It’s beginning to look a lot like…

CHRISTMAS!

I was raised in a family where Christmas was a big deal.  The weekend after Thanksgiving was reserved for Christmas Preparation: getting a tree, decorating the entire house inside and out so that it resembled a Winter Wonderland.  When both my brother and I lived at home, and were around most nights, we’d do Christmas devotions, a little story and prayer about the season.  My mom bought us Advent Calendars with little chocolates behind the doors, and every night, we’d guess the shape that lived behind each door.  Our family shared so many special nights laughing together and hanging out together—the Christmas season’s memories are some of the fondest memories of my childhood.

The older I get, the more excited I get each Christmas season.  I love just about everything about the holidays: the bright lights, the colors, the joy and pleasant feelings that fill the air.  It makes me happy to think about what to get my family, the fun times we’ll share, the treats and fun and the chilly nights I’ll spend with some of my favorite people.  I live near (basically, in) my hometown, so friends from all over come home.  Truth be told, I’ve had Christmas music on in my car for the past 2 weeks.

There are many little holiday traditions I’ve started, in addition to those that my family still celebrates.  Every year, after I’ve finished my Christmas shopping, I like to go to Nordstrom, get a Mocha Blanca and listen to the piano player and watch people shop.  I try and see the Nutcracker if possible.  I love to get coffee and drive around looking at the Christmas lights nearby.  I play Secret Santa with people at work, and spend mornings bundled up making Christmas cards.

This year, I’m looking forward to some new Christmas traditions.  I FINALLY live in a place where it’s my own and I can put up a tree.  I am going to attempt stockings for me and Andrew.  And, perhaps most excitingly, Andrew and I will be spending a day in San Francisco.  We have some plans in the city on a Friday, and are staying overnight to enjoy the holiday decorations in Union Square and beyond.  I literally can’t wait.  I have a few other hopes and dreams up my sleeve, including some cookie recipes and other treats.

As cliche as it may be, to me, the holidays just feel different.  Sure, there is Black Friday insanity, grumpy people, insane parking, but for the most part, I feel like the world is a lot nicer.  And I try to make the most of it.

So, your turn…I’m curious: what are YOUR holiday traditions?  Anything I should add to mine?

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11 Comments

Filed under life with titch

11 responses to “It’s beginning to look a lot like…

  1. I love Christmas. When my sister and I were younger and lived at home, she would stay the night in my room and we would stay up late talking. Christmas morning we weren’t allowed to leave our room till our mom came to get us (she wanted to have her coffee first and have our stockings out), so one of us would pretend like we had to go to the bathroom so we could sneak a look at the presents under the tree.

    Now that I am married, the holidays will be different. This year, my in laws are spending Christmas with us. I guess it’s time to make some new traditions.

  2. I tried to get my roommate to watch a Christmas movie with me on Sunday night, and she said it was too early. Then, as we were scrolling through On Demand, we saw all the holiday films—“Love Actually,” “A Christmas Story,” “A Christmas Carol,” “Home Alone,” etc., and suddenly, she was all, “Oooo, I can’t wait for Christmas!”

    Yeah. My thinking exactly!!!

    I love that the holidays are almost here!!

  3. I throw a Holiday party the second weekend in December always. I make Mulled spiced wine, sweet treats and pumpkin pie martini’s.

    We also play “Hide the Christmas Pickle” as a family, and no its not that dirty I promise. There is a Christmas ornament shapped like a pickle. The person who found it last year is in charge of buying a small gift and hiding the pickle in the tree. The person who finds it gets the gift and has to do the tradition next year.

  4. I’m an atheist who celebrates Christmas and I married a Jew. My favorite thing about the holidays now is blending our traditions. So we put up a tree and light the menorah; we go to China Town Christmas Eve, but make dinner and celebrate at home on Christmas day; brunch and coffee and mimosas and so many presents; but I still miss the hell out of my parents on Christmas day.

  5. Ari

    I love Christmas! My adult Christmas tradition is to mix some Bailey’s in with my coffee in a travel mug and go shopping. Its never enough to get drunk, but just enough so I don’t have an axiety attack. It’s more placebo than anything.

    I also watch Nightmare Before Christmas, Charlie Brown Christmas, the Grinch (the old one), and A Christmas Story while I wrap presents.

  6. I LOOOVE Christmas too!
    Since the first year I became a real “adult” with my own job, apartment, etc, I creating a special theme each year for my Christmas presents. I buy cute wrapping paper, bows, glitter and name tags for each present. One year I had bells on each present and we had to listen to them jingle for 7 hours all the way back to Nebraska on our drive home!

    Yay for the holidays!!

  7. Juley Robarge Woods

    Have you ever celebrated St. Nicholas Day?
    I believe it is observed on the eve of the 6th of December. You leave out your shoes, and Santa fills them. Sort of fun!
    Also, in my family on my dad’s side, we celebrate the epiphany, which is 12 days after Christmas. It is so neat to have 2 Christmases, especially one being in Anti-climatic January!

    I will also be in San Francisco in December. I will be going on Friday the 11th!
    Hooray!

  8. I’m so glad I’m not the only one getting in the spirit. I don’t know why, but this year I’m getting really excited. I wanted to put my tree up before November even started! I’ll hold off, probably till 1 December, but then it’s all on. In the mean time I’m enjoying making my own cards (first time) and checking out all the pretty decorations on offer in the stores. Plus I bought a couple already and have them pinned to my notice board until the tree is up.

  9. You and I should be best friends. I am totally Christmas crazy and not many people understand it.

    And San Francisco at Christmas time is SOOOOOO wonderful! I love Union Square and the huge Christmas tree at Neiman Marcus. What a great romantic Christmas getaway!

    My mom STILL gets us advent calendars. When we were kids my older brother would steal the chocolate out of mine, and when I would open the little door and discover it empty he would tell me mine was defective.

  10. I love Christmas so much! It’s my favorite time of year. I went to Target last weekend and felt such happiness and peace in their Christmas section. So happy. 🙂

    I have so many traditions but once my brother moved out, some of my favorites were gone forever. 😦 Really sad. But we’re making new ones. My favorite tradition was when my brother and I would try to stay awake the whole night and spend it together. We played games, watched movies, and did everything we could to stay awake! We only managed to do it one year.

  11. We used to always get the chocolate Advent calendars too. One year, my sister was about five and opened all the doors at once, and ate all of the chocolate…on around the third day of Advent. Of course, this was my calendar that she demolished! Just last week, I found a website that ships chocolate Advent calendars, so I sent her one, with a note reminding her not to eat all of it at once…

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