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Saturday, November 26, 2005

So we got our Christmas tree today.

The day starts with trying to get everything ready - snow pants, sleds, hats, dog, dog crate, saw, hot tea and cookies, snow boots, kids, tie-downs for the tree, mother-in-law, husband, me, and gloves. Wait, gloves are a problem. Everyone seems to just have one glove. More gloves are found; everyone other than Kira is gloved. Finally find some one-size-fits-all-but-you-just-hope-they-don't-get-wet kind of gloves, stuff six people in a car that seats five, and we are off into the mountains.

On Kira's orders, it had snowed an inch the day before, so everything is nicely coated in white. Which isn't an problem and rather pretty, as long as you are not on a wet road on the shady side of the mountain. Within a few minutes, we pass an accident, where two cars have plowed into the side of the mountain and have strewn snow mobiles all over the road. I tell Randall to slow down.

Kira gets bored and wants to play 'I spy'. I point out that other than white and green, there aren't a lot of choices at the moment. Tic-tac-toe then? I tell her that if I look down at a paper while riding in the back seat, I will be barfing all over her lap within thirty seconds. She settles for drawing.

We make it to Banks and buy our Christmas tree cutting permit, milk duds, chex mix, two bottles of water, and a bottle of Pepsi for the boys. We then drive up to Garden Valley, and take the road up towards Silver Creek. I tell Randall to slow down.

After a few miles, the snow gets deeper, and the road is covered in slush. There is also a rather steep cliff down to the frozen Payette River. I tell Randall to slow down.

We arrive at our usual spot, and start hiking up looking for trees. Trees are covered with snow. The only way to see if they are even remotely even is to shake off the snow. Which makes the snow land on me. After a couple of trees, I am coated. The next tree, I smile nicely and ask Randall to shake the tree. Which he does. He looks so cute with snow down his neck.

We find two 'maybe' choices up a steep ridge. I decide to keep looking. My longsuffering husband sighs deeply, and lets me. I point to a likely looking spot up a steep ridge on the other side. He looks at me resignedly and tells me to have fun and shout loudly if I find something. I trudge of the hill, and, bingo, several likely looking candidates. Find one I like. Call Randall. A few minutes later, Randall and Josh arrive with the saw, we cut a 12 foot prime specimen that gained everyone approval, and then the menfolk drag the whole thing back to the car, far, far away down the hill.

They are not complaining. After dragging a 130 lb deer two miles out of the hills recently, this is a piece of cake.

Back at the car, we have hot tea and cookies, and Kira and I build a punky-haired snowman. The boys amuse themselves with the sleds. The dog has decided long ago that snow is just too darn cold, and is hiding in her crate. Randall ties the tree to the car, we make it home, and set it up.

Everyone disappears while I try to make the Christmas lights work. Bulbs are missing in massive amounts. I put on some Christmas music to get in the mood. My favorite - Emmylou Harris' Light of the Stable. It is not working - every single one of the %@#$ lights isn't working. I retrieve a bag of spare bulbs and work my way down the line. Finally, I get the lights working and on the tree. Then, mayhem: My daughter, a neighbor girl, and Toby decide to help hang ornaments. I think we have too many ornaments. The poor tree is literally groaning. By the end, they put one on and another falls off. As I am typing this (after everyone has gone to bed) the silence is periodically broken by the rhythmic plop of ornaments hitting the tree skirt. No matter. It was a fun day, and the tree is up.

Happy First of Advent to every last one of you!


Isaiah 11: 1-2:
A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse;
from his roots a Branch will bear fruit.
The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him
the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding,
the Spirit of counsel and of power,
the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD -

posted by Birgit
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