It's tree time it's tree time!

Per tradition, we set out the Friday after Thanksgiving to get ourselves a tree. 

This time, because we do not live in a cement wonderland anymore, we went out to the source to find our tree and chop her down off the side of Moscow Mountain.

Moscow actually has a mountain in it that is called Moscow Mountain. It's hysterical.

Looking for a tree is a spiritual affair, I've said that before, so we'll leave it at that, BUT! Spiritual affair or no, hunting for a tree in 25-degree weather is not for the faint of heart. Huck was a pile of kid holiday misery. It made our experience feel quite authentic.  (You know that mom singing "Deck The Halls" at the top of her lungs while her kid covers his ears in mortification and can't wait to get out of there? It is a terribly satisfying experience once you're on the other side of that situation, it turns out.)

And then, we found her.

(We kind of wanted something sparse and needly to show off our homemade ornaments. She is definitely sparse and needly.)

Husbands playing lumberjack. NOT BAD.


Oh lights. Every year I'm stuck finishing the Christmas lights.

It's okay. 

Presenting a brief history of The Lovin-Holbrook lineage of trees:

Brandon grew up with colored Christmas lights, and a tree filled with ornaments collected over the years to represent each of the Holbrook kids' interests and activities. Brandon's collection are mostly made up of soccer and Garfield ornaments. There you have it.

Natalie grew up with white Christmas lights, and a tree YOU DIDN'T TOUCH. Because it was a glorious masterpiece of Juliemom craft and to touch it was to disrespect a whole matriarchal line of perfection in the form of yuletide tree, and so you just didn't do it.

My Juliemom grew up with Miss Shirley Jean, who is famous for never getting her tree to her liking until nearly January, and then leaving it up until February, so all can properly enjoy its majesty.

My dad grew up with a big, fat Christmas tree, with silky needles and those red string Christmas balls, with colored lights meant for the outdoors drooping behind a generous waterfall of tinsel. A gloriously puffy white angel presiding on top.

Huck is growing up with some funny kind of middle ground, where THE RIGHT OF TREE IS MINE, but it never looks the same from year to year, and Huck is always involved in the planning of ornament placement, and here and there I'll throw a marshmallow garland on it that Huck can eat as much of as he likes. Nice of me, huh?

I also believe in naming Christmas trees, because our trees are like our Power Ranger spirit animals, and it's important you honor the spiritual nature of such a choice. Huck can tell you that much. So this one's name is Amy Grant. Because she is thin and spindly. Just like Amy Grant's voice. 

(No no I love Amy Grant stop for a minute baby I'm so glad you're mine!) 

(But her voice IS a little bit needly.)

She's also our first Holbrook Christmas tree with colored lights. 

Here she is! 

She's rather squinky. I kind of like her.


  1. I love the garland!
    I grew up in a house like yours, too. My mom would decorate the tree with a different theme every year. She'd do it while we were at school. It was lovely but I was always so jealous of the kids who had memory making trees! So my husband and I have embraced silly and fun when it comes to our tree! It's very fake and very white with colored lights and mis-matching ornaments and I love it so much. We buy each other ornaments every year to build up a historical collection.
    Last year he got me an ornament that is a teeny tiny potato masher. It's my favorite.

  2. i really like that you thought about how each of you have grown up with a "different kind of" tree. it's funny how traditions can be so different, in the same vain. i especially love making traditions your own. like this lovely, needly tree.
    ps. i might have gone with that orange tree, just to have had an orange tree one year. xo

  3. Aw Idaho you are beautiful. All wide open space, i miss you. That Huck with the red cap is the cutest!


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