Welcome to the Christmas edition of getting to know your friends (and by friends, I mean, random online strangers reading this blog in search of peeing snowsuit wisdom). I realize that not everyone celebrates Christmas (including me. Sometimes I’m just not in the mood, okay? All that cheer. All that merriment. All that Bailey’s in my coffee. *Hiccup*), so if you repost, please tell us about your favorite [insert religious, non-religious, familial, self-described, or totally fake-ass made-up winter holiday here] traditions!
(And you can all thank my dear friend Amy D. in Minneapolis for starting this today!)
- Wrapping paper or gift bags? There isn’t enough gift wrap in the world to contain all the love I have to give you this Christmas. We’re making it another “thought that counts” Christmas. As in, it’s not the amount of money you spend. It’s the thought that counts. And I’ve thought a lot about your gifts!
- Real tree or artificial? Real. Fake plastic trees are like flavored coffee. They seem like a good idea at the time, until you’re standing there Christmas morning half asleep in your Dora the Explorer underwear trying to identify the chemical aroma filling your nostrils. But don’t let my propensity toward the authentic fool you into thinking I actually got a tree this year. Or last year. Next year is looking better, though we’ll be back in NY which means table-top tree, Charlie Brown style.
- When do you put up the tree? In the time-honored tradition of my father, I like to put up the tree part of the tree in early December, and then apply one row of lights per week until late Christmas Eve, when Mom gets a hold of the Bailey’s and threatens divorce if those lights aren’t up in one hour.
- When do you take the tree down? In the time-honored tradition of my mother – around Valentine’s Day. If you leave it up long enough, it practically takes itself down!
- Do you like egg nog? Silk Soy Holiday Nog is the way to go! A little nutmeg on the top… yeah. Also great for making French toast.
- Do you have a nativity scene? Me, personally? Like, here’s a miniature likeness of Mom, feet in stirrups, about to turn to the dark side if she doesn’t get the drugs? Here’s me, taking my sweet time on the trip out? Here’s the doctor and various medical staff and three men outside the door arguing about which one is the father? So um, that would be no, (but I do feel a business idea coming on…). Anyway, since this is after all a Christmas meme, I think the original meme author meant Nativity scene, capital N, which means the whole “tiny little statues commemorating the birth of Jesus” thing. In which case, the answer is, no. There are no tiny little statues in my home.
- Hardest person to buy for? Everyone! Hence the Thought That Counts Christmas and its close cousins, the Wrap Up Something From Your House And Pass It Off As New Christmas, and the Make Something From The Heart That Has Actual Meaning But Will Probably End In The Recipient’s Disappointment Christmas.
- Easiest person to buy for? Myself! That’s why Alex and I don’t go Christmas shopping anymore. One for them, nine for us, that’s how we roll, baby!
- Mail or email Christmas cards? Email Christmas cards? Really, people, is it that bad? It’s almost better not to send anything. Because if I don’t get a card from you in the mail, I don’t think anything of it. But when I get an e-card for Christmas? I say, hey there, guy! Thank you for only pretending to think about me this holiday season!
- Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Christmas, 2002. My newly-appointed boss sent me a box of meat. I don’t mean like a Hickory Farms box of sausage and cheese and chocolate and jams and whatnot. No, this was a box of raw, red meat. It sat on my front porch in the sun all day until I got home from work. I’m vegetarian. Imagine my surprise. Nothing says “I was only pretending to listen to you” like sending your vegetarian employees a box of raw meat!
- Favorite Christmas book? The Night Before Christmas, but I feel compelled to add a new question below:
- Favorite Christmas movie? Bad Santa.
- When do you start shopping for Christmas? You mean, when do I start thinking about shopping, wa wa wee wa!
- Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? What, just one? I tried to recycle that meat, but the post office wouldn’t let me re-ship it.
- Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Bailey’s! Oh, and these, in no particular order:
- Clear lights or colored on the tree? Clear. But not blinking or musical or anything freaky like that – whoa!
- Favorite Christmas song? Silent Night, Etta James version. Well that, and this classic, dedicated to my brother Pook:
- Travel at Christmas or stay home? We alternate. This year we’re staying in town, but dog-sitting at my friend’s house, so it’s kind of like traveling, right? I already told my friend I’d be implementing my grab bag idea from the previous post, so maybe some of you will get nice (purse-sized) Christmas gifts after all.
- Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer? Yes, but what about their second-string understudies? Those guys never get any play.
- Angel on the tree top or a star? Is there anything more frightening than BHAD (Blue Haired Angel of Death)? I think not. That’s why she’s been in our family for 47 years. Everyone is afraid to throw her out. She will put a spell on us. Bwah hah hah!
- Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Morning. Except for the matching PJs we get when we travel to Mom’s house in Buffalo. Those babies we open on Christmas Eve, but we’re not allowed to put them on until Christmas morning, lest we wrinkle them and spoil the effect.
- Most annoying thing about this time of year? Mass consumerism and commercialization. What if everyone followed the true spirit of Christmas and, say, donated their holiday cash to a good cause instead? *Ducks rotten tomatoes some of you are inevitably tossing at me*
- Favorite ornament theme or color? Well it used to be the glass ornament I got when I was a baby, with my name on it, but my brothers destroyed it with a nerf gun one year and I don’t like to talk about it. Thanks a lot.
- Favorite for Christmas dinner? Bailey’s! And Ensalada Rusa. More, please.
- What do you want for Christmas this year? I’ll take… waking up with my favorite person in the world. 🙂
But seriously. Enough about me. Now it’s your turn! Either answer in the comments or on your own blog!
Oh MY GOD!!! NNNNOOOOOO!!! She/It is still around!! Not you, favorite (meaning only) daughter. Meaning Blue haired Angel/Witch, held together by more and more masking tape(if I can find it on Christmas Eve) or black electricians tape if not, and cardboard splints. She’s lost most of her spun glass (I think that is now an illegal material to have in your possession), hair over the nearly half century she’s been in existance, but managed to put even more weight on with all the repairs.
Maybe it wasn’t the boys that knocked the tree down that one year. Maybe it was the blue haired witch/bitch/angel who did not like the 2 of them underneath her.
As I type this the first tier (that would be bottom) or branches os on the tree and I’ll be pulling repair material off the angel to use to make the now 25 year old fake tree stand up straight.
Merry Christmas!!Merry Christmas!!Merry Christmas!! to all (Note the total lack of PC ness)
Loved reading about your Christmas traditions, Sarah! What’s odd is that I received this exact same survey in an email at work today. Weird! Anyway this put me in the holiday mood, reminded me that I needed to ask you when that Christmas book is coming out that you were a part of, and also got me to blogging about my own family’s Christmas tradition, so thanks on all accounts!