Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Trees

So, a couple of years ago we found this really cool Christmas tree farm down in northern GA. We cut down a Carolina Sapphire (CS) to try something new and were really happy with it. That particular tree had this really cool luminescence about it when the lights were on. It also put out this amazingly-strong aroma. I don't know how to describe it exactly, but it's kind of like a mixture of pine and citrus. Whatever it smells like, someone should bottle it and sell it every winter. It just smells like Christmas.

Last year, with Gus being as young as he was, we took it easy and just got a tree at a local nursery. It was a very nice tree, but we missed the experience of cutting down our own (so did my wallet!). This year, we had a hankering for another CS so the online search to find that same tree farm began. After what seemed like hours, we weren't having any luck though. We finally gave up and decided to hit a farm a little closer to home.

So, the Saturday after Thanksgiving we set out to cut down the Noll Family Christmas Tree. This year, we were joined by a few of our neighbors, Andrew, Cindy and "Male Baby." They live a few houses over and are part of our meal co-op. It was great to have them along.

After a few detours (it might be time for a GPS unit...and maybe a new co-pilot (Andrew)), we finally arrived and were surprised to find that SAME farm that we had visited two years prior. We came at it from a different direction, and I swear that the name changed, but it was definitely the same place so we were pretty excited. Carolina Sapphire, here we come!

We all wandered around for a while, but it was the Keans that found their tree first. Andrew thought he saw a beam of light shining down from above and I'm pretty sure he said he heard singing as well. No one else had quite that experience, but we all agreed that it was a great tree.

After the Kean's tree was netted and ready for transport, the Noll clan continued on in search of the perfect CS. At this point in the excursion, Gus was frozen from the waist down and was tired of the adventure. He looks pretty happy here, but I think this picture was taken soon after we arrived. Thankfully, Cindy saved the day by entertaining Gus while Amy and I looked for our tree.

We finally found the tree we were looking for. Of course it was in one of the areas furthest from the staging area, but our team motto from the beginning was, "Go big or go home" so there was no getting away from it.

Here, wishing we hadn't come up with that motto:

It was fortunate that I put the rack on top of the car because we wouldn't have made it back home with both trees otherwise. I think Andrew and I had eyes that were bigger than our ceilings at home! Each tree was about 12 or 13 feet tall and both of us had to do a little trimming to make them fit in our respective living rooms. I can't speak for the Kean's tree, but ours was over 5 feet wide near the base!

500 lights later, with the ornaments on the tree and our high wire act complete, we settled in to enjoy our tree for the '08 season.

I think that we've started a tradition that will carry into the years to come. In my opinion, it's so much more rewarding to cut down a tree. You can't beat the price either ($35!). Thanks for coming, Keans! Let's do it again next year! Gus and "Ebenezer" can pick out their own trees while the adults take care of the real business. "Go big or go home!"

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