Squirl's Nest

Thursday, December 20, 2007

A Christmas meme thing

Lotus Lynn tagged me. Rules for the meme include:

1) Link to the person that tagged you, and post the rules on your blog.
2) Share Christmas facts about yourself.
3) Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
4) Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Lynn, being a Buddhist, says she really doesn't do Christmas anymore. About fifteen years ago I started observing the Winter Soltice. But that doesn't mean I can't get into Christmas, too. I mean, food, decorations, gifts, and spirituality. How can you go wrong with all of that!

1. Wrapping or gift bags? I use both, but mostly paper. I enjoy finding paper that's different. The shiny stuff is my favorite.

2. Real or artificial tree? Real. I mean real as in the Norfolk Island Pine that I bought the very first year that Ichabod and I were together at Christmas. It's now taller than we are. Some years I've put lights on it. Some years, garlands. This year and last I only ended up using pretty bows that came on other things. :-)

3. When do you put up the tree? It sits in the dining/kitchen area by the biggest windows we have. All year because it has to.

4. When do you take the tree down? Never.

5. Do you like eggnog? Yes. When I was a kid my mom used to mix it with regular milk to make it go further. Now I love the rich, creamy taste of it without regular milk or alcohol to mess it up. My lovely sister, Eclectic, wrote about Silk Nog last year. It's soy milk eggnog. I need to go buy some of that.

6. Favorite gift received as a child? My pink ballerina tutu. Oh, I can hear Bucky laughing right now.

7. Do you have a nativity scene? No. I don't do any other decorating, either. But what I love to see are other people's nativity scene with Frosty and Santa hanging around the manger. I'm sure they must have a sense of humor. ;-)

8. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Tacky decorative items.

9. Mail or email Christmas cards? I love to send Christmas cards. It's something that helps me feel close to my mother. She also sent letters, birthday cards, and of course, Christmas cards. At her funeral we were each given a tall candle in a glass that we could light when we want to remember her specially. Her birthday and holidays are times I've used it. I lit it the night I did my cards. It felt right.

10. Favorite Christmas Movie? How the Grinch Stole Christmas and the Christmas Story. What? I can't have two?

11. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I used to always start early. One year I was done by September. Didn't work that way this year.

12. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Too much to choose from. But I have to admit that since I've known Ichabod I've learned that I like fruitcake. His mom makes it and it's good.

13. Clear lights or colored on the tree? When the clear lights were new I just loved them. Now I like any color.

14. Favorite Christmas song? I love to sing so many that it's hard to pick just one. On the religious song side my favorite to sing is Angels We Have Heard on High. For secular, I think it's The Christmas Song (Chestnuts roasting...).

15. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Our travels don't go more than a fifteen minute drive away.

16. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer? Yes, but just because they're listed in the Rudolph song.

17. Angel on the tree top or a star? Just a bow.

18. Open the presents Christmas Eve or Christmas Morning? When I was a kid it was always Christmas morning. Since Ichabod and I have been together we have either hosted Christmas Eve or gone to his sister's for it. It's kind of fun, late that night, to get together and open stuff. Won't be much this year, though. Our big present to ourselves was a recumbent exercise bike. The scales will love that preset.

19. Most annoying thing about this time of year? People having a fit over others saying Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas. But at this time of year there's Hannukah, Solstice, Christmas, and Kwanzaa. They're each legitimate. And Solstice is the oldest of them all. So Happy Holidays is all inclusive, and that's what I'm all about.

20. Do you decorate your tree in any specific theme or color? No. Too lazy.

21. What do you leave for Santa? Nothin'.

22. Least favorite holiday song? Little Drummer Boy. Sorry, Lynn. :-)

23. Favorite ornament? I don't have them anymore, but my parents had these very fragile glass ornaments in gorgeous jewel-like colors with winter and Christmas scenes done in some white stuff. I hated it when the cats got into the tree and one of those would break.

I tag no one. But if you're bored or looking for a post, go ahead. Let me know if you do!

Happy Holidays

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Blogger here today, gone tomorrow said...

Wonderful, squirl! I love people's responses to this. Thanks for playing along! (I'd love to see a photo of your Norfolk Island pine.)

Thu Dec 20, 09:27:00 AM  
Blogger Bucky Four-Eyes said...

Pink tutu. Of course I wouldn't laugh at that.

What? I'm not laughing. My shoulders are just shaking from...I don't know, heroin withdrawal or something.

Remember that manger scene Mom and Dad had? Dad used to get so mad at us for putting the sheep on the roof.

Thu Dec 20, 09:31:00 AM  
Blogger Squirl said...

htgt, this was more fun than I thought it would be. I'll have to get a good shot of the tree. It looks kind of lame with the assorted bows just stuck on it. But I love it anyway.

Bucky, yeah heroin withdrawal, that's it. I had totally forgotten about the sheep on the roof. I can picture it now. Of course, Dad would be the one to get mad. Mom probably, secretly, thought it was funny.

Thu Dec 20, 09:41:00 AM  
Blogger Danielle said...

I am glad that you have a new post up. I always like reading your posts.

I particularly liked this one. I think it is really interesting to hear how different people celebrate Christmas, or the holidays in general. So many aspects of it come from our childhood. But there are always parts that are unique to our adult lives too.

I'd love to see a photo of your tree - maybe a closeup of one of the bows with the tree needles and such in the background. It might make for a really pretty shot.

Do you remember how outside lights used to be those big bulbs? They were really fat and a couple of inches long. I don't remember exactly when white lights appeared on the aisles, but I do know that around here, and in New England, it seems that most houses do white lights.

Thu Dec 20, 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger Squirl said...

Thanks, Danielle, I'm always haunting your place looking for a new post, too. :-)

I remember those old big bulbs. I think that's why I loved those little white ones at first. There's more color around here these days. People are using the LED lights. The blue in those is unbelievably deep and gorgeous. The lights are really my favorite thing. I love to ride around and check them out.

I'll have to take a picture of the tree. I like the idea of a close-up of a bow. Thanks!

Thu Dec 20, 10:20:00 AM  
Blogger Ern said...

I love that you have a LIVE real tree. That's so cool!

I don't know that much about traditional Solstice celebrations, but I love the idea of marking the shortest day of the year in a significant way. It appeals to the nature-loving part of me - being in touch with the rhythms of nature, etc.

Thu Dec 20, 10:41:00 AM  
Blogger Ern said...

Heh, I'm just reading your exchange about the big bulbs, and it reminds me of a Friends episode (as most things do - it's a sickness, really) where Chandler is reminiscing about how everyone used to use the big lights. Rachel says, "That's a nice story, Grandpa!"

Thu Dec 20, 10:43:00 AM  
Blogger tweetey30 said...

I did this one just the other day. HTGT tagged me.. Great answers though.

Thu Dec 20, 10:55:00 AM  
Blogger Squirl said...

Ern, I love my tree. A couple of times we weren't sure we'd have room for it when we moved. But did whatever I could to keep it. And, of course, I'm so young I only know about those bulbs from older people.

Tweety, I'll have to come check yours out. Thanks!

Thu Dec 20, 11:43:00 AM  
Blogger Sometimes Saintly Nick said...

You leave Santa nothin'? Well, I’m skippin’ you house, Ms. Squirl.

P.S. ~ Thanks for the Christmas card.

P.P.S. ~ On second thought, I won’t skip your house.

Fri Dec 21, 01:01:00 AM  
Blogger von Krankipantzen said...

What a great meme. Christmas (or whatever celebration floats your boat)is filled with so many fun and special celebrations. Thanks for sharing.

Fri Dec 21, 02:20:00 AM  
Blogger Squirl said...

Nick, for you I would leave something! You're welcome and thanks!

Kranki, do you have time to do this one? I'd like to read it.

Fri Dec 21, 08:12:00 AM  
Blogger tshsmom said...

Sheep on the roof are better than my son putting his green army men in our manger scene. ;)

I loved this meme! We find out so many neat Christmasy things about each other.

Fri Dec 21, 09:41:00 PM  
Anonymous hellokittn said...

I love your random facts so here is one from me:

At age 5 or whatever my favourite gift was my very first Care Bear that my mother didn't make herself. Yes, I was an ungrateful child by feeling embarrassed that my mother made my commercialised toys from scratch because she didn't want me to do without.

We couldn't afford the real thing and I was always a little embarrassed at playtime because all the other little girls had "real" Care Bears (amoungst other toys) and I had homemade "imposters." Added to the homemade clothing and the hand knit socks and I was the sheer epitome of childhood angst.

I still feel guilt when I think of how I told her at 5 years of age I didn't want homemade things anymore. For some reason I can still see the look of disappointment in her face in my aged memory. Whether it be true "memory" or "realisation" that direct this mental playback... I don't know.

I know now that it was her way of showing me how much she loves me and although we didn't have any money she still wanted me to have everything in the world.

Point is, I've learned some people spend a lifetime trying to own a bunch of crap that everyone else owns. It's the things that we toil over and create out of love that really matter. Being different isn't something to be ashamed of as long as there is love in your heart and true appreciation in your being.

Something to remember whilst walking around this "Christmas thing" America turns into this time of year.

I should go knit something.

Love you Sis. Happy holidays!

Sat Dec 22, 12:38:00 AM  
Blogger Squirl said...

tshsmom, green army men would have really made my dad go ballistic. Making me chuckle just to picture it. Yeah, these kinds of memes are fun.

Kittn, what a sweet story. I can understand wanting to have the "real" kind of whatever, just like your friends. You were too young to understand what was going on. At least you know now. And I can see why your mom was at the top of your Christmas list. Well, almost second to Colin Ferrel anyway. ;-)

Sat Dec 22, 06:43:00 AM  
Blogger tshsmom said...

Kittn, your comment brought back a memory I had forgotten.
I made our daughter a Cabbage Patch doll when we couldn't get one. I think she still has it.

Sat Dec 22, 08:57:00 AM  
Blogger eclectic said...

Silk NOG!!!!! Yeah!!!

The lights twinkling everywhere is my favorite part about this season. I love them all, but I'm especially partial to using clear on the tree, and then strings of green ones over the fireplace and around the windows.

Kittn made me teary. My mother embarrassed me daily in elementary school by sending me with sandwiches on crumbly, homemade, whole-wheat bread while the other kids either had school lunch or PB&J on Wonderbread. I marvel now at the ingratitude, and wish I could take it back.

Happy Holidays, Sis! Love you!!!

Sat Dec 22, 07:17:00 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

Merry Christmas, Squirl-Bob! I hope it's a wonderful day for you.

Sun Dec 23, 11:19:00 PM  
Blogger tshsmom said...

MERRY CHRISTMAS Squirl and Ichabod!

Mon Dec 24, 08:15:00 AM  
Blogger Squirl said...

Eclectic, my mother didn't make anything. So if we didn't have money for something I didn't have any version of it. And I managed to make it in life anyway. :-)

Yay Silk Nog!

Jim, thanks! The same to you.

tshs, thanks! The same to your wonderful family!

Mon Dec 24, 10:02:00 AM  

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