I think Christmas just got infinitely more exciting. I mean, Christmas has always been exciting, but with a baby, it became even more so. I'm not sure which is better: being a kid at Christmas or having a kid at Christmas. Perhaps we'll never know. Or at least I'll know after a few Christmases with a kid are under my belt.
Needless to say, I'm pretty pumped about this coming Christmas, and so we got started with the Christmas decorations a little earlier than usual this year, beginning with the Christmas tree.
In a perfect world, we'd go to the tree farm and cut down our own tree. I have such great memories of doing that for years as a kid and I'd love to pass that down, but it turns out that somehow cutting down our own is significantly MORE expensive than buying a pre-cut one. Someone explain that to me, please. Someone has to do all the labor of cutting, moving, arranging, selling, and attaching the trees to cars, but it's $20 less expensive than me going to the farm, sawing, transporting, and attaching everything on my own?
Long story short, we got Elise's first Christmas tree at the local garden supply place down the road, but as far as pre-cut trees go, they had a really good selection and it was still fun.
We headed to the lot on Saturday afternoon and perused the various tree options. There were several good ones!
Our living room has limited options for tree placement, so we knew we wanted something not too tall and not too wide, but not too short and not too skinny. Basically, it had to be just right. Fortunately, we found the perfect one within a few minutes and then we made sure that Elise approved.
When we couldn't get her attention to take a picture, we knew that was it. And so we played it like the millennials that we are and took a family selfie, then paid for our tree and got it on top of the car.
As one does with Christmas trees, we brought it home, set it up, and filled it with decorations while Christmas music played in the background. Midway through we made breakfast for dinner, and then finished it up after we ate.
We tried to take one more picture along the way, but it's a little tough while baby-wrangling and this is pretty much what we got:
And finally, because Christmas with a baby is magical, I took a few photos while she played with some lights to round out the evening.
Since Advent starts later this year, we have an extra week to enjoy the season. We're celebrating at our house this year for the first time, and I'm quite looking forward to slowing down, savoring the preparations, the decorations, and the holiness in which these weeks are steeped. And I can't wait to watch Elise take it all in for the first time, since there's something especially lovely about introducing holidays to someone who's already filled with wonder over the regular day to day life. May we all anticipate Jesus's birth with such childlike amazement.