Gearing up for another year of holiday cheer, we've begun the traditional Christmas preparations. Saturday we went to get a tree. Typically we go with my parents to a 'cut it yourself' place. So, we bundled up, loaded in the car, and drove to meet my parents. We followed them to the tree farm only to find the place closed. No sign, no trees for sale, nothing. Dang. Not knowing where else to go we headed for the local grocery store who had trees for sale out front. It just isn't the same. Those pines and spruces have been cut for months. The forest scent is long gone and the needles can't seem to fall from the tree fast enough. As luck would have it, a lady walked by and said 'If you want fresh trees, come to our tree farm. ' I recognized her as a teacher at my old high school, her son is a substitute teacher for my brother's school, and they live out by my parents. What a small world. So, after a few false starts we had the opportunity to take Carlie on her first hayride to find a tree. It was a lot of fun but it was freezing. Maybe 25 degrees and windy.
Last night we decorated our beautiful white pine. We dug out the box of decorations and turned on our favorite Christmas music (Andrew Peterson's Behold the Lamb of God). Carlie was so excited to help string the lights and hang the bulbs and other ornaments. Our tree is a little bottom heavy when it comes to decorations... Afterward we wrapped presents all the presents, except for Carlie's. Carlie wrapped a few by herself - and she really likes tape. It was a nice evening home together preparing for the holidays, the Holy day, preparing to celebrate the birth of Jesus together.