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Charlie Brown Christmas Tree

Sunday, June 19, 2011

 Michael took picking out a Christmas tree to a whole new level.  Picking out just the right tree was of utmost importance to him. Christmas was his favorite holiday. He had many romantic ideas about how the whole month of December should look, from the choosing of the tree to Christmas Day. Holiday traditions were very dear to him.   Our den has a huge vaulted ceiling which enabled us to get extremely tall trees, which we all loved.  We always went out as a family to pick the tree from a Christmas tree lot in our town.  We would all amble in and out of the trees trying to find our favorites.  He would always want to see one that was not officially out yet but still leaning up against a back fence.  He would ask for our top choices, then try to help us see that his choice was the best!  Most times, we ended up with his choice.  As the kids got older, they told him that he always did this and he became much more diplomatic the past few years.

  I ran across these photos while perusing through iphoto on his laptop.  I had not ever seen this one of he and Michael Anthony.  I loved it.  It was such a happy day.  We were lease purchasing a large piece of property and had decided that we would cut a tree down from the land.  On the first Sunday of December 2008, we bought hot chocolate for everyone from Starbucks and drove forty minutes out to the land, hauling our ranger on the trailer behind us.  Once we got there, all five of us climbed in the ranger and drove all over the place looking for the perfect tree.  We had so much fun driving, walking around, and joking around together.  We found a tree that we all agreed upon and the two Boy Scouts began working on taking it down together.  The girls and I sat in the ranger and talked while watching them be "the men".

Once we got the tree home, we realized how hard it was to decorate because of how the limbs grew up vertically.  We made the most of our Charlie Brown Christmas tree and it was beautiful with all of its open spaces.  We all laughed about the tree and agreed that it was the only ugly tree we had ever chosen but loved it anyway because of the experience in the woods chopping it down as a family.  That December, we were going through our home study for the adoption which we were pursuing.  We were sitting at our breakfast table one morning, while a man and woman were in our home for the in-home interview and they were speaking with all of the children.  We heard this huge crash that came from the den.  We all quickly got up and ran to the den... our Charlie Brown tree was face down with broken ornaments all over the brick floor. They helped us put the tree back where it belonged and then picked up all of the ornaments.  Many were damaged beyond repair and countless ones were glued back together later that day.  We all went back to the interview and, of course, we still passed the home study! We had a love hate relationship with that tree that year.  It was a great story for us to tell.  We all loved that tree, in spite of itself.

This last picture is my screen saver on my laptop.  Michael took it of us before he and Michael Anthony cut down our sweet tree.  He was so happy to be in the woods with his family, sharing his love of the outdoors with all of us.  He was like a kid in a candy shop, jumping out to look at trees, pointing at different ones, calling us over to him to inspect, all the while sipping on his grande cafe mocha no whip... his all time favorite drink from Starbucks.  I don't know how we will pick a tree this year without him.  It was always a great kick-off to the holiday season of doing many things together as a family.  I am thinking about doing something totally different, like just going somewhere else for the Christmas season.  I don't know yet, but I am already aware that the need to do something is critical.  He brought Christmas alive every day.  Our children share the same love and excitement for the Christmas season, as
do I.  These pictures stir up in me the happiness and joy that we felt as a family from Thanksgiving all the way to New Year's Day.  It was always about being together.

1 comments:

Anonymous Says:
June 22, 2011 at 11:42 PM

Just wanted to say I enjoyed this story of your Charlie Brown Christmas tree and how you came to love it :) I also loved those beautiful pictures, thank-you for sharing. We also chop down our own tree every year at a nearby farm, and like Michael, I am very particular about which one comes home! I think you are very wise to begin planning something completely different for the holidays this year. I can say from experience that this approach does help to get you through it.

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