Monday, October 19, 2009

Picture a Day - Day 321

There are many options available to a couple as they celebrate their first anniversary. Bed and breakfasts are very popular as well as visiting fancy 5 course restaurants. You could make a nice trip to a city of love (such as Detroit) or roam the streets at night staking vampires to protect the world of the werewolves.

But if there's one thing that is expected of every and all celebrating couple be they Madagascar tourists or covered in Vampire guts is to give each other little trinkets to display their love. Hell they (if someone ever figures out who "they" is, could you kick them in the nuts for me? Thanks) even created a special chart so you'd always know just what is expected of each other and on what year.

While I can totally get behind a book for the 47th anniversary and I guess groceries for the 44th are nice and practical I just lose it for the first 15 or so. I'm sure after six years iron has to come in handy in some form (especially if you're fighting off killer elves) but I have more than enough paper at home this year.

Taking into account that my husband and I are two of the hardest people on the planet to buy something for we just decided to skip the gifts. Instead we packed up, put the puppy outside, and traveled an hour and a half out of town to the Birthplace of Arbor Day!
It was actually started by the Salt Guy, J. Sterling Morton whom if any of you have a water softner would have sworn at for those incredibly heavy and hard to lift 50 lb yellow bags.

Way back when he lived in Nebraska when the buffalo roamed free, with those buffalo running around stomping on everything trees were an oddity. It was all prairie grass and big scary prairie fires.

To help combat that, and because once you create the iconic girl holding the umbrella you're pretty much done for life, he and his family started planting. They're mostly known now for their apple orchards.

So if you want to see trees in Nebraska you head to Arbor Lodge.
We went on a Tree Experience and got to see wild mushrooms!
While there was a nice and simple paved path for kids and anyone else that wanted to take it easy walking through the trees there was a bit more challenging "Exploratory Trail," that was nothing more than a little mile walk through the woods.
There was a really cool bridge we crossed a few times as the trail wound us up and down through the tiny forest.
I love wood log steps, they're so hard to walk on but look so cool.
It's rather fitting that on our anniversary we came upon the majestic kissing trees.
After that, despite the lack of a little wooden sign I'm pretty sure we also found the majestic fighting trees as one tree leaned over the forest canopy so it's top branches attacked another tree leaning into it.
Because it's us and we can't go anywhere without Halloween popping up somewhere while my husband was hiding in the bathroom because it was actually heated I took a little picture of some baby pumpkins in a planter.
They had a U-Pick for pumpkins but we already had some pumpkins at home waiting patiently for the opportunity to be cut into and have their guts yanked out through the hole.

Finally, after a few hours of tree watching and bathroom hiding we came across the holy grail of our trip.
Mmmm apples.
We got a couple bags of apples to take home, one of Braeburns and one of Jonathans to appease both the tart and the sweet crowd.

Then we wandered down to the wine tasting area and for the price of a glass got to try four wines. We're very interested in the fruit wines so first we tried their cherry - which was way too astringent for my liking (we were encouraged to eat a piece of chocolate and if you have to hide the wine flavor with chocolate you're in trouble.)

Their Peach was just awful, and barely tasted like peach at all. There was more of a plum flavor to it. I honestly can't remember what the third wine was it made that little of an impression.

Finally we get to the apple, what you'd think would be the creme of the top but again it left us both seriously wanting. She tried adding some cherry juice to the apple wine to fake a Sangria but it was really beyond the point.

We have about 7 bottles of wine at home gathering dust, if we really wanted to make a Sangria we could have one hell of a wild party (vodka and rum mix well with a raspberry wine, right?).

After a slice of apple pie with ice cream and caramel (the only way to have apple pie in my world) we headed home.

Oh but before that we picked up our free tree. If you stop by Arbor Lodge you get a free tree.
And because they needed something that might stand a chance in the Nebraska winter they picked the Blue Spruce.

Right now our tree is residing in our crisper drawer but when I get a chance I suppose we can celebrate our first anniversary by the planting of a tree, I just hope I don't jinx it.

It only seems fitting that once you plant something and declare it a celebration of your love after three days it'll turn brittle and brown and shrivel up in front of your very eyes. Something about the ironic comedy rule of the universe.

So I guess that makes it one year, wild. Can I still call myself a Newlywed or is there some sort of Newlywed weeding off program? After 18 months you can only call yourself a newlywed to people who inquire about your change in life status?

Has anyone else made an agreement with your spouse that you're both just so hard to buy for each other you'd rather put the money towards something fun you can do together instead of gifts?

Would you tempt the comedic irony universe rule to plant a tree to commemorate something?


Leslie said...

My dad, brother-in-law, and nephew planted a tree for my sister for mother's day, knowing it would be her last. We'll always have that tree to remember her by.

Jennifer said...

My Blue Spruce that I received form my visit there in 2004 is going strong on my patio in a pot! (and heck- 5 course meals aren't for everyone- we just celebrated the way we like to best- with food)

Leslie said...

Potting a spruce is a good idea. Eventually, you could use it as a potted Christmas tree. My grandparents had one once. It was great. Didn't have to kill a tree that year for Christmas.

Linda said...

We stopped saying we were newlyweds when our friends got married in March. We let them be the newlyweds now.
Great idea planting a tree! We have no where to plant a tree now.

valerie said...

Sooo, I'm a little late, but happy first anniversary!

Rachel said...

That place looks awesome!! I'd love to go visit sometime!

Chris and I are toying with the idea of going to New Orleans again for New Year's.... we'll see...

I'd plant your tree in a pot for now, so you can bring it inside and put it by a sunny window for the winter. Since it's so small, that'll give it a chance to really grow and get some roots established before the freezing temps get it. Then next year you can set it out on your porch in the spring and be all good. Once it gets bigger, then I'd plant it in your yard- I think it'd be a really cool thing to do! And even if it's not "on" your actual anniversary, you know where you got it, and you can remember the trip every time you look at it!