The Last Christmas Tree in Alaska

I grew up thinking that all Christmas trees came from either supermarket parking lots or farms that only existed under electrical power lines.  The trees were bushy and deep green and always between six and seven feet.  My siblings and I always put too many ornaments on the lower branches.  They were gorgeous trees.


We awoke early.  6:30 or so I heard Anna calling; Zach and Kris got up soon after.  Two weeks ago, we got a new assignment.  Come July, we’ll be far away from Alaska and 0930 winter sunrises.  Next year, we’ll have to settle for a Christmas tree lot or farm.

We ate breakfast and waited.

Anna slept and Zach and I played an ‘Anna Sleeping Game,’ one where smaller pieces and chewable cards are allowed to be on the floor.  I taught Zach the difference between single and double colors.


The sky turned a paler gray and we loaded up our winter clothes.  We drove to the forest, looking for openings in the forest from the road; openings which would allow a 3-foot boy and 15 month-old girl in a backpack to pass through brush.

I parked and grabbed the saw.  I carried Zach and Kris carried Anna.  We went back a couple hundred yards and debated the merits of trees loud enough to keep the wildlife away.  “This one’s too sparse,” “this one’s too sparse,” and “this one’s too sparse.”

Zach in snowZach in snow 2

I hacked at the chosen one.  Better than last year, but too sparse to mistake it for one bought in a Christmas tree lot or farm.

I cut it down and Zach cheered.  We took the kids back to the car.  I went back to drag the tree out.  Zach cheered again when I came out of the woods.  It was twelve scrawny feet…

Zach in snow 3

but it glowed and the branches bowed just like one from a lot or farm…

Zach in snow 4

much like the ones from when I was young.




About Jimmy

The stories herein are about a sentimental 80s child who cried at every showing of ET (the sad part where he was lying in the wash) and his families, then and now. His wife, son, parents, and siblings play their parts well. They have their exits and their entrances. Sometimes their exits are sad, but not as sad as ET.
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3 Responses to The Last Christmas Tree in Alaska

  1. inkline says:

    It’s a beautiful tree! And to think we once called it our backup plan!

  2. Jimmy! I haven’t been a while and your babies have grown and you’ve got a Christmas tree! All is well in your world! Sending you and your family season’s greetings and to the stories of our lives. May they always make us laugh. Sharon

  3. Mom says:

    It doesn’t matter what the tree looks like or whether it’s from a lot or a forest, as long as you can pick it out together and decorate it together.
    Love you guys—

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