How Lovely Are Thy Branches!

When the Mister and I had been dating for a while and things seemed pretty serious, I decided to ask him gently about some of his former girlfriends.  I was particularly curious as to why he hadn’t continued seeing one young woman, who was quite beautiful.  His reply was  “Oh, I could never be serious about her.  She didn’t like Christmas!”  IMG_2763Years later, I wonder if any other man loves Christmas as much as my husband—his enthusiasm is just shy of that of Buddy the Elf’s.  In fact, it probably surpasses it when you take into account that Buddy’s zeal was focused on the North Pole and Santa while the Mister’s is centered on the birth of Christ and encompasses almost every detail of this season of celebration.   Even so, we’re kind of picky about our holiday traditions, being firm believers that Thanksgiving should get its due.  And we do our best to honor Advent and its deliberate and thoughtful traditions.  IMG_2726 In years past, we’ve set aside the first Saturday in December to get our Christmas tree.   We would bring it home, put it in a bucket of water, and usually have it in the house ready for decorating by the following Saturday.  But when a child goes to college, family traditions have to be adjusted, and so today we made the trip to Cedar Mountain, North Carolina, to cut a Frasier fir.  IMG_2722 - Copy Our favorite tree farm is a very small, family run operation.IMG_2723 - Copy    A yellow bow saw is provided.    IMG_2737As is a measuring stick, marked up to nine feet.IMG_2724 - CopyIt’s a pretty secluded place.IMG_2728 - CopyThere’s no piped-in Christmas music, and Santa Claus is nowhere to be seen, but Lovely and Little are still on their best behavior.  IMG_2743Trimmings are free for the taking, rather than bundled up and sold.   IMG_2751Once you have made your selection, just carry it to the cashier,  who is one of the owner’s granddaughters.   IMG_2754The owner’s son will measure it and then net it for you.  IMG_2753 At only $7 per foot, it’s easy to see why five trees seems reasonable to the buyer of these fragrant beauties!IMG_2758Big makes sure the tree is ready for the hour-long ride down the mountain.

O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
How richly God has decked thee!
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
How richly God has decked thee!
Thou bidst us true and faithful be,
And trust in God unchangingly.
O Christmas Tree! O Christmas Tree!
How richly God has decked thee!"

What are your Christmas tree traditions?

10 comments:

  1. What a great tradition. I only do two trees so hats off to you!

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  2. Beautiful! I wish we would do a real tree, but we just have never made the effort.

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  3. We have a similar farm that we go to every year. We know everyone there and they always help us find the best tree. It's so much fun. How wonderful that you're decorating so many! We have only done one large tree each year...but we always talk about doing a second (due to the insane amounts of ornaments we've accumulated). Perhaps this will be the year. You've inspired me! (We adore Christmas around here and definitely understand the Buddy spirit!)

    H.H.

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  4. Sorry for any confusion, but we decorate only one tree! If we do a second, we usually will purchase it from the local high school's tree sale.

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  5. What a wonderful tradition! That farm looks like a great place.

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  6. We used to go to a tree farm with the kids when they were little and make it an outing - I have fond memories of the entire affair. I'm sorry to say that my husband does not share the enthusiasm of yours - the burden lies with me to festicize the house!

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  7. What a wonderful place! And so honest and down home... I bet your house smells divine!

    We have a faux (sounds better than fake or artificial!) tree. Just easier for us with Mike.

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  8. What a wonderful tradition! Because of where we live, no Frasier Firs grow nearby, just White Pines. And since Frasiers are my favorite, we buy from a tree stand. All the best to you this holiday season. (And good for your hubby for holding out for a great woman who likes Christmas!)

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  9. Your pictures bring back sweet memories of our Christmas tree outings when everyone was at home but now that all the children are out are of the nest, we only do the "fake" ones which I "spruce" up with live branches for that wonderful smell.

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  10. Now that is what I call a beautiful family tradition. I wish we could have a real tree but the ones that are sturdy enough to survive the heat of summer are not very nice to look at.

    I love the story about your husband's ex too!

    Great post!

    Best wishes,
    Natasha.

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