Holiday Traditions:  Going to the tree farm

This year is blazing by, I blinked and Thanksgiving was here.  The holiday truly snuck up on me.  We have annual traditions in our family that we established for this time of the year. The weekend of Thanksgiving we bundle up in our winter gear and we head to a local tree farm to pick out our Christmas Tree.  The kids love the horse-drawn wagon ride out into the field, we negotiate whose turn it is to pick the perfect tree.  I even think my husband delights in his chance to take a saw to the trunk of the tree and yell timber as the girls watch the tree fall to the earth.


We have gone with a fresh tree every year since Giana was a baby.  It was a tradition I also had growing up.  For me, nothing beats a real live tree.  The smell of a Fraser Fur pine as it opens in my living room gets me in the warm fuzzy feeling and brings back memories of my childhood.  Last year we went with a Balsam pine tree and it was a bit more of a mess since the pine needles seem to shed daily.  This year we will go back to our Fraser Tree variety. At  Miller Tree Farm in Rio, WI Santa sits in a warm cabin on the property, listening intently to each child’s wish list and sending them on their way with a promise to behave and a peppermint stick.

Holiday Cards from basic invite

Mini Photo Session

These memories have been so special for our kids and the setting of the tree farm makes a perfect backdrop for holiday greeting cards.  For the past two years, I have booked our family photos with a mini session at a different tree farm.  Mini sessions are very reasonably priced; they usually consist of 15-30 minutes of photography and a set number of edited pictures.  Which is just enough time because how long can you tolerate being outside and smiling with all the kids looking at the camera?


Our photo session with Samantha Walters was a success even our newest family member Irie an 11-month-old Bernedoodle, cooperated for the family picture. Samantha brought hot cocoa, Christmas cookies, and a decorated/lit tree.  Nothing like unexpected treats for my girls to bring genuine smiles to their faces. They were so happy.  She turned around the photos in under a week and next it was time to create the perfect Christmas cards photo.


Although we were guaranteed to get 10 images from our mini session, Samantha was generous and gave us an extra five.  Still, I couldn’t settle on just 15 images from this photo session.  Hence, I opted to add a few more and pay for them a la carte. Unlike the sites I have used before to create my holiday greeting cards I found the basic invite site to have many more options for customization.

Christmas Cards

Christmas Cards

The basic card templates offered a variety of styles from New Year’s Eve theme, to traditional religious Christmas greetings to the very modern minimalist look.  You can further your preference by the number of photos you want to place on your card but even beyond those options, you can still make significant changes to the card.


Elements such as the color scheme, font positioning and the option to order a sample before running your card to print were exceptional to me.  The option to preview the card would have come in handy that year I misprinted our names on the Christmas card, listing Giana twice and missing Misha’s name completely.

Time-Saving Features

Additionally, to save time you can have the address labels printed and the cards mailed for you. Avoiding the post office during the peak season is about as convenient as can be.   If your list of family and friends is constantly growing and changing, you can also utilize the address capture service from Basic Invite.  Choose to post a link to your social media platform and have your peeps add their addresses directly into your customer account, genius.

Holiday Greeting Cards

Whatever your family traditions are, I hope that this season is full of warmth and love for you and your family.  If you would like to spread the holiday cheer by way of sending out Christmas cards, use this code for 30% off your holiday greeting card with Basic Invite!



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Creative Holiday Cards

coupon code: holi30