We're Going on a Tree Hunt

One of my favorite traditions growing up was going up to the Santa Cruz Mountains the day after Thanksgiving to cut down our Christmas tree.
Kevin and I continued this tradition when we first got married, but haven't gone since we have had kids....until this year! The past 4 years we have gone to Home Depot, but this year we decided to resurrect the tradition of cutting down our tree!
The drive takes over an hour, but it is beautiful & scenic.
My favorite part of the drive? Listening to Christmas music!
Since we get our tree the day after Thanksgiving, this is the first day that I "allow" Christmas music to be played, so the drive to get our tree is filled with my favorite Christmas music!
Once you get into the mountains & past the windy roads, you come to a beautiful clearing, filled with Christmas trees!
There are several Christmas Tree farms, but my family has gone to the same one for the past 30 years. Unfortunately, they closed down last year, but they owned another tree farm a mile away, so we went to that one this year.
This tree farm was much more hilly & diverse than the one we were used to, but that's okay, we were up for an adventure!

This is the one! Our tree, before we cut it down:

My dad, Jimmy and Kevin carry the tree to the truck:
Kate helping Kevin & Jimmy carry the tree back to the truck:
The Larson Family 2010 Christmas Tree!

I still have to put up the garland on our staircase & put up our stockings.
Our new house doesn't have a mantel on the fireplace, so I am trying to figure out where to put them. Right now they are just laying on the dining room table!

Are your decorations up?
Do you cut down your tree, go to a tree lot or (gasp!) put up an artificial tree?

We had a fun time cutting down our tree & I was so excited to introduce this tradition to my girls because I have so many great memories with my family cutting down our tree.
I asked Kate if she had fun cutting down the tree.
Her response? "I like going to Home Depot better."
Oh snap. Hopefully she changes her mind by next year!

And, don't forget....The Virtual Cookie Exchange starts the week of December 6th!


  1. hahah that's funny! kids! I love going searching for the perfect tree! what a beautiful place you guys went to. Wow! We are going this Friday to find our tree. I probably won't do artifical for a loooong, long time. I just love the real ones so much. I can't wait to start decorating.. have to get the house in order first. sigh.

  2. So funny about Home Depot! LOVE the tree lot, we used to go to a similar place in Sonoma growing up, makes me miss those days! You can gasp, I gave in 4 years ago after vehemently opposing Erik's idea for so long! It's very Costco pretty, but I miss the scent of a real tree! We are going to a small lot with my parents this weekend, my mom has the will power to not give in! I'm going to buy a little Charlie Brown tree so the kids don't grow up "deprived". :)

  3. beautiful! what a great tradition. we always got a real tree growing up. sometimes cut down, sometimes store bought. my husband never cared about getting a tree so i finally bought a fake one one year and that's what we've used. until our basement flooded last year and i tossed it. so this year we were going to get our first real tree! we've been talking about it all year! however, now we've moved for my husband's job and live in corporate housing and they said NO LIVE TREES! i'm so sad. and really don't want to buy another fake one :( i will live vicariously through your fun tree experience!

  4. I love how your daughter's always match on special occasions! It makes me want to have another one:)

  5. We are all about the fake tree.
    I have been planning a post about it. If we had one more real tree, it was going to ruin Christmas forever in Casa Case.

  6. What a fun tradition! And about the stockings, last year my mom found this rod iron standing thing at Kirkland's to hang out stockings on. I don't know if you have Kirkland's in CA, but it is really pretty and would look nice in front of a fireplace.

  7. What a fun tradition! And great pictures too, by the way. We did the real tree for a while but it scratched up our walls getting it in and out, so we decided to go fake. Maybe if we move into a house with wider hallways and better door-to-hallway space, we'll go back to the real thing. I agree, there's nothing like the smell of a fresh Christmas tree!

  8. If you would leave your tree up past the 26th, you would be getting more for your money. ;)

    We chop ours down in the mountains after trekking through the snow Christmas Vacation style... $10 for as big of a tree as you want.


  9. So much fun! We wanted to start this tradition this year too-- and got snowed out. Maybe next year we'll have a 4-wheel-drive vehicle and the snow won't be an issue. :P

    HILARIOUS that Kate liked going to Home Depot better! The picture of Claire getting the tape measure out to "measure the tree" cracked me up. :)

  10. It is a LOT colder in Wa... so our trip to the tree farm is freezing!! We now visit the tree farm for fun... and pick out an already cut tree!! haha! the last 2 years we ended up at Home Depot! but I hate that! ;)

    We put our kids names on the Calendar each year for the Star... so after Abby does it this year... I will write Sammy's name on the December page of 2011 with a star next to his name!! =) we have a little tree that the other kid puts an angel on .. but it is not THE one!! ha ha! ;)

    our tree hunting is planned for Saturday... in the cold... freezing rain... we may end up at home depot??

  11. Tree killer! hahaha jest kiddin'

    Looks beautiful!

  12. Hello, I admire your blog so much! You take beautiful pictures. Do you mind telling me what kind of camera you use? Thanks for all the inspiration!

  13. This could be something I made up in my mind or dreamed about . . . but I think we used to do this when I was a kid. But we take our kids to a field trip to a parking lot or grocery store or something super special like that.

  14. we cut down our tree too...started it last year. but, we have snow on the ground and cold weather we deal with! but, it is so much fun!

    your tree looks great! i have a few more things to get out for Christmas and then i am done. the girls loved helping with the tree this year too and we have to do a little tree for them now.

    where did you get the girls' cute vests...i love them!

  15. I love your stockings! I'm making ours this year...and hopefully they'll be the ones we use forever!

  16. Thats such a great tradition, you & your family are adorable, Merry Christmas!!



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