Our tree might be much smaller this year

Our family’s favorite Christmas tradition is going to be a little different this year. We usually go out and cut our own Christmas tree, but with Colby off to college, we’re probably going to have to settle for a smaller tree than usual.

My whole family loves to go outside. Even when it’s snowy and cold, we love the outdoors. Granted, I don’t think any of us like the snow, cold and wind when we have to be outside for chores, but if we can get out on our own terms, we always enjoy it, no matter what the temperature is.

That’s one of the reasons we love to go cut our own Christmas trees. Almost every year for the last 18, we’ve taken the truck up to the Snowy Range and wandered around in the woods until we found the perfect Christmas tree. Well, maybe not perfect. You can’t find a wild-growing tree that’s as full as one you’d get at a tree lot, but where’s the adventure in that?

We’ve learned a few lessons along the way, though. The first year we were in our current house, with ceilings that are much taller than the old house, we decided we wanted to get a tree that would go all the way to the roof. Unfortunately, for every foot taller a tree is, the trunk is usually several inches wider. All that extra tree adds weight. A lot of weight. Stick with the shorter trees if you don’t want to have an aneurism in the middle of the forest.

The boys were both pretty small that first year we were in this house. I honestly don’t know how I got that tree out of the woods, and my wife wanted to kill me by the time she and I got it into the truck.

But then the boys started growing. As they’ve gotten bigger, we’ve gotten bigger trees again each year. But now Colby, the biggest of the two, is away at college, so it’ll be up to Logan and me to drag that thing out of the woods. I have a feeling Colby’s going to come home for Christmas break to a much smaller tree than he’s had the last few years.