o christmas tree #1

Our first tree was 3′ tall and purchased outside a drug store in Santa Clara, CA.  Since then we have had 12 Christmas trees and added 2 children to our family.  Some of the funniest stories of our marriage surround getting our Christmas tree. In the beginning, it always seemed to be an adventure.  
Year A:  I watched my husband whittle the trunk of tree down with his chainsaw [in the dark and pouring rain] so that it would fit into our tree stand.  
Year B:  We took our 18 month old to a tree farm to cut down our own tree.  After walking through knee deep mud and our little one taking a face plant, we looked at each other and agreed, without words, to abort mission.  We grabbed a tree from a lot on the way home. 
Year C:  Our favorite nursery nailed our tree stand on for us.  When we got it home, the tree had a considerable lean.  We piled coasters under one side of the stand to even it out.  A slight breeze would have blown that tree over.
I have considered getting an artificial tree, but where’s the fun in that?  We actually have it down to a science now.  Chalk that up to a little experience.  Our requirements:  a dry day, all 4 family members in attendance, the same local nursery, a larger tree stand, and a quick check to see if the tree stands straight – before it’s loaded onto the car. 
Lucky us, we found a pretty darn good-looking noble fir this year [no chainsaw required].  
Step 1:  get tree. check.
Step 2:  add ornaments.

{clockwise from top left}
1.  The original ornaments.  Purchased in 2000 for $2.99 for our very first tree.  Only a few remain, but I can’t leave them off.
2.  An ornament engraved with my name.  For the last 37 years, it has been on my grandmother’s tree [along with all of my cousin’s ornaments].  This is our first Christmas without her.  I lovingly hung it on my tree this year. 
3.  iheartny.  A little ornament to remind me of an amazing trip to New York City last December.
4. A bag of plastic ornaments purchased at Home Depot.  In 2007, I had a baby on the move and needed ornaments on the tree that wouldn’t break [or kill him if he bit one].  Certainly not designer, but we put them on our tree every year.  It makes my heart full remembering my boys as babies. 

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