Wednesday, December 22, 2010

I'm Throwing My Stuff Into the Hodgepodge

This will be my first time joining a fairly new blogger meme presented by Joyce at From This Side of the Pond. It's the

I don't regularly play blogger games but since I'm all "shopped and wrapped and baked and ready to go" as Joyce said, I have no choice but to play today. So, here I go.

1. Share your Christmas Eve traditions.

I have continued many of my childhod traditions into my adulthood and imposed shared them with my husband and children. We set out cookies and milk for Santa, carrots and celery for the reindeer.  The ranking adult male (either my husband if it's just us at home or my dad if we are visiting family for the holiday) will read Clement C. Moore's "Twas the Night Before Christmas" to everyone, young and old, gathered around the Christmas tree.  My Dad is a great enunciator and always says "Donder" phonetically rather than "Donner" the way it has been bastardized by pop culture. I love that. After the reading, the boys get to open one present on Christmas Eve night which to their dismay is new winter pjs. They always act surprised that there isn't something better like a toy in this present. I don't know why they are surprised. The opening of a present is not a tradition from my childhood but one that my husband and I added. After donning the new pjs, there is always the feigned (or not) whining about going to bed. The kids are always coaxed to bed with the threat that Santa won't come until everyone is asleep. The threat is followed by a ringing of jingle bells from somewhere outside the window. The kids believe that these are the reindeers' jingle bells as Santa passes by checking on the sleeping status of the house. Between you and me, one of the adult males (usually not the ranking one) has to go outside in the cold and jingle the bells while the rest of us cover for his absence.

2. What was the best book you read in 2010? (we're not going to include The Bible here)

I am still in the process of reading my best book of 2010. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. I am on page 659 of 983. I started reading it back in October....yes, nearly three months which point my prediction for the my finish date was August 2012. I have considerably increased my pace so I'm looking good to finish early. I have to say this is the best book for me in 2010 because it is a great story that has kept me engrossed at my snail's pace and any book that you read for more than a quarter of the year has to be good.

3. Do you have pets and if so do you allow them on the furniture?

My husband and I have had cats almost the entire time we have lived together. Neither of us were cat people before we adopted our first...a three-legged stray, Arnold. Arnold couldn't always get up on to the furniture by himself. So if he made it up on to a piece of furniture, we let him stay. That habit has carried over to the four-legged cats that followed Arnold. But we don't let them on the kitchen counters or any tables! I know some cat people who do. That's too much.

4. What event from 2010 are you most thankful for?

There isn't one event in 2010 that I could name for this. The entire year was filled with decision points for our family. I am thankful for each one. Some were very challenging decisions but each one has brought us closer and clearer on our goals and desires.

5. What did you do in 2010 that you'd never done before.

I started my wee little photography business. I committed to jobs that intimidated me. I took school portraits for a small private school co-op and slam-dunked the job! I gained confidence in my photographic abilities.

6. Brussel sprouts...friend or foe?

I love me some Brussels sprouts! Bad English aside, I really do like them. But only since I found a better way to cook them. As a child, they were nothing more than bitter, green, mushy brain-like things that triggered a gag reflect on sight. Now I roughly chop them so the brain resemblance is removed and saute in olive oil seasoned with garlic, onion, salt and pepper. They are a favorite here. But then again, anything sauteed in olive oil and garlic et al is a favorite here. 

7. Who would you nominate for man/woman of the year?

Kristen Wiig of Saturday Night Live fame. A comedienne isn't usually who you would think of for this honor, but Kristen has made me laugh more times this year than anyone or anything since Gilda Radner. We all need a bit more laughter in our days so I give my nomination to Kristen. And Gilda should have been nominated back in the day as well.

Not that you asked, but I will tell who I would NOT nominate for man/woman of the year: anyone named Kardashian, anyone who personally knows or who has been in the same room with cast members of the Jersey Shore, or anyone who is involved in the productions of shows about the aforementioned groups of people. There, I feel better now.

8. Insert your own random thought here.

What else to say but Merry Christmas!


  1. Pillars of the Earth is incredibly long, but really good.
    Love your Christmas Eve traditions! :D

  2. I read your answers out loud to the fam as we sat in Bob Evans not far from your stomping grounds...see you soon!

  3. I loved Gilda Radner too and I couldn't agree with you more on who you would not nominate. Merry Christmas to you too.

  4. I like Brussel Sprouts cooked with some butter and not too mushy.

    We open up one present on Christmas Eve.
    We get to choose which one we'll open.
    Sometimes it's a really good present we look forward too, or not.

    Merry Christmas!

  5. The one year that we let our boys open a present on Christmas Eve, one of them opened the package of underwear! Disappointment aside, the two started tossing the package to each other like a ball!

    Good luck with your business in 2011. It sounds like it got started off very well!

    Tell your family "Merry Christmas" for me!


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