Last year our friend, Charlotte, suggested that the kids need to start hauling the tree. And since our daughter now fits Anne’s bikes, Tim floated the idea by her a couple of weeks ago. As a new 13 year old, she’s lukewarm about even riding bikes, let alone hauling trees on bikes in public, where, you know, like, her friends and, like, the whole world might see her!
So we weren’t surprised then with her less-than-enthusiastic response.
But we were shocked last night, amid last-minute bike decorating, she proclaimed, “I’m hauling the tree home this year aren’t I?”
Tim and I both tried to play it cool, though we exchanged a couple of surprised meaning-laden smiles (“holy crap, maybe we ARE doing something right.” “careful, she’s 13. She could change her mind at any second.”) before adjusting the saddle on Anne’s Xtracycle for the one-mile, all-uphill ride to the tree lot. (savvy bike-fitters amongst you may notice, it turns out she didn’t *need* the saddle lowered, and in fact next year will likely need it *raised* from Anne’s riding position.)
The rest is pretty routine. She positively flew up the hill while the rest of us slogged up to Hunter’s tree lot under a full moon cloaked in dense eerie fog. (My excuse for all of the blurry photos I’m about to post). As usual, it took more than an hour of evaluating tree candidates against all sorts of esoteric criteria before we all got cold and damp enough to agree to purchase what was probably one of the first trees we rejected.
We used to do all sorts of rigging and strapping to carry the tree home, but last year we gave in and let them bundle the tree. This means that instead of wrestling with rope and straps and whacky balance issue, the slender, nearly eight-foot tree can fit easily into on side of the Xtracycle Freeloader bags. Tim used to cling to the “look” of riding with an unwrapped tree, but even he is growing more pragmatic. Less fiddling means less-chance of the kids bailing at the last minute.
A few quick (foggy) group photos and we (she) was off.
It turns out kid-powered Christmas-tree hauling is both easy and fun!
Once’s again, I’m recycling our tree-hauling photo retrospective. Because I can. And the early photos are so darn cute.
Happy Holidays everyone!
This Mad Max-inspired tree hauling photo from 2008 is still one of the most-viewed photos in our Flickr stream. It never fails to bring a smile to my face.
Happy Holidays, everyone. Looking forward to checking out your tree-hauling adventures.
– Anne and Tim