Monday, November 30, 2009

Stealing Your Traditions....and free books!!

Sweet sweet Thanksgiving. My family goes whole hog on Thanksgiving. We bring in international cousins and Hello Dolly Pie. We wrestle, play flag football, we play spoons until someone bleeds. Thanksgiving is our holiday. And because my brother is in the middle of wrestling season (he's a college coach - go Warhawks) and I live in Canada - it's too difficult to do Christmas all together. We've tried for years and this year - we've decided not to do anything. Which on hand is a relief. On the other hand it breaks my heart.

But here's my chance to start a new Christmas tradition with my own young family. this holiday is blank slate.

My Christmas Anthology - The Night Before Christmas - is all about Christmas traditions and Merri Monroe's love/hate relationship with them. I love this book and I would love to give out a whole bunch of copies this week to anyone who comments throughout the week. But only if you comment with a Christmas Tradition - because my intent is to steal yours in order to start mine...

21 comments:

Maureen McGowan said...

First commenter. Awesome! But I guess DWT bloggers aren't eligible to win, huh?

Maureen McGowan said...

also... Spoons... Yes, much blood shed in the McGowan family over that game, too. Plus another card game called Pounce. When a game is called Pounce, you know there are going to be tears at some poing.

Maureen McGowan said...

poing or point...

Eileen said...

Okay. This isn't MY Christmas tradition. Having been raised Jewish cuts down on those. This is one from my boyfriend's family.

We spend Christmas Eve at his mother's house. Because it's a couple of hours away, we generally spend the night there. Once we get everyone in the car to leave for her house, one of us sneaks back in and sets up the kids' gifts from Santa. Then when we walk back in the door on Christmas Day, it looks like Santa came while we were away!

Last year, Santa left a gift for me, too! It was a brand new road bike! I still smile every time I think about walking in and seeing her there in all her glory. It was a total surprise.

Sinead M said...

This is a tradition from the in-laws. The Christmas fondue... lots of meat on a stick. Or basically, how to make a meal last for hours.

It's all yours if you want it..

Eileen said...

Ooh. The meat fondues make me nervous. How can you be sure it's cooked through? On the other hand, give me a bowlful of melted chocolate and I'll be happy for hours and hours.

M. said...

Not a Christmas tradition per se, since we don't celebrate Christmas, but something we started doing during the winter break: we set aside an afternoon and have an open house for our neighbors. Only people in walking distance invited. The kids love it, I invite my book club friends, everyone brings something to contribute to the food table, people come and go over the course of four hours or so. It's especially nice when new families happen to have moved into our street, and even better when they're from other countries - their contributions to the food table are always enticing!

Simone said...

My family is very small, and shrinking over the years as folks move away.

We've started going out for Indian on Christmas eve. We go to the Bombay Palace near my sister's place and eat and eat. Leave all the cooking to the next day. It's a blast!

I love Molly's books.

J.K. Coi said...

My Christmas tradition is COOKIES!!

My mom made a ton of different christmas cookies when I was little, at least 10 different kinds, which she would then hide away in the freezer. You would think they were rare and precious truffles by the way they got sparingly doled out only when company came during the holiday season. But for as long as I could remember, I used to sneak them whenever I could and my mom always had to make more :)

Now I've started to make them in my house as well (although not as many different types) and I know they must be good because they're always half GONE by the time I pull them out for company :)

Susan Anne Mason said...

Hi Molly,

Christmas is going to be so fun with the little ones all aglow for Santa!

When my kids were small, we had a couple of Christmas Eve traditions. Christmas Eve is the one night kids are eager to get to bed, until they can't sleep cause they're so excited.

We had two favorite pictorial books of 'The Night Before Christmas' and we all had to read it together in bed. When the kids were a little older, we would light a fire in the fireplace and put on the movie "Home Alone" with McAuley Culkin (which takes place around Christmas). We'd all have popcorn and watch the movie in front of a roaring fire.

Then on Christmas morning, the kids were allowed downstairs to get their stockings before mom and dad had to get up. Gave us a few more minutes in bed.

Good luck with finding your own traditions! And Happy Belated Thanksgiving.

Sue
sbmason (at) sympatico (dot) ca

Alli said...

My Christmas traditions have been challenged since we moved to Canada. :-) Our Australian tradition is to have a seafood BBQ for Christmas dinner (but we always have a Christmas pudding, no matter how hot the day is!). And shortly after we have a game of backyard cricket - most of the players try to play the game with one handed. Players have to balance cold drinks and try to throw or catch the ball. Rather amusing, I must say... I've given up on the Christmas backyard cricket since moving to Calgary, I'm afraid. But we do bake a fish for Christmas dinner (along with all the trimmings).

And we always have an open house on New Years Eve Day (similar to M). We love this and it gives us a chance to catch up with people we haven't seen over December because of the Silly Season.

susan_danic said...

A new Christmas ornament for each kid each year -- something that speaks to who they are at that point in their life. When they leave home, a box of those ornaments will mean the world to them. My mom did that for me, and it still touches my heart.

Molly O'Keefe said...

Maureen - pounce? All this time and I haven't heard about pounce? Already I want that to be a Christmas Tradition.

Alli - husband's vote was already Christmas eve Paella - with grilled lobster - so we're in the same vein. Though I would miss that cricket game too...

JK - My best friend's tradition growng up was cookies for breakfast on christmas morning. her mom always made these iced sugar cookies that i remember decorating every single year and never being able to eat... but the cookies on christmas morning might make an appearance

Sinead - I love a good fondue but I think i'm going to hold off on the boiling oil until the kids are a little older...I have nightmares.

Eileen - it sounds like Santa knew exactly what you wanted...that's a nice santa.

Simone - Indian buffet is a tradition I could totally get behind! And thank you - I'm glad you like the books...

I'm loving these traditions - keep 'em coming!!!

Molly O'Keefe said...

SUSAN! My mom did the same thing -- I cry every year that i decorate my tree - it's so special. This is a good year to start that!

Becca J. Heath said...

We have a lovely tradition from the last few years my mum was alive (she's been gone 8 years) where i get together with my older sisters and have a Golden dream cocktail to start the day (galliano, contrieu, orange juice and cream).
Our family traditions have had to make a change cos my youngest daughter was born Christmas Eve last year. We'll be trying to concentrate on her birthday that day and keep Christmas til the 25th this year.
=)

Eileen said...

Becca, I'm adopting your tradition! Ice cream AND booze? Seriously? Why hasn't anyone told me about this before!

Sinead M said...

Eileen, I'm terrible at the fondue, never knowing if the meat is cooked, until its overcooked, but the dipping sauces make up for it..

Gale Laure said...

I think our family tradition is trying to find a day, time and place where we can all get together. It is now a necessity with work schedules and traveling for work. We did not start out with this tradition. But each year it took a life of its own. Now it is almost an obsession with everyone. "I can't that day." "That time is too late." "It is too far to travel to that place." Sometimes I wish we would just all lock ourselves in our own homes and celebrate there! Whew!

Maureen McGowan said...

I forgot Molly was trying to steal traditions for her kids...

My two favorite things my parents did when I was little were:
a) they did a ton of decorating after we went to bed Christmas eve, so it was really magical and new in the morning.
b) they put our stockings at the end of our beds. We hung them in the living room, but they moved them to our beds after they filled them.

I know they did that last one so they could sleep in longer while we girls opened our stockings in bed. (We all shared a room back then.) But it was still awesome and so exciting to wake up with a big sock full of goodies that wasn't there when you went to sleep. And we'd eat candies and our oranges, etc. and play with all our new stuff before we went to wake up our parents.

Susan D said...

Okay, Molly, I'll bite.

Every year when I go to my Mom's for Xmas, I take along the stocking she bought at Eaton's for my first Christmas, in 1950. Yeah, it's small, but I love it. And every year she says, I wish you'd get a bigger stocking (because by now everyone in the family has moved on to bigger newer stockings). But I don't. And every Christmas morning, my stocking is overflowing with stuff piled on the hearth, because it won't fit into the smallish stocking, which, frankly, used to be big enough to hold a handful of mixed nuts in the toe, an apple, some ribbon candy, maybe a Minikin, some barley sugar, a candy cane and some silly toy. Possibly even a paperback book.

Christmas Trad # 2: Ancestral eggnog. With rum.

Your kids interested in either of those?

Sinead M said...

Maybe it's just my frame of mind these days, but I don't like eggnog, and I don't like rum, but together, so intriguing..

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