I spent much of last night riding the adrenaline wave of Melissa's launch party. We've done a lot of events, but this was just so much fun on so many levels.
Today was a planned slug day. The weather was predicted to be awful and it was! Snow and sleet and yuck all day. We opted not to open today - sorry to anyone that made the trek, but I can't imagine anyone would. It was truly that nasty out there! I can't say I did much slugging or knitting. I spent time communing with the laundry (how do two, small boys create so much??), attacking Jackson's closet. Mrs. Claus must come and take away toys and clothing the boys no longer use or fit into for those children less fortunate. Jonathan and I worked through his room and we all did the basement play area around Thanksgiving, but we've stalled since then. Mrs. Claus will be stopping by one day this week and the boys are feeling very good about things.
Next, I need to get right to an apology. To Knitting Contessa - who was so kind to ask me to participate in her 25 days of holiday blog interviews. Not only did she ask me (which I was incredibly honored by) but she kicked off her series with ME! Here I am, 15 days later finally getting the link posted. Tina - I will never be able to apologize enough. You did a beautiful job, not only with my interview, but all of the others throughout the month. For anyone who doesn't regularly read Knitting Contessa - now is the time to start. She has a lovely blog, her writing is witty and entertaining. Be sure to check out my interview and the rest of the series as well!
Now, I promised to build upon something on Melissa's blog. She stole this from Purling P's and I'm stealing it from Melissa Knits. Kind of a nice way to cap off the weekend.
1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? This truly depends on the gift. I LOVE to wrap gifts. I am big on ribbon and bows and such. My family thinks I'm nuts. Anytime I'm shopping and I"m offered gift wrap, I always say "NO", that's my favorite part! Some years are better than others in terms of the effort. Also, we definitely have specific "Santa" paper and "family paper". I messed up one year and Jonathan, at age of 3 or 4 noticed. I had to do some fast talking!
2. Real or artificial tree? REAL! I always had a fake tree growing up, so once I was out on my own, a real tree was a must. At this point, I could be convinced to get a nice fake tree with lights already strung, but Steve insists if we're going to have a tree, it must be real.
3. When do you put up the tree? It sort of depends on (a) our schedule (b) weather and (c) when Hanukkah is. Since Hanukkah was early this year, we waited until it was underway before getting the tree. Usually second weekend in December.
4. When do you take it down? It's out the door, deocrations packed away and gifts put away by New Year's Day.
5. Do you like eggnog? Not really.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Oh - tough one. I was a HUGE Winnie the Pooh fanatic as a child. Unfortunately, there were no Disney stores or major licensing agreements in those days. What little was out there could be found at Sears. I still have ornaments that my mother found that are easily 35 years old. I always got a new Pooh Bear at Christmas and I still have them all. One year, I received a long gown - dark green with a high white ruffle neck and poufy sleeves. There were Winnie the Poohs all over the green fabric. I wore it the entire school vacation and I wanted to wear it the first day back at school. There was also the year I wanted to get my ears pierced and my mother refused. I was too young (13). My Aunt Dottie gave me pierced earrings for Christmas :)
7. Do you have a nativity scene? No.
8. Hardest person to buy for? It varies. This year, my ILs were tough. My mom is always hard. Some years I'm very inspired and other years it's more difficult, depending on the person.
9. Easiest person to buy for? The boys!
10. Worst Christmas present you ever got? Coat Hangers. From a former sister-in-law.
11. Mail or email Christmas cards? I have not sent Christmas cards in at least 3 years. I have the cards, just never get them done. It's depressing because we're being dropped off lists and not receiving as many cards. There just isn't enough time.
12. Favorite Christmas movie? Year Without a Santa Claus - I love Heat Miser and Snow Miser. Then of course Charlie Brown Christmas, Rudolph, The Grinch - I know these are more "shows" than "movies" but they are what I grew up with and I love watching them with the boys.
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? November-ish, although I've always got an eye out, especially when travelling. If I see something I'll get it and stash it away.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Oh yeah.
15. Favorite thing to eat on Christmas? Sweet Pickles. We always had these at holidays growing up and it's just not Thanksgiving or Christmas without them.
16. Clear lights or colored on the tree? Clear.
17. Favorite Christmas song? Have Yourself a Merry LIttle Christmas, Christmas Wrapping and most sentimental is Silver Bells. Oh, but I love Carol of the Bells too!
18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Home.
19. Can you name all of Santa’s Reindeer? Absolutely.
20. Angel or star on top of tree? Star. Given that Steve is Jewish, I have always felt that an Angel would not be appropriate, not am I a big angel person. We only recently found a star we love. For many years the top was either bare or just had ribbon. When the kids were first born, my mom (I think) gave Jackson a large Clifford the Big Red Dog furry ornament and we decided he should be the topper and he was until last year.
21. Open presents Christmas Eve or morning? Morning, but there is always a "Christmas Eve" present. When Steve and I were dating and first married we would exchange our gifts on Christmas Eve.
22. Most annoying thing this time of year? Grumpy people.
23. Do you decorate your tree in any theme or color? It's a hodge podge of memories. Ornaments from my childhood, exquisite ornaments given to us as gifts or something I've picked up, handmade ornaments from the kids - lots of Red Sox ornaments, hot wheel cars - whatever their passion is each year. Plus, we give the boys a special ornament each year so that when they go off on their own, they will have ornaments that are meaningful to start their own trees.
24. What do you leave for Santa? He gets cookies and milk. The reindeer get carrots and maybe some apple.
It's overwhelming to think one week from tomorrow, Santa flies! It's going to be a frantic week at work. Deadlines for shipping to customers are flying by (tomorrow is it for the West Coast without expedited shipping, Tuesday is South/Midwest and Wednesday is East), shoppers will be starting to panic and we've got to prep for the Year End Blowout Sale!
I'm going to see if I can steal a sneak peek from Steve's super-secret list and give you all some inside scoop later this week!