*I truly can’t say enough how so very sorry I am to the families of those lost in yesterday’s tragedy – so many thoughts, prayers and condolences to all of you

* * * * *

Well ladies and gents, we’re about a week and a half away til’ Santa squeezes those rosy buns down the chimney.  And I’ve been thinking recently about how much I love this time of year – I really do just love it, maybe a little more every year. But there are some items that seem just a little more special during the holidays – here’s my list:

BUTTER

Favorite Holiday Things

I don’t even want to know how much butter I’ve used in the last few weeks – but if I added it up, I’m sure I could have a small sized toddler made entirely of butter.  Holiday recipes aren’t meant to be ‘butterless’ so hell, add an extra tablespoon or two – you’ll be back to the gym with the rest of the world on January 2nd, sweating yellow butter sweat.

COOKIES

Holiday FAvorite Things

Do yourself a favor – make these

For breakfast – for lunch – for an afternoon snack and then dessert (if not for dinner too) What is it about Christmas that makes people cookie crazy? They make amazing gifts and even better desserts so go ahead, try that new cookie recipe you’ve been eyeing all year – if there was any time to do it, now is it!

COCKTAILS

Favorite Holiday Things

Cherry Pomegranate Sangria – a Christmas Winner! Click here for the recipe!

December = parties: work parties – family parties – parties for one – christmas eve – christmas day – new years eve – champagne – wine – ‘special punch’ – one tequila – two tequila – three tequila – FLOOR.

Drink up kids – your liver will also be back to the gym on January 2nd with a nice tall H2O on the rocks – so go ahead, get the family size Advil and finish that bottle of pinot! You know you wanna…come on now…

FAMILY AND FRIENDS

Favorite Holiday Things

Last year’s Holiday Gathering of my High School friends where we all dressed as our favorite Christmas character. Can you guess who’s who? I know…we’re a strange bunch…I think it was the water…

It could be your mom, a cousin, a BFFAOT (Apart Or Together – I saw you scratching your head) or your next door neighbor.  The holidays are meant for spending time with the ones you care about the most in life and it doesn’t mean that if you don’t have a huge family with first, second and third cousins coming out of the woodwork that you can’t have just as great a time celebrating with a new friend, a co-worker, or heck even Fido the dog!

THINGS THAT SPARKLE

HOilday favorite things

Shamefully bedazzled things of all shapes and sizes: wrapping paper – sparkly tops and dresses – a Clark Griswold portion of christmas lights.  A line from an old favorite song of mine says “All that shimmers in this world is sure to fade away…” and while it’s slightly depressing and has NOTHING to do with Christmas, I feel as though it’s fitting.  This is the only time of year where excessive sparkle is not only encouraged, it’s mandatory.

SPECIAL ORNAMENTS

ornaments

When you’re a kid and you open something like 1) underwear 2) new boots 3) a christmas ornament, after subtly rolling your eyes and looking around for the next box that looks like something more desirable that you can actually use for a whole day and then get sick of, well you don’t realize the importance of things that those ‘old people’ tell you that ‘someday you’ll appreciate’.  Nothing could be more true than my Aunt Mary’s ornaments – every Christmas, she and Uncle Charlie would host the family for a Christmas party – Santa came – sounded eerily like our Great Uncle Dave, but of COURSE it was just a coincidence – and we’d get our gift from Santa’s sack, usually something small that was on our list but not Nintendo or Teddy Ruxpin – a more modest gift like a barbie or G.I. Joe.

Aunt Mary was an amazing painter – amazing actually doesn’t even accurately describe it.  But she would hand paint – HAND paint – an ornament for every.single.grandchild (got all the way up to 17 + 2 great grand’s!) So holy mother of god – I cannot even imagine how long it took her to get all of these done.  But every curve on the face of every snowman she painted was perfect, and we’d all say “Thank you Aunt Mary”, tossing the ornament to our mom’s to hold onto so we could get back to Polly Pocket or whatever ridiculous toy we got.  But now, so many years later, they mean probably more to me than any stupid gift I ever got as a kid.  And she knew that us dumb kids might not realize how special they were just then, but she knew that someday we would.  Damn she was smart 🙂

And well, the list could go on and on and ON and on…but you all get the idea and I’m sure have your own favorites that make the Holidays that time of year that is enjoyed so much so, that it seems it’s over as quickly as it began.  So take this next week and a half and savor each and every moment! Each and every favorite! And share some please – I’d love to know what makes the Holidays special for you 🙂

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