Each year we look forward to our special “Family Christmas Tree Day”, when we all go out to find our perfect Christmas tree. I say “day”, because we like to make a whole day out of this fun family event. We bundle up with our boots, coats, hats, gloves, and scarves to keep us warm, because there’s usually lots of snow! Even though this year there was only a few inches of snow on the ground, it was still unseasonably bitter cold. After we find the perfect tree, we go out to dinner, and then we come home and prepare for the festival of decorations 😉
My husband & I have been married for 21 wonderful years, and have been blessed with 4 “not so little anymore” children in our family. I guess you could say that we’re not your typical family. My children are all musicians, singers, actors, and artists of some kind, and all that being said, you might be able to imagine all of the silly fun we have in our home! I like to look at this way… we’re making lots of wonderful memories 😉
Today, I thought we could have some fun sharing our “special” day with you!
So… here are some tips from our family to help you find that perfect Christmas tree!
1. First, you need to find a good tree farm with lots of different types & sizes of Christmas trees to choose from.
We like to go to a farm about 25 minutes away called Grangers Tree Farm. If you don’t know where to find a tree farm in your area, simply google the phrase “christmas tree farms” and include your state.
Did you know…
– Christmas tree are grown in all 50 states including Alaska & Hawaii
– For every Christmas tree harvested, 2-3 seedlings are planted in it’s place to insure a future harvest
– There are approx. 1 million acres currently used in the growth of Christmas trees, and each acre can provide the daily oxygen requirements for 18 people
– The Christmas tree industry employs over 100,000 people yearly between 21,000 tree growers in the US
– Christmas trees have been sold commercially in the United States since about 1850
– It takes 7-15 years to grow a tree of 6ft, which is the average purchased height
– The top selling Christmas tree varieties are; White Pine, Balsam Fir, Douglas Fir, Fraser Fir, Noble Fir, Scotch Pine, and Virginia Pine
2. You need to be happy about the task at hand!
Don’t forget that 80% of the fun comes from the fact that you are together & making memories – not just the hunt itself!
3. Don’t just settle for any tree!
Take some time in choosing your family tree… what’s the hurry anyway 😉
Here is a nice guide that explains all of the different types of Christmas trees. You could read through the guide and look over the pictures before you go tree shopping. That way, you’ll have a better understanding of what you would like before you go.
4. Measure the tree to make sure that it will fit in your home.
My son is standing next to the tree, so we can gauge the approximate height of this possible choice 😉
5. Be sure to examine the tree out from all sides.
6. Make sure you all like the tree that you’re picking out!
But… if you LOVE it, it’s that much better 😉
8. Take some time to take in the atmosphere!
Many tree farms have others things to enjoy such as; petting zoos, a cozy fire, and goodies!
9. Take a few minutes to rest before the trip home.
We like to take a few minutes to sit around the cozy fire, and have a few goodies.
10. Cover the floor with plastic, and get your tree stand ready.
To protect your carpet from the water, sap, and anything else that might drip on it, put down a layer of plastic (something water proof – I use a garbage bag cut open) before you put your tree stand in it’s place. Make sure your stand is in good working order, after all that’s the only thing that will be holding this whole presentation together 😉
I think getting your tree into the stand, and having it stay up properly is one of the biggest hassles of putting up a real tree. But… it doesn’t have to be a big deal anymore, or so they told me at the tree farm! This year we picked up a new tree stand called the “Stand Straight Tree Stand”. All you need, so they said, was a pre-drilled hole in the bottom of the tree trunk, place the peg into the hole, then stand the tree up in the middle of the stand. With a 9ft “very full” tree, I wasn’t quite ready to sing the praises of this new stand yet…
11. Leave the tree bundled up until you get it in the tree stand.
We have found this to be such an easier way to handle the tree, instead of dragging it through the house… dropping needles and small branches along the way 😉
12. Fill the tree stand with water.
Because our tree was a fresh cut tree, we could bring it directly into the house & put it into the stand, but if you buy a tree from a roadside stand, be sure to cut a fresh slice off of the bottom of the tree’s trunk so it can properly absorb water.
Did you know… a fresh cut tree will drink a quart or more of water each day for the first week it is brought into your home?
Tip: To make watering VERY easy, simply place a long tube of some sort down into the tree stand, then, using a funnel, pour in enough water to almost fill the basin. For the tube, you could use a piece of pvc pipe, a piece of an old garden hose, or any other type of long narrow tubing.
13. Remove the netting from the tree.
14. Trim the tree as necessary.
After you remove the netting and the limbs relax into place, you might find that the tree needs a bit of trimming here & there. Some folks like to let their tree relax for at least a day before decorating, especially if the tree came into the home directly from the field. * Please remember to shake the tree as much as possible before bringing it into your home, as you could end up with pools of water from the melting snow if you don’t – yikes.
15. Let it go & pray it stays up!
Many times we have had to hide a little guide wire hooked to the wall to keep the tree from toppling over, but this year, we wanted to try this new stand to see if our troubles were over 😉
15. Now, decorate to your heart’s content!
I hope you & your family enjoys getting your tree ready for the holidays as much as we did!
I’ll be sure to share lots of pictures of our cottage, as soon as we get everything ready!