It was that time.

Our yearly trek to the Christmas tree farm.

Determined this year to find the biggest one that these 4 sets of hands could cut down and haul back to the barn unassisted.

We hadn’t quite found a way to make it out earlier in the month when the weather was hovering in the low 50’s.

Instead, we managed to pick a 21 degree morning to put on our boots, pick up our saw and head out in search of holiday perfection.


There was a pep talk first, which when looking at the picture makes one believe it was much more of the “stern warning” variety then the uplifting kind.


Consensus was reached 20 minutes into our adventure;

after of course they all made their case for a tree they had “discovered”.


Ultimately we did the happy dance when we found this guy.


Then my phone died and with it the chance to document Momma on her side chopping down nine and a half feet of white pine goodness.

We warmed up with some pizza from our favorite pizza shop that’s right around the corner from the tree farm, then headed home to put her up.



This year all 5’8 of Sid proved to be particularly helpful.


She was the untangler of lights and Ellery Jane’s own personal ladder.

Audrey our comedic relief when Momma got frustrated with setback.


Sometime around 4pm we stepped back to marvel at our doing.


We’d done it again, together, our tradition.

Making memories, my team, my family.




The Joy

The book lives in my cupboard.


Dog-eared and worn, cover long since lost.

It comes out once a year as Christmas tradition demands its recipe for peanut butter cookies.

So we sit together, stirring and scooping the peanut butter goodness.


The years fall away. The girls grow and the tradition remains as if nothing has shifted.

It doesn’t recognize one less person around the counter.

The tradition delights in the joy of the making of a moment.

As each candy is unwrapped, it doesn’t acknowledge that this year Ellie is the one to make the candy train and Audrey has graduated to rolling peanut butter balls.


Nor does it see that Sid is actually in charge of the baking and I their momma am now just a witness to it all unfolding. My hands are no longer needed, just my gaze taking it all in, recording the memory.

The tradition will out survive me.

My girls will teach their girls and what will be left is that book and

the feelings of joy in the moment.