thrill of the (tree)hunt

Mmm the holidays. This time of year is just too much for me. All the cinnamon smells and cider and hats and lights. And of course, Christmas trees. Last year we didn't have a tree of our own, so we had to somehow make this year doubly good. We did our best. This was where our effort started:

It seems like a lot of my favorite times start in the mountains.

They're one of few places that guarantee adventure and views. 

Since before I can remember, my family has gone to the same spot to find our own Christmas tree. It's legal here with a permit. So 'Idaho', I know. But country bumpkin or not, I love this tradition. Buying a tree is fine and all... but ours always has more character. 

 

We don't kid around about it. My parents bring up a stove, and the day is made of chili and hot chocolate and Schnapps and a lot of cookies.

This year, we had some friends join us. There were a few little ones scampering about. I think that the way small kids react to snow is how we all should. With a little fear, a little amazement, and a lot of excitement. 

Bentley sort of acted that way about it, too. 

It's always a process finding the perfect tree, and usually takes a bit of hiking. The forest is so surreal in the snow. Everything is green and white as far as the eye can see. Where we go is thick with trees, but it takes time to find the perfect Christmas companion. 

I love this photo. It reminds me of a hunter returning to camp with his prize. Which I guess is exactly what's happening, except the prize is green and smells good( :

Obligatory family photo

Obligatory family photo

We said goodbye to a lot of friends, packed up the stove, the sled, the food. Then fastened the trees to the car in true festive fashion.

And that was that. It was a simple and sweet day, with so many of my favorite things- friends, family, food, and adventure.

These sort of trips always satisfy for a little while- that need to soak up experiences and views and new places. With the right perspective even places we are used to can feel new for a day. But we are feeling that bigger pull again, and new ventures are coming soon!