iiiiIIIIITTTT'S CHRIIISTMAAAAAASSSS!!!! (well, nearly...)

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Postby Silwen » Sat Oct 08, 2011 12:50 am

Thanks, Morwenna, for pointing me towards this thread! I do love Christmas and just realised I haven't used my Christmas smileys in years! I have a whole collection of them on my photobucket account. :lol: This would be just the right place to use them.

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Postby Morwenna » Sat Oct 08, 2011 5:51 am

Silwen, those are just too cool! :D

So what's on your docket for this year?
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Postby Silwen » Sat Oct 08, 2011 10:56 am

Right, I had to look up the word "docket" before I could reply. :lol:

This year I am planning NOT to knit anything for people for Christmas, though I might make one single exception for a friend. Instead, I have made a few pieces of Jewellery for the girls of the family. Thinking of something for the boys will be harder, I fear. I love giving presents at Christmas (or anytime, really), so that is something I am definitely looking forward to.

Last year Mark and I had our first Christmas all by ourselves, which was lovely. This year we will be spending it with his family, which means we will soon need to book a hotel room for that time. His family doesn't have enough room for two guests so we always have to stay somewhere else nearby. That is the reason we don't visit as much as we probably should! I wonder what their Christmas is going to be like.

They will be going to church, I know that since all but one of them are very religious. I am not sure if I will come along or not - probably not since I am not religious at all even though I do like Christmas mass. I went to one last year, but it is weird because I loved it on the one hand because of its ritual character, but on the other hand I can't help sitting there shaking my head. (No offence to Christians, it's just my personal opinion.) Weird how I can love Christmas time as much as I do despite being a non-believer. ;)

I look forward to decorating! This year I plan to turn our small artificial Christmas tree into an advent calendar for two. I will tie Mark's and my own little gifts/chocolates to the tree so that we can pick one off every day. We will probably have to replace each item with our usual decorations or the tree will look very bare. :lol:
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Postby Kaya » Sat Oct 08, 2011 11:53 pm

Silwen wrote:Weird how I can love Christmas time as much as I do despite being a non-believer. ;)


I can totally relate to that, Silwen. :)

This Christmas is going to be interesting, to say the least, and for once I hope for a not too cold winter. I'm in the middle of renovations since a while (almost a year, actually). My house is being extended at the ground level so that I'll have a bigger kitchen and living area. It's at this stage where the windows are all in place but am still a few weeks away from having extra heating installed, and the insulation for the flooring and the flooring itself will not be done before some time in January, from the looks of it. It's chilly already on the ground level (my current heating can't pull it off with the added space) and the temperatures are not even below zero. :(
I was just thinking that I might have to hang Christmas socks around the house, but for the guests to keep their feet warm. :shock: :rofl:
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Postby Silwen » Sun Oct 09, 2011 1:55 am

They could come in useful. :D

Our office is already cold as well, more so than my flat which has absolutely no heating on at the moment. :shock: Not looking forward to winter at all.

I doubt there will be a Christmas party at work since we are only 5 people in the company right now anyway. :lol: I wonder if we get a tree though. I found some decorations stashed under the printer recently. :rofl:
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Postby Morwenna » Mon Oct 10, 2011 7:38 am

It's always cold in our office. :( The AC is too good. :roll:

It's cold at home right now too, because we have free heat which means the whole building is either on or off (though to some extent we can regulate the heat once it's on), and it's not on yet. We're on the northwest corner of the first floor, which is the coolest apartment: great in the summer, but not so much in chilly weather!

The office decorates big time at Christmas, and sometimes at other holidays as well (depending on the whim of the people that year). We decorate a little; for several years our place was too crowded/cluttered to have room for a tree, but last year we finally got back into it and it was glorious! :D The only slight disappointment was that hubby bought new lights for it, the tiny kind, because he didn't like the looks of the cords on the old ones (D6? I forget the designation), and he also figured the tree would stay fresher with the newer cooler bulbs. Right on both counts; but I really missed the bigger bulbs that actually threw light within the branches and even out into the room. :( I distinctly remember seeing in one of the seasonal stores a few years ago some bulbs that looked sort of like the old ones but not quite; I wonder if they're modern cool energy-efficient bulbs with the same lighting capacity as the old ones? If so, poor hubby is going to be faced with yet a new set of lights!

I have a manger set, my mother's, but last year we didn't put it up because we didn't find a place to put it. This year I'll have to try harder. That thing hasn't seen the light of day since 1989, the last time my mother was in her own place to put it up! And it's the old-fashioned soft plaster Italian kind, with 8" or taller figures, that she bought back in the late '50s from a department store. There's a wood & straw stable too, which they bought separately, and an electric star that sits on the roof.

And I hang the cards we receive, and I have several small figures that get put out on table ends, bookshelf fronts, and so on: angels, wise men, girls holding presents, etc.

Hubby and I go to Christmas Eve Mass, mainly because we sing there. We've been doing this along with a friend of ours for a couple decades now; it's the church (chapel, rather, part of a shrine) where she and her husband got married, and her mother lives near there; and we have a long-standing working relationship with the organist. When she herself lived in that city, she was involved with the choir for the shrine's mother church. So before the Mass we gather at her mother's place for dinner; occasionally it's been at her brother's instead, but that's a much longer ride back to the church, and sometimes her mother doesn't want to go out of town then. Hubby and I were both brought up Catholic, but we both have lapsed pretty much; still, I love Mass and am religious in my own way. It's tough though sitting through an Old World sermon (the priest is an immigrant); it just feels too conservative somehow (I want to say things like "backward" but that's really too harsh). And relatively few people go to that Mass anymore. When we started, 20 years ago or so (I forget just when), that chapel would be packed to the rafters! Still, I think we only missed one year since we started, due to car trouble. And we'll keep going till the organist is incapacitated!
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Postby Morwenna » Thu Nov 03, 2011 4:56 am

*follows self* :oops: OK, it's official: Halloween is over as of this morning (All Souls' Day has passed) so now it's time for CHRISTMAS! :clap: I've already started looking through the seasonal cookbooks. :love:
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Postby Vanaladiel » Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:28 am

No no we need to get through Thanksgiving before concentrating on Christmas!!!

I like to enjoy each holiday in turn before going to the next!! :D
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Postby Morwenna » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:27 pm

Well, Thanksgiving is an occasion to get together with hubby's family and eat till we roll, and it is an automatic paid day off, but it doesn't have the panache that Halloween and Christmas do, if you know what I mean. It's more like the beginning of the Christmas season: start with a feast, end with a feast.

Which brings me back to Christmas... :D
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Postby Kaya » Mon Nov 07, 2011 10:58 am

I'm in London since a couple of days and the Christmas lights are already on in the streets. At first I thought it was way too soon and would spoil the mood, but since it gets dark here so early by now, it kind of makes the grim late afternoon and evening cozy. :D

Bought some Lush products for my Mum (and a couple for myself as well) as a Christmas gift.
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Postby prmiller » Mon Nov 07, 2011 5:19 pm

November...then Comes Christmas

I think about that holiday
affecting GDPs,
that time that dulls a winter's edge,
when ponds and fingers freeze.
I am not numb to Christmas,
but being in Japan
has shifted my perspectives,
(though I missed marzipan).
We sorta had a holiday
December twenty-third,
but not December twenty-fifth,
it would be thought absurd
to celebrate that special birth
along with Buddha's day,
but we eat cake on Christmas Day
and take some time to play.
However in our travellings,
we see from time to time,
a wreath, a garland, or a bell,
a Merry Christmas chime.
I truly will anticipate
more things as they arise,
but times at Church, with family,
these are the times I prize.

Blessings,
Parm :)
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Postby Gollum Girl » Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:21 pm

prmiller, you are so talented! :happydance: Truly :) They fill me with a sort if peace.


kaya, London! I've always wanted to go there. Have fun!


Morwenna, I know what you mean. ;) At least it gives me an excuse to eat like a pig for a night.



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:hihi: to yall
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Postby Morwenna » Mon Nov 07, 2011 8:11 pm

I was in London 21 years ago; I suppose a lot has changed but not much in the scheme of things. Of course it was October then; it would be interesting to see it in December. But not this year!

We got a bit sidetracked doing household stuff lately, but I did find the leftover Christmas cards, which is a start. And a large electric candle, which I think I'm going to send off to Goodwill; I haven't used it in ages and it's one of a kind (a crafted one) and we're short on electric outlets anyway.

Parm, good to see you gracing our humble thread! :hihi:
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Postby legolas the elf » Tue Nov 08, 2011 4:11 pm

"I-I-I-I won't be ho-o-o-o-me for Chri-i-i-istma-a-as....You-u-u-u can count on tha-a-a-a-at."
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Postby prmiller » Wed Nov 09, 2011 6:02 am

Gollum Girl wrote:prmiller, you are so talented! :happydance: Truly :) They fill me with a sort if peace.


You are most kind...and I am always glad to leave something of value behind...
that you are filled with a kind of peace, is a good thing, I believe, a very good
thing indeed.

Thus this...
The Powerful Peace of Christmas

A war was halted briefly,
but all too soon that peace
was shattered by such nonsense,
forbidding men release
from shooting at their neighbors,
and end all concord,
yet history remembers
and we shall still record
those moments when that power
that Christmas often brings,
to drawn in men as brothers,
of this the minstrel sings.

I know that there are wonders,
that people love to tell,
of miracles at Christmas,
and many know them well;
but deeper than the magic,
I hear that Christmas brings,
are simpler tales of goodness,
and other noble things.
The countless unrewarded,
who offer helping hands,
to bring that Gift of Christmas,
to harsher, crueler lands,
the faces trimmed with gladness
who bring such Christmas cheer,
that laughter fills each corner,
where once dwelt pain and fear.

I celebrate a Christmas
that does much more than buy
a trinket for one's darling,
a glitter for the eye,
I celebrate a Christmas
where deeper joys are found
and not in frosty places
with snowbanks all around.
I see it in the tropics,
in deserts bleak and vast,
I see in happen daily,
and glad to see it last
beyond the date remembered
when One wee life appeared,
and from that day such wonders!
Oh may that day be cheered!

Yes, peace on earth at Christmas!
Yes, peace on earth each day.
Yes, peace in lives where torment
continues to have sway.
Yes, peace on earth tomorrow,
and peace on earth this year,
I will remember Christmas,
and cherish it in here...
my heart, my soul, my substance,
the am of who I am,
I will remember Christmas--
the Lion comes as Lamb.


Blessings,
Parm :)
The autumn I know and love in Calgary.

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Postby Quimrill_Renctar » Wed Nov 09, 2011 12:37 pm

I'm inclined to agree with Vana. One hurtle at a time! Thanksgiving first then Christmas. Though if you were to stroll down the isles of the stores in my area you wouldn't know there was another big holiday before Christmas. The day after Halloween and Christmas decor everywhere. I guess thanksgiving is just not as marketable. :P

Excellent poetry parm. It always impresses me how you can do that.

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Postby Morwenna » Wed Nov 09, 2011 1:19 pm

Beautiful, Parm. :)

Thing is, unless you're doing the cooking, Thanksgiving doesn't require much preparation. The only thing I'll be doing is putting the turkey-shaped pillow into the living room and baking a pie to take to my brother-in-law's. Christmas, on the other hand, usually entails a lot of decorations, parties, food plans, gifts, cards, rehearsals, religious observances, whatever your household takes part in. And even with the food, most people who routinely make their own Thanksgiving dinners stick to an established menu; Christmas, though, often leaves itself open to a lot of new possibilities.

Thanksgiving Day is a day. Christmas is a season.
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Postby Vanaladiel » Thu Nov 10, 2011 9:01 am

This year in our new home with plenty of room we are hosting a Thanksgiving gathering so I am looking forward to this season of Thanks Giving!!!! :D

Then I shall shift into high gear for the Christmas gathering we have planned for the following first weekend of December. Then I am slowing down to enjoy the season to remember and honor the coming of our Saviour!!! I don't do loads of Christmas gifts for I never have the money that commercialism calls for, so we dwell on special gifts of time and self to those we hold dear. Singing and ooing and ahhing over pretty lights and things like that!!


A candy maker in Indiana wanted to make a candy that would be a witness, so he made the candy cane. He incorporated several symbols from the birth, ministry and death of Christ.

He began with a stick of pure white, hard candy. White to symbolize the Virgin Birth and the sinless nature of Christ and hard to symbolize the Solid Rock, the foundation of the church, and firmness of the Promises of God.

The candy maker made the candy in the shape of a "J" to represent the precious name of Jesus, who came to earth as our Saviour. It could also represent the staff of the "Good Shepherd" with which he reaches down into the ditches of the world to lift out the fallen lambs who, like all sheep, have gone astray.

Thinking that the candy was somewhat plain, the candy maker stained it with red stripes. He used three small stripes to show the scourging Jesus received by which we are healed. The large red stripe was for the blood shed by Christ on the cross so that we could have the promise of eternal life.

Unfortunately, the candy became known as the Candy Cane -- a meaningless decoration seen at Christmas time. But the meaning is still there for those who "have eyes to see and ears to hear". Every time you see a Candy Cane, remember the Wonder of Jesus and His Great Love that came down at Christmas, and that His Love remains the ultimate and dominating force in the universe today!


Though this is unsubstantiated, it is a great way to see Christ in Christmas for me!
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For my dad who now resides with the Lord! :rose: 05/11/16 I love you daddy and will see you again someday in Glory!

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Postby Morwenna » Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:55 am

Cool, Vana. :)

We don't buy much in the way of gifts either: one (small) item each for the members of hubby's family (and not everyone, if we don't expect to see the New Hampshire branch), home baked pound cakes for everyone in sight, some food for whoseever party or gathering we go to (except the dressup office party, of course), and I send cards.

Christmas Eve itself, we have dinner at a friend's mother's place (sometimes her brother's place instead), after which we go to Mass where this friend, hubby and I provide the vocal music. Then hubby and I go home on the local roads instead of the highway, listening to Christmas music on the radio (the less common, the better) while looking at everyone's decorations, and generally arrive home about midnight. We swap gifts before going to bed, then next day we go to his brother's house, or nowadays more likely his niece's because now that she has kids of her own she wants them to have Christmas at home, the way she grew up. And there we have dinner, after which those who still have a brain left divide up between watching TV and gathering for board games in the dining room. And nowadays, playing with the kids and their new toys. :)
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Postby Vanaladiel » Thu Nov 10, 2011 2:49 pm

Wow!!! My mother in law came by today and she informed me that this year we will instead of getting gifts for everyone, with us being broke and all, will be giving gifts made in the kitchen or for making in the kitchen. I told her I have a recipe for something for my niece that is called "Instant Snowman" or the "hot chocolate in a jar". The hot chocolate in a jar is a mix of powdered milk and instant chocolate with mini marshmallows ready for you to scoop it out in a cup and add hot water. I think Lori would love that!!! I will make a fancy lid or find a fancy air tight container at the thrift store to put it in. Something either decorative or that I can decorate for her.

Now to think of something for my MIL, my SIL and my BIL!! Not much else is needed and could be fun to find something unusual. ;)
Image Spring come quickly!!
~*Sister of the Twilight*~
~*Daughter of the Moon*~

Inyë melmëlyë my love, for you are the melody to which I now dance!!

Bearer of "Elen~Uial"
The Moon Ring of the Twilight Star

Bard of the land of Eryn Lasgalen

Mithril Knight of Lore
Mithril Knight of Eryn Lasgalen

Lifetime Award 2010

Always in our memories, vison :rose:, Alex :rose:, Rowanberry :rose: and Watcher :rose:! Our world is a little dimmer without your smiles!

A tribute to Cynthia 11/14/2005 :rose:

For my dad who now resides with the Lord! :rose: 05/11/16 I love you daddy and will see you again someday in Glory!

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Postby Cock-Robin » Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:50 am

My Christmas decorations are already up. It's the one time of the year that my poky little apartment looks like something. So festive.
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I love french toast, too!





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Postby Morwenna » Fri Nov 11, 2011 6:04 am

Great idea, Vana! I know we've made fancy coffee for BIL in the past, though now that they have a Keurig machine that's less of an idea for them.
I ought to bring this gift-mix idea up with hubby again; he usually has good ideas in the kitchen. :) As it is, he makes up biscuit mix ahead of time for us (just ad water), so that may be a jumping-off point.
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Postby Vanaladiel » Fri Nov 11, 2011 11:35 am

Do share some of the recipes or ideas with us too, please!!! I am always looking for ideas for great food gift ideas!!! :yippie:
Image Spring come quickly!!
~*Sister of the Twilight*~
~*Daughter of the Moon*~

Inyë melmëlyë my love, for you are the melody to which I now dance!!

Bearer of "Elen~Uial"
The Moon Ring of the Twilight Star

Bard of the land of Eryn Lasgalen

Mithril Knight of Lore
Mithril Knight of Eryn Lasgalen

Lifetime Award 2010

Always in our memories, vison :rose:, Alex :rose:, Rowanberry :rose: and Watcher :rose:! Our world is a little dimmer without your smiles!

A tribute to Cynthia 11/14/2005 :rose:

For my dad who now resides with the Lord! :rose: 05/11/16 I love you daddy and will see you again someday in Glory!

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Postby Morwenna » Fri Nov 11, 2011 1:32 pm

Well, to start with, hubby often made coffee with cinnamon and grated orange peel in it for us, right in the basket of the coffeemaker. (Lately he's been doing hazelnut coffee using syrup.) So he bought a big canister jar and filled it with coffee spiced with cinnamon and grated orange peel for BIL's family. They'd go through it before January was over! And somehow we kept getting the empty canister back, and we have it still. It takes a little math, I know, but if you figure how much spice of whatever kind you like you need for your coffeemaker's usual amount, multiply that to get a bagful of spiced coffee. The possibilities are many: just about any of the baking spices will be good. And it dawns on me, you could do the same trick with hot chocolate powder.

Magazines used to have articles that promoted giving a dry cookie mix along with instructions to add an egg or add water or milk or shortening or whatever. Another thing is that Chex mix; nowadays they sell it commercially, but time was they'd put a recipe in the magazines about how to do it yourself; and if you do it yourself, you put in the munchies you want. :) Or you can make gorp: that's the fruit & nut mixture ("trail mix") that sells for outrageous amounts in the snack machines. Hubby puts raisins, chocolate chips, mixed nuts, and sunflower seeds in his. It keeps well in sealed jars, only you just have to watch out for the nuts over a long period of time, or they start tasting like varnish. :P
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Postby prmiller » Tue Nov 15, 2011 1:31 am

Vanaladiel wrote:Wow!!! My mother in law came by today and she informed me that this year we will instead of getting gifts for everyone, with us being broke and all, will be giving gifts made in the kitchen or for making in the kitchen. I told her I have a recipe for something for my niece that is called "Instant Snowman" or the "hot chocolate in a jar". The hot chocolate in a jar is a mix of powdered milk and instant chocolate with mini marshmallows ready for you to scoop it out in a cup and add hot water. I think Lori would love that!!! I will make a fancy lid or find a fancy air tight container at the thrift store to put it in. Something either decorative or that I can decorate for her.


I am showing your ideas to Mrs. Parm.
We are facing the same sort of reality, being on a very fixed income, and
needing to come up with some inventive and inexpensive Christmas gifts.
I have been pressed into service to make calligraphed bookmarks. Little
Firefly has yet to give me her ideas, but I know she is coming up with something.

Despite the world's economies,
creative juices need not freeze,
and thus, with my inventive clan,
we shall pick up what once began
with simple, inexpensive ways,
to celebrate these Christ-feast days.

Blessings,
Parm :)
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Postby Cock-Robin » Tue Nov 15, 2011 10:06 pm

And now, I'm getting all my Christmas videos and music out. Already watching some of it.
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Postby Vanaladiel » Tue Nov 15, 2011 10:24 pm

I pulled my Christmas CDs out and placed them in my car to listen to on my drive each day starting the day after Thanksgiving. I believe that is when we will start our decorating too!!

But I have a Thanksgiving to plan here at our home with family. It is our First Thanksgiving here and so we are excited to share our home for such a wonderful event. Will be planning where we will be having Christmas next! :thumbsup:
Image Spring come quickly!!
~*Sister of the Twilight*~
~*Daughter of the Moon*~

Inyë melmëlyë my love, for you are the melody to which I now dance!!

Bearer of "Elen~Uial"
The Moon Ring of the Twilight Star

Bard of the land of Eryn Lasgalen

Mithril Knight of Lore
Mithril Knight of Eryn Lasgalen

Lifetime Award 2010

Always in our memories, vison :rose:, Alex :rose:, Rowanberry :rose: and Watcher :rose:! Our world is a little dimmer without your smiles!

A tribute to Cynthia 11/14/2005 :rose:

For my dad who now resides with the Lord! :rose: 05/11/16 I love you daddy and will see you again someday in Glory!

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Postby Morwenna » Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:28 am

Thanks for reminding me about the decorating. I still have most of the Halloween stuff up. :roll:
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Postby PatriotBlade » Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:32 pm

Okay, been meaning to do this for a while, but have been too busy. For my family, "Christmas Time" starts the first Sunday of Advent (usually the Sunday after Thanksgiving). We used to light the first pink candle and had scripture readings for each day when we sit down to dinner.

Now that I'm on my own, I need to get a wreath (I have the candles) and be ready to start my own Advent readings.

My mom never let us decorate the house (beyond our own rooms) or listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving, and she usually put those off as long as she could. Usually the weekend before Christmas, we decorated. My roommate agrees, but only because she has a two and a half year old and a kitten that like to climb the drapes (both of them. Literally. I'm NOT kidding). Personally, I'd do it about two weeks before Christmas.

I shop all year for presents, so as soon as the tree is up, the presents are wrapped and placed. My parents usually wrap and place on Christmas Eve. My "adopted" parents (the couple I lived with for a while in SC) would place a present a day. It was a running joke that the presents were having babies, cause a new one appeared (it seemed too any way) every time someone left the house.

There's always more baking than usual around the start of Dec. A lot of extended family that we feel obligated to give a gift to, but are really to poor/ don't know them well enough get baked goods for their presents. Also, on Christmas Eve night, my mom makes homemade cinnamon rolls and leaves them in the fridge over night to raise, then in the morning when we get up to open presents, she puts them in the oven. The whole house smells like a sweets bakery by the time we're finished and their ready.

My roommate and I are gonna go to the Christmas Shop soon. I can't wait!
Last edited by PatriotBlade on Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Vanaladiel » Thu Nov 17, 2011 4:54 pm

Those traditions sound absolutely lovely Heather!!! I hope you can get your own traditions started and keep them growing over the years. :hug:
Image Spring come quickly!!
~*Sister of the Twilight*~
~*Daughter of the Moon*~

Inyë melmëlyë my love, for you are the melody to which I now dance!!

Bearer of "Elen~Uial"
The Moon Ring of the Twilight Star

Bard of the land of Eryn Lasgalen

Mithril Knight of Lore
Mithril Knight of Eryn Lasgalen

Lifetime Award 2010

Always in our memories, vison :rose:, Alex :rose:, Rowanberry :rose: and Watcher :rose:! Our world is a little dimmer without your smiles!

A tribute to Cynthia 11/14/2005 :rose:

For my dad who now resides with the Lord! :rose: 05/11/16 I love you daddy and will see you again someday in Glory!

TORC 365 project
User avatar
Vanaladiel
~*MoonLight Dancer*~

 
Posts: 37521
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2002 2:47 pm
Location: Beautiful Pacific Northwest
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