Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas Survey

Hope you all are having a happy holiday so far!

Yesterday I went to yoga class; they had just one all-levels class for Christmas Eve. While you could modify to make it more challenging, it was overall more meditative and relaxing than the class I usually do. I didn't even go into downward dog once, just stuck to child's pose in between flows. It was a lovely start to the holiday.

The teacher read a Nhat Hanh poem at the beginning of class that was quite appropriate to enjoying the holiday: 

The miracle is not to walk on water. The miracle is to walk on the green earth in the present moment, to appreciate the peace and beauty that are available now.

A Christmas survey:  

1. Egg nog or hot chocolate?

Hot chocolate, for sure! I can't remember if I've actually tried egg nog and found it gross, or am just assuming. But it definitely sounds gross.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?

Neither, Santa only fills stockings.

Actually, when I was a kid our family didn't even have stockings, we did have one (wrapped) present that was from Santa. (Though some relatives would have stockings for us if we were at their houses on Christmas, or sometimes even after - "Santa knew you'd be coming by here later.") For our future kids, I like the stocking thing, rather than a designated larger gift - I don't love the idea of Santa (as far as promoting it to kids), so I feel like stockings, having small and useful things, would let one keep it a bit more low key.

We still do stockings (my mom got stockings for our immediate family at some point, I think around when I was in middle or high school?) for my immediate family, and I enjoy buying the little, generally more practical, things for those than I do buying the "real" present for each person. 

3. Colored lights or white lights on the tree/house?

White lights (or another single color, like all blue or such) - I prefer a simpler aesthetic, at least for my own decorations. I enjoy seeing others' decorations with more going on, though.

4. When do you hang up your decorations?

The Friday after Thanksgiving at the earliest! Any time before that is too early and not acceptable. 

5. What is your favorite holiday dish? (excluding desserts)

Croissants. Or rolls. Mashed potatoes are good, too. Any kind of carb, really. 

6. Do you open gifts on Christmas Eve?

Sometimes. We don't have a really consistent tradition here, either in my family or Abe's. Depends on where we are and who we're seeing on Christmas Eve versus Christmas Day. Once we have kids, I love the idea of everyone having a book to open on Christmas Eve.

7. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?

Not extensively. This year we just have this dowel tree, and while in theory I'm sure I could finagle some way to put ornaments on it, it just didn't seem worth while (and potentially dangerous, being that close to the ground near the cats). I think it looks nice in its simplicity, just the white lights.

8. Snow - love it or dread it?

Love it, so long as I don't have to drive anyway in it. We very rarely have snow here. About six years ago there was ridiculous storming and we had a couple feet of snow on Christmas day (I ended up being stuck here instead of flying to see my family because of it; a friend graciously invited me to join her family locally instead); it made for a pretty Christmas, at least, but we definitely don't know how to handle it here since it's so infrequent.

9. What's the most important thing about Christmas for you?

Spending time with family. Cookies and stockings are fun, too.

10. Do you have a Christmas morning tradition?

Just that we open presents with immediate family (or whoever's staying the night wherever we are) pretty much first thing in the morning. We usually have a somewhat more extensive than usual breakfast (maybe pancakes and eggs; we got cinnamon roll dough to make this year), then all gather in the living room for gifts.


  1. Oh fun! I'll play -

    1. Neither. Too sweet.
    2. Oh he definitely wraps presents. Santa is no slouch!
    3. You know what I love? Those off-white or blue-white icicle lights. Those are my favorite. We don't have lights for our house, though.(*)
    4. Um .... Christmas Eve? If at all? I'll be honest, the only reason we got a tree this year was because somehow our 2-year-old actually knows the word "Christmas." So we felt obligated.
    5. If we have to exclude desserts, N/A.
    6. Yes.
    7. However the kids want! We have a red and gold ornament set, but the kids also have a collection of ornaments they have made at school.
    8. Love fresh snow, hate stale snow. Hate how people either drive too cautiously or too recklessly in snow.
    9. I suppose this wouldn't be the place for a wordy exploration on the arbitrary nature of holidays and holiday observances across time and cultures ...
    10. Not a consistent tradition. Although a couple years ago we got the two older kids the Nintendo DS's they wanted and I took a video of them opening their presents. That was fun!

    (*) I often gaze wistfully at Pier 1 and the home goods section of every store, and I think to myself, someday I will have my house in order and decorations for every holiday. That day is not today.

    Hope you had a great Christmas!

    1. I actually really like the white icicle lights too, sometime I'll get around to buying them and putting them up outside...

      Of all the places to explore/rant about arbitrary social norms, I think this blog is an appropriate place to do so. :) Would love to hear your thoughts on that.


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