My plan: stealth out, "borrow" VERY gently a few stray branches, take a few pictures along with some yoga moves and stealth back.
What actually happened: It was windy. And snowy. Did I say windy?? Sigh- when does it EVER snow here without wind? I should have known. The first five seconds were exciting... until my toes got wet from the slush-puddles. Since we both have extremely poor sense of direction (I think I need a GPS stuck to my head at all times) we initially wanted to just go on the main path until I saw something suitable. (on the search, prepared with french-pressed coffee)
The downside to that was that there actually were some people out in the park that day other than us. Crazy people walking their dogs and running in the ridiculous wind-snow-rain-slush storm. Inhibiting our branch-activities.
So we cautiously stepped onto a more secluded path and just when Andrew had started to use "that" voice (me: "not yet, there's a lady coming down with her dog, I don't want her to think we're cutting branches!") I saw some branches under a tree that were.... ALREADY CUT. (I am jumpin' in, no hesitation, must-have-branches!!)
It was a sign. Definitely. I mean, we weren't even harming any trees for our branches, perfectly sustainable! (me with our spoils- YES)
So, I hauled together a huge armful and dragged them back to the car. The wind was so strong that it pulled my branches back... and me with them. By the time we got to the car there were no more thoughts of "tree pose" or warriors in the snow. All I cared about was the nice warm car (and a few people looking at us strangely with our loot).
They were slightly wet when we arrived at home, but a quick "mat" from a blue recycling bag and an hour to dry off later (during which time I went to a local craft fair which was awesome- more like artisan fair), I was ready to decorate.(our dining room table branch-deco complete with inedible cookies)
Armed with oranges, baked cookies that turned out more like rocks but look nice (I guess unbleached flour and sugar cookies don't really go together...), branches and candles I was ready.
I was going to stick to the natural- soy/beeswax candles, coffee beans (in the vase) and oranges, but I did already have some terrible, sparkly purple abominations that I thought should be put to good use. So it's a mix, a sparkly reminder of what we are moving away from in our healthy, community Yule apartment. (a little "sapin" in the bathroom)
Here are my messy, needles everywhere, results. Now our space feels festive and it only cost the trip and experience.
The book shelf- my "piece de resistance"
article and photos copyright of EcoYogini at ecoyogini.blogspot.com