Last weekend we made the mental shift from “just moved in” to “Christmas is coming” by means of a brilliant event organised by the RSPB on Arne Heath (about 20 mins from our new home). Succinctly named “Pull a pine for Christmas” hundreds of people turned out on Saturday to cut down the invasive pine trees which threaten the natural heath habitat and, in so doing, gained themselves a Christmas tree or two – for free.
Weather-wise, the day was worthy of Good King Wenceslas. Cold, clear and crisp with brilliant sunshine (but thankfully no snow). The RSPB had chosen a fabulous site looking down onto Poole harbour, which shimmered like a mirror in the sunlight. We had so much fun moving from one pine to another, cutting it down at the root and then pulling up any little off-shoots. We came away with three Christmas trees, two medium sized ones and a little tiddler for Lily’s room. Compared to the exorbitant prices we used to pay for a tree in London, volunteering to “pay” for your tree felt like an excellent deal and was a great way to get into the festive spirit.