Following our family tradition, we traveled to a local Christmas tree farm the day after Thanksgiving.
We arrived shortly after opening time and were able to promptly board the trolley to ride up the hill to the area of the farm being utilized for harvest this season. This particular business is an excellent caretaker of their trees, allowing harvest from only one section at a time and promptly replanting in the spring.
Frosty’s system is finely organized: you choose a tree, place your tree pole green end up, and a tree cutter is at your side within minutes. The rest of the process is effortless: a ride back downhill, this time on a tractor-drawn trailer with hay bale seats, to the main building to pay, then well-marked signage to the pickup area. Meanwhile, the tree was bagged up on the hillside, delivered car-side, and secured to the roof.
Unfortunately, the tree farm staff did not accompany us home to assist with unloading, carrying up a flight of entry stairs, across the great room, and hoisting into the tree stand. Nevertheless, we persisted.
Our ceiling height is 12 feet; we chose a stately Frazer Fir over 10 feet tall. The tree towered over my 5'6" stature, even after I had climbed a ladder. A kind neighbor helped by placing the tree-top star and winding the first string of lights.
My wife did a marvelous job completing the light stringing and hanging ornaments. We have quite a collection of balls and figurines ranging from family heirlooms to baubles and memorabilia we acquired on our many international travels.
While she labored decorating the fir, I set up the Christmas village and Nativity scene. A large wreath adorns the front door. A few knick-knacks are yet to be placed: a hand-carved Haitian creche and a photo of Pope John Paul (taken during a Papal audience). Before week’s end, a rope of lights will be wound along the front railing, and matching wreaths will be hung on the gate posts.
Do you decorate for Christmas: does the scent of fresh pine linger in your home, do you use a pre-decorated artificial tree, ready-to-setup straight out of the box, or does your family adhere to other traditions?