Sunday, December 4, 2011
it's beginning to look a lot like christmas...
It's that special time of year again when Christmas overtakes, well, everything. In honor of that magical spell (and in order to be a total conformist) I once again offer up my holiday gift of jolly seasonal blogs. I hope you enjoy!
To kick off the 21st Century Wonder Woman 2011 Christmas Season, I'm starting with a list of my favorite things about this time of year - offered in no particular order (keeping in mind that I sort of have a mostly love-hate relationship with all of this, so even things that feel my love might get a little bruised in the process).
Numero Uno: Seasonally-themed overpriced coffee concoctions at Starbucks. Yes, I am a part of the evil Starbucks machine - and if you have a problem with that, you can suck it! While it all starts with the return of the pumpkin spice latte in autumn, that's just the precursor to wonderful delights such as the eggnog latte, gingerbread latte (I've never actually tried that one, not being a huge fan of gingerbread even when it's not in my coffee) and my penultimate favorite - the peppermint mocha (I prefer mine white and with no whip). Sometimes I break down during other times of the year and order a venti white peppermint mocha with no whip in the middle of summer - but it always tastes best during the holiday season. Yum!
Numero Dos: Christmas music. My love of this festive cacophony of sleigh bells, choirs, Bing Crosby - and sometimes Elivs - is two-pronged: I love nostalgic classics that take me, much like that well-known ghost of Christmas past, back to those innocent holiday days of yore. I also love hearing new renditions of those beloved favorites as wrapped up and sung by the likes of Glee, Michael Buble, Diana Krall and She and Him. My all-time favorite song, though, is Judy Garland singing "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas." I like the melancholy in the song as I think melancholy owns a front-row seat in the holiday season. Secondly, I love to make fun of all the ridiculous and cheesy songs that pollute the holiday airwaves - and no mention of holiday tunes would be complete without a nod to the many inadvertently pervy songs that fill me with mirth and delight upon each listen (for more on this topic, check out my blog from Xmas 2008). Not to beat a dead horse, but there is also an awesomely sick and wrong Christmas tune by Fall Out Boy that you must check out: Yule Shoot Your Eye Out.
Trois: Decorations. Oh yeah, baby! Even cheesy, horrible, overdone decorations make me happy. I don't necessarily want to live in the midst of them, but I do appreciate the enthusiasm and garish taste that goes into them (for more, see my blog watch of my neighbors' decor from Thanksgiving 2010). This year I am trying something new on the decoration front. After a viewing of Elf the other nite, I was inspired by Buddy's paper chain and snowflake explosion at his evil dad's house - a style that one friend has deemed "trashy chic." So, trashy chic it is! The first phase of trashy chic started last nite (see pic, above) with the hanging of the inaugural paper chain. Awesome!
Cuatro: Food. Well, cooking food, to be exact. Every year I cook a big Christmas feast for my friends and assorted loved ones. This is one of my favorite, favorite things to do and is typically the only gift my friends get from me - so it helps me be a cheap bastard, as well. Eschewing turkey and the usual holiday spread, I decided - o so many years ago - that it would be cool to make a meal from a different country every Christmas. That way we could try new things and learn about traditions around the world at the same time. As a mother of young kidlets, I thought this idea was genius. The first year I made a Mediterranean feast of stuffed leg of lamb, dolmathes, lemon rice, tortellini salad, mussels and assorted meats, cheeses, olives and breads. It was such a big hit, that I was forbidden from moving on to any other countries in subsequent years. A few years ago I was able to convince everyone to partake of a "traditional" Victorian Christmas feast (I even boiled the pudding!) This year, having made the Mediterranean feast on Thanksgiving (at my brother's request), I will be making prime rib, crab legs and various delectable accompaniments to complement those main attractions.
Cinq: Glitter, sequins and other shiny things. Christmas is one of the only times of year when it is entirely acceptable - nay, encouraged - to light yourself up just as brightly and sparkly as the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. Hells yeah! You can wear glitter on your clothes, on your legs, in your hair - even on your eyelashes. And this is just seen as adorably festive rather than cheaply whorish! How can you beat that?
SIX: Charity, generosity and an abnormal tendency to be just a little more forgiving, helpful and aware of those less fortunate than ourselves. I always tried - in the midst of overblown materialism and the inevitable "gimmes" - to make my kids conscientious of not only taking their grandparents for all they can get at this time of year, but giving something back to those, who whether due to stronger marriages or better all-around mental health, don't have six different sets of grandparents to spoil them rotten. Much to my delight both of my chicas have come through with a deep concern for others - and they show it. Gabi (even while owing nearly $600 in fines) has been joyously giving away any dollars she has in her pocket whenever she passes by a grizzled fellow with a sign asking for help. She just can't go by and act like they're not there - she is compelled to dig into her pocket and give. Savannah has been into "adopting" kids at Christmas - and even adopted Jesus one year!
Well, there you have it. Just a few of my favorite things about this time of year. Undoubtedly you will be subjected to more holiday musings in the days to come - so stay tuned!
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