If you celebrate Christmas, my guess is that you have a few favourites/traditions from times past that you look forward to partaking in each season. Naturally, some things will have to look different this year given the pandemic, but I’m going to focus our efforts on those things that still can be enjoyed. Ready to play along? Alrighty then, here we go…
Favourite Movie? For me, it’s the childhood classic, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. The reindeer’s cuteness, the style of animation, the voice of Burl Ives and the notion of Rudolph being victorious over those who made fun of him is simply the icing on the cake. Yes, I’m a sucker for a happy ending and the red-nosed fella definitely delivers in this nearly sixty year-old feel-good must watch of the season.
Favourite Song? Hmm… this is a tough one. After all, I am the one who tunes into the all-Christmas music station long before the 25th of December arrives. Needless to say, I’ve listened to A LOT of songs, including the more traditional kinds of carols to the re-invented versions and variations of such that today’s artists put out. Traditionally speaking, I’d say I like Bing Crosby’s Silver Bells best and my modern-day pick would have to be, River by Sarah McLachlan. I also really like Dean Martin’s, Baby, It’s Cold Outside despite the recent controversial take on its lyrics, like everything else these days.
Favourite Inside Decoration? Anything reindeer or Rudolph related. So, I’m a kid at heart. What can I say? The deer can be stuffed, wooden, metal or stitched onto pillows—it does not matter because chances are that I will like it. The cuter, the better!
Favourite TV episode that is Christmas-based? The original Flintstones’ Christmas. I like that Freddy boy comes to the rescue for Santa, just like Rudolph. Notice an underdog theme developing here?
Favourite Thing to Do? Sit in our darkened living room, tucked underneath my electric blanket, with just the Christmas tree lights on and the TV fireplace crackling in the background having conversations with my husband about everything and nothing all at the same time. Some light, fluffy flakes of snow falling outside simply adds to the ambiance, however I did say light. Remember, I am not normally a fan of the white stuff.
Favourite Baked Goods? First off, let’s clarify that my question is purposefully phrased in the plural form, as in who can pick just one? Childhood favourites were my mom’s rum balls (my first dabble in the hard stuff that I came to fancy), her specially whipped shortbread (gotta have the tinted sugar on top), butter tarts from scratch and the dark fruit cake wrapped in rum-soaked cheesecloth. Hmmm… another commonality emerging within my list, I guess. All of those picks and more (oh yah… gingerbread dipped in tea—yum!) are still favourites of today.
Favourite New Find? The So Delicious brand coconut-based egg nog. Perfect for someone lactose intolerant like me with all the familiar spices and sweetness to compliment one’s palate. A nice little apéritif or rather digestif, since I love sipping on it post-dinner. So tasty!
Favourite Outside Decoration? Our pre-lit moose in honour of the moose family that comes to visit us each year. You can’t really make out his figure from our road out front, but luckily he is visible to us through our front and bathroom windows. Indeed, Elmer (all moose deserve a proper name) breathes new life into the otherwise dark, drab outdoors.
Favourite Tree Ornament? All of them. They all have a special place in my heart since they are a combination of old, new and handmade belonging to each my husband and myself from over the decades. They represent time, places and people whom are near and dear to us. No generic, fancy schmancy, look-good only kinds of adornments here, though there are admittedly some very pretty ones out there.
Favourite Family Moment? Time spent together. It’s always been precious! Christmas mornings were the best as a kid as we all sat together ‘round the tree and now, as a grown adult, dinners together are where it’s at. I’ve also always enjoyed watching my loved ones open their carefully chosen gifts and/or read the handwritten messages in their cards. Silly gift exchanges in more recent years have also been fun and memorable.
Favourite Gift to Receive? Aside from time with family and friends? Anything, really. The smallest things/gestures often mean the most. Stocking stuffers usually top my list since they are often simple, yet thoughtful. Of course, homemade goodies and gift cards to spend at my favourite places are always appreciated as well.
Favourite Childhood Gift? My pink Barbie motorhome was the best ever as was any kind of stuffed animal, which I faithfully collected. Although, I wasn’t much of a doll girl having grown up with two older brothers, I also really cherished my three Cabbage Patch Kids that my parents drove halfway around the world for. Phyllis is the only name I remember at the moment, but there were each a brunette and blonde-haired girl (Cindy?) and a boy with a ball cap—Kirk, maybe? Funny, I suddenly have visions of the many marked pages that each of us kids would hand over to our parents from the classic Simpson Sears’ Wish catalogue. Remember that thick beauty of a book that would be specially delivered but once a year? I’m pretty sure that my decked out Barbie mobile came from there.
I could probably go on and on, but I don’t want to put you asleep just yet. Or, maybe by the time you are reading this, it’s long past your bedtime and you are ready to end the night with some So Delicious coconut egg nog. Go easy, however, or you might have visions of sugar plums soaked in rum dancing about. Actually, if that’s the case, Cheers!