When I was young my dad used to go out to the farm he owned in Wisconsin and cut down 20 or so pine trees for Christmas. He'd give them to family and friends year after year, but at some point the trees started to get a little picked over so we'd cut down fewer. Sometimes they'd be a little thin or crooked or miss a side, but that's what I always knew. Our tree always went in a corner, so you wouldn't really need all the sides anyway...
One winter we didn't go out to the farm to get a tree. The weather was bad, but the trees were also getting a little too big or weren't quite big enough. And then it happened again... and again. We bought trees at local stores during those years, but a couple years after having a kid we decided we wanted to have the whole experience of cutting down our own tree. We thought about going back to my dad's farm, but decided against it. My dad was in his '80's and while we were willing to risk our lives cutting down a tree during deer hunting season (those bullets travel across borders and so do people as we discovered one year), we didn't want to bring Riley out into that. Side note: I wish I had a picture of me in my winter 'farm' coat. The coat is the exact color of deer and the only thing that probably saved my life is that the farm truck was so loud and stinky it made it that a deer wouldn't hang out around it.
My dad sold his farm this past year. I do wish we could have gotten one last tree there, but let's face it... while my dad's trees were free, no one provided Christmas sausage and hot cider. There was no bonfire, or tractor ride or gift shop - all things that we've come to enjoy about this new experience. As much as I'd love my farm tradition to be Riley's tradition, it's nice that we've found a new one of our own.
Obviously, we spent part of November exploring our favorite Minnesota tree farm. Make sure to follow the rest of the blog circle around to see where they explored in MN this past month. Next up is the very talented Tina Fischer from Tina Fischer Photography.