December 23, 2011

Holiday Guest Blog: JM from Indiana

Happy Holidays, fellow Prep in the Midwest Blog readers.  This would be Megan’s soriroity sister, know from previous blogs as JM.  Megan asked several of us to do a blog post for the holidays and I told her I would be more than happy to after I finished my Law School Finals. I finished with everything today and I will never ever have to take over the holidays as a full time student and let me tell you finals put a cramp on the holiday season.  But finals are over so it now time to get into the Christmas spirit.
Growing up in the Midwest where Christmas Tree farms are plenty and one of the results from that is the annual family tradition of the hunt for the perfect tree.  Now for those of you who either have a fake tree or purchase your tree precut, you have never had the privilege of the thrill of the hunt.  Since we were little my family….Momma M, Papa M and sister SM have gone on this yearly trek and you have to understand there are certain qualifications for any tree we consider.  It must have a straight trunk, it can be no taller than 8 feet, and it must pass Momma M’s hug test (if she can’t get halfway around the tree its too fat.  Only once in my life have we not all gone and that was when Momma M was sick and couldn’t go….SM and I were still young so we had not bee fully schooled in “the hunt” and we failed.  It was the fattest tree we have ever had and was almost too big for the area in the old house.  Now the hunt is no something short, one year when SM and I were both in college or SM had just graduated we went to three, yes three different farms to find the perfect tree.  It is no uncommon for it to take half a day as we trek over 10-15 acre large tree farms.   We normally get it down to a couple of trees and then Momma M has to compare them which means normally SM, Pappa M, and I got left at our top three picks to guard them while Momma went between them.  Finally when we had reach a unanimous decision (ok really it was Momma’s call at the end of the day) we all assumed our designated roles which we have had since I was 8 years old or so.  Pappa would of course cut it down and Momma, SM and I use to hold it but after I hit 12 it was strictly my job.  Pappa and I would carry the tree, SM would carry the handsaw, and Momma the measuring pole.
When SM and I were at Purdue we normally wrangled dinner out of Momma and Papa before they went home.  Momma would put lights on it, normally around 1,000-1,200 lights, and when we got home we would decorate it.  We are at no shortage of ornaments as Grandma M has gotten SM and me an ornament every year since we were born, so right there we have 4 dozen or more.  We also have ornaments friends have given the family, several glass balls from my parent’s first tree together, ones from my parent’s childhood and even some that belonged to Momma’s grandparents. The only time we don’t go on “the hunt” for a Christmas tree is when we go to Florida and then I have to make do with a fake one….but throw in a beach and I can deal. 
This is the first year I was not home to decorate but I think they did a great job and Momma saved a couple of ornaments for me to put on when I head home next week. 
This is the first year I was not home to decorate but I think they did a great job and Momma saved a couple of ornaments for me to put on when I head home next week.  A picture of the finish product that Momma sent me. 
Over the years we have had scotch pines, white pine, Douglas fir and Frasier fir trees.  I have to admit Fraser firs are hands down my favorite and have been our tree of choice for the past 8 years.  Which is your favorite?
Scotch Pine
White Pine
Douglas Fir

Fraser Fir

I wish you happy holidays and I hope you get to sit around your Christmas Tree on Christmas morning whether it be a fake one, one you got precut or one you spent hours hunting with your family!

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