After talking to other Christmas tree farmers, who were encouraging, and reading up on planting the trees, I began a plan for a small Christmas tree farm. In February of last year, Jim and I and our work horse, Snip, ploughed up and disked an area to the east of our house. My “field of dreams” became my “field of screams” as rocks and boulders boiled up out of the earth. Only slightly daunted, I tackled the rocks. I raked, scooped, picked and dumped them for days. When the little plot was relatively clear, the fun began. I untied the strings and opened the brown paper bundles that contained my Douglas and Noble tree seedlings, and inhaled pure Christmas, pure magic!
Our old barn houses many animals. Pigeons, mice, bats, cats and horses make their home there. But the heart of the barn is an old white Arabian mare named Snowflake. She will live out the rest of her life here. She is almost 33, but I suspect she has many years left to her. She belonged to us once, years ago, when our daughter, Meg, was 14 and a dainty white horse with blue ribbons in her mane and tail, filled her dreams, day and night. When Meg grew up and started pondering the possibilities of her life, she passed Snowflake on to another girl with horse dreams. Alas, that girl grew up too, and Snowflake is back with us once again.