The Festive Forrest (and a lot of rain)
Another major storm was sweeping through the Bay Area. The weather forecast read 100% chance of rain (not “showers” – downpour soak you through and through). So naturally we thought – this would be the perfect day to drive up to the local mountains, hike the hills and cut down this season’s Stream Christmas Tree.
Also, wouldn’t it be fun to take the two toddlers with us? It’ll be an adventure! (Yes. I am well aware this was a blog post in the making.)
I woke up to the sound of rain pounding down on the roof. The wind was howling through the trees lining our little slice of suburban heaven, making its presence all too well known against the 60-year-old walls of our house. (Note: Our street is presently flooded with the warm colors of autumnal leaves and the giant inflatable penguin in our front yard looks like he went on a serious bender last night and wasn’t in real good shape to blow himself back up today.)
Nana joined us, so an additional adult was at our disposal to wrangle muppets. I can only assume you’re now envisioning us setting out on our journey from within the comfortable confines of the MomMobile, which seats eight. (Or at least three adults and two muppets comfortably.) But no. My car features a naked top. I have been driving around these past two years without cargo rails.
We piled into Jon’s car – with Nana quite literally wedged in between the boys – and set off through the flooded streets of San Jose and winded our way toward the mudsliding Santa Cruz mountains with Nana in the backseat trying to teach the muppets to say, “Are we there yet?”
To the Christmas Tree Farm! (Lot 3)
The rain was dumping when we arrived. The muppets were wearing their superhero raincoats and monster boots. Because we were on a mission to ensure we got the right tree. I had my snowboarding jacket and some obnoxious white winter boots that Search chose for me yesterday at Target. (Now you know where I get my superb stylings from.)
Jon, however, was in full rain gear. Our family patriarch was Water Resistant through and through.
We splashed down into the mud, grabbed a saw on a stick, and headed for the hills. Search had charged ahead as though he owned the place. He was at one with nature. Literally as his toddler sprint continued to propel his upper half forward once his little legs came to a halt. After his muddy face plant, he popped right back up and was back to business.
“Carry me,” demanded Destroy.
Approximately 2 feet from the main path Jon pointed to a tree. “This one’s nice. Let’s call this Option A.”
It was a nice tree. But cutting down the first tree we found kind of defeated the purpose of going on an adventure. So we pressed forward. Or rather, we slip-n-slided up (and down) the sloping evergreen forest.
Finally, the heaven’s parted and the light shone down upon THE ONE. Okay, fine. The heaven’s had been angrily dumping their goods all morning and the light was likely merely the shadow of a clearing. In any case, the fir tree was gorgeous and not infested with mistletoe.
Jon began hacking away at the trunk, leaving two branches for next year. Search and Destroy’s eyes lit up like it was, well, Christmas morning. (Good thing we were getting ready for that very event.)
“DADDY’S CUTTING DOWN THE TREE!”
(Let’s all take a moment to ask the universe that the boys don’t decide to reenact such amazingness once the tree is secured in its stand in our living room.)
After trekking back down the hill, Jon secured the tree to his well-railed car in a manner that would likely withstand gale force winds akin to the tornado that once transported Dorothy to Oz. I noted that we need to go on more hikes. Perhaps in drier conditions.
We pulled back into our driveway just as naptime closed in around us. (Despite proclamations of, “I’m not tired. I don’t need a nap,” from the respective toddlers present.) Muppets were unloaded, Nana unwedged, and the tree set upon the porch to air dry.
Once we were all tucked back inside, the sun came out.
Welcome to the holiday season – 2012. I’m presently taking bets on how long the tree remains upright.