The Great Christmas Tree Hunt 

This year we aren’t waiting until our 25 Days of Christmas to get our tree!  Because of time constraints and upcoming prenatal appointments, we are pushing our tradition of getting a tree up a week.

Really, we’ve been breaking tradition already this holiday season.  The kids already picked out their annual Christmas ornament.

Carefully looking over all the options

Ornaments ’16: Marshall picked a Mack truck that had a load of presents in it’s box and Vi picked out a purple My Little Pony ornament

In our family, after the “babies first Christmas” ornament, we let the kids pick an annual ornament they want to add to the tree.  The idea behind it is that with each year it shows their ever evolving interests and then, when they someday move out and have their own trees, they can have their own set of a lifetime of ornaments.  I’m sure even when they are all grown, we will be buying them an annual ornament to keep the tradition alive.

Marshall’s Christmas ornament collection

Vi’s Christmas ornament collection

Someday we will have a perfectly matching and coordinated tree.  But for now it’s nice to have the kids’ homemade ornaments proudly on display- as well as their special annual ornaments telling their story.

And of course, there’s our other tradition that Brad & I started in 2007. An ornament with a picture of our growing family each Christmas.

Anyways, back to today’s events, we went to an organic Christmas tree farm!  We started with hunting down the perfect tree; this year it happened to be a balsam fir.  Brad loaded the kids into the sled and we ventured out into the field.

Marshall was eager to help saw down the tree this year, Vi was happy to just watch from the comfort of the sled.

“Timber!!”

Brad hauled the tree back and Marshall volunteered to be a gentleman and give his sister a sleigh ride back to the car.  His sleigh rides are a little bumpier than papa’s.

The fact that she’s bundled up more than Ralphie’s little brother on A Christmas Story doesn’t help either

The sleigh was a definite must for us.  Queen Violet Angeline didn’t love trudging through the snow like some peasant.  And if the Queen doesn’t want to schlep around like a commoner, she won’t.

Makes sense. Who wants to get their water proof snow boots wet when you can get your bare face wet and muddy?

Brad loaded the tree on top of our SUV while Marshall reminded him of last year (our tree started sliding off because Brad didn’t secure it properly).  It’s times like this that Brad wishes Marshall didn’t have such an exceptional memory.  We drove to the front of the lot and the workers shook the tree- to get loose needles out- and netted it for an easier haul home.

With the tree hunt over, we headed over to Santa’s village that is conveniently located within the tree farm.  There the kids met Prancer & Dancer, rode on a magic trolly ride, horseback riding, and a petting zoo!  Not to mention meeting the big guy himself: Santa!

He had a long list of what he wanted since he’s been a good boy. (Mainly Paw Patrol related)

Can you tell which one is on the naughty list?

My favorite ornaments

Looking out over the trees on the trolley ride while Christmas carols rang out over the speakers.

Loading up into Prancer & Dancer’s sleigh

Sleigh ride! Marshall has been looking forward to this since last year, this was Vi’s first year actually getting a ride in the sleigh. She absolutely loved it!

Pony rides! Marshall’s pony started shaking and he held on and kept smiling like a professional cowboy! Vi was iffy about her first pony ride but having papa there helped make her feel comfortable.

Brad obviously sincerely enjoyed it too, he loves being a dad and it such a great one

Petting baby goats!

Marshall is such an animal lover. He can’t get enough of any kind of animal friend.

Bunnies!

Not wanting to get too close to the sheep

This pony wasn’t even part of the petting zoo. He’s a spare for the pony rides; Marshall just saw him tucked away and thought he looked lonely so naturally Mads had to go say hi.

Our family loaded up and headed home, tired out from all the cool fresh air and Christmas fun.  The kids slept once Marshall was reassured that this tree wouldn’t slide off (thanks to Brad buying ratchet straps this year instead of the rope of last year).

When home the kids were eager to help get the tree all set up.  Brad and I loved how wonderfully the tree made our living room smell!

Wearing Christmas pajamas of years past: Marshall’s is from last year and Vi’s is hand-me-downs from when Marshall was her age

The kids favorite part was when we turned off the lights and listened to Christmas carols in front of the sparkling lights of the tree.  We did our annual Christmas set up tradition of hot apple pie and cocoa.

And I mean, look at that pie?! Whoever made that did a great job…good job Frozen food worker (ha! I hope you didn’t think I was talking about myself at first)

And with that, the Christmas season was officially in our home.  We are so excited for December 1st to arrive to officially kick off our 25 days!

For now though, we are quietly enjoying the moment.

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