The decorations are up. It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas!
This year is the first time we have had a real tree (first time ever for me). I love it, it smells lovely and looks so much better, than our old fake one. I am someone that loves to get the tree up at the beginning of December. So when we heard about an event near us on the 03rd December to get our own tree we had to go.
Fairly near to us is a local nature reserve which host an event called ‘pull a pine’ every other Christmas. The premise is simple, to help conservation you turn up to help chop down pine trees which are taking over somewhat. As a thank you you can take home your very own locally grown sustainable tree for free (apart from car parking). Easy, I thought, this will be fun, I thought. The reality for me was a little different. We went with a group of friends and BB and LP. Armed with our own saws, bungee cords, and groundsheets to wrap the trees in (no netting machines here) we were ready. We mistakenly (I realise now) did not take the pushchair for LP. It was muddy and not ideal, however we did not realise quite how far we would have to walk. It wasn’t actually too far, but with a small child in tow, it’s far. LP would walk a bit, get carried a bit, cry
a bit, a lot, as he wanted to be constantly walking. On our way to the area, we saw lots of people walking back to their cars with their Christmas trees. They looked pretty good, I was hopeful. I had heard some good and bad things before we went, stories of naked trees, that looked more like sticks. Having not had a real tree before I was worried about pine needles falling off everywhere, these trees were not your Nordmann Firs after all.
When we got to the pine tree area, it was actually quite hard to find a tree. I mean there were loads, but they were in awkward places, they might look good from the front, but rubbish from behind, or they were too tall, or too small, or not full enough. It was hard for LP to walk around too. We were on heathland which was prickly and he just kept falling over. We decided that J and BB along with our friends would go and find the ‘perfect tree’. It felt like they were gone for ages, phone reception was rubbish, and I realised my friend had LPs snacks. Then finally on the horizon J returned triumphant, with an amazing looking tree. I was excited, YES, a mega tree!…..No, on getting closer to it, it did look great, but was massive. J was despondent, it had been hard work sawing it down, and I was not the most enthusiastic. Also J had not actually found our friends, so had dragged this tree back by himself. BB was super happy, he thought it was the best thing ever. J was not happy with my reaction, to say the least. He sawed a bit of the bottom to make it smaller. I still wasn’t happy, and now we were becoming irritated with each other. At that moment our friends emerged with their trees. They were happy with what they had, and took one look at ours and also decided it was not good. They took BB and LP for us, and we headed back out with one of our friends to find another tree. We felt slightly better now, but it was getting cold, and windy, and I just wanted a tree, anything would have done. We found one, it seemed ok, I wasn’t entirely convinced, but truly I just wanted J to be ok, and not be in a grump with me.
So with the trees wrapped (our one and our friends wrapped together) we headed back to the car. The walk back took ages, toddlers and trees are heavy!
After much bungee and rope wrapping the trees securely to the roof of the car, we set off to a pub for lunch. I still wasn’t convinced though and was ready to reserve judgement for when we were home. J responded by saying that was fine, but I needed to drive so he could have a drink after his hard work. I was happy with that, so after lunch we set off home. Except we had to stop a couple of times as the trees were trying to escape from the roof. They must have sensed my dissatisfaction.
We finally got home, unwrapped the trees and this is what we had.
You might think they look ok, ours was the one on the left as you look at the picture, our friends was the one on the right. We quickly realised that the branches would not even support that funny angel hair type tinsel stuff. We looked at them, we laughed at them, and ourselves, our day had fun. The trees were dumped by our garage. We decided at this moment to hot foot it to Homebase, where we picked ourselves up a Nordmann Fir (so did our friends). It looked amazing compared to what we had cut down earlier.
Here is our actual tree all decorated.
Not being used to a real tree, I’m a little paranoid about it dying before Christmas, and whether I have watered it too much or not enough, or will the needles suddenly spring off the tree?
LP loves to keep prodding the decorations, which keep falling off as a result. But, I’m pleased with it, and we are so glad to have gone with a real tree, I think its something we will do again, though we might go to a Christmas tree farm next time. There is something really nice about picking and cutting down your own tree, and the boys had such a lovely time. BB did find a small
tree branch, which he has proudly got displayed in his room.
One set of the friends we went with did keep their ‘pulled pine’, it’s pretty massive, but it’s up and decorated (it may or may not have fallen over once).
Have you got your Christmas trees up and decorated yet?