December 13, 2021
Meet the Blogger, Christmas Version
I’m linking up today with Deb @ Deb’s World Blog for A Festive Bonbons Linkup.
The word ‘bonbons’ creates a festive feel. Bonbons are small bits of Christmas cheer like our questions. A bonbon is a sweet or small confection, especially a small ball coated in chocolate.
Here are Deb’s questions:
I like to celebrate Thanksgiving before putting up Christmas decorations. Years and years ago, we bundled up the kiddos and picked out our tree from a tree farm. As the children became adults and we experienced an “empty nest,” we bought our first artificial tree. There have been a few iterations of the fake tree. We started with one that had color coded individual branches and the lights were put on manually, and now our tree is easy to assemble (three pieces) and is pre-lighted for the win! When the children were little, I would take them to pick out an ornament each year, so our tree was filled with treasured, unique, individual ornaments which reflected each child’s interests that year. Now that they’ve moved out along with their box of ornaments, I have enjoyed more thematic trees. The one item that never changes is the angel tree topper. I think it’s been on almost every tree we’ve ever owned (except perhaps the first few because I can’t remember the year I bought it).
This was last year’s tree.
This year’s tree with a closeup of the treetop Angel.
I love ALMOST all the Christmas music, traditional and modern. Enjoy an assortment of a few of my favorites! What is your favorite Carol?
- My favorite traditional song is “O Holy Night”:
- My favorite verse from a traditional Carol is this one from “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear”:
- And ye, beneath life’s crushing load,
whose forms are bending low,
who toil along the climbing way
with painful steps and slow,
look now! for glad and golden hours
come swiftly on the wing.
O rest beside the weary road,
and hear the angels sing!
- And ye, beneath life’s crushing load,
- Hallelujah by Carrie Undersood and John Legend
- Your Presence For Christmas by Sisters
- Mary, Did You Know? by Carrie Underwood
- Peace, Peace…Silent Night
- Breath of Heaven (Mary’s Song) by Amy Grant
Luke 2: 1-20 is my favorite Christmas Story!
I don’t think I have a very favorite Christmas book but there are several books that have poignant Christmas scenes which I love. For example, Little Women and The Deal of a Lifetime. Do you have a favorite Christmas story?
I don’t have a Christmas movie I watch every year, but a classic that I love is It’s a Wonderful Life. How many times have you seen it? Do you have a favorite Christmas movie?
I don’t think I have a favorite Christmas cake, so I’m “tweaking this category”! I have a weakness for decorated and frosted Christmas sugar cookies, Russian teacakes (powdered sugar coated balls of pie crust! …..also known by other names), and peanut butter cookies with a hershey’s kiss pressed into the center after baking made by my mom. What is your favorite Christmas cookie?
Chocolate, Nuts, or Fruit:
My favorite chocolate at Christmastime is the Bordeaux selection from the Sees Candy Box! I also love ANY chocolate covered nut clusters! I like my fruit (bananas, apples, mandrian oranges, strawberries) with chocolate fondue please! What is your favorite Christmas treat?
Our family has always celebrated on Christmas Eve. Maybe this is a Midwest U.S. or Scandinavian tradition? I’m not sure, but I can’t image it any other way. I love the warmth, the candles, the Christmas lights, the fireplace….. all the Hygee! Plus I’m a nightowl and the evening is when I have the most energy….my family would hate me in the early morning hours!
Comfort Food/Traditional Foods (ideally everyone brings a dish to share)
Optional: stormy weather
When my children were young, we always went to a Christmas Eve Candlelight Service before or after opening presents. As my children grew to become more independent and it was more challenging to corral them, convince them, conjole them into attending a service and as our family began to grow to include sons- and daughters-in-law and grandchildren, we let go of this tradition. I do miss the tradition of a quiet and lovely Christmas Eve Candlelight Service.
Another tradition we enjoy as our children have become adults with families of their own is to play games (the minute-to-win it varieties). A big hit with the children of all ages. We also play a dice game in which a pie tin with a pair of dice is passed around the room…..each time a double is rolled, the person gets to choose a gift (which I have purchased). When all the gifts have been chosen and unwrapped, we pass the plate of dice again and if the person rolls a double they get to steal (actually trade their gift for the other person’s). We set a time limit of 5 minutes for this part of the game. The reason I started this game is because our family was expanding with marriages and grandchildren and it was too expensive for everyone to buy gifts for everyone. We decided to just buy for the “littles.” Because I wanted everyone to go home with “something,” I introduced the dice game and bought all the gifts (a sneaky way to gift them!). Do you have a favorite family game?
“Times when families laugh together are among the most precious times a family can have.”
~Mr. Fred Rogers
What’s on the Table?
On Christmas Eve my family of origin always had Oyster Stew. I never ate the oysters but we all learned to love the savory stew and oyster crackers. We also loved how much my dad loved carrying on the tradition from his childhood. When my own children grew old enough to voice their objections and we started including girlfriends, fiances, and in laws in this traditional meal, I started supplementing it with something they’d like. After a while, there were only a couple of us enjoying the oyster stew and it was extra effort to literally prepare two meals. So, I eliminated the tradition of oyster stew and began a new tradition of Mexican food (which is plentiful and delicious and available for easy takeout in Southern California). Everyone is happy now as we enjoy chicken enchiladas, taquitos, tamales, chips and salsa, and a couple of side salads. What is your traditional meal?
Growing up, my family didn’t have a lot of money and our Christmas presents were minimal by today’s expectations. My parents did make sure we received one thing that we really, really wanted. The remainder of the gifts were practical (pajamas, etc). I always loved getting a new book which I would devour over the school break! My strongest memory of winter vacation is reading my new book! For many years this was a Nancy Drew book!
Then there was the Christmas when I was very young and received a John Deere tractor (riding toy….not motorized/battery powered in those days….pure pedal power). Yes, I grew up on a farm! My mom found me up in the middle of the night (sleep walking) excitedly riding my tractor! My other favorite gift as a young girl was a new doll!
When my children were young, I enjoyed creating a family-centered and magical Christmas Eve for them! Those memories are kept safe in my heart. Of course, Christmas was always at my house, so I also have memories of being so tired!
One special personal memory occured the first year I was married. It was my first Christmas away from home, and one day my dad showed up at my door, kidnapped me, and took me to a Christmas tree lot and bought me a tree (complete with stand)! I have no idea why he did that, but it was such a surprise and so very thoughytful! I’ll never forget the gesture!
All I Want For Christmas Is…
Because of the Pandemic, this is the second Christmas where we will not have an extended family Christmas gathering. We decided to be safe one more year and not take unnecessary risks with the new variant surging in our communiy.
I have two requests on my Christmas list:
- GO AWAY Pandemic!
- Peace on Earth
What’s on your Christmas wish list?
How would you answer these questions?
If you participate in this linkup, please include your link in comments and linkup with Deb @ Deb’s World Blog.
Happy Reading Book Buddies!
“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke
“I love the world of words, where life and literature connect.”
~Denise J Hughes
“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad ones.”
~Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
“I read because books are a form of transportation, of teaching, and of connection! Books take us to places we’ve never been, they teach us about our world, and they help us to understand human experience.”
~Madeleine Riley, Top Shelf Text
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