I grew up in a city. A city by the beach. I will never fully appreciate the smell of the ocean. I will never be amazed by a 7-11 within walking distance. I will never sit in awe as a Lamborghini passes me on the highway. These are things I take for granted. Now that we've transplanted ourselves to a some what more rural setting (this is a guy from LA talking; rural means someone down the street owns a horse) there are things I see that amaze me, and I know these are things my girls will never truly appreciate as it will be the world they've always known. Last night we went out and cut down our own Christmas tree. That's right. No muddy lot set up where they tore down an old gas station and have yet to start construction on the new one. No sickly looking trees spray painted white. No petting zoo and Santa's lap stand. Just a dark hill full of trees, a borrowed saw and splintery old cart. And it was magical. The girls boarded the old cart - and I really do mean splintery; when I went to put jammies on the girls after we got home Genevieve had a sizable splinter still sticking out of her rear that needed to be removed. ... now that's childhood memories. With all aboard we trekked up the hill, the girls calling "mush reindeer" behind me.
We wandered into the forest and found a beautiful tree (best part it was at least 40% cheaper then buying from a lot) and we got down to sawing. The girls pushed and down it went. We loaded it on the cart and set off toward the car.
It was amazing. Something out of a movie for me. The girls absolutely loved it. But as we drove home, it occurred to me, this is their new normal. For me, it'll never be anything less then amazing that we live somewhere that this can be done. For them. ... eh. ... it's just another year picking up the Christmas tree. Just like preschool is another day on the farm. Just like sitting outside and staring at the billion stars is another summer night. I guess, at least, they'll appreciate the beach.