Oh, Christmas Tree!

We got our Christmas tree today after church. Usually it's just the four of us traipsing around Whispering Hills in search of the perfect tree, but today there were a grand total of ten people in our group. My dad and sister (the one living with him while her husband decides if he wants to be a husband and father) joined us. My sister has two kids and my dad brought my brother's two oldest boys with him, bringing the child headcount up to six.

I love this tree farm. There's a kid-sized maze made out of bails of hay. My boys love it and, as expected, so did my nephews. The farm also has reindeer, geese, and ducks for the kids to "oh" and "ah" over. Once they wore themselves and us out, it was time to think seriously about getting a tree. A tractor-pulled hay wagon took our group and several others back to where the Christmas trees grow. Watching the kids delight in the very bumpy ride and run among the pines always is just awesome. While I captured the moment through a camera lens, my hubby looked for our tree. Up and down the rows, crunching through the half-melted snow, avoiding the mud, and trying not to trample the baby pines growing where last year's trees were harvested, we searched and searched for a decent-priced but beautiful evergreen. Eventually we found one we both liked. Of course, I had to take a picture of all the kids in front of it and then several snapshots of the hubby sawing away. Yep, it's a cut down your own Christmas Tree kind of place.

This year's trip back to the barn where they shake and wrap the trees was a little more exciting than usual. The wagon had a flat. Halfway back, the tire shredded away and we were riding on the rim. Unfortunately, our tree fell off the back wagon and the hubby had to go retrieve it. He was not a happy camper--the idea of mud dripping off the tree onto our carpet likely had a lot to do with his irritation.

While the hubby and my dad took care of the trees, my sister and I let the kids run through the maze and took them to visit the reindeer one last time. Afterwards it was time to go in the barn to see Santa. The boys about mobbed the Jolly Old Elf. Five little boys, aged six and under, rushed him. He handled the confusion with a delighted smile and expertise. My sister and I were even able to get some pictures of the mayhem. The only one who didn't seem to care much for Santa was my neice--she's only one and can be rather shy. It was only when he broke out the miniture candy canes that she dared to waddle up to him. She never did sit on his lap but she did dare a quick "high five".