I’ve been in a writing funk lately, but two of my favourite bloggers both tagged me in this fun holiday tag. With just a couple of weeks before Christmas, I thought I would give this a go! Some of you will know that I am quite anxious and can feel low at Christmas. Nevertheless, I do love this holiday!
Now for the questions.
1. Do you prefer giving or receiving gifts?
I enjoy both, but I would give the edge to giving gifts. I love seeing a friend or family member’s face light up when they open up a gift that I’ve chosen for them. Choosing the right gift is something I put a lot of effort in to, out of joy rather than pressure. My loved ones are incredible and I love having the opportunity to spoil them. That said, my family and friends would also be the first to point out that I am quite the enthusiastic recipient of gifts too!
2. Do you make and stick to New Year’s resolutions?
No, I don’t. I think goal setting and self-improvement are meaningful, but I don’t like the added pressure of New Year’s resolutions.
3. Have you ever made a snowman?
Many times! I’ve never been very good at it though; my brothers have always made much better snowmen than me.
4. Is your Christmas tree real or fake, and what theme do you prefer?
I always get a real Christmas tree, but my parents all use artificial trees now. This year our tree is an oddball, it’s uneven and a bit strange looking. I think I might like it all the more for its quirks though! We don’t have a theme, though we enjoy getting fun ornaments. Last year we found a set of Harry Potter ornaments with Harry, Ron and Hermione, this year I’m adding Belle from Beauty and the Beast to the tree too.
5. Most memorable holiday moment?
One of my many favourites would be my first Christmas living with Tom. We were renting an apartment and didn’t have space for a big tree, but it was still important to us to have a Christmas tree. We found these real mini trees at our grocery store. The one we picked out was only about 2 feet tall. Starting the Christmas tradition of decorating our tree together was special, and still is.
6. What holiday traditions are you looking forward to this year?
I’m not sure to what extent I’ll get to celebrate the holidays this year. For the sake of this question I’ll take an optimistic view of things. Every year I look forward to dinner at my dad’s house, taking our annual picture at my mom’s house and playing games with my in-laws.
At my dad’s house we gather together in the evening. We exchange gifts and then have the best of all the Christmas meals. My dad is a fantastic cook and pulls out all the stops with his traditional Quebecois recipes. Sometimes after dinner we will play a round of Monopoly. My eldest brother and I enjoy teaming up against my sister-in-law, who is far too skilled at Monopoly.
At my mom’s house we typically have a dinner and sleep over for our Christmas eve, then wake up the next morning to open gifts and eat my mom’s famous oatmeal pancakes. My favourite part at my mom’s house is that my mom and stepdad always take a photo on Christmas morning of my siblings and I. It’s loads of fun flipping through Christmas photos from past years and seeing how much we have all changed. We’re all much groggier on Christmas morning as adults!
I love Christmas at my in-laws’ house too. There is always freshly baked bread at dinner and our gift exchange is a blast, especially with our dog running around trying to steal all the wrapping paper. But my favourite part of celebrating with my in-laws is definitely that we always play tons of board games over Christmas. Some years we also get to join in on Christmas celebrations with the extended family too, it’s always a load of fun seeing Tom’s grandma, aunts, uncles, cousins and their kids.
7. What is the best Christmas present you have ever received?
I can’t choose! Each Christmas present is the best because they are given with care from people I love.
8. What are your favourite holiday foods?
I am a food person, so this is another hard question to answer! I love my dad’s tarte au sucre (and doughnuts, sucre à la crème, etc.), my mom’s pancakes, my mother-in-law’s homemade bread, President’s Choice brand candy cane ice cream and the Irish soda bread that Tom makes. I like to cook a lot during the holidays too, last year I made a vegetarian mushroom-walnut roast with gravy and cranberry sauce, which was out of this world. I’ll have to make it again this year.
9. What is your favourite Christmas film?
I have two favourites, Miracle on 34th Street (1947 version) and The Muppet Christmas Carol. Tom and I started watching Christmas movies a few weeks back, we have a whole binder full and like to spend the weeks leading up to Christmas watching as many of them as we can!
10. What is your favourite Christmas song?
I have a lot of favourites. The one that’s stuck in my head right now is, “One More Sleep ‘Til Christmas” from The Muppet Christmas Carol. What I’m saying is, you must watch The Muppet Christmas Carol! Michael Cane as a singing Scrooge, Kermit the Frog as Bob Cratchit… It’s simply the best! If you haven’t seen this classic yet then you are missing out.
11. What is your favourite thing about Christmas?
Spending time with the people I love. I’m not a religious person, so the meaning of Christmas to me has always been being present with the people who matter most to me.
12. What would be your dream place to visit at Christmas time?
At Christmas time, there’s no place like home. (Tom cracked a joke that,”of course it is, you’re agoraphobic!”)
13. Who do you spend Christmas with?
Tom and I have several families to visit, so we have several Christmases. We have one celebration with his parents and his brother. We have one Christmas with my dad, my two older brothers and my sisters-in-law. And another Christmas with my mom, stepdad, step brother and step sister, and one of my older brothers, as well as all my siblings’ partners. Every year who we spend the 25th with changes. Each Christmas has its own traditions and is special in its own way.
14. When do you start getting excited about Christmas?
Probably in mid-November! Excitement and anxiety, battling it out until the holidays are past.
15. You have one Christmas wish – what will it be?
That all my family and friends have a healthy and happy 2019.
Take care and Happy Holidays!