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1)The reason for the Season—Jesus Christ—the little one sent to change the world.

2)The Christmas story books I read to Mikey like “Room for a little one” by Martin Waddell and Jason Cockcroft, with its sweet story and fantastic illustrations.

3) Christmas Lights and Decorations

4)People are generally friendlier

5) Christmas music (since I don’t have to hear it all the time, anymore)

6)Wrapping Gifts (sometimes)

7)Shopping!

8)Parties where I get to see people whose company I haven’t enjoyed in a good while.

9)The kids’ pictures with Santa.

10)Leveraging Santa and his dispensing of gifts being in direct relation to Michael’s behavior (Pierce doesn’t get it yet.)

11)Also, telling Michael I have Santa on speed dial.  ( I did this last year—I forgot to this year, but I had whole conversations with a dial tone about bad behavior and how I was cancelling Santa “I would call back if anything changed.”  Wink, wink…

12) The spirit of giving.

13) That fancy new light checker Auntie Good Times loaned to me that fixed my broken lights.  It really works!

14) Definitely time together with family!

15) Watching the kids’ excitement on Christmas morning

16) The vacation days that we spend together as a family

17)  Putting the decorations away after the Holidays

18) The glitter and sparkles that makes the shortening winter days magical instead of depressing.

19)  Being in Florida

20)            Going out for a drive after dark to look at Christmas lights and outdoor

21) Pointsettias

22)My Seasonal job.  It’s just enough hours to make it fun!

23)The New Year’s Party we always have the week after Christmas.

24)decorations

25) Somebody wanted to switch white elephant gifts with me for something I liked WAY better.

26)Wreaths hung on house windows and pine boughs strung like bunting along banisters and balconies.

27) Cars dressed up lake reindeer—I know it’s corny, but I have kids now, so it makes me laugh.

28) Tractor Trailers with all their steel and chrome looking huge and menacing, only to be softened with a wreath on the front grill.

29)Ribbon.  All kinds of ribbon…and wrapping paper.

30) My Mom’s Nativity crèche.  I like mine, but I LOVE hers.  I always have since I was a little girl.

31) Coffee’s everywhere in seasonal flavors: peppermint, pumpkin, cinnamon, etc. Eggnog (and Canadian Mist—Props to you Canada!)

32)My favorite Christmas Movies.  Elf, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Christmas Story, the original Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

All the things I hate about Christmas and the Holiday Season!

1) Broken Christmas lights

2)People who are determined to be grinchy even at this time of year—whether you celebrate it or not, if you let yourself, the festive energy will draw you in!

3)I get tired of leveraging Santa and his gift distribution.

4)The financial concerns that can accompany the Holiday Season.

5)Being asked many times a day when Christmas will be here.

6)That all of my family can’t be together every Christmas.

7)The guilt I occasionally have about the decadence of our gift receiving.

8)The amount of time Michael has off from school.  (Actually, I haven’t really experienced it yet, but I imagine the 2.5 weeks won’t go by fast enough at a certain point.)

9)Putting away the decorations after the Holidays

10) The average 7 lbs most people put on over the Holidays—let’s hope it’s not 10!  Argghhhh.

11)  The traffic

12) Trying to figure out how much water Poinsettias need.

13) The royal blue “Forever Lazy” version of the “Snuggie” that I won at a white elephant gift exchange.  I wouldn’t want the “Snuggie” either…

14) The anti-climax of January 2nd.

15) Getting the decorations down from the attic.

16) The mess in my garage that’s waiting to return to the attic.

17) Fruitcake, unless someone can really REALLY impress me.

18) The fact my son thinks my tree is pretty, but NOT the prettiest!

19) Having a 4’ deep hedge and a wiggly extension ladder that makes hanging lights on the eaves both scary and frustrating for Greg (and me, of course!)

20) The griping and colorful language that spews forth from Greg’s mouth while doing number 19 on this list.

21) The death of the Christmas Bonus—my god—we’d even take jelly-of-the-month club!

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