We’ve got our Christmas tree. We cut our own at Bob’s Trees this year. This was a departure for us–we’ve been to Ellm’s Family Farm for the past two years. And we do like Ellm’s (here’s the post from last year). But last year the choices seemed a little sparse, so we thought that we’d venture out.
Bob’s is a farther drive away from us than Ellm’s, but not by much. Both places have lovely extras, like reindeer, Santa, and food to buy. All the cut-your-own trees cost $45, while at Ellm’s, prices vary by height, but they’re generally higher. The selection at Bob’s was better, absolutely, but I’d also say that Bob’s was a bit more challenging. At Ellm’s, you park, and then ride on a trolley through the farm to get close to whatever bunch of trees that you like. They provide saws as well as little drag-your-tree-around carts. You bring your tree back to the trolley stop and the staff remove the trees and bundle them up for your convenience. At Bob’s, you drive in and park so that you’re somewhat closer to trees, but you’re likely to do some hiking in your hunt for the perfect tree. They provide saws, but no carts. So you walk back to your car carrying the tree, then you place your own tree onto the car. Really, you could get help by carrying or driving your tree down to the sort of “base camp” at the bottom of the hill, but that’s not super-convenient. Cute W and I agreed that at Bob’s, it felt more like you were tramping through the woods on your own looking for a tree, which feels more fun and authentic. But that’s because we don’t have little kids anymore. If I had toddlers or preschoolers, it might feel like a death march. And I’d definitely bring a red wagon.
Oh, but here’s one bittersweet custom that I appreciated at Bob’s. You can claim your tree early: people actually tagged their future Christmas tree and decorated it in some cases. Cross-country skiing is available, so you’re encouraged to scout out next year’s tree. And I say bittersweet because of course the pre-claimed trees were the most awesome trees around. We’d see one, head for it, and then notice that someone had already added tinsel. Dang.