Every Christmas, I take my family out to cut down a Christmas tree. It’s a tradition that really gets me in the holiday spirit and has given us a lot of great memories.
One of the best times we had didn’t start out so good, though.
For several years, we had been going to the same Christmas tree farm near our house, but one year we decided to make a little drive instead. We had been disappointed by the selection at our regular farm the year before, and we had had heard that a farm only about an hour’s drive away had great trees.
It had begun to snow as we got ready to leave, and there were other tree farms closer, but we all wanted to see the farm we had heard about. So off we went.
When we got there, our anticipation turned to disappointment. We spent an hour or so searching for just the right tree for our home—the snow picking up all the time, the cold moving in—but we couldn’t find one we wanted.
Discouraged but still optimistic, we decided to head back and find a tree at one of the tree farms nearer home.
It wasn’t our day. We stopped at one place, but they had no blue spruce, and for our family, a Christmas tree must be a blue spruce!
The snow was really getting heavy now, and everyone was thinking of how warm and cozy it would be at home, but we weren’t ready to give up. We wanted to go home with the perfect tree! We knew what it looked like; we just hadn’t seen it yet.
So we tried a third farm. What a waste of time! The trees were huge. It was like walking in a forest.
Thoroughly frustrated, already away from home for more than three hours, we finally called it a day and I steered directly toward home. My kids, who had been bouncing around with excitement earlier, were sad-faced and thoroughly dejected. My wife and I weren’t too happy, either.
Then as we neared home, a vague memory came to me. Years ago, I had heard about a very small tree farm nearby, not even two miles from where we now lived. I had never been there and had forgotten knowing about it—until this moment. I headed toward where I remembered hearing it was, and we found it.
We started looking around, and within five minutes, we came across what we were looking for—the perfect tree for us, the blue spruce we envisioned. It had just the right height, fullness, and shape for our tastes and for where we planned to put it.
We had driven for hours in the cold and snow only to find what we were looking for right in our own backyard!
But that journey—together as a family—made that Christmas tree one of the most special we’ve ever had. The dejection of going home empty-handed turned into joy, and that’s a feeling I’ll always cherish.
When I think back to that day, it always strikes me that I would be remembering it as bad experience if we had settled for a tree that wasn’t what we were looking for.
It’s the same with hardwood floors. At Ralph’s Hardwoods Floors, we constantly caution homeowners not to settle for floors that aren’t what they’re envisioning for their home. We know they’ll be a lot happier if they insist on getting what they truly want.
There are so many options and possibilities with hardwood flooring that you can always find the flooring that’s just right for you. There’s no need to settle.
And, unlike my family in search of the perfect tree, you don’t have to drive around the world to find what you’re looking for. Just point your car toward Ralph’s!
Wherever you’re headed this holiday season, whatever you’re doing, all of us at Ralph’s wish you and yours the merriest of Christmases.
Photo courtesy of Chrisopher Graham. Available under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License.