I'll take any excuse to talk about Christmas

Lindsay at From Nanny to Family tagged me to answer these questions. And, well, it's about Christmas, so here I am. With bells on. Jingle bells. 

1. What makes Christmas such a special holiday for you and your family?

Early Christmas morning 2011

Being with my family is the obvious answer, but last Christmas was a total wake up call. My mom woke me up around 5am Christmas morning to tell me she was taking my dad to the hospital. He was in ICU all day with heart problems. Long story short, after a legitimate miracle where his heart started beating normally again seconds before the doctor was going to shock his heart with paddles, he was able to come home that night. There was no early morning Christmas music, coffee, and gifts. The day was spent fielding phone calls from family members while my mom stayed in the hospital with my dad. But we were able to eat Christmas dinner together and unwrap a few late night presents. But just having my dad home was all I needed. It was an awful day, but in some ways it was the best Christmas. 

On a lighter note, we all just plain love Christmas. Love it. The snow (or lack thereof this year. booooo), decorating, food, family time, music, you name it. On Christmas Eve this year I'll be anxiously waiting to get out of work and drive home to our traditional Christmas Eve meal of chili and cornbread, followed by a Scrabble tournament and Christmas music. 

2. Where you told the truth about Santa or did you find out another way?
Wild Lights at the Columbus Zoo

My parents played along with Santa, and I loved it! I know people think that's lying to your kids and whatnot, but I'm glad they let me believe in Santa. I think it made those Christmases that much more fun. I just grew out of the belief when I was 6 or 7 and I realized how improbable it was. I remember sitting in the car with my dad and asking him to tell me if the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus were real. He told me they weren't, and I was fine. I wasn't upset. I didn't feel lied to. It just made sense to me. It was fun while it lasted, you know? And I'd be lying if I said I still don't spend Christmas Eve running around screaming about Santa coming.

Now, as for my future kids? I have no clue what I'll do. No clue. James isn't keen on the Santa idea, so we'll see.

3. Real tree or fake tree?

A super blurry picture of our tree this year.

I grew up cutting down a Christmas tree in the mountains with my family, so I am and have always been a sucker for a real tree. The look, the smell, the experience, all of it. But we've had a fake tree since moving to Ohio, and I love the convenience. But as soon as James and I buy a house, it's real trees again!

4. Do you open presents Christmas morning, Christmas Eve, or both?

Christmas morning 2010
Christmas morning. Duh. Santa brings presents on Christmas Eve.

5. What are your favorite Christmas movies and your favorite Christmas songs?
(in no particular order)

1. The Santa Claus. I LOVED this movie growing up. And can we discuss Bernard? I had the biggest crush on him.

"If something should happen to me, put on the suit. The reindeer will know what to do."

2. National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. Seriously, how can you NOT love this move? It's a family tradition for us to watch this. I've watched it every year since I was a kid, and it just keep getting funnier. 

"Merry Christmas! Sh***er was full!"

3. White Christmas. My ALL TIME favorite movie. So fantastic, so magical, so funny, so amazing.

"How can a guy that ugly have the nerve to have sisters?" 

4. Elf. Because, duh. My husband is so sick of this movie and I still can't get enough of it.

"You smell like beef and cheese! You don't smell like Santa!" 

5. The Holiday. This movie is on my top 5 favorites list. I have serious hankering to watch it again, too.

"I have a cow and I sew. How's that for hard to relate to?"

6. Christmas in Connecticut. If you like old movies, watch this immediately. It's the sweetest story and hilarious, too. A total comedy of errors.

"Scarlet fever? It's a better color for Christmas."

An honorable mention goes out to A Christmas Story. I would've included it but I'm already pushing the limits at 6 favorite movies. Fra-gee-lay.


My favorite Christmas song would have to be O Come, O Come Emmanuel. It's beautifully haunting. I love Sufjan Steven's version.

BUT. There's one album that kicks all other Christmas albums in the butt. The album that is ALWAYS on repeat when we decorate the tree. The album I sometimes would put in my boombox (remember those?) as a kid and listen to it quietly in July like a contestant on The Biggest Loser sneaking a piece of cake.

90s gold.

Oh yes. All. day. long.

So......tell me your answers! Let's talk about Christmas!


  1. I cannot even express the volume of cackle I just let out reading "Merry Christmas, shitter was full!" You never cease to make my day!!!

    Also.. 90's Harry C. Jr.... don't mind if I do

  2. I love your tree. It is totally magical and fun.

    We do not yet have any tree, because I don't want to store a fake tree in an apartment, so we always get a real one. With finals and everything, there has been no time for decking the halls. Sigh. I do actually want to this year (for the first time ever!).

  3. I may steal this post idea...I've been at a blogging loss the last few days, it probably has to do with being sick but still. I haven't written anything since...last week! And it's Tuesday! This is so unusual for me...

    Anyway, I love all your answers!!! And I seriously thought I was the only one who had a crush on Bernard. I'm so glad my shame isn't just mine anymore. ;)

  4. I grew up with always having a real tree as well but since getting married, we've only had a fake! I've begged D to let us get a real one [he's a cheapskate] but we haven't yet. However, I agree, the convenience of a fake tree is nice. maybe next year it will be the real deal?

  5. HARRY! He does not ruin christmas music like many others do. I also just discovered the Sufjan albums on spotify and am obsessed.

    I need to watch Elf. NEED TO.

  6. I love all your Christmas movie reviews! Thanks for doing this girl, loved reading all your answers!

  7. That picture of Harry!!! I can't even handle his hair hahaha...oh, and the sweater!

    "I have a cow and I sew. How's that for hard to relate to?"

    Dear Jude Law: I don't care what you have, as long as you don't have a wife, call me! :)

    Don't mind if I tag myself in this - I need something to write for tomorrow!

  8. LOVE your fireplace mantle and all or your christmassy pics!

  9. Your mantle looks beautiful!

    My family always had chili, cinnamon rolls and cookies Christmas Eve after going to the Christmas Eve service at church. I wish we still kept that tradition, but being married/having kiddos we have to split up the holiday more. So now we spend Christmas Eve with my in-laws.

  10. OMG let me live at your house. It's so festive, so beautiful...and I'm moving, and can't even decorate, whine, sniff...

    I never even knew about Christmas in Connecticut, and I love both Christmas and crooner-era movies! You have very much made my day.

  11. I know what you mean about the fake trees - we have one in our current house but when we get a house of our own, we will definitely switch back to real.

  12. it's so fun to read your blog since you live in Columbus! i was just at Easton and the zoo on Saturday.

  13. I would imagine the incident with your dad last year has definitely gave you a different outlook on Christmas. I hope this year is magical and wonderful for all of your family.

    My parents did the whole Santa thing and I do it with my children. My 13 year old no longer believes of course but my 2 little ones do. I always just tell them that as long as they believe, Santa will deliver!

  14. Reading this was fun!! We always have fake trees. Mine is actually purple! haha
    We open presents from friends on Christmas Eve, from family and Santa on Christmas morning. My sister is 17 and I'm 22 and my mom still gives us Santa gifts. I guess it's kind of weird now that I think about it.


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