Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Let the Countdown Begin

by Beth Andrews

In the US, Thanksgiving is the official kick-off to the Holiday season. And since Thanksgiving is in two short days, I'd like to present my list of the Ten Things I'm Looking Forward To This Holiday Season and Five Things I Could Live Without

Ten Things I'm looking forward to (in no particular order):

1. Enchanted. I love Disney movies and this one about a cartoon princess who gets banished to New York City looks really good *g*

2. Nora Roberts' Sign of Seven trilogy. I LOVE Nora Roberts' books, especially her trilogies.

3. Big Boned, the latest Heather Wells mystery by Meg Cabot. Meg's books--both for adults and teens--are laugh-out-loud funny!

4. White trash. This yummy combo of pretzels, peanuts, M&Ms, Corn Chex cereal and Cheerios covered in melted white chocolate is addicting.

5. Chocolate Chip biscotti. Yummy biscotti with chocolate chips and a hint of cinnamon--and the ends are dipped in melted white chocolate (I'm seeing a pattern here)

6. Christmas songs - especially anything by Trans Siberian Orchestra or Bing Crosby.

7. Shopping. Well, I love shopping at any time of the year really, but during November and December I get to tell my husband I HAVE to go to the mall. Two or three times a week.

8. Watching holiday movies like It's A Wonderful Life, Holiday Inn and The Santa Clause *g*

9. Making a gingerbread house with my kids on Christmas Eve. Making the dough and frosting takes some time but it's worth it :-)

10. All those wonderful sappy commercials. Remember the Folgers one where the older brother comes home and his little sister is awake and they make coffee and the rest of the family wakes up to the fresh aroma of Folgers and is surprised to see him there? Gets me every time.

Five things I could live without:

1. My mom's meat stuffing. She makes it every year for Thanksgiving. I'm not even sure what's in it but it's dark brown and looks like a dry meatloaf. The only people who eat it are my father and brother. But even though I don't eat it, it's still there on the table tormenting me.

2. Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer. The TV show, not the actual reindeer. I know, I know, it's like I'm Scrooge or something, and it's not that I hate Rudolph, it's just that something about the animation freaks me out. And I've always been afraid of that snow monster.

3. The song, Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer. Argh! And now that I've typed it, it's already stuck in my head!

4. The five pounds I'll gain from eating so much White Trash and Chocolate Chip Biscotti.

5. Taking down the decorations. Funny how everybody and their brother is around when it's time to decorate the house, but when it's time to UN-decorate, I'm the only person within a five mile radius.

Okay, that's my list *g* What about you? What are you looking forward to this Holiday Season? What could you live without? Come on, I can't be the only person who doesn't watch Rudolph :-)


Keira Soleore said...

(cough, cough, cough) No comment needed.

Susan Seyfarth said...

And again, no Golden Rooster for me. Congrats, Keira!

But, Beth, you MUST share this recipe for White Trash. I've never had it, & I think I might be in love. :-) Pretty please??

Jennifer Y. said...

Oooh...White Trash is good! I like Divinity too....and just about every other sweet common around the holidays!

Kirsten said...

My birthday!! It's Nov 25th and when I was a kid, we always celebrated on Thanksgiving, because we'd have family around. And it was a huge party where we ate all day long and I got PRESENTS!!

Which leads me to my favorite thing I'm looking forward to. Forget all that nonsense about giving to charities. I LOVE PRESENTS!! I'm completely easy to please--anything, as long as it's wrapped and is for me. Love it. :-)

Oh, and Bing. Love Bing.

Anna Campbell said...

Keira, you GR rotten snatcher!!! How did I miss out today??!! I was even on the computer!

We don't have Thanksgiving down here. But it's definitely the countdown to Christmas. I picked up some really cute gifts for people at our local market last week. It's hard to get things that you don't see everywhere.

OK, OK, I can't help it. What I'm looking forward to is the release of Untouched in a week! Shoot me for a self-promotional pain, but it's true! Beat me, whip me, banish me to the doghouse! Woof!

Christine Wells said...

Congrats, Keira! I was waiting for your comment but it looks like you took the rooster and ran:) You do know you have to give it back tomorrow, don't you? Otherwise, the banditas will don our bucket boots and come after you, cutlasses at the ready. Arr!

Nice post, Beth! What I look forward to most about Christmas is my sister-in-law waking us at 5am on Christmas morning with Elvis singing 'Santa Bring my Baby Back to Me'. If she's not staying with us, she calls and plays it down the phone. Love it! Love Bing, Frank and Louis singing Christmas carols but I must say Neil Diamond's I-y-I-y-I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas holds a special place in my heart:)

I love buying the perfect present for everyone and the anticipation of Christmas Eve. The actual day is always a bit of a fizzer by comparison. After the presents we stuff ourselves silly, then go and snooze. This year, we'll be either in the mountains or at the beach. Either way, it will be HOT!

Happy THanksgiving, everyone!

DownUnderGirl said...

Ahh, my favourite time of year.
I look forward to all the Xmas fruit being out. Plums and apricots and cherries. And mangoes are everywhere. And there's nothing like crisp cold watermelon on a hot December day.

I love going into the shops but just to hear the piped carols - love Bing singing carols. I've just submitted a Xmas book and my ed came back and said - enough with Bing ;-)
I really hate the crush of people in the shops though and the 30 min hunt for a carpark. I'm like you Christine - always try to find the perfect gift. Which means too much time in the damn crowded shops!!Not a great shopper at the best of times.
Another thing I sort of look forward to but also sort of dont, is the annual presents for teachers. I always make some baked goody or other which always looks fabulous but the time and effort is usually immense. I made clove oranges the year my son was in kindy (can you tell it was my first year?) and they looked amazing and smelled divine but oi! Ten hours it took me to put all those suckers into two oranges!!!
And I bet the teachers just ditched them.
Like you Kirsten, my birthday is close to Xmas so this always make it an extra special time of the year for me too.

And what I love most of all is when a complete stranger says "Merry Xmas" to you. Its just so festive!!!


p226 said...

No need for a list.

One word summary.


Helen said...

I love Christmas all the food and presents I love presents and food I make christmas cakes for presents and I am going to start making them this weekend I usually make about 7 and I make christmas puddings in the cloth as well and yes downunderlady I too love all the fruit I have been eating cherries all week.I love decorating the house and writing out the chrissy cards and getting them and I don't like shopping at all but I do get to the shops and start as soon as I can and then get it all wrapped.
We still have the traditional chrissy hot lunch with our family so christmas day is always hot in my house with the oven cooking pork turkey chicken a very busy day at my place and of course I have two beautiful grandchildren to spoil now lucky me. Beth there is not a lot I don't like about christmas except perhaps it is very busy at work all the way thru because we don't close on christmas day but I am not working this year.
I am also looking forward to Untouched Anna I can't wait to read it and a big congrats Keira on the golden rooster.
Have Fun all
Beth I too would love the reciepe for white trash.

Caren Crane said...

Congrats, Keira! And all you Aussies are freaking me out with the "hot December" business. We're dreaming of a white Christmas, as in snow. *g*

I adore Thanksgiving, because it's a time for all of my huge family to get together, talk, eat great food and count our blessings without the muck of presents. Don't get me wrong: when Christmas gets here, I'll be more than ready for prezzies. But what I enjoy most is the anticipation of the holiday season. Advent is all about waiting!

My least favorites include:
-both decorating and un-decorating (I like having decorated, Cassondra *g*)
-keeping up with what I've bought for whom (and please do not suggest a spreadsheet!)
-last-minute gift buying when I think I'm finished
-realizing I'm supposed to be at least two fun places at the same time and having to choose =:-0

Most favorite:
-Getting the GH entries into the mail (yes!!)
-getting Christmas cards in the mail
-eating Christmas cookies (okay, I enjoy baking them when I have time)
-buying the perfect gift I know someone will adore (LOVE IT!!)
-Christmas services at church

Gillian Layne said...

I love taking my kids shopping and watching how they worry over choosing just the right gift for those on their list; it's sweet, and fun.

And my mother's fudge. So good it's worth every tight waistband in my closet.

Beth said...

Keira, congrats on the GR!! I fear I shall never know the joy of winning that award :-)

Susan, of course I'll share my recipe. But first I'll have to find it *g*

Jennifer y, to me, sweets are one of the best things about the holidays. Although I do wonder why there are some treats we only make at Christmas. Like Kiss cookies (peanut butter cookies with a chocolate kiss) What would happen if we made them in June? Would the Holiday treat police come after us? Or would they just seem less special?


Beth said...

How fun, Kirsten! And yes, I love presents too *g* Best part about a birthday if you ask me ;-)

No, Anna, shoot ME for not adding that to my list! The Holiday madness has already consumed me and I've lost my mind *g* I can't wait for my copy of Untouched as it's going to kick off my Holiday reading :-)

What a wonderful tradition, Christine! We always play Bing Christmas morning and my parents, mother-in-law and sister and her family join us. This year I think we'll head to my sister's house as her kids are still very young *g* But I'm bringing my Bing CDs ;-)

Beth said...

downundergirl, I used to make homemade gifts for teachers too! It was fun but quite a lot of time *g* And I'm sending in a proposal for a Christmas story today! Hopefully my editor will like it enough that next year I'll have its release to look forward to.

p226, come on, no list? Not even a What you could do without list?

Helen, I'm determined to be more organized this year and to get more baking, crafting and decorating done! You've inspired me to get started this weekend *g* I will definitely share the white trash recipe later today.

Beth said...

Caren, I agree - I love a white Christmas! And speaking of the GH, I usually get my entries to judge the day before Christmas! Yet another thing I love - all the packages that come in the mail *g*

Kids are one of the best parts about the Holidays, aren't they Gillian? And I love fudge but I can't make it to save my life :-)

Suzanne Welsh said...

Oh Beth, I love the holidays and have my own list of traditions I can't wait for.

1. Christmas carols. I love them, know the first verse of so many, and the second and third of about half! My grown kids have a caroling party, complete with appetizers and hot chocolate afterwards. They don't collect money, they just go singing for the fun of it.

2. Baking. I have about 6 kinds of cookies and Buckeye candy I HAVE to make each year. And if mom forgets one kind, the kids tell me about it for the next year.

3. Wrapping Christmas present while watching my White Christmas tape. Just me the dog and some popcorn!

4. Going to church for the service closest to Christmas.

Deb Marlowe said...

Hi Beth! You've got some fun lists. I have to disagree with you on Rudolph, though. I love that show! Even the scary Bumble! My sister is partial to The Year Without a Santa Claus because she loves the Heat Miser and Cold Miser.

Looking forward to:

--Giving presents! I love to choose presents for people. Must be my controlling nature. :-) Here--your life will not be complete without this!

--Surprising the kids. One of my favorite parts of Christmas. The Christmas morning frenzy.

--Chex Mix. Also addictive. And the excuse to spend quality baking time in the kitchen!

--Christmas get-together with the Biaggi's Bunch! A highlight any time of year! Love you guys!

--Untouched! Whoo hoo! FauxAnna--I cannot wait!

Caren Crane said...

Hi, Deb! When is that Christmas get-together going to be, anyway? *g* We got some planning to do!

I forgot all about Chex Mix. Man, I love that stuff! But I cannot keep it around. I do not need to eat any. I might as well just tape it to my thighs and avoid the whole digestion bit.

Hey, honorary Banditas y Banditos, we will be waxing rhapsodic about holiday goodies and sharing recipes during December, so be sure to check for recipes throughout the next month!

Beth said...

Suz, as you might have guessed, baking is one of my favorite things as well *g* I save recipes and holiday themed magazines so I can try a variety of new items each year along with old favorites.

Deb, I love the Heat Miser and Cold Miser! And the cartoon about the mice - I think it's called Twas the Night Before Christmas - that I always liked too :-)

I'm not big on chex mix - probably because there's no melted white chocolate involved ;-) but my family loves it *ggg*

Caren said...

Beth, I'm also sorry to report that I love Rudolph! After we talked about it here a few weeks ago, my girls and I had to watch it that night. We had a great time! It's so incredibly cheesy (now that they're teenagers) it makes it even more fun. But, as a kid, I was afraid of the Bumble, too. *g* I got over it, though. I mena, Yukon Cornelius makes up for a lot!

Joan said...

Whoa, another list blog. Yay! Thanks, Beth! I love lists.

I actually have some holiday spirit (which has waxed and waned since my Mom's passing)this year.
I believe it was all the classic holiday songs my local Kroger's has already been playing.

1. Presents. I really do like to look for THE perfect one for everybody on my list. And I have two little girls to buy for this year. Island Barbie Princess? High School Musical? (for 3,4year old?) or..a Raggedy Ann doll. Simple but classic. Afraid my brother though will NOT be getting the French Maid on his list (eye roll).

I enjoy getting them too (2 years ago bro got me a digital camera! He said "This is to say how much I appreciate you and all the things you do even when I don't say them" Awwwwwwwwww) but like giving rather than receiving.

2.Baking. Really do love to do it for work, for parties, for the heck of it. This month's Southern Living magazine ie FULL of cool new things.

3.I'm with Suz. I like wrapping presents with "White Christmas" on the TV. I also really put a lot of thought into my wrapping paper selections. One roll HAS to have Santas on it, another Snowmen and then one classy metallic or blue.

4. I can't even include Untouched. Not when I will have GOTTEN IT, READ IT, BRAGGED ABOUT IT way before the holidays.

And I both dread the putting up and the taking down of decorations. It is "just me" in my house but I still like a big tree. It takes me forever to drag the sucker up from the basement (yes, artificial LOL), string the lights and put on all the "special ornaments". Then I have to choose between the Precious Moments or the Cherished Teddies nativity scene :-)

Well, now I'm in the shopping mood so think I'll swing out for some falalala

Oh, a p226. Never say Humbug to a Bandita. We WILL change your mind! bwahahahaha

jo robertson said...

Cute, clever post, Beth!

I love our tradition of sitting around the table at Thanksgiving and each person saying one thing he's thankful for. Even my teenaged sons coughed up something back in the day!

And my pumpkin bread is to die for.

Keira Soleore said...

The tree. I loved the smell of fresh pine. I like going out to this local farm and choose a five-footer for us. Ahhh the fragrance. Of course this activity is so much more fun when there's snow on the ground (Sorry, everyone where the sun shines brightly at Xmas.) We have individual ornaments gathered from all our travels, so each other has a story behind it. Some are gifts from friends, some were made at school by starfish hands... It's so much fun putting it all up.

While it won't be at midnight when the shops open, I do plan on venturing out to the stores the day after Thanksgiving to take in all the excitement and spirit and crowds. I won't get any buying done, but I'll get a ton of "seeing" done.

I love receiving holiday cards, photographs, and news.

Banditas fun to look forward to: Untouched's release and Inara's birthday.

Tawny said...

Ooooh I love the holidays!

My favorite things - shopping with my kids. Pretending not to notice my kids whispering together and shoving things under their bed with big smiles. My kids opening their presents. Making cookies and decorating with the kids. Our gift wrapping parties, and the inevitable re-teaching the youngest daughter how to wrap a gift so it doesnt' look like her dad did it.

Um... My favorite things are my kids LOL.

Least favorite... when its all over. Oh -and the stores any time after Thanksgiving. I hate crowds.

Donna MacMeans said...

LOL - I'd forgotten that the "white" in an Aussie white Christmas was suntan lotion.

My likes - cookies!!! Especially, as I feel obligated to eat them to "save" the rest of the family from the unhealthy calories *g*.

I love decorating the tree. Like Kiera, each ornament has a story behind it (that I've carefully written and packed away with the ornament). I love the memories that come with decorating the tree.

I love those Christmas carols that the whole family can sing along with in the car as we visit relatives.

Fav Christmas movie - The Christmas Story with Ralphie ("You'll shoot your eye out, kid")
Hilarious stuff.

I love the first pristine snow that covers the ground and muffles the everyday winter sounds.

Dislikes - the weight gain from eating all those cookies. Taking down the tree - it's always so sad, packing away the memories again. Christmas carols that start playing in the stores BEFORE Halloween (egad!). The morning after it snows when the roads are impassable or yucky/ugly with ash and salt.

P226 - I don't believe that humbug routine for a minute. The person who maintains the toughest facade for the world to view, usually has the softest heart. You love it. I know you do.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Claudia Dain said...

Hate to leave you lonely, Beth, but I love Rudolph as well. He's so cute! And the elf who wants to be a dentist...I giggle every time I think of it.

What I love about the holidays are getting to spend so much time with family. We love to sit around the dining room table, sharing stories and memories, laughing together.

What I dislike is, now don't laugh at me, the fact that there's never any room in the fridge because it's so stuffed with food! I have a turkey in there now that's taking up an entire shelf! Horrors.

Caren Crane said...

*sigh* I typed a whole reply to Claudia's comment and Blogger ate it. Which actually is a nice segue to my point.

Claudia, I understand your frustration with the over-full fridge. In my household, there could be ambrosia of the most tempting sort lurking behind a turkey...but my family would never find it.

Anything that is not directly in view when the door is opened might as well not exist. So, leftovers (even highly desirable ones) languish on the "second row".

I have to trot them out, set them on the counter and lead the Tour Of Leftovers for them to get any action at all.

I may set up a schedule of food rotation this year to make sure the leftovers are eaten. Or I may simply "forget" them all at my sister's house. *g*

Nancy said...

Hi, Beth--

You have a nice mix of holiday ups and downs. I'm looking forward to spending time with my family and getting to know the friends, new co-workers of the dh, who're coming to dinner Thursday. I look forward to the end of my semester and the tranquility of Christmas Eve.

Things I could do without--chaos at the mall, lines at the post office, the last-minute rush. I try to shop early to avoid the latter.

And yeah, Beth, share that recipe!

Beth said...

Joan, I enjoy shopping for other people as well *g* I try to make sure I get them something they really want. Which was why when I had my one brother's name (we draw names 'cuz there are so many of us) a few years back and he asked for a Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle (yes, just like the movie A Christmas Story) I got him one *g* Well, actually, a Red Ryder BB gun but's it's as close as I could find.

Beth said...

Jo, I love pumpkin bread! And that's a wonderful tradition :-)

Keira, I might be shopping on Black Friday as well. I like to go by myself and just take my time to look at everything and find the best sales. Luckily crowds don't bother me so it's a great day to shop ;-)

Tawny, LOL on the crowds. I just go into my happy zen place and honestly don't let it bother me *g* Plus, I've been known to zip through WalMart using my cart as a battering ram from time to time. But only when absolutely necessary *ggg*

Beth said...

I agree with you Donna about the snow. For me, I don't like when it melts, the grass is ugly/brown and everything looks dirty. Yuck.

(sigh) I can't believe I'm the only one who can't watch Rudolph. I'm starting to develop a complex. I guess I'll just stick to Frosty and Charlie Brown *g*

Claudia, I also can't stand not to have room for all the food. We sometimes run out of space and we have two refrigerators and a standing freezer. But I love leftovers ;-)

Beth said...

LOL, Caren on leading the Tour of Leftovers! I have to do the same thing - but I love having all that easily accessible food *g*

Nancy, you've hit on another of my Things I Could Live Without. Lines at the post office. Ugh. Ours is really small and they usually only have one person working the counter. Very frustrating.

I'll be back with that recipe in a little bit!!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, you gals are great! Well, we all knew that! I'm serious about looking forward to Untouched coming out - and you all got it!! It wasn't JUST me having a bit of a promotion at Beth's expense! Hey, anyone passing, on the 27th November, I'm having a release party here and I'm giving away prizes included a signed copy so CALL BACK!!!

Actually I LOVE Christmas mail. I love proper mail (i.e. no window in the front and not trying to sell me anything) anyway but the Christmas stuff is just extra fun somehow.

Actually, Donna, the 'white' in our White Christmas is me revealing my dimpled flesh that hasn't seen the sun for so long! You can't avoid cavorting in your swimming costume at this time of year and I'm so pale, I dazzle!

Inara, looking forward to your birthday now too! Whoo-hoo!

Actually, and the recipes should be great. I did my first lot of Christmas baking yesterday (I'm getting visitors at the moment, one of the hazards of living in a holiday area when the weather gets nice). It's so great for relieving the stress, isn't it? And don't you feel like a domestic goddess when you pull those perfect suckers out of the oven (thank goodness, the slice worked out!)?

Donna MacMeans said...

LOL Anna on the virgin flesh unkissed by the sun. I relate every spring.

I love Christmas cards as well. I display and save them. Not sure for what, but I just can't throw them out.

I also love the Christmas lights. Do they do that in Oz? Cover the house and outside trees with multi-colored lights? We have a house near us we call the Gingerbread house because roof line, house line, window frame is lined with lights. Some are chasers, some are blinkers. I like it - the sheer overabundance is exhilarating, but I think I'm a bit unique in that appreciation, based on my neighbors' grumbling.

Joan said...

Well, the falalalala out there today wasn't TOO bad. There were actually great sales going on already...I got ME another new pair of silky pjs. I got ME another black purse (you know, gotta fill up that void left by the 25 I donated a couple of weeks ago) and got ME 4 more books.

Do you think it's about me?

Oh, I got some other stuff too. Bro mainly. His bday is the 5th (the same as Walt Disney). He's gotten onto an Eagles kick and so Walmart was the ONLY place to have that CD. Where I got ME pot holders, a area rug, another book... (sigh.

LOL, Caren on the "orphan" food in the fridge. I had my CP's over for a session Sunday where I cooked Vegetable Chowder. Now being a single lady, usually not a LOT in the fridge. But as I was shifting items around, discovered a tupperware bowl in the back...from ???1985. Ugh...it was NOT pretty!

My greatest wish on Christmas is to have snow. It's a really iffy thing here in Kentucky. But to have snow, a favorite movie/special on (Rudolph's OK...LOVE Charlie Brown) with the tree lights on....heaven.

That reminds me, I gotta get ME a DVD of Holiday Inn :-)

Helen said...

Yes Donna some people decorate their houses and whole streets do it they are beautiful these people go to so much trouble to do the lighting on one of the news shows they show different suburbs at the end and they have traffic congestion late at night with people going to see the lights.
And Beth I do love to watch Rudolph I plan on trying to get my grandson to sit and watch it with me this year and I will be getting all my christmas cd's out this weekend because I must have them on while I am cooking the cakes and puddings a tradition with us here and everyone who is here the day I make the pudding has to have a stir and a wish.
Have Fun

Cassondra said...

Well, OBVIOUSLY I like Rudolph, since my whole blog was about him quite recently...ahem...

And as to P226--Pffffft. Unless your favorite thing about the holidays is the Muppets Christmas Carol (an absolute CLASSIC)you'd best come up with a better answer. (note the disbelieving sniff at the end of my sentence)

What I hate?

Shopping. I hate shopping. I shop like a man. I go. I buy what I want. I leave. If I have to look around for it, I hate it. And if I have to go to the mall for it, I hate it. And if I have to fight a crowd, just forget it.

What do I love about the holidays? The food that you normally get only at this time of year. SOME of the music--Baby it's COOOOOOOLD outside. Some of the films--Elf, The Santa Clause, getting cards (hate the guilt because I buy them but never get them sent....:0/ )

And in the immortal words of Burl Ives, the best thing we can do at this point, is to get the women back to Christmastown.

(I admit it. I have to fast forward through that part of Rudolph. The cheese is just too deep to wade through at that point.)

Claudia Dain said...

So glad I'm not alone in the fridge dilemma. I do love my leftovers. Everything tastes better later.

Favorite holiday movies: Holiday Inn, White Christmas (though Bing is so bossy in that role!), Miracle on 34th St, The Bishop's Wife, It's A Wonderful Life (that telephone scene with Donna and Jimmy---sigh), Easter Parade (I know, wrong holiday, but it's such a Feel Good), 7 Brides for 7 Brothers. I like some of the newer ones, too, but the old ones just take me to a happy childhood place that the newer ones can't match.

Joan said...


Oh, I had forgotton about "The Bishop's Wife" The ORIGINAL with Cary Grant. (sigh) when he magically decorates the Christmas tree...

p226 said...

Fine fine fine.

Things I hate about the holidays:

Ridiculously over the top commercialism/consumerism 24/7 for two full months.

Things I like about the holidays:
Sometimes it snows.

DownUnderGirl said...

wAH!!! I want a white Xmas. I sit and listen to Bing extoll the virtues and it's the one thing I yearn for the most at Xmas - snow.
We too still do the traditional turkey and all the trimmings so the kitchen is HAWT!! But I just click on all the air-cons and its a chilly 16 degrees and I close my eyes and listen to Bing and I can make believe its snowing outside.


Beth said...

Anna, I'm so looking forward to your release day! Another party in the Lair :-)

I'm going to try and talk the family into hanging lights tomorrow before the weather turns nasty, Donna. We have a house called the Santa house with TONS of decorations. Kids love to drive by and the owners dress as Santa and Mrs Clause and hand out treats *g*

LOL-Joan! Sounds like a fabulous shopping trip!

Helen, I love that about stirring the pudding and making a wish! Wonder if I can do that with instant pudding? :-)

Beth said...

Cassondra, I know of your love of Rudolph and I remember your wonderful post well *g* It took me a great deal of courage to admit my less than joyous feelings toward old Rudy :-)

Claudia, you hit on my favorite scene in It's A Wonderful Life! The sexual tension just about burns through the screen *g* I was trying to explain how wonderful a movie it was to a certain Bandita who has never seen it (Tawny) and I quoted the scene where they walk home from the gym (soaking wet) and the telephone scene :-) Man, I love that movie!

Beth said...

Yay! Thanks, p226 *g* You know, the commercialism really doesn't bother me. Maybe because there are so many sappy movies/TV shows/songs etc. Now, the commercialism of Valentine's Day bugs me for some reason. It just seems a bit overblown :-)

Amy, snow is wonderful for Christmas. As long as it melts soon afterward *g* We've had snow storms as late as late March/early April and believe me, by then, everyone but die-hard skiers are sick of the stuff.

Beth said...

As promised, here's the recipe for White Trash:

10 oz. mini pretzels
5 cups Cheerios
5 cups Corn Chex
2 cups salted peanuts
1 lb. M&Ms Plain Chocolate Candy
2 pkg. (12 oz. each) vanilla chips
3 tbsp. vegetable oil

In a large bowl, combine first 5 ingredients; set aside. In a microwave-safe bowl, heat chips and oil on medium-high for 2 minutes, stirring once. Microwave on high for 10 seconds; stir until smooth. Pour over cereal mixture and mix well. Spread onto three waxed paper-lined baking sheets. Cool; break apart. Store in an airtight container.

For super white chocolatey deliciousness, you can use more white chips and veg oil


Aunty Cindy said...

(Aunty peeks out of the deadline cave to give p226 a HIGH 5!)

HUMBUG from me too! Things I could do without? Most EVERYTHING, but esp.

1. shopping, don't like to do it under the best of circumstances but fighting for a parking space, fighting the crowds, standing in the check-out line for hours... SO NOT WORTH IT!

2. cold, rainy miserable weather, which is generally what we have here, but no snow. I NEED to live in Oz for Xmas! I'd LOVE Santa on his surf board, running the air conditioning down to Arctic Tundra level and all the hotties on the beach!

3. my birthday is the week before Xmas and I HATE IT! Always have! However, Aunty has a sure fire "cure" for all those who try the old "combined" bday/Xmas gift scam:

Them: This is your birthday and Christmas present combined. (shoves a package in wrinkled red & green Santa paper at Aunty.)

Aunty: (shoves a package wrapped in red & green Grinch paper) And this is YOUR birthday and Christmas present COMBINED.

Them: But my birthday is in July.

Aunty: Too bad. Now you know how it feels.

And YES, I have actually done this very thing, but never more than once to the same person. They seem to get the hint.

who does like going on a cruise to Mexico during the holidays

Nancy said...

I'm with Donna and Helen on the lights. There used to be a guy about half a mile from us who had a little bungalow that had had additions tacked on every which way. He covered every bit of it, including the back fence, with lights. He had lighted figures, inflated and illuminated figures, and music in the yard and on the roof. And he lived on a cul-de-sac! The traffic was just wild some nights. We called him Christmas Guy because we didn't know him and his house was always so over-the-top festive. With the leaves off the trees, his lights were visible from the street even though he lived at the bottom of a hill. We so looked forward to his lights every year.

Then he moved. *sigh*

I do love presents, too, especially knowing the recipient genuinely likes my gift. As I get older, giving generates far more pleasure than receiving.

To the "White Christmas" bunch--I'm with ya. I can't remember the last time it snowed here at Christmas (it was supposed to be 74 degrees today *grumble*), but hope springs eternal. For the fluffy kind of white Christmas, not the Aussie style one generated by zinc oxide ointment on the nose, but I'm sure if I were lucky enough to visit Oz, I could cheerfully adapt.

Caren Crane said...

Nancy, I remember a couple of Christmases we had some snow in Nashville when I was little. Once was just a dusting, but once was real snow. Since we've been in NC (since 1982!) I think there may have been some flurries one year. More than once, my brother has been wearing shorts. *sigh*

I always wanted to live in New England. I know, everyone from there gripes about the snow (including my cousin), but it's so much more festive!

P226, I don't enjoy the commercialism of Christmas. I enjoy the anticipation, the joy of the season, the celebration of the fulfilled promise and the company of loved ones. I also enjoying doing for others with less than myself.

As to the sales and commercials and brouhaha, I would gladly forgo it. Try this: don't watch TV at Christmas or listen to commercial radio. You'll be amazed how much saner and simpler the holidays will be. (Of course, I have all the Christmas shows on video and DVD, so I don't have to watch TV! *g*)

Keira Soleore said...

I love reading Christmas books, listening to Christmas music, and decorating the tree, Christmas catalogs -- but everything after Thanksgiving, not two weeks before Halloween, which is when they started falalalaing this year. That's downright annoying.

Beth and Joan: Woo Hoo to shopping, mostly window for me. I go through cycles. Sometimes, I love to go to imbibe the excitement as I people-watch.

Joan said...

Yes, Kiera. I'm gonna miss "Black Friday" this year.

The ONE year I'd managed to be off on the Friday after Thanksgiving and then my co assistant nurse manager needed to be off too....


p226? You've probably done a lot of exciting Marine things but it pales in comparison to the strategy, cunning, skill and dedication it takes to finding a parking spot at the mall! LOL

p226 said...

Joan said:

You've probably done a lot of exciting Marine things but it pales in comparison to the strategy, cunning, skill and dedication it takes to finding a parking spot at the mall! LOL

I have a terrifying story about exactly that. I'll not share it here.

Beth said...

LOL, AC! Great way to get your point across *g* I don't think it's fair to combine gifts either.

Nancy, I often wonder if our Santa House guy's neigbhors mind the traffic - not to mention the bright lights *g*

Caren, great idea about not watching TV or listening to the radio if the commercials bother you *g* I guess I'm too easy going. I just let those things roll off my back :-)

Keira, I love Christmas books! I buy each of my kids a hardcover Christmas book each year as a gift. My 16 yo son isn't too thrilled but I figure he can keep them and give them to his kids someday (someday WAY in the future)