Saturday, December 02, 2006

Christmas Meme (finally) and Other Stuff

Update on this morning's post. Jesus heard my prayer, and those of you wonderful people. I was able to calm down, prioritize, and get a lot done. I got the package off to New Guinea ($112.55 - the church's money, not mine, but a lot!), I got to choir practice by 9:30 (it was a great time and the music seeped into my soul), the tea was at 11:00 and we had a wonderful time of fellowship with a great message about how we are like different cups - flawed, old, still useful - very clever. Here are a couple of pictures of the tables (there were 14-15 altogether, and each one different). I am amazed every year at the beauty that women create for this occasion. I was approached to do one and calmly told them that this is not one of my gifts!

tea party (2)
Above is my SIL and the table she decorated and hosted
tea party (1)
tea party
This is the table where I was assigned

Now - on to the meme:
  1. Egg nog or hot chocolate?

    Hot chocolate hands down. I love it with whipped cream instead of marshmallows. I like egg nog flavored taffy, but that's about it.

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

    Everything has to be wrapped. When the kids were little, they would count packages every day and compare. One year I numbered the packages and kept a list, so they didn't know which was whose. It was so much fun to watch them discover what I had done. One year we had a scavenger hunt all over the house.

  3. Colored lights or white?

    Colored. I like the white ones on others' trees, but I like color myself.

  4. Do you hang mistletoe?

    Ever since I discovered the mistletoe growing at the tops of the trees in Oklahoma and that it was a parasite, it lost any romantic appeal it might have had.

  5. When do you decorate for Christmas?

    I used to do it the day after Thanksgiving, but am not as structured any more - or I don't have kids around keeping me going. I do it in bits and pieces the last few years. I have a real mess in my family room right now. DC says he's never seen it this bad in all these years! I hope to have it done soon.

  6. What is your favorite holiday dish, excluding dessert?

    That is a tough one. We don't have set in stone traditions on food, as we do for Thanksgiving. We often have had Swedish potato sausage, which the kids didn't like, but Grandpa made it, so we had to have it. I still like turkey and the trimmings, or ham. But there are so many yummy things.

  7. Favorite holiday memory as a child?

    How in the world do I narrow this down? We had cousins in Africa as missionaries, so seeing them every four years at Grandma's house was so special. We traveled long distances to be in Minnesota through horrid storms, and those memories are unforgettable. I have many wonderful memories, but probably my most memorable Christmas was 9th grade, when I was in bed for a month with mono. I was down flat two weeks before Christmas and two weeks after. I was so sick that I still can't eat some of the things my mom baked that year. I was supposed to play the piano for the 9th grade choir concert at school that year and didn't get to. That was a huge disappointment. It took me a year to get my strength back. Another definite memory - my sis and I are less than a year apart in age. We always go the same things for birthdays and Christmas, maybe a different color. We got to where we'd sit with our backs to each other and open them at the same time so we wouldn't know what we were getting if the other one opened first.

  8. When and how, did you learn the truth about Santa?

    Santa was never a part of our lives as kids, and we passed that along to our kids. I am going through this with Kristen's kids right now - I think Anakin is at the point of realizing that it's a huge myth, but he doesn't want to give it up yet. He keeps asking me why I don't believe in Santa. I decided I don't want to get into it with him!

  9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?

    Both DC and I were raised with Christmas Eve gift opening. That made it easy to mesh our customs. But some years we have several different gift opening occasions, so the fun goes on and on.

  10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?

    I actually have two trees. I sometimes wanted to put the tree in the window in the living room. The kids always wanted it in the family room so they could snuggle on the couch and watch the lights. It was always a real tree. So when they left, I bought an artificial tree and it became my designer project. It has blue and white lights, blue and gold balls and bows, and gold poinsettias. It's a lot of work, but I love the end result. The one in the family room is full of memories. Our first Christmas was 3 days before our first anniversary. We had 6 dozen blue satin balls on our white flocked Christmas trees (instead of flowers) for our wedding. That was all we had on our first tree together. I began giving away a box each year to friends and loved ones, and replacing it with a new box of balls. We also had one really special ball each year, usually dated. One year we came home from a band concert and found our tree had tipped over, shattering many of our balls, including our very first "special" ball. That was sad.

  11. Snow. Love it or hate it?

    Growing up in Minnesota, it was always a part of winter that we didn't even think about. I love it to look at, especially at Christmas time. I don't like driving in a storm, or the ice mess it leaves on the streets. But I love a beautiful, soft, falling snow. I don't like it when it is blowing parallel to the ground!

  12. Can you ice skate?

    When we lived in International Falls, Minnesota, it was something every kid did after supper at night. Everyone threw their skates over their shoulders and headed for the neighborhood rink. I hate cold feet, but to be in the crowd, I had to play the game. I spent most of my time in the warming house. I wouldn't call what I do skating, but I did manage to stay on my feet most of the time. But I LOVE watching good ice skating.

  13. Do you remember your favorite gift?

    The year I had mono was probably the most difficult Christmas my folks had experienced in years, financially. The next year was so much better that my sister and I each got large blue suitcases filled with clothes. That was a really special gift.

  14. What is the most important thing about the holidays to you?

    Celebrating Jesus' birthday; celebrating with family and friends; remembering the Reason for the Season.

  15. What is your favorite holiday dessert?

    Aanything chocolate, I suppose.

  16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?

    I have thought about this a lot today and I think I have to say it is singing in the cantata every year. I absolutely love singing with a group of people and putting together a series of music - starting from scratch and having it turn out beautifully.

  17. What tops your tree?

    My family room tree doesn't have anything on top - it's too tall. I've never had a traditional tree topper for some reason. The one upstairs has a big gold bow, which tops it off perfectly.

  18. Which do you prefer, giving or receiving?

    I really enjoy getting something special for someone and watching their reaction. I love getting gifts, of course, but I have a hard time telling people what I want. I wish I were more creative and patient to make special things for people as I used to.

  19. What is your favorite Christmas song?

    That is a hard one. I love so many - Carol of the Bells, Little Drummer Boy, Do You Hear What I Hear, all the traditional carols, but I think Josh Groban's and Sandy Patti's versions of O Holy Night top them all. I wish I could hear them do it as a duet! We could do a whole discussion of horrible songs that pass as Christmas songs.

  20. Candy canes. Yuck or yum?

    I'm not fond of candy canes. I love the legend of how they came to be, though.


Barb said...

My goodness, the tables are gorgeous. How fun that each table is different.

I loved reading your Christmas meme. Mandy was about the same age you were when she got mono. It was a tough time and after all these years I worry about her ever getting a relapse.

Just reading all your Minnesota memories made me cold. You did a great job on this.

I'm so glad you're feeling more collected now. You should see my lack of progress on the tree - after the light fiasco we did finally get the lights on today. But I just wasn't in the mood to spend hours hanging ornaments so I plan to do it a little a day during the week. I've never done that before. Maybe I'm slowing down?

Looney Mom said...

I'm glad you're feeling better and getting things done. Great meme!

Anonymous said...

Great answers! I'm with you. Whipped cream sounds way better than marshmallows.

I wanted to avoid the whole Santa thing with my kids, too, but we gave in to peer pressure when they learned about him from their friends at church, of all places.

Your memories of Minnesota sound wonderful. I've always wanted to go to an outdoor ice skating rink.

I'm glad you're back in the swing of things. Those tables are lovely!

PEA said...

Good to hear you're feeling a bit's so easy at this time of year to let everything overwhelm you. Those tables are just beautiful, what gorgeous settings!! Loved all your meme answers...that is the most fun meme I ever participated in:-) Hugs xox

Sue said...

Your tea tables are lovely. What a nice relaxing break during this hectic time. Love your meme answers. This is one I totally enjoyed!

Tammy said...

First off...those tables are stunning! What a fun event that looks like!

And second, I really enjoyed reading your Christmas meme answers. I haven't done this one yet, but love reading everyone's! Yours was really interesting, and it must have been a hard year, indeed, the Christmas you were sick! Glad that your next Christmas was better! :)

Chaotic Mom said...

Those tables are AMAZING! I've been to something like this and had a great time, too.

Good job on accomplishing so much, too. Sounds like you've had a lot on your plate.

Know what? I was a white light kind of gal until I had children. Now I miss the nostalgia of those gorgeous colored lights. ;)

Jessica said...

I put hot chocolate on my Meme too! Those tables are beautiful!

Pamela said...

My Mom and I love hosting a table for the church tea. It has always been a passion of mine to decorate. Your SIL did a beautiful job! :)

So sad that you got Mono and were sick for so long as a young girl, my goodness. Wish we could hear you sing! Enjoy your day Dawn! :)

Lala's world said...

that was a fun meme! loved reading it and getting to know you a bit better!

Linda said...

What beautiful Christmas decorations!! I really do like this Christmas meme. I'm determined to do it one of these days when I can get away from cardboard boxes and newspaper!!

Anonymous said...

Here I am at a second blog today were this idear of doing up a table for christmas each as special but as different as the lady who is doing it. I have never known this idear before but am now excited to do the very same thing next year here in Australia. I would have loved to have been there for the talk on the similar yet as different as teacups, that sounds so lovely to me.

Your day was truly blessed I can see that.

It was so nice to visit and I will be back again.

Nancy said...

Yea! I knew you could do it! One step at a time. I loved the tables. What talent!

Anonymous said...

I heard Michele M had quite the table, is that it in the picture? Sounds like it was a fun time.