Ski and Tree – the 2015 MacDonald Family Christmas Tree Hunt (and the Canadian Blogger Christmas Swap)

Read about previous years: 2014,  20132012201120102006

This year we tried something new with our Christmas tree hunt – and it was such a success that I’d like to it become our new tradition. Usually we just head out to cut a tree, but this time we figured we’d go out to ski and then cut the tree. This gave us two adventures in one day – plus meant almost a full day of outside time.

Saturday was officially marked on the calendar as “get tree day”. We had a bit of a later start than we’d hoped for since we couldn’t get the “safari rack” back onto the Rover. About an hour later than we’d planned we finally got it all in place and were able to head out for adventure #1 – cross-country skiing.

It was super foggy in the city, but in Bragg Creek it was blue skies and sunshine. It was a little colder than last time but perfect for skiing (-7 C or so). We skied a new to use trail by taking the East Crystal Line to join up with the Sundog Loop. The route is about 3.5 miles and had some nice big downhills when skied clockwise. Even though the parking lot was really busy, the trail was quite and we saw only a few other people. Patches loved it – probably because it was cooler this time – and was one happy dog to be outside in the snow.

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After our ski it was around 12:30 so we hoped back in the Rover and drove to adventure #2 – the Christmas Tree hunt. We went to the Junior Forest Warden lot again this year and it was certainly busy with the nice weather. We were hungry after our ski so had lunch first and sat around the fire. Then we headed out to cut our tree.

The trees are getting pretty tall but after about 30 minutes of searching we found a pine that seemed like it would work (minus about 1.5 feet). We quickly cut down our find and hauled it out to the parking lot. Unlike the truck, we actually had to strap the tree down but two ratchet straps worked wonders and the tree didn’t move the whole drive back to Calgary.

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We always climb to the back of the lot just for the views (and I always think that the trees that get more sunlight will be growing better)
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We brought some help along

At home we cut off the extra tree and left the rest to acclimatize while we did some tidying around the house. We ended up leaving tree decorating until Sunday since we had a Christmas party Saturday evening. I decorated in stages – putting the lights on in the morning before swimming, adding the large ornaments at lunch and finally finishing with the snowflakes and tin icicles after dinner. I think it looks fantastic and really makes the house feel like Christmas.

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This year I added two new ornaments. This Highland Coo that I couldn’t resist buying when we were on the Isle of Skye this summer:

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And this beautiful wooden snowflake I got from Leigh in our Christmas Swap. She also gave me some lip chap and chocolates (which I have already eaten) in my package. I think it looks perfect on the tree and matches the other decorations I have.

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So far I’m really loving winter this year – it has been fun to go outside and actually do things like ski and get our tree. I’m looking forward to the other winter items on my Christmas to-do list now that we’ve got the tree taken care of.

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