So, I’ve kind of been having withdrawals from blogging. I know it’s only been, what? A week and a half since my last post? But that is the equivalent of at least six months in blogging terms. At least it feels like it! Therefore, even though this post is still lacking a few pictures I would have liked to have had up, I’m going to post it anyway… and maybe when we actually get our tress decorated, I can do a Christmastime is here: Part II post later this month! ;] For now, here’s a post about the joys of getting a real Christmas tree every year as our family tradition.

The leaves have fallen. The sky is starting to get that constant overcast, grey look. The weather is beginning to turn somewhat cold (welcome to Northern Virginia: 75 degrees one day, snowing the next). And our house is slowly transforming into a home that has that wintry, comfy, cozy, Christmassy feel! And just like every year, it all started with….

THE CHRISTMAS TREE!

This picture was taken last weekend after we got home from a morning spent at Cox Farms looking for the “perfect” tree. As you can see, it’s not exactly perfect. Sure, there were hundreds of other trees that probably didn’t have as many flaws, but if you go Christmas tree shopping, you know the emotions involved. There’s a certain feeling of attachment you get when you see THE ONE. It’s kinda ridiculous actually. But we saw this tree, fell in love, and we were in and out of the tree farm within one hour! And then came the set up…

Now, it wouldn’t be Christmas Tree Day in the Marcus household if we weren’t screaming at each other at some point in the process. I’m always the one worried about getting out of the house in time, my sisters are always a little unenthusiastic about getting up so early, and my dad’s always the one fretting (and probably regretting) the burden of carrying a heavy, living, breathing pine tree into our house and watering it every day for a month. Nevertheless, this is a MARCUS TRADITION that we all love and look forward to every year! So no matter the pains… we stick it out!

…Even though those little metal prongs on our not-so-new Christmas tree stand give me callouses that stay for weeks. What can I say, it’s become one of my winter trademarks. Right up there with my non-existent tan and dark roots.

After the initial torturous installation of the tree (torturous for both me and the tree, since it’s the one getting holes poked in it), then comes the cutting of the lovely plastic wire wrapping, which tends to leave more random plastic pieces lying around at the end of the month than the tree leaves pine needles.

And finally, after the three to four hour process of driving to the farm, picking a tree, waiting in line for check-out and loading, driving back home, carrying the tree in, and setting it up (whew!), our tree was READY….. to settle for at least 24 hours before decorating!!

Of course, that 24-hour settling period is just a minimum recommendation! Because it’s now 8 days later and all we’ve got are the colored lights up! It’s been a busy month so far for all of us! But we have had the time to put up a few decorations and bake some Christmas cookies. By the way, that Snowman/woodland creatures ice skating thing going on in the picture above?? That’s been my favorite decoration in my house for as long as I can remember. You turn it over and spin the dial and suddenly a song starts playing and the little mice couple start spinning around in circles on the ice!! I know, MAGICAL. It was to me growing up! Now here’s a few pictures of our cookies (that tasted heavenly, by the way, and I’m usually not a good cook!)

Baking sugar cookies cut into bell, snowmen, angel, and holly leaf shapes has also become a family tradition! This year I had a bunch of my friends from school over to help. I think we probably baked over 75 cookies total! And they went FAST. I’ll have to schedule another cookie bake before the 25th gets here!

These were Reese’s cups in peanut butter cookies… SO GOOD!!

And it wouldn’t be a personal blog post if I didn’t include a picture of my little one! This is Chloe, my toy poodle. She’s been a part of my family since I was seven years old… and she is totally used to me making her stand and pose in front of the camera. Let’s be honest, I don’t think there’s ANYONE in my life that isn’t used to that!

So there you have it, a peak into the Marcus home when Christmas season is just getting started. I have many more photo opportunities to blog this month, like ice skating, our annual trip to New York City, and Christmas itself! This post was short, but I hope you found it sweet!!

Happy Holidays,
Megan Kelsey

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