I normally wouldn't use up a blog post to do a survey, but I've gotten this from all sorts of people, so I figured - what the heck. I left out some questions though. (If you REALLY need to know, my favorite Christmas movie is National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.)
Wrapping paper or gift bags? While there is a time and a place for gift bags, (wrapping a bottle of wine, fireplace tools, etc.) I love to wrap presents. I like to make sure there are no crinkles in the paper and that the tape is invisible. Ooooh, then you get to add ribbons and bows and tags. So fun. (Yes, if you'd like to drop your gifts off at my house, I'll be happy to wrap them for you.)
Real tree or Artificial? Real. Especially now that we've started a tradition of going to the Christmas Tree farm to cut down our own.
When do you take the tree down? Generally on Epiphany. For any of you that weren't raised in a hard-core Catholic family, that is the "12th day of Christmas" and the day the Three Wise Men arrived with their gifts for the baby Jesus.
Do you like eggnog? I like it once a year. Although, as most of you know, this year I am testing out new recipes and might skip the eggnog and go with either "Spiked Almond Joy Hot Cocoa" or "Peppermintinis."
Favorite gift received as a child? The one that sticks out to me is when I got Pantene Pro-V Shampoo/Conditioner. Growing up, we always had everything we needed, but there were never any designer duds to be found and we rocked the White Rain when it came to hair products. When I was like 12 or 13, I just knew my life would improve dramatically if I had Pantene instead of the generic stuff. So that Christmas, I opened a present that was Pantene Pro-V. All 5 of us kids shared a bathroom, and nobody else was allowed to use it, just me. I loved it then, and now I love that my parents cared enough to humor my adolescent ridiculousness.
Do you have a nativity scene? Yes. I have an Aunt that is a nun who spent several years in Kenya. She gave my parents a nativity scene made out of some black wood that looks like ebony. I always loved it and told my parents – "When you die, the only thing I want is the ebony nativity set." One year, it was not set up and I asked where it was. They said, "Oh no, we gave it to our friend Gisela because she really liked it and collects nativity scenes." Well, I know Gisela and she really does collect them, so I believed their story. (Gullible much?) Anyway, sure enough, one of the gifts I opened that year was the "Ebony Nativity Scene," My parents said, "We didn't want you to wait until we were dead to enjoy it!" (Picture not available, as it is still in storage at press time.)
Worst Christmas gift you ever received? I'm pretty easy to please. In retrospect, the worst gift I ever asked for and then received was Ex-Cla-MAtion perfume. Y'all, that stuff smells NASTY. (No offense to anyone who might still be using a 17 year old bottle.)
Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Mugs. I used to get lots of mugs from students. So I would put a mini bottle of bailey's and a mini packet of coffee in it and have it on hand for when I needed a little something to give to somebody.
Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Sausage balls and puppy chow!
Most annoying thing about this time of the year? I am forced to take over 2 weeks off from work. Oh, wait. That is only annoying to those of you who aren't employed with an educational institution. ;)
Favorite ornament theme or color? I like them all. I wanted to be all proper and pretty and have a tree that only had certain colors, but there are just too many fun things out there. Plus, I'm hoping all my nieces and nephews will make me ornaments that say "We love you Aunt Bee" out of paper mache' or something, so I'll want to hang those up. (hint hint)
What was your most memorable magical memory from your adulthood? All of a sudden how it became lots more fun to give gifts then receive them. And watching my sibling's kids soak in the magic of it all.