beside being winter  and cold … it was snowing).

Up Pole Creek Road we drove, a few white knuckle slides until Sweetie put the truck into 4-wheel drive. Peering through snow crusted windows we searched for the perfect trees, close enough to the road we wouldn’t need a search party to find our way back, but far enough away to meet the 50′ from the road rule.

We spotted two little trees not far apart off the side of the road, well, down the hill off the side of the road. Excitedly I stepped from the cab where briefly I was on top of the snow before I abruptly dropped  through to the ground below … up to my knees (and my boots weren’t tall enough either).  Blazing trail Sweetie dropped off the road, carrying the bow saw and even following in his footsteps I was  pushing through thigh-high velvety powder (where were my skis?).

You know of course the rule that a very small tree found outside grows like Alice taking her 2nd pill and fills every available space once it enters the room. After forgetting this rule numerous times we attempt to err on choosing the smaller of small when on the hunt for our Christmas trees … even then we generally lop off branch ends to fit.

With little effort the trees were  down … actually Greg cut and hauled them … I took pictures.  Back up hill we went, Sweetie dragging both trees to keep from tipping over.  I had one thing to do … pull one tree 10 feet up to the road …  I dragged and slogged, and dragged some more grabbing whatever short branches poked above the snow to pull myself forward … near the top I floundered … I slipped, one leg beneath me and if a quickly thrust bow saw handle wasn’t within reach I would have tumbled head over tookus … me and the tree.img_3970

It was a very successful Christmas tree hunt … bagged, tagged and back to the house in under an hour … the snow inside my boots didn’t even have time to melt.

Right now, behind me, one of the trees is looking over my shoulder, wondering how the heck it ended up inside this tiny room when yesterday it was part of time and space .  It must be in shock! But it’ll be happy to know that once it shares our Christmas celebration it will grace our field sheltering quail from predatory birds.

Hey! I just realized I can tradition twice this year! Once in Council, and again in Boise … how can a girl get so lucky? Especially one who loves a good goblet of eggnog!

May your traditions lighten your heart and home with joy and happiness in this Christmas season. The celebration of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. (Luke 2:1-20) … the greatest gift of all.

Merry Christmas!

OK, Now it’s December … Trees, Lights, & Eggnog


So, now it is December I can quit ranting about Thanksgiving being shoved aside for the commercialism of Halloween and Christmas.  I’ve been telling everyone that each time a Christmas light is lite or a carol is sung before December the elves drown a baby reindeer.  The herd is getting pretty small ….

Tomorrow after Sweetie spends the morning in his masochistic sport of chucker hunting, we will buy our Forest Service Christmas tree permit,  and will hunt out our perfect tree; fresh and green.  Over the years since the chicks have flown the coop, I have developed my own Christmas decorating ritual;  I fill a crystal goblet with eggnog (no, not homemade), put in my favorite Christmas movie It’s a Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed and begin draping its_a_wonderful_lifethe fireplace in greenery, and placing the Nativity fresh from its wrappings in its place of honor near the front door where it is the first thing I see entering, leaving or passing the hallway.   The next evening once the tree is cut and placed ready for decorating I will again pour eggnog and put in my other most favorite Christmas movie, the 1951 black and white version of  A Christmas Carol with Alistair Sims as Scrooge.scroogeandghost2

As the children and grandchildren have grown there are few wrapped gifts ‘round the yule tree as in years past  … gift cards, activity passes, ski days or gifts of service have taken the place of the wrapped and stacked booty of yesteryear.  There will be a Christmas village beneath the branches and empty gift bags as a reminder to myself that the greatest gift I can give is of myself; to give of my time, talents and everything with which the Lord has blessed me.

Christmas … a reminder of God’s greatest gift to us, His Son, Jesus Christ.

Life is good … Happy first week of December!