Blogmas 2014- Day 1 Favorite Christmas Tradition

This year, I'm participating in Sandra's, at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom, Blogmas 2014.  If you want to join in, you can go over to her post, by clicking here, and see what it's all about.  

When I was a kid, growing up, we never had fake trees.  I loved everything about them. The smell, the way they looked, and even more so, the going out as a family in the cold.  It was always a hunt whether at a tree far or a parking lot full of precut trees.  When I was younger it was the parking lot.  There was a place about a mile from our house that we would drive to.  We'd walk through tons of trees leaning against walls and fences.  My dad would hold each one up, shaking them a little bit and asking what we thought.  We all got to be involved in finding the perfect tree.  As we got older, we started going to tree farms instead of the parking lot.  We'd get a sled and a saw and walk between aisles and aisles in fields, full of gorgeous uncut trees in all shapes, colors, and sizes.  Most of the time it was incredibly cold, our feet, hands and noses were all red and frozen, but there always seemed to be something magical about it.  

After we had Ben, I was determined to continue the tradition. (I'm also a huge believer in supporting local farmers, but that's beside the point.) We had a live tree for a few years, even when he was only 3 months old.  Sydney was born and we continued the tradition. It was so much fun.  Taking them to the tree farm and finding the perfect tree.  Loading it up on top of the car and driving it home, where we would decorate it, making it our amazing little tree.  

Ben was about 3 or 4 years old when we noticed he had a horrible rash after decorating the tree. After taking him to the emergency room and the allergy doctor (making sure he didn't have a peanut exposure since he was allergic) we discovered that it was the tree, and our days of real live trees were coming to a close.  The next year, we got our first fake tree.  I do like that there isn't the clean up from dropped needles, but it's not quite the same.  We still enjoy the decorating of the tree and now I buy little scented icicle things that go in the tree to make it smell pretty.

My favorite Christmas tradition we have now, started back when Shawn and I were only dating.  Every year, Shawn's parents throw a huge family Christmas Eve party at their house.  There is tons of snacky type foods, cookies, lunch meat and cheeses, shrimp cocktail, alcohol, you name it.  The kids all play and run throughout the house and the adults all have a good time socializing until late in the evening.  We usually give presents to the people who don't stay the night.  In the past, we've stayed the night, however I don't know if that will continue with our family being so large any more.  Usually it's us, which is now 6 people and Shawn's brother and his family which is 4 people staying in two bedrooms at their parent's home.  There is just not a lot of room for 10 of us and all the crap 10 people require, not to mention 3 of those are in diapers, and don't forget presents.  Presents for that many people take up so much space!  It's complete insanity, but even if we don't decide to stay the night Christmas Eve, the party will always be a part of our family tradition.  We look forward to it every year! 


Penny said…
We had a real tree growing up but now have a fake one due to me developing the allergy. They are not the same, I agree :) I hope my girls have a sleep over at our house when they are grown up with families as well. Have a Merry Christmas :)
Sandra said…
I love your traditions, we always do real trees too. And the whole getting together on Christmas eve sounds a lot like my big family back in the day. I do miss that :)

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