Monday, November 30, 2009

Like many moms, I often plan family outings that I think we will all enjoy and that will also add to my childrens' "memory box" of childhood. I always start our family adventure with picture perfect mental snapshots of how these outings will go. My expectations can often cause disappointment later. Fortunately, I'm able to move beyond the disappointment by replacing those snapshots with the "home movies" of how life really unfolds on a family outing--tantrums, bloopers and all.

So yesterday we set out on one of our family outings. Having spent Thanksgiving with my parents at their cottage in northern Wisconsin, we decided to stop to cut down a Christmas tree on the way back to Chicago.

It was cold. It was wet. It was muddy. The kids were tired...dead tired, and yet I insisted and persisted. It could still be a picture perfect day.

The good thing is, there were LOTS of trees to pick from. The bad thing is there were LOTS of trees to pick from.

We couldn't drive our car to the trees because we don't have 4 wheel drive, so we huffed to the furthest corner of the mud pit farm to find our special tree.

When you're at a Christmas tree farm, it's hard to have perspective. It's really hard to tell how big your tree (and your space at home) is! We ended up with a big tree...a really BIG big, it's going to need a serious shearing just to fit through our door!

Of course, we had to haul our tree all the way back to our car through the mud we had already slid through. My muscles still ache from carrying the tree "just 100 more yards." (I kept telling the kids it was "just 100 more yards" to keep them moving forward.)

So my mental snapshot of cutting down a beautiful Christmas tree and lightly pulling it through the crunchy snow will be replaced by a more realistic memory of dragging an oversized, exceedingly heavy tree through lots and lots of mud. But we laughed...a lot. And at the end of our mud-filled journey, we were welcomed into this little log cabin filled with candy canes, hot cocoa and treats for the kids.

I'd say that's one for the memory box.


Rachel said...

Sounds like a great day with lots of things that your kids will remember with a smile on their faces!

Denise said...

Where did you guys go to get your tree? Was it in Wisconsin still, so you had to drive with it on top of your van the rest of the way home?!