Our family has been going to Hensler's Tree Nursery, located in Northern Indiana for many years. Eons. It's in a book somewhere that we have to go.
The ooziness of Christmas there is simply perfect. Mrs. Claus greeting you into the warmth of the shops. Santa waiting to hear your list with candy canes in tow. Horse drawn wagons taking you out to the tree fields. There's just nothing better.
We always go the day after Thanksgiving so without fail this year, we were out there. The weather was absolutely perfect! With Black Friday so often calling for our attention, it is so nice to get away from the hustle of the city and escape to the simple task of picking a tree.
But not just any ole' tree. The tree. The perfect tree. For us that is usually a Frasier Fir. With its mid-length needles and spicy, citrus smell, the nobility of the frasiers really appeal to our traditionally styled home. It fits in well with us goof balls. This was the first year that it took us forever to find the tree. FOREVER. FOR to the EVER. It was crazy. There were a lot of tears.
On a side note I was very proud of us. We had $100 budgeted this month to purchase our Christmas tree and our wreath. I had already spent about $15 on our wreath which meant we had $85 for our tree. And so, of course, everywhere we looked there were 10 foot trees that were $95. Those all seemed to be the beautiful ones. But those were a) not in our budget and b) too tall for our ceilings (we have 10 foot ceilings but need room for that star, yo).
We did finally find a "9 foot tree" that was perfect for us. I have that in air quotes because we had to chop a foot off of the thing. It still scraped the ceiling like some caged robo monkey and so even more had to come off. So, yeah, I'm glad we went with the "9 foot tree". Oh and the photo above is missing Calvin because, well, he was sobbing on the ground. It was one of those days. We celebrate the ups and the downs around here. On a plus side my hair is starting to grow out. So we've got that.
After tree cutting we haul the sucker in from the field and they shake it and bail it. And trust me, you want to get that sucker shook. Otherwise you could take home a nest of mice. Nice...
After tree bailing you put your tree on the friendly little tractor and then you go back to the Santa village and load your tree onto your car. I love every little bit of this day.
After we all get our trees loaded up we eat. My amazing in-laws reserve a picnic area for us each year at the tree farm, complete with a pavilion, picnic tables, and fire ring. The tree farm gets a fire going for us which is good, because by the time we are done picking out our tree, we are ready for roasting some hot dogs and relaxing!
Every year we have the best food. Let's face it, it's basically just leftovers from the day before but everything is delicious and we have the best time! The cousins all get to spend time together and play, the grown ups sit around talking, it's perfection!
After that we all went to visit Santa village. Mrs. Claus is there welcoming everyone, there are lots of animals to see, things for kids to climb on, it's so much fun! Not to mention there are loads of gift shops to purchase ornaments, wreaths you can special order, kettle corn, cookies, and more!
If you have never gone to get a fresh tree from a farm, one that you have to cut down with an actual saw, you must this season. There is nothing else quite like it. I know you will love it!
See you next year, Henslers! Thanks for the memories!