HH or MC? and a CONTEST!

So do you tell people “Happy Holidays” or “Merry Christmas”? I heard an interesting bit of information on the radio yesterday. Zogby did a poll and found that 95% of people were not offended to be wished a “Merry Christmas” during the holiday season. But even more interesting – 32% of people WERE offended to be wished “Happy Holidays” because they felt like it takes the focus off the Reason for the Season. Apparently, it even affects where some people shop. (Seriously. Read about it.) So are you an HH or an MC? I’m an MC. And an HK. Happy Knitting. :-)

DSC00144.JPGToday I thought I’d talk about some holiday Christmas traditions we have at our house. We have been using this Advent Tree for 15 years. I still remember painting it (it was a kit) on the kitchen counter with 1 year old Knitting Daughter and 4 year old College Boy trying to get in there and “help”. I think they soon realized that I was very occupied with getting it done, and they were able to get away with way too many things that day. We all had fun. This is one of the important things. One of the “You don’t have to put up ALL the decorations this year, but you must put up the ornament tree” kinds of traditions.

Another favorite includes putting all of the photos that we receive in cards, up on the refrigerator for the month of December. I used to put them all over the kitchen cabinets, but Wonder Husband pointed out that my tape left a sticky residue which he wasn’t too happy about. So now they go on the fridge. I love being surrounded by the smiling faces of those we love all month long. I didn’t take a picture of it, because most of my friends are like me – they send their cards about a week before Christmas. Although I should’ve given the early birds a bit of recognition by showing their photos on the blog.

DSC00131.JPGLast year I started a new tradition – collecting these fun elves. I saw them in a magazine and hunted them down. DSC00127.JPGMy thought was that I’d add one or two a year, but as you can see, I picked up four last year already. Don’t you love the tattered outfit on the fiddle player? And the singer guy has holes in his knees. I’m the kind of sucker that picks things like this up just because they’re so pathetic.

(I’ll have to show you the really scarey elf-guy I bought before I discovered the cute Elves Themselves.) I haven’t bought any for this year, so maybe that will all even out. Aren’t they fun, though?

I’d love to hear what is special to you during the month of December. Tell me something that you collect, or a tradition you have, or a recipe that you always make, or … anything else that makes the season special to you. I’ll enter everyone who leaves a comment into the December drawing for a fun prize – yarn, pattern, chocolate – you know, all the important stuff. I’ll post the winner a week from today, and will mail the package right off. I’m looking forward to hearing about how you make the season special in your family!

I will post this on the website as well, but I wanted to give you a heads up that we will be taking a week off at the end of the month. We are heading out of town on a special trip in celebration of my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary – so the whole family is attending! We’ll ship our last batch of orders out on the 23rd. You are welcome to place orders while we are gone. (In fact, you’re encouraged to place orders while we’re gone, and we have something fun in mind for that week. More info on that later.) We will get them packed right up when we return, and will start shipping them out on January 2nd. I’ll miss hearing from you during that week off, but I’ll be anxious to come back and share with you all the new yarn lines and fun stuff that we have in the works for January!

DSC00133.JPGHere’s the scarey “Muffin Man” guy. I bought him just because I felt sorry for him. :-) He was on clearance at the store (mid-December) because no one wanted him. So I took him home. He has shared several Christmas seasons with us, and he likes it here.

Remember – keep sending Socks on Trees and Socks on Rocks for our photo gallery. Some of these are really cracking me up! (And I want to come live at some of your houses – you have wonderful knitting areas. Keep sending those photos, too.)

And check out the fun things over on my friend Kelly’s website – she’s the one with the wonderful sheep farm! (Note – if you suspect you will be hitting Loopy Groupie status in the next month or so, don’t be ordering her cute sheep calendar. Just sayin’.)

FYI: More new Fleece Artist colors went up over the weekend. Check them out! Also – Sock Blocker Keychains are back in stock!

Sheri thinkingitmightbetime
tostartinonthoseChristmascardsthisweek


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42 comments on “HH or MC? and a CONTEST!

  1. We have two traditions that never change, no matter where we are.

    1. We read the Christmas story from the Bible.
    2. We make a birthday cake for Jesus.

  2. Love the Advent Tree. The elves are adorable…I have not seen them anywhere.

    My tradition is my fabric Santas….on high shelves because of the Goldens. I think of the dozen or so I own my favorite is Santa sitting on a rocking chair, holding a kitten and a ball of yarn. Hummm…wonder if there ever will be a knitting Santa? My other not so frequent tradition is snowmen…actually, they come out after Christmas and are with me through Valentine’s Day…they seem to brighten the dreary winter days.

  3. I’m not much of a baker. It’s not that I am not good at it, I just don’t LIKE to bake! At Christmastime, I make an exception, and always bake a batch of cookies called Mexican Wedding Cakes. It’s something I used to do with my mom every year when I still lived at home. Now, my sister and I get together and make a bunch. It helps me feel less homesick.

    I also ALWAYS decorate the whole house for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving. I make sure I am home, no matter what, in order to put out the decorations.

    In early December, I make ornaments. I try to make a big batch of a different style each year to give away, and a few special ones to keep to build my ornament collection.

  4. We have a ton of traditions! It’s hard to pick just one to talk about. Let’s see…I always make several kinds of fudge at the holidays, and bring lots down to my mom’s house (we spend half of Christmas Day on the farm with my parents). My peanut butter fudge is like crack…I can’t help but eat half the pan by myself! I also make a Viennese Coffee fudge that my parents just love, and an oreo fudge that makes my husband soooo happy. My youngest son loves the Raspberry Truffle fudge simply because it’s pink (he has a thing for pink & purple). One of my favorite traditions is watching A Muppet’s Christmas Carol on Christmas Eve. It’s simply not Christmas Eve without it!!

  5. One of my favorite things about Christmas is the decorations at my shop. (I own a small one person skin care studio). I never know when the magic is going to happen but usually within about five days from Thanksgiving my shop becomes transformed, by magic (and my fabulous friend Lynn) into a Christmas Wonderland.

    I have NO decorating talent. Every year Lynn arrives at some mystical predetermined only by her time (I’m never there) and makes the entire reception area, retail area, bathroom and my treatment room look like Santa Land. There is a three foot tall Santa, various smaller santas, wreaths of all kinds, wrapped packages, stickers on windows, garlands on windows, and much more. This year’s theme includes lots of silver and blue, it’s really beautiful.

    This is one of my absolutely favortites things, it’s magical, gorgeous and I get to share it with all my lovely clients.

    Anna M

    p.s. the best part, she stores it all, purchase new stuff when necessary (I reimburse her) and takes it all down around New Years plus redecorates the shop for the new year at that time. Am I blessed or what!

  6. One recipes we always do throughout the month is keep a big kettle of Spiced Tea on the stove simmering. It smells heavenly and tastes just as good. There are lots of of other confections too… like Bourbon Balls…. mmmmmm!… but Spiced Tea is one of those things that really evoke Christmas in the house. Here is the recipe if you want to try it.

    Spiced Tea
    In large pan bring 2 quarts of water to a boil then turn off the heat and steep 8 teabags in it for 3-4 minutes.

    In a small pan make flavored syrup: bring to a boil 1 cup of water, 1 cup of sugar, 2 cinnamon sticks and 1 teaspoon whole cloves. Right after boiling reduce the heat to simmer for 15-20 minutes.

    Juice 3 lemons and 3 oranges.

    Put the syrup mixture and the fruit juices in the tea and serve warm. You can leave the cinnamon and cloves in overnight but then remove or it is too strong.
    **************************************************************
    My favorite decorations are the ANCIENT plastic elves tree ornaments. They were my grandmothers and have been a part of every single Christmas of my life. Now they are mine and there are only 4 left after the years of moving etc. I value them above all my fancy ornaments and give them special spots on the tree.

  7. My family was never big on cooking, but at Christmas we always make a huge batch of sugar cookies. The recipe belongs to my Uncle…so the cooking are Uncle Ted’s cookies. We also read the birth of Jesus from the Bible and say a prayer before opening a single present. Santa also visits my house first. My dad owned a convenience store growing up and he always worked on Christmas day…so we wrote to Santa and asked him to visit first. He always did :) and we open presents on Christmas Eve.

  8. Even though I am an adult, I have to have an advent calendar. When I lived in Switzerland I would always buy the ones with the chocolate inside because the chocolate was so good. Now that I cant find that kind of calendar easily I always try to at least find a card that has the little doors on it. I always look forward to finding out what’s behind the doors!
    I also have to have a tree. No matter if I dont have room for it, or if I’m not even going to be home for the holidays. That tree is what puts me in the Christmas spirit!
    Merry Christmas!

  9. Many years ago, a friend from college and I decided we wanted our children to be friends. She lived about an hour away and our kids were not all that close in ages. Different ages, different towns, different schools. They really had nothing in common except that their mothers were best friends. We decide we would get together during the Christmas holidays every year and bake cookies. We always made extra so each family could take cookies to share with their friends and family. And those lucky friends and family members now ask when “cookie day” is. Well, the oldest of the group is now a sophomore is college. One of the first questions she asked when she got home last year was “when are Lauren, Megan and Austin coming over for cookie day?” All five children now anxiously look forward to this special time together. It has become one their most vivid and precious childhood memories. Mission accomplished..

  10. I grew up in Scotland, and until the early 60′s Christmas was not a national holiday, it was a religious celebration, the fesitivies were always kept for New Years, or as we call it Hogmany. In fact we didn’t have a Christmas tree in our house until 1963.

    We do have Christmas traditions, which date from my great-grandmother, a woman to be reckond with, even though she only was 4’9″ tall. She would make a Christmas pudding each year, and all the grand children, and great-grandchildren were an important part. On “stir up Sunday” (the first Sunday before advent, as the pudding needs to mature in whiskey until Christmas) we each had to stir the pudding once, clockwise and make a wish, when that was accomplished, grannie would put in the trinkets (a timble, a sixpence, a bell) individually wrapped in grease proof paper, then the pudding would be put in the basin, tied up with muslin and string and put in the copper and steamed for hours.. If you found a trinket you would get your wish and also the luck that each trinket provided. My mother stills does this each year, as do I – only much smaller puddings now as the family is spread out all over the world. We still use grannies recipe and still put in a thimble, sixpence and bell. My husband says the best part is the whiskey that is lashed on before he lights it – we don’t use brandy butter (I think that’s an American tradition) but we pour on warm custard (creme anglaise) when the pudding has gone out.
    The alcoholic content of the pudding never seemed to be of any concern to anyone, I am sure it is now. The Gaelic word for whiskey is uisce beatha whick means the “water of life”.

  11. One things that I have to do to make it feel like Christmas is make my mom’s recipe for Chocolate Candy Drop cookies….half the batch gets frosted with green peppermint icing and the other half gets frosted with red anise frosting. They look so festive and really represent all of our childhood Christmas memories for my brother and I. I am hoping my son will feel the same way!

    Another thing that I do for myself to kick off the Christmas Season is sing in the Community Handel’s Messiah…..

    I would love great ideas of traditions to start with our son. Last year we made a Gingerbread house, this year it was a Gingerbread train….so I think that will be a tradtions of ours. The other thing that we do is buy new pj’s for all of us…then on Christmas Day we wear them all day even when family stop by to eat Christmas brunch with us!

  12. i don’t know if we have that many traditions that we actually do every single year, but one thing is that we are always allowed to get up however early we want to go through our stockings, but presents have to wait til after breakfast. also, my mom makes yummy, yummy pumpkin roll every year. :)

  13. Two of my favorite things happen right before Christmas. Every year my dad makes Jim’s Christmas Mix and gives it to my mom, me and my 2 sisters. Also, my mom and I begin our craft fair circuit in November which continues through December, it gives us a chance to buy unique gifts and spend time together. The other tradition is we always open gifts from youngest to oldest.

  14. I work at a yarn store and we’re Happy Holidays and Happy Knitting. First, being in California with the diverse racial and religious mix here, it’d be silly to assume someone celebrates Christmas. Secondly, I’d rather be inclusive than exclusive, politely said. If the non-Christians are kind enough to show understanding when you wish them Merry Christmas, then the Christians can love thy neighbor with Happy Holidays.

    Our normal family tradition is to travel during Christmas. These last few years have been fairly travel free, though. As a child, I used to wonder how the Jolly Guy (code in case children are reading this*) would get into our hotel room.

    * I doubt any children are reading this, being a knitting blog, but hey, love of yarn knows no age.

  15. My sister and I have made decorated sugar cookies every single Christmas since I was three! They take forever because we argue over how many trees/bells/santas/etc we should make, and then we “paint” them all individually with food-colored powdered sugar frosting. We always put in too much milk so it’s goopy, and by the end of all the painting there’s congealed frosting globs all over the kitchen! At least now we know to clean it up ourselves…our poor mom must’ve been beside herself when we were little. My fiance (who’s Hindu) is coming home with me for Christmas this year, so we’re looking forward to introducing him to the joys of Things You Have To Do For It To Be Christmas! I told him about some of them (like leaving out carrots for the reindeer on Christmas Eve, and very solemnly hanging up my grandma’s Alaskan Outhouse Ornament on the tree) and he just about died laughing…it should be a fun year. :) Merry Christmas!

  16. Well, you hit a topic I can usually get fired up over. I’m 100% MERRY CHRISTMAS. Now let me apologize ahead of time if I step on any toes. I am so tired of hearing how we have to quit saying “this” or stop saying “that” in order to keep from offending people who may not have the same beliefs we/I do. It’s to the point that I feel like my rights are being taken away. I was born and raised in this country and I feel it’s my right to say Merry Christmas. I do get offended when someone says “Happy Holidays” because they are trying to be politically correct. To me, it’s diminishing in what I believe. I do not get offended seeing Hanukkah decorations (I’m only using this one religious example to shorten a much longer post). I respect their right to observe their holiday. I want the same respect. Last year it took me over an hour to find Christmas cards that had a theme I liked and that did NOT say Happy Holidays but Merry Christmas. Ok….I’m thru…. Thanks for letting me vent. :-)

  17. I usually say Happy Holidays because, like freecia, I live in SoCal and the diversity is quite amazing here! Also, HH covers New Year’s too.

    Here are some of our Christmas traditions: putting the lights on the house on Sunday after Thanksgiving and taking them down on the first Saturday after New Year’s. We attend church on Christmas Eve. We (meaning me, the husband keeps me company) also bake pumpkin pies from scratch (as my mother, sisters and I did when we lived at home). At my family’s Christmas celebration we always play games for prizes (we are a very competitive lot). We drive around the neighborhoods to look at the light displays on people’s homes. We hang stockings on the fireplace – even the pets get their own. We haven’t put up a tree for the past two Christmases because we are afraid the yarn snipping/project stealing/needle biting cats will damage it. We’ll try that again when they get older and (hopefully) mellower. We have dinner with friends and exchange gifts. We also send surprise gifts to very special friends who don’t live close by.

    Congatulations to your parents on their 50th Wedding Anniversary!

  18. We have several traditions, but a favorite for us is to read the Polar Express. We bought the entire set which includes the book, cassette tape and bell. We read it on Christmas Eve and even though our youngest will be 24, we all still love it as it brings out the kid in all of us.

  19. Ah Traditions…….

    I broke one this year – we always have a real tree, but with everyone gone this year I opted for the fake tree…However, I am loving it!

    Collections: I collect Ornaments and Snowman….I love my tree decorated with all different kinds of ornaments….and I remember where each and every one of them came from.

    Traditions: My family is Polish and we celebrate Christmas Eve, with breaking off unleavened bread, fish and exchanging of presents. All of this after attending the early evening Mass in the church where I grew up (and cleaned and mowed the lawn growing up)

    I HAVE TO BAKE COOKIES to give to the world or I am not happy! Must haves are White Anise and Pizzelles…I had new one’s each year: this year Macaroons dipped in Chocolate (yummy) and Peppermint Shortbread – dipped in white chocolate……

    I am a Merry Christmas kinda person……but my boss is Jewish, so I am inclined to say Happy Holidays!

    Diane

  20. One of my favorite traditions is after we get our tree and put the lights on it, we watch ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ and string popcorn and cranberries for the tree. I’ve always loved the look of them on the tree!! Then I add little red apples and red bows and all of the wheat ornaments my mom has made me over the years. It turns out so beautiful

    Favorite recipe is the Swedish Tea Ring that we have for breakfast Christmas morning. I posted the recipe (with photos) on my blog. (http://jarlady.blogspot.com/) I often make several of these for gifts as well during the Holidays.

    ps. I’m a Merry Christmas person!!

  21. We have so many traditions, some borrowed from my family, my husband’s family and some of our very own. Making and decorating sugar cookies, going to Christmas eve candlight service and reading the story of Christ’s birth are three of my favourite.

  22. Our Christmas traditions include watching the movie The Christmas Story and reading Twas the Night Before Christmas before going to bed. One of my favorite memories is from the year I was 12. My dad was in the military so we traveled a lot. That particular year we lived in the Bavarian Alps in a little town called Oberammergau. We woke up Christmas morning to gentle snow falling on top of already white mountains which were right outside our windows. So beautiful and peaceful. When things get hectic this time of year, I think of that morning and it brings a smile to my face and a dose of peace to my heart.

  23. I collect and display Snowfolk—my collection started way back –Christmas of 1975—long before it was fashionable to collect them. Several young women that lived on my dorm floor went together to purchase a small, handmade statue of a couple of people with their arms around the snowgirl. I was touched, we were all poor college students–they were underclasswomen and I was the housefellow responsible for keeping harmony within the group of 66 students living in cramped dormrooms. (Read this as–keep the beer/booze in the men’s dorms, keep the stinky, dirty dishes out of your rooms and turn down the stereo, please.) Many other snowfolks have joined my collection over the years–some years they all go on display, some years only a few find their way out of the basement–but that little statue ALWAYS is on the mantle.

    Two other traditions–attending a Christmas Day service rather than Christmas Eve–started when my son was young, up early, openned presents, and then off to Church to celebrate Christ’s birth, then home to an afternoon dinner, playing with toys and a jigsaw puzzle (for mom). Finally, buying and putting up the Christmas tree no earlier than the 23rd! Seems that I have a reputation in the neighborhood–one of the families has a pool to guess when I’ll have the tree up and lit. Won’t they be surprised this year when I put it up this week–bought an artificial tree, but I’m thinking that I may pick up an small Charlie Brown tree a couple of days before Christmas and put just one string of lights on it!

    Kaidy

  24. SInce I’ve been married I have enjoyed blending our family traditions into our own traditions. I like to bake my trademark “Underpants Men” (they are gingerbread men that I decorate so they look like they’re in tighty whiteys) and make a special breakfast on Christmas morning. OH, and the only Chritsmas CD we own is “Jingle Cats”. I listened to it this weekend while decorating the house. I even meow along with the cats sometimes.

    Now that we have a bigger house we are looking forward to having friends and family over. We’re having my family over for Christmas eve. We are really looking forward to having kids in the next couple years. I think it makes Christmas more special to share it with a child :)

    My day job is in retail, and I don’t like to wish anyone a happy/merry anything. I wait for them to say whatever they prefer first then I say “you too!” with a smile. After saying it 300 times a day it stops feeling sincere.

  25. One of my favorite traditions is watching ‘It’s a Wonderful Life” as a family and stringing popcorn and cranberries for our Christmas tree! (I LOVE the look of popcorn and cranberries on a Christmas tree!!)

    One of my favorite recipes is for a Swedish Tea Ring that we had/have every Christmas morning… I posted the recipe on my blog today.

    I am a Merry Christmas person all the way!!

    Oh, and Happy Knitting too!!

  26. Family time. It doesn’t matter how much or how little money we have for Christmas gifts(not much this year), or whether we even got any decorations up (we haven’t this year). We focus on the real meaning of Christmas, which is Jesus. So we just spend more time with each other, and less time doing all of the meaningless stuff that gets in the way the rest of the year.

    I’m definitely a “Merry Christmas” type!

  27. We prefer Merry Christmas because we are Christian. Wo don’t mean to exclude anyone — one of my bestest friends is Jewish, but she celebrates Christmas for the ornaments!

    Most of the traditions (mine; hubby didn’t have any) have gone by the wayside since I am married with no children of my own. The four siblings who live in this part of the country usually get together, but this year even that isn’t happening. And the same sibling that won’t be with us didn’t have his usual Thanksgiving bash this year, due to the death of his mother-in-law, so I haven’t seen him since summer. (I totally understand about Thanksgiving, just miss seeing my brother and his family.)

    I miss the traditions, and I’d like to get them back.

  28. My favorite tradition is making Grandma’s cinnamon rolls on Christmas eve. I am a bread/cookie/biscuit/you name it dough eater, and cinnamon roll dough is the best by far.

    We’ve always done it as far back as I can remember, and as I grew up I was put in charge of making the cinnamon rolls while Mom did other yummy delights. Even after I went to school, I would still make it home in time to make them.

    We have a Happy Holiday household. I am one of the many flavors of Christianity, but my husband is Jewish. I grew up in an area that was very middle-class, white, Christian, and ethno-centric, so I never thought about saying Merry Christmas.
    Most of my husband’s family wouldn’t necessarily be offended by someone wishing them a Merry Christmas, but my husband hates it. It doesn’t help that my parents always send us Christmas cards that reference the baby Jesus!

  29. I say “Happy Christmas” because I’m such the Brit-wannabe. ;) Nah, ususally, I say “Merry Christmas”.

    My family’s Christmas traditions are:
    -go to midnight mass
    -watch the 24-hour “The Christmas Story” marathon on TBS
    -pig out on my brother’s standing rib roast and my sister’s cookies
    -the day after Christmas, watch the James Bond marathon on whatever channel

    My boyfriend and I don’t have any decorations up this year, but next year, I think we will.

  30. There is an old record album of organ and chimes that my parents always played to wake us up on Christmas. I got a taped copy of it and used it to wake up my own family.

    Except – the stereo was on one end of the house and the stairs were on the other; I would make the family stay on the stairs until I got the tape player and receiver on, and the tape in the right place, and the volume loud enough for them to hear it. And then — wait, I didn’t turn the tree lights on! Go back upstairs!!

    My family is very patient.

    Anywho, my remaining parent just died this past June, and I now have the original album with me. I can’t wait to play it this year, scratches and all, and bring the past and the present full circle.

    My family will probably still be waiting on the stairs, but they’ll forgive me.

    A blessed season to all.

  31. We are having our first Christmas at home this year. For the last ten years we have always went to my husband’s parents for Christmas in Kansas. I have three small children ages 6 years to ten months old. We don’t have any set traditions but this year we will start with making cookies, reading T’was the Night Before Christmas and the story of Jesus’ birth out of the book of Luke. I am a Merry Christmas person because I like to remember what Christmas is really for. I loved the idea from an earlier post about making Jesus a birthday cake. I just might steal that one for a tradition for us.

  32. Hi! And Merry Christmas to all!! Until last year–when my College Boy went away (and ended up rooming with Sheri’s College Boy :-)!!), we had “secret helpers”. We chose names out of a hat every Sunday of Advent (and I ate my piece of paper every time just for fun because we read that in a book somewhere). Anyway, every time we did something nice for our person–did one of their chores, or made their bed, or left them some candy on their chair, etc. we could add a piece of hay to our nativity set. By Christmas Eve when Baby Jesus was added to the display He had a nice soft bed to sleep in!

  33. Our traditions at Christmas time include…always putting up the decorations the day after Thanksgiving…always getting together with neighbors one Saturday morning before Christmas for brunch…always spending one evening during the Christmas season driving around looking at the Christmas lights and then coming home to hot cider and homemade cookies…always going to a Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at church…always starting Christmas morning with the opening of the stockings, then eating “Monkey Bread” (a recipe from my husband’s aunt), and finally opening the presents…always having a meringue chocolate pie from my grandmother’s recipe for lunch on Christmas…and always getting together with my brother’s family on Christmas night.

    Another tradition we have is with my husband’s family. One weekend before Christmas all of his 6 brothers and their families go to one of the brother’s house in Memphis, TN to spend the weekend together. There are about 35-40 of us when everyone comes. We always have a “Goody Table” of just about every kind of candy known to man. My husband’s dad started that tradition when the boys were all little. We eat, laugh about the “ole days”, and just enjoy being together. It’s a good time for the cousins and now 2nd cousins to get to know each other as well.

    And finally, when the children were little, every Christmas I would buy or make them a Christmas ornament that reflected something about the past year for them. Then when they left our home to get married or just move into their own place, they took all of their ornaments to put on their own tree. The kids still get an ornament in their stockings…and now the grandkids do as well.

    Merry Christmas everyone! Remember Jesus is the Reason for the Season!

  34. Some of our family traditions include opening Advent calendars every night after dinner. Although I believe my children are more interested in the chocolate than in the meaning at this point. We also buy our girls each a new ornament every year. Our hope is that they will have enough to decorate their own trees someday and that they can remember childhood Christmasses while doing so. I am not offended if someone wishes me a Happy Channukah, Happy Kwanzaa or a Merry Christmas. But I do get tired of all celebrations being pc and trivialized with the generic “Happy Holidays”.

  35. Ohh, how I love Christmas. Being with my family is the best part.
    Our tradition is we all gather at my mom’s or my sisters, have a great dinner and all visit and laugh and open presents. Even more fun now with a toddler in the family.
    My grandma used to make the mexican wedding cake cookies, but she passed away, now I bake them. Everyone looks forward to those cookies and of course they always bring back fond memories.
    Deb

  36. Being a “dyed in the wool” procrastinator, most of my family’s Christmas traditions take place on Christmas Eve. Even if we are uncharacteristically prepared early, the Christmas tree cannot be trimmed until Christmas Eve. We have to read Twas the Night Before Christmas and we must leave out cookies for Santa. For the past several years, Santa has preferred the white fudge covered Oreos. Some time prior to Christmas Eve we ride around in the car listening to Christmas music, sipping hot chocolate, sucking candy canes and looking at the beautilful lights on the houses.

    Even though my “babies” are now 11 and 19, they still love the traditions as much as DH and I do.

    Merry Christmas

    Daryl

  37. All of our family holiday traditions revolve around food (of course!)

    My dad is teaching my sister and me to make lefse, a Norwegian flat-bread, so we can carry on the tradition in our own families. And mom always makes a big Italian fish dinner on Christmas Eve, and special Italian cookies with sprinkles. (My nana never did tell us their real name, and now that she is no longer with us they’ll remain known only as “Nana cookies”)

    Why is it that the best memories are often of tastes and smells?

    Happy holiday memories,
    M.E.

  38. We bake, of course. My mom always use to make great sugar cookies in cutout shapes, frosted and decorated. I try to make these, too, but my son’s egg allergy is steering me toward new recipes. And the one thing we have EVERY year? Chex mix! My aunt makes it, and we make more of it!

  39. Hi! We have a very old venezuelan tradition: In Venezuela (the northernmost country in South America) is baby Jesus, not Santa, who brings gifts to everybody and all the kids have to write a letter to BabyJesus in order to get their gifts. In my family our daughters write their letters on the first days of december and put them in the Christmas tree and wait until Baby Jesus picks them up!!! I’ts wonderful to see their faces when the letters are gone. Even though we live here in the States we try to continue this tradition in combination with Santa, so my daughters are very fortunate to receive gifts from Baby Jesus AND Santa!
    We are catholics, so we prefer Merry Christmas (unless we know the religion of the other person or family).
    Hope you have a MERRY CHRISTMAS!
    Raquel

  40. My first summer job was working at a Burger King. I didn’t like it much because I smelled like a big french fry when I was done with my shift, and I was greasy all over. I worked a closing shift, and I was usually too tired to wash up before I crashed. YUUUCK….wouldn’t do that now!