Sunday, November 30, 2014

oh christmas tree

nick and ellie
For the past few years, our Black Friday tradition has been to get a Christmas tree.  While we may do a bit of online shopping, we bypass the hordes of people shopping all night (and starting on Thanksgiving Day now!) and instead, spend the day together as a family.  This year, we headed into the Blue Ridge Mountains and set out to find a tree.

chopping down a tree
We chose Mistletoe Meadows because you get to cut down the tree yourself.  After looking through hundreds of tress, we found "the one" and Jacob set to work.  Christopher and Nicholas took turns holding back the branches so that he could cut easier.

sibling love
The little kids had fun playing amongst the trees and in the patchy snow but Ellie HATED it if the branches got anywhere near her.  I may have set her down in front of a tree so I could take a picture of her but she started crying hysterically so I had to pick her up before getting a picture.

riding the horses
After dragging the tree down the hill and then up another one, the kids wanted to check out the horses while the tree got bundled up.

big kids
Lexie. Ben. Nick. Chris

hot cocoa and then ready to go
Cute kids enjoying their hot chocolate.  Once the tree was bundled and loaded on the van, we headed home so that it could fulfill its Christmas destiny.

nick and ellie
So excited about a tree in the house!!

unwrapping the tree
Jacob got the tree all set up- and this year we didn't get sap all over the ceiling!!  He let the branches fall for awhile and then spent the evening putting lights up.

nick's new ornament
We spent the next morning decorating the tree.  Nick was VERY excited about his new "Jaws" ornament from Grandma and Grandpa.

decorating the tree
Putting up the ornaments is one of my favorite parts of the holiday season.  Unwrapping each one brings back memories from the years before.  We get an ornament on every vacation we take (and sometimes several!) and the kids get new ones every year, too, so this year we were only able to get about half of our ornaments up on the tree.  I'm thinking that next year we'll need to get two trees!

kids in christmas jammies
Once the tree was decorated, it was time to do our annual "kids in Christmas pajamas" picture in front of the tree.  It's important to get some silly ones, too!

cooperation... or not
Ben and Chris wanted their pictures taken with Ellie but her smiles didn't last for long.

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