Monday, December 22, 2014

My favorite Christmas things

My top 5 Christmas things

    Don’t hate me, but I’ve always been a bit “meh” when it comes to Christmas. Not Scrooge status by any means, but coming from a small family, Christmas just wasn’t that big of a thing. We decorated, and we opened presents, and that was about it. College changed it to “eh”. It was nice to get together with my parents after being away at school, but I was pretty broke (but became talented at homemade presents) and since they had just moved when I left for college, there wasn’t a sense of community festivities.

    Then came being a home-owner, and a mom, and now Christmas takes on a whole new meaning for me! I love putting up the yard lights, decorating the house, and cooking delicious food. It was especially fun this year when my 3-year-old daughter was able to help me decorate our tree, and we would go through the story of every ornament. It’s a totally different world, and I love it.

1) Lights! Oh yes, give me bright, sparkly lights when it’s dark outside. Colorful, white, yellow, green, it doesn’t matter to me. I love seeing houses lit up and every night during the month of December my daughter and I will drive around all of the various neighborhoods to see the displays.

    While most people would put me in the group of (somewhat) annoying people who put up lights far too early, this is my argument. When it is dark at 5pm, I need lights to be happy. It just so happened that this year it was dark at 5pm the week before Thanksgiving. I shall call them, Thanksgiving Lights, and they shall be my lights.

2) Cranberries! Call me blasphemous, but I’m not huge pumpkin fan. Cranberries, on the other hand, are my go-to food of the season. Cranberry muffins, cranberry scones, cranberry bread, cranberry sauce, nom. My favorite use of cranberries is something my family calls Cranberry Marshmallow Goodness. Basically cranberries, walnuts, marshmallows and pineapple chunks mixed into a big bowl of whipped cream. So good.

3) Wrapping paper. Alright, I’ll agree, this one makes me a little weird, but I love wrapping paper! I love all of the pretty designs, especially the glittery ones. I have been known to just cut wrapping paper in 4 by 6 squares and put it into frames because it’s “that” pretty. It’s a problem I’m okay with having.

4) Quality kid time. I work in the education system, so Christmas means winter break, which means I get to spend more time with my kid. It also means not having to wake up to an alarm for 2(ish) weeks or spending 2 hours on the road 5 days a week.

5) Hat making. I didn’t get a chance to do it this year (except for between now and Christmas, when I will make 4 hats), but I usually spend all of November and December crocheting hats. I love to crochet hats of all types and sizes, then donate them to local shelters and hospitals just before the holiday. I’m already gearing up for a big hat event next year where my plan is to donate 100 (or more) hats to our local foster care center for the holidays.