Many of my Twitter friends think that we live in a Hallmark card, as our small town in Montana is a very picturesque place.
Today was such a magical day that I decided to share it with you in photos. (And, if you make it to the end of the blog, there’s a musical present for you… or you could listen to it while you read through the blog and view the photos.)
As is the tradition in our family, Darryl and I reserved this day to find our Christmas tree. We left our home on Flathead Lake and headed into the Swan Mountains. The entire day was filled with one breathtaking sight after another. As we were driving from Bigfork to the Swan Valley, about 16 miles away, we passed five bald eagles, just hanging out in the snow.
As we arrived into the Swan Valley we went back into the woods on an unplowed road called Cilly Creek. As our tires broke through the foot-deep snow, our windshield was covered with the spray from blasting through the virgin snow.
It continued to snow from the two hours we were there, and Koda, Darryl and I just LOVED it! We were immersed in total silence- the only sound I could hear was the noise that the snow made as it hit my jacket. It was coming down so hard that on many of these photos you can actually see the streaks of the snow falling.
We hiked around the woods, sinking into more than a foot of snow with each step, looking for the perfect tree. Many times we found one that we thought was “the tree”, only to shake the snow from it’s branches to find a scraggly looking tree underneath the winter decoration. (Each year we invest in planting trees, a renewable resource.)
At one point Darryl and I were standing deep in a thick forest, when he pointed to a white area in the distance, through the trees. He hiked ahead and called for me to join him. The white area was a large open meadow, filled with 2′ bumps of snow that looked like moguls on a ski slope. But across the meadow, he spotted what looked to be the perfect tree. We hiked around the edge of the meadow, not knowing if there was water underneath the open area.
Sure enough, he had found the perfect tree! After clearing the snow from the branches and cutting down the tree, we exhausted ourselves dragging the tree through the meadow and back to the car.
Koda ran and played and thought this was the coolest place in the world!
But after two hours of extreme playing, he was one tired pup. He curled up in the snow and rested, looking a lot like a white wolf.
Our mission was accomplished. We’re headed home with the beautiful tree tied to the roof of the car.
What a perfect day!
(of course I’m saying this as I’m home, now dry, drinking cocoa by the fire… ah… finally warm again.)
As an early holiday gift, please enjoy the song below, Winter Wonderland, performed by our daughter, Carly.
Happy Holidays to you and yours!