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Christmas getting-to-know-you quiz

Egg nog or hot chocolate?
Hot chocolate, all winter long... when I'm trying to avoid the extra calories, I drink herbal tea instead.

Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?
That's a dumb question. How do you know who the present is for if it's not wrapped?

Colored lights on tree/house or white?
I prefer white or a single color outside, multi-colored lights for the tree.

Do you hang mistletoe?
I never have, but I'd like to. I don't know where to get it, though.

When do you put your decorations up?
Sometime in December, depending on our schedules. This year I did it about a week after Thanksgiving. My family's tradition was to wait until 2-3 days before Christmas to do any major decorating (like the tree)... I think it's a German thing.

What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?
There are holiday dishes that aren't dessert?

Favorite holiday memory as a child:
I always loved the trip up to my grandparents' house, especially at Christmastime, when we would listen to various Christmas tapes for the whole drive. I remember once or twice getting a very late start and doing most of the drive in the dark; we pulled off the highway (I have no idea why) and went to a diner in a small town for dinner; and then I got to look at all the Christmas lights on the way back to the highway.

When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
My parents never really expected me to believe Santa was real; it was always a *wink-wink-nudge* sort of thing in our family, like the "Cookie Monster" who would eat most of a package of cookies overnight (which was really my mom). I still get presents from "Santa" some years.

Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
Not when I was growing up; I always waited until Christmas morning. Now that I'm married, we celebrate our own private Christmas whenever is most convenient... so sometimes that is Christmas Eve. This year, it will probably be the 23rd.

How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
Lights and all the ornaments that I can (limited by how many we have, or how many will fit). Maybe a garland or two, but no tinsel.

Snow! Love it or dread it?
I love every part of it except cleaning off my car and the way other people drive when it snows. Oh, and I don't like driving in a blizzard (but then again, who does?)

Can you ice skate?
Yes, but I haven't since my mother gave away my skates.

Do you remember your favorite gift?
Probably the Barbie doll I got when I was 3 or 4.

What’s the most important thing about the holidays for you?
Celebrating the birth of Jesus.

What is your favorite holiday dessert?
Cookies! (Don't make me pick a specific kind, it varies with my mood.)

What is your favorite holiday tradition?
Wrapping presents the night before we go visit family, and listening to Christmas music.

What tops your tree?
No tree this year, because of kittens. Growing up, we had a simple gold angel made of a few pieces of paper. It was way too big for our 3-foot tree, but we used it anyway :)

Which do you prefer, giving or receiving?

What is your favorite Christmas song?
It's really hard to pick just one. I was discussing this with Andrew the other day, in part because I have sung in so many choirs over the years.
Non-traditional: "Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence" and "In the Bleak Mid-winter"
Medieval: "Gaudete"
Non-religious: "Silver Bells"
Traditional: "Joy to the World"

Candy canes: yuck or yum?
Yum! I need to stay away from things that are pure sugar...

Favorite Christmas movie?
White Christmas. So cheesy, but I love it. It reminds me of my grandfather, who used to say that (even in his 80s) he couldn't listen to Bing Crosby sing "I'll Be Home for Christmas" without tearing up. (Yes, I know that song isn't in the movie... but Bing Crosby is...)

What do you leave for Santa?

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lil_cherub December 11th, 2006
no tree?! You can have a tree with cats! Cats ignore the thing. Its novel for day one.

FYI, random fact.... with celebrating the birth of Jesus.... Given that the shepards were in the field, Jesus was born in the spring. We are merely celebrating a holiday that was created by the catholic church to rival with those who celebrate the start of winter. It made it easier to convert people when they were given holidays around the ones they were used to.

Easter is in fact correct, as it follows the first sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox.

anitra December 12th, 2006
Re: cats - Adult cats will only play a little in the tree, but given our 5-month old kittens' fascination with ANYTHING that moves, twinkles, etc... we figured it would be better not to get one this year. We probably will next year, when they're a little older (and hopefully saner).

Re: holiday dates, yup, I knew that. To be particular, Easter is the Sunday after Passover (which matches up to the description in the gospels). I believe Jesus was actually born in the spring, but I have heard respected theologians say that the evidence of the shepherds in the field is not conclusive. But anyway, I do know that our modern date for Christmas has more to do with co-opting Yule than the actual date of Jesus's birth. Doesn't really matter to me - when you don't know a birthday, whatever day you pick to celebrate is fine, as long as it's consistent (that's what we usually did with our cats - figure out the month they were born, and then just pick a day. For our current kittens, that's July 15th.)

teenyweenyowen December 12th, 2006
One great thing you can do it get a bunch of assorted bells and hang them from the lower parts of the tree. Makes for much amusement. Other than occational overeagerness and drinking from the tree stand my family never had problems. The bells distract the cats from anything else shiney.

anitra December 12th, 2006
That's a great idea!

My parents had a small artificial tree (just a little over 3 feet tall), so we had a special short table that we bolted it to - kept the cats from knocking it over. We also didn't use too many breakable ornaments on the tree, opting for my dad's walnut ornaments instead... we'd find a few walnuts under the fridge when it got moved for spring cleaning.

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