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What You Should Know Before You Cut Your Own Christmas Tree

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It's a great family experience to cut your own Christmas tree.

Before you cut your own tree, make sure you know the size tree you're looking for.

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If your family wants to opt for a real tree this Christmas season, consider cutting your own Christmas tree at a local Christmas tree farm. Cutting your own Christmas tree is a wonderful family tradition, and you can even put your older children in charge of some of the planning and choosing.

Here's what you should know when you take the kids out to cut your own Christmas tree.

Tips and Suggestions: Cutting Your Own Tree

  • Before you leave, you need to know what size tree will best fit in your home. Grab a tape measure and with your child, jot down the height and width you'll need. Take into consideration any tree toppers you may be placing on the tree when considering the height.
  • Be sure your family members are dressed for the occasion. Hats, gloves and warm, layered clothing is best. Boots are also a good idea since farms can be muddy at any time of the year.
  • Other items to bring: your tape measure for sizing up potential trees; hand warmers if it's really cold outside; baby wipes for quick clean-up; a thermos of hot chocolate and plastic or insulated hot/cold cups.
  • Be sure you take advantage of any hay rides or other fun activities on the farm. They are a part of the overall experience, and can make the event even more exciting for your children.
  • Many Christmas tree farms offer the tools needed to cut down the trees, but be sure you know beforehand in case you need to bring your own.
  • Before you cut your own Christmas tree, make sure the tree is the right size for your home. It's also important to make sure the tree is healthy. Needles should be flexible and resilient, and the tree should have a fresh, evergreen smell. Test the limbs to make sure they are strong enough to hold your ornaments, lights and garland.
  • Be sure you also check your tree for abandoned bird nests, they are a potential fire hazard if you don't remove them before you decorate.
  • Many Christmas tree farms take credit cards, but you should probably check beforehand. Some operations are cash only.
  • Also check to see if the farm provides netting and rope to help secure your tree to your vehicle.
  • If a farmhand helps you transport your tree or secures it to your vehicle, a tip is a generous way to say "thank you".
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