Sunday, July 31, 2016

Christmas in July - Day Thirty

Here's a little meme before my wrap-up of Christmas in July 2016.  I wrote this seven years ago so let's see if my answers have changed (updates will be in red italics).

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping Paper (I've switched to decorative boxes)

2. Real tree or Artificial? Artificial, as much as I love the smell of the real trees, I don’t like the mess.

3. When do you put up the tree? Thanksgiving Day afternoon, as soon as the turkey platter is in the dishwasher!

4. When do you take the tree down? Boxing Day (the day after Christmas)

5. Do you like eggnog? Yes, but I buy it from the supermarket. I've never attempted to make it - the uncooked egg thing really bothers me.

6. Favorite gift received as a child? As a child - Stacy Manning, my doll, no clue where the name came from. As a teenager - red American Tourister luggage.

7. Hardest person to buy for? Used to be Dad,now it's Vic (still the same, buying for men is so tough)

8. Easiest person to buy for? Sophia

9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes, I bought one from the Current Catalog for Sophia's first Christmas. It's small and very well-done for such an inexpensive set. I used to say I'd like one from Royal Doulton or Lladro but we're really happy with the one we have.

10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail with newsletter and photos

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A telephone!

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? White Christmas (I think it's a tie now with The Holiday)

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I shop throughout the whole year which means I sometimes can't remember where I have hidden things!

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? I might have but I can't remember what it was.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Smoked salmon (Christmas cake, I look forward to it all year)

16. Lights on the tree? Yes, white, non-blinking

17. Favorite Christmas song? Once in Royal David's City (another tie with O Holy Night)

18. Travel at Christmas or stay at home? Usually stay at home but we have had a few travelling Christmases that were wonderful - our entire family (Mum, Dad, Vic, Sophia, me, Barbara and Paul) went to Kettlewell, England in 2001 and to my sister, Barbara's, house in 2008 (Dad's last Christmas).

19. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer? Of course!

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Capiz star from the Philippines, another Christmas tradition since Sophia was a baby.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas morning

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? The way Black Friday has become so chaotic - we used to enjoy getting up early (7 or 8am, not the insane 5am it is now) and doing a little shopping (nothing major, just the odd ornament or decorative item for the house). We would stroll (and I mean, stroll) through the mall, enjoying the festive atmosphere, admiring the decorations and displays, and stop for a coffee. Now it's such a dog-eat-dog, trample each other for the 99 cent bargain mess that all the enjoyment has gone out of it. (Black Friday is even worse now, it starts on Thanksgiving Day which is just wrong and the madness has accelerated into real violence)

23. What theme or color are you using? Don't really have a theme other than wrapping paper - we each have our own design (saves on tags!) - our ornaments are a jumble of Hallmark, homemade, mementos from our travels, and gifts, decorations vary from Mum's knitted and sewn items to bits and pieces we've had for years, Christmas linens stick around for a few years and then I change them. (see 1. for wrapping paper update)

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? Our big meal is a cold buffet on Christmas Eve - baked ham with pineapple, Caesar salad, smoked salmon, chilled shrimp, marinated mushrooms, olives, cheese board, pate, french bread - we snack on this for a couple of days. I gave up cooking a roast dinner on Christmas Day about ten years ago.

25. What do you want for Christmas this year? I got my big present early - an I-Convert, a slide/negative converter so I just put a few little things on my Christmas list - perfume, Calendar Girls movie, make-up mirror, pizza peel. (A piece of patriotic jewelry from Ann Hand; I've got my eye on the American flag, just gorgeous)

26. Do you have a favorite ornament, what? Not really, they are all special. It takes a couple of days to decorate our tree because I keep stopping and telling Vic and Sophia the history behind the ornaments (not like they haven't heard it all before!).

27. Gifts from Santa? Wrapped or Unwrapped? Santa brings the big stuff that it's hard to wrap - not too many of those in recent years since Sophia has gotten more of the smaller (ie. electronic) gifts lately.

28. Advent Calendar, chocolate or paper? Chocolate, Cadbury's if we can get one, or the German ones from the commissary.

29. Favorite Christmas memory? It would have to be Kettlewell - the whole family gathered, a coal fire burning in the fireplace, Mum bustling around making endless pots of tea, canasta until the early hours of the morning, all our favorite British foods, a picturesque village, Dickensian carolers, pub dinners...the best Christmas ever!

30. Special favorites of the season? A holiday concert or play - we went to see White Christmas on stage in Boston one year, we've been to see the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular a couple of times, would love to go to New York City for a couple of days one Christmas to take in a few shows. This year, Sophia is in the high school chorus so they will have a couple of special performances.

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