One tradition that both of us have honored, as most families in Wyoming do, is the Christmas tree hunt. In fact, last night she woke me up at 3 am to promise her we would never get an artificial tree. Apparently she was sleep talking but I assured her it would never be an option. I grew up in Wisconsin where cutting down a Christmas tree involved driving to a tree farm and choosing a huge, full, shaped, perfection of a conifer. In Wyoming, we get a $10 tree permit and head for the mountain in search of a tree that hopefully has more than 10 branches and the branches are actually on every side of the tree. Easier said than done. Basically there are 2 choices of tree, that is, what’s left from the Bark Beetle infestations: lodgepole pines or spruces.
This year we headed for the mountains and found a beautiful tree. My partner was at drill for the weekend, so the hunting group consisted of me, all 5 kids, my ex-husband, my ex-husband-in-law, a cousin, and my ex-husband-in-law’s mother, who could be considered my um, hmmm, uh, I’m not sure what that term would be. But she’s amazing, loving, kind, and a friend, and I love having her in our family. I would call our first official Christmas tree hunt as a family a success! Hopefully next year we will all be together.