Friday, December 18, 2009
Friday Five: Christmas Traditions Edition
•traditions you always do
We always put up a tree -- even this year, when we won't be home, we'll still have the tree up to greet us when we get back. Because I brought my tree and bling with me from Cold Comfort Cottage our ideal is to have the "family" tree with more whimsical and homemade ornaments in the living room, and then the blingy traditional tree with my collection of blown glass ornaments in the front room...but that scenario will have to wait a year.
Since we've been together, I've always bought a romantic Old World-y blown glass Christmas ornament for Fellow Traveler and myself -- hearts, snuggling birds and the like.
We always have Christmas creches. I usually put up my old family one with the mismatched shepherds and the gimpy three-legged sheep; but in the meantime we've collected others we enjoy, that we display elsewhere.
For years I've always taken a tag off whatever community Christmas tree I happened to live near, and buy presents for the indicated giftee. FT loves to do this too. We also buy a critter for Heifer Project.
We also open our presents on Christmas Eve -- this is a tradition I've brought with me to our home. FT is the kind of impatient giftee who's shaking and squeezing and sniffing wrapped gifts weeks before Christmas, so she's fine with adopting the custom of my people.
FT's family, unlike mine, is big on Christmas stockings, which are filled with an assortment of little goodies and practical items, all individually wrapped. Everyone in the family has a monogrammed L.L. Bean stocking for this.
And of course we go to church on Christmas Eve, although at this point we're still wondering if, when and how this is going to happen in our kids' Brooklyn neighborhood.
And you read about the cookie thing...I'm still feeling like that's a "left undone" this year even though we just mailed off two hearty tins of cookie-walk cookies to the younguns in the family.
•traditions you always cook or eat
Growing up, my mother always made her good tuna noodle casserole (the solid kind made with eggs as a binding, that you can cut into squares) for a fast Christmas Eve supper. Christmas dinner was generally ham. We on the other hand tend to eat Mexican food on and before Christmas. (FT notes that the only other positive of her relationship with her ex-husband, apart from the existence of our two kids, are the recipes she learned from her Mexican ex-mother-in-law, who couldn't speak a word of English but who nonetheless taught FT how to make tasty dishes like chicken mole'.)
•traditions you would like to start
Our tradition plate is pretty full, thanks...although we think we might start buying granddaughter Ruby an ornament each year. This year her parents are getting a glass baby bootie with her name on it.
•traditions you would like to discard
I very often have a cold at Christmas, and/or one of those [TMI alert!] perimenopausal female-plumbing issues that make the middle years of my life so very special. Those are two traditions I'd be happy to dump.
•anything about your family Christmases
It's wonderful to live into family Christmases that are much better than the ones I grew up with -- much less relational Sturm und Drang, much less anxiety, much more fun. As someone once said, it's a wonderful life.
Posted by LutheranChik at 6:33 AM