Commonplace; rather ordinary.
But to us it is was rather extraordinary.
We went and got a live tree for Christmas this year.
Why is this so special?
We've never had one.
And this one, we cut down ourselves.
I was a little apprehensive about doing this. I didn't really know what I was doing. I've never cut down a tree before and wasn't sure what all was involved.
We made it to the tree farm with 25 minutes before closing. The men who helped us get our saw gave us a funny smirk. I know exactly what they were thinking. They thought I was crazy for taking three kids out to cut down a tree. They thought we couldn't do it. I had to laugh to myself. They obviously had never encountered us before.
We walked back through the field. All the way to the furthest corner. We occasionally stopped and inspected a tree, but we couldn't find one that quite measured up. I kept reminding the kids that we had to get a little one because we had to get it in the Jetta's trunk. I was secretly a little nervous about how I would ever make this happen.
After tramping through most of the field, we stopped and found the perfect tree. The kids thought it was a little small, but it would do.
Riley started sawing.
And made it look easy.
Rhianna took a turn.
Reagan, determined, sawed some as well.
I didn't think we were making quick enough progress, so I said I would take a turn. I'm embarrassed to admit that I could hardly do it. It was HARD! I had to surrender the saw to Riley and tell him to keep working at it.
I was starting to panic. It was getting dark, fast. We were still sawing away and the end was no where in sight. I was really getting nervous I was going to have to tramp back through the field and ask the guys to finish it off for me.
I didn't see it coming. Riley, fed up from sawing, decided to hit it like a linebacker. He ran a few steps, put his shoulder down, and knocked into it.
My boy is becoming a man right before my eyes.
We loaded the tree onto the sled and started back.
We went in and paid while the men wrapped it tightly in twine.
When I came out of the shop, I noticed that there was a drive to pull around and have them load up your tree. The line of cars was rather long and I was cold, tired, and starving. I didn't feel like waiting to have them load up the tree for me.
I told Riley: "Let's carry the tree together and load it in the car."
He replied with: "I'll just carry it myself."
He picked the 6 1/2 foot tree up, flung it over his shoulders and carried it the quarter mile to the car.
I hope those guys who laughed at us earlier saw him.
It was a proud mama moment.
I know that a lot of people cut down their own tree every year. I know that this isn't that exciting or special. It's not getting the tree that was the achievement. It was seeing my kids determined to get something they wanted. To see them work together. To see them get creative and find ways to solve a problem. To hear them say "we won't give up". If there is one thing I want my children to know from me, it is to never give up on your dreams. Even if it is as simple as cutting down your own Christmas tree.