Holiday Traditions

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Holiday Traditions

Postby mmichaelson » Mon Nov 22, 2004 10:28 am

With the holidays drawing close, I wanted to start a thread to see what special holiday traditions everyone has. (note the holiday reference, as in not specific, so everyone with a holiday to celebrate can participate)
:) A huge tradition my family is that on Christmas Eve, my dad and I play Gin Rummy to determine what time we wake up to open presents. As I was always one of those kids who COULD NOT sleep on Christmas Eve, I usually picked a very early time (ie 4 am), but luckily for my parents, dad was a much better Gin Rummy player than I (still is), so we usually ended up getting up at 7 or 8 or so. :D

A close second for me is Independence Day. Being a history person, I like to re-tell the story of our nation winning our independence on this day, in much the same way people tell the story of Christ's birth at Christmas. I think it's important that our future generations realize just what we've got, and how important it is.

These are just a few of my more special traditions. What are some of yours?
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby mpreston » Mon Nov 22, 2004 12:04 pm

For me the holidays are special because hope and beauty and happiness are a bit more abundant. People are nicer to each other, and there's a little magic in the air (along with the music - I love all holiday music - even the really bad stuff just because it makes me laugh :) ). And of course SNOW!!!! :D Woooohoooo!!

As for family tradition, my family is spread out over the entire country, but we all gather a Grandma's for Thanksgivng and Christmas. Thanksgiving is usually just the ten of us (large family) gorging ourselves on the typical foods, and watching (aka napping through) the Macy's day parade/football. Every year right before we eat we do a pollyanna where "the adults" put their names in a hat and draw names for the person they will buy presents for. The oldest (Grandma) and the youngest (three grandkids - myself included) get presents from everyone. Except this year my older cousin and I have joined the ranks of adulthood so we finally got suckered into adding our names... The limit is $50 but no one pays any attention to that. And you're only supposed to buy for that person, but that never happens either.

My grandmother hosts an open house every year on Christmas Eve and people I don't know/haven't seen since I was 5 show up and pinch my cheeks (arrrgh :D
rktktDC
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby Marye » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:12 pm

By the time I reached my mid thirties, the family members that loved and celebrated Christmas were gone and for many years my Christmas was spent reading a book and listening to recordings of Christmas Carols. Christmas means sadness to me. I miss a great many people. But I have since gained and regained a family and though the sadness never leaves I am going to cook two dinners for 20 on two occasions and remind people that they are loved. If I am not dead by Boxing Day, I will consider my efforts a success ;)

As always please suggest some new Christmas Recordings. I am in need of hearing something remarkable.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby piqaboo » Mon Nov 22, 2004 9:24 pm

Marye - so sorry. Best wishes for a delightful boxing day (may I suggest an appt for a pedicure?).

Traditions - time to start some for the Altoid!

<small>[ 11-22-2004, 09:24 PM: Message edited by: piqaboo ]</small>
Altoid - curiously strong.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby FlyingSorcery » Tue Nov 23, 2004 1:14 pm

A wonderful tradition to start with a child is having something special that comes out only at the holidays.

When I was five, an aunt gave me a Shirley Temple doll. It only comes out at Christmas and has been in the same box for nearly 40 years. That box smells like Christmas to me.

When I got married, my husband and I began buying each daughter a Christmas ornament every year. The ornaments have come from all over -- Disneyland, vacation spots, etc. Each one has their name and year it was given. When they move out, all their ornaments go with them.

My favourite holiday is the 4th of July. My Dad's birthday is a week later, so we always BBQ, have fireworks in the backyard and watch the Boston Pops (oh how I miss Arthur Fiedler). This is the big family holiday and I love it.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby hal 9000 » Wed Nov 24, 2004 12:15 am

The best holiday tradition to me is intangible. Eat, drink, and be merry! Treasure the time spent with friends and family. :)

P.S. Ever take the younger members of the family on a Santa snipe hunt on Christmas Eve? Fun stuff to be enjoyed by all. :)
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby RC » Wed Nov 24, 2004 3:36 pm

My husband always flies just before Christmas and is home come hell or high water the day of.

I usually take the kids out to look at lights a night or two before. They normally attend a midnight mass with a good friend as well and I always sing Silent Night as their que to hit the hey Christmas eve night. We have one day of cookie baking for neighbors and cleaning up the trash in the neighborhood.

Christmas morning, we either wait for Dad to come home or wait for him to wake up - its agonizing. The build up is always more fun than Christmas day.

4th of July is right up there with Christmas as my favorites.

oooooooo.... I love sparkley things and things that go boom. :D
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby shostakovich » Wed Nov 24, 2004 5:23 pm

Holidays? HOLIDAYS?? I don't need no fargin' holidays.
Grinch

[Well, SOMEBODY had to make this "fair and balanced". ;) ]

<small>[ 11-24-2004, 05:25 PM: Message edited by: shostakovich ]</small>
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby monkeymd2b » Wed Nov 24, 2004 7:38 pm

My brothers and I each have an ornament for each year of our lives. We each have the baby's first christmas glass (?) ball (my brother bounced his like a ball and it survived!). Then after the first four years, we each got to choose our own ornament. Though it wasn't meant to be this way, each of us chose a theme for our ornaments. My brother has eskimo ornaments (hallmark has the frosty friends series and my bro has almost all of those), the next bro has bears, and I chose santa ornaments. It now makes packing up our ornaments after christmas easy. The tree will fall over one of these years. My dad and I work on the tree lights while the middle bro works on the house lights with dad. My mom's domain is the cooking - pies, cookies, turkey, etc. We always host christmas for our family (other holidays are at the other uncles' homes). In the week or so before christmas, my mom would spend an entire day with my brothers, cousins, and I and make christmas cookies. I suppose her teaching career allows her the skill to deal with all of us at once. On christmas eve, we went to the 7 pm Ohana Christmas Mass and then came home to open the gift from my mom's parents - new PJs handmade by grandma! I was always worried that I wouldn't get too many gifts so my parents would wrap each thing individually after the year I wrapped up my old toys for myself. And now I have no clue what I want and even though I ask for the money, I still get stuff. My dad always gets me the classical winnie the pooh calendar and I fake a surprise since my dad always tells me beforehand that he bought it and that I should "act surprised." Had enough of my christmas memories? Now that we're adults, christmas isn't the same and I'm a little sad since I don't know if I'll be able to go home next year - I'll actually have a job (knock on wood that match sets me up in portland!).
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby piqaboo » Sun Nov 28, 2004 9:00 am

I started buying annual ornaments for friends' children some years ago. I write the year on them and ship them out. Altoid gets her own this year.
Next year it looks like I'll be adding her cousin to my mailing list. :) THe first year ornament is the only expensive one - its a silver plated cradle with baby's name and birthdate.

Tree goes up Thanksgiving weekend. If I dont get it in place then, it never goes up, due to the load of holiday concert commitments etc (It was bad enough when it was just my schedule. OT's is brutal!) It comes down on Jan 1, usually while I watch the Rose Parade on TV. Ditto - if it doesnt happen then, it wont happen til Presidents Day.

We also opened one gift each (my sister and I) on Xmas eve, and it was new PJs, so we'd look good in the photos the next morning.

I think we picked up a new Thanksgiving tradition this weekend. One of Altoid's Aunts on OT's side made the-best-bar-none yams I have ever eaten. They are so good I'll probably serve them year round! I'm afraid to look at the recipe to see how much sugar and butter is in them.
Altoid - curiously strong.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby treebeau » Mon Nov 29, 2004 9:28 am

I think I will start a new solo tradition this year. I will set up the fake tree and decorate it with...
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AOL CDs that I have gotten through the years!

Regards,
Tim B.

P.S. If I actually do it, then a picture will be taken and posted somewhere.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby piqaboo » Mon Nov 29, 2004 9:51 am

Tim,
thats brilliant! And its a good excuse for a nice large tree, to keep things in proportion.

I use the CDs under glass candle holders, for a little extra sparkle.


How was your thanksgiving trip and visit with son?
Altoid - curiously strong.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby Shapley » Mon Nov 29, 2004 9:56 am

I donate a ham to the Women's Safehouse every Christmas, in memory of a friend. I believe this will be the tenth year I've done that.
Quod scripsi, scripsi.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby piqaboo » Mon Nov 29, 2004 11:36 am

My mom has a canned food drive for her Jr High students. She promises that if they collect 1000 cans of food, she will donate a check of "n" $ to the Interfaith Food Bank/Shelter.
I'm not up to date on "n" but the original premise was to donate 10 turkeys. The shelter requested the money instead. Easier for mom so she's more than happy to do so.
She's taken in over 1000 cans every year (its hilarious to watch her car waddle down the street). The kids in her class really get behind this idea.

We'll have to come up with one for Altoid.
This year, she helped serve breakfast at teh interfaith shelter.
Altoid - curiously strong.
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby mmichaelson » Tue Nov 30, 2004 2:02 pm

I forgot another holiday tradition that is near and dear to my heart:

The day after Thanksgiving we always decorate our tree while we watch my beloved maroon team take on the nasty orange and white team from down the highway. (alas, we lost for the fifth year in a row this year, but it was a good game).

:)

Methinks Altoid would look STUNNING in maroon.
;)
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby brkelm » Mon Dec 20, 2004 8:22 am

Nicole thanks for hosting yesterdays presentation of the Mesiah, and thanks to Beethoven.com for playing it. I greatly enjoyed it. Second time this Christmas Season, once when the USNA and Hood College partnered to do it live and again yesterday.

Thanks so much.

Brian
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby Nicole Marie » Mon Dec 20, 2004 3:24 pm

You are welcome! I love the recording we played with St Martin in the Fields. Glad you enjoyed!

On a side note: Holiday traditions... hmmm... opening only one gift on Christmas Eve! That's always fun. ;)
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby hal 9000 » Mon Dec 20, 2004 3:56 pm

Originally posted by Nicole Marie:
On a side note: Holiday traditions... hmmm... opening only one gift on Christmas Eve! That's always fun. ;)
Not when that one gift had its nametags switched by a mischievous older sister who thought it would be funny to give her little brother the "My First Bra" gift meant for her. :p

<small>[ 12-20-2004, 03:57 PM: Message edited by: hal9000 ]</small>
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby Nicole Marie » Mon Dec 20, 2004 4:04 pm

OK that is sooo funny. I read that right before I opened the mic. I almost laughed while on air. Sorry to laugh at your tragic surprise... it's just too funny! :)

(I can't stop laughing...)
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Re: Holiday Traditions

Postby hal 9000 » Mon Dec 20, 2004 6:01 pm

Go ahead and laugh, I'll just be over here in the fetal position whimpering. :D
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