And after much delay, here are my responses to the Christmas Meme for which Melody tagged me.
1. What is your most enduring Christmas memory? Follow the link for a look into some of my most precious Christmas memories.
2. Do you have a favorite piece of Christmas music? I love Christmas music in general, and so picking just one favorite is impossible. This year I seem to be partial to Jingle Bell Rock, but some of my other favorites will always be What Child Is This?, Sleigh Ride, Carol of the Bells, and Little Drummer Boy. That is just the tip of the iceberg though.
3. Do you stick to the old family traditions? Some, but not most. Time has eroded many of the old family traditions. It is hard to hold onto them when Christmases are divided between one family or another and as other family members also go their own way.
4. What makes your mouth water at Christmas time? Homemade cookies and my mother's pumpkin pie. No one can make pumpkin pie like her.
5. How soon do you put the Christmas tree up and when do you take it down? It depends. Usually the tree goes up the weekend after Thanksgiving or shortly thereafter. This year it took a little longer than that even. The tree comes down whenever we feel like taking it down. Sometimes it has stayed up for another month while other times we take it down almost immediately after Christmas.
This Christmas Meme was borrowed from Carrie K:
1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I much prefer gift bags because I am such a terrible wrapper. Unfortunately, because I ship off so many of the gifts I send, gift bags are not very practical.
2. Real tree or artificial? Artificial. I have never had a real tree and can't really say I'm eager to try one.
3. When do you put up the tree? This year we've been a little behind. Hubby put the tree up late, and it's still not decorated. In years past, it's usually the weekend after the American Thanksgiving Holiday.
4. When do you take the tree down? It depends on when we get tired of having it up. The longest we've kept the tree up was about a month after Christmas.
5. Do you like eggnog? I do but without the alcohol added in.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? My pink/white banana seat bicycle. On my first ride out on it, I rode right into someone's mailbox, but I didn't let that stop me from enjoying my prize.
7. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes.
8. Hardest person to buy for? My father-in-law.
9. Easiest person to buy for? Me. Oh! I suppose I don't really count do I? It never fails though that when I go holiday shopping, I always end up picking something up for myself too. Haha I suppose my mother would be the easiest if I don't count myself.
10. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A floral-designed ceramic cross wall hanging. It was ugly and not at all something anyone who knows my husband and I well would have gotten us. I know it's terrible of me to be so ungrateful. I hate even admitting it!
11. Mail or email Christmas cards? Mail, absolutely.
12. Favorite Christmas movie? I have two. The original Miracle on 34th Street and The Santa Clause.
13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? It varies. Some years I am ahead of the game and start as I'm shopping for the the Christmas before it, while other years I wait until the last minute. Because I mail out most of the gifts I give, last minute to me usually means by the end of November.
14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yes. That ceramic cross, for example. I had a friend who fell in love with it at first sight. So, I gave it to her. More often than not, I give away gifts I don't want not so much as gifts, but with full disclosure that I received a gift I don't need or especially want. I hate tossing anything out or leaving it to clutter up my closet (although I do that too sometimes). I might as well find a good home for such items.
15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Homemade cookies, a real rarity around here, I'm afraid.
16. Clear lights or colored on the tree? I prefer gold tinted lights, but we have always had multicolored lights.
17. Favorite Christmas song? I have so many! Besides the ones mentioned above
18. Travel for Christmas or stay home? We are staying home this year.
19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? Yes as well as the unofficial ones.
20. Angel on the treetop or a star? Angel. I always had a star on the top of the tree growing up and never thought I would be able to grow used to having an angel in its place. Our angel is my favorite Christmas decoration.
21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas morning.
22. Most annoying thing about this time of year? The whole Happy Holiday/Season Greetings versus Merry Christmas debate. Likewise the Christmas versus Xmas debate. It's so silly to me and such a small thing. There are many more serious concerns to be bothered by out there than how someone greets someone or what is posted on a sign or in a card. Both sides of the argument are guilty of making a mountain out of a molehill.
23. Do you decorate your tree in any specific theme or color? No.
24. What do/did you leave for Santa? Growing up, my brother and I would leave cookies and milk or sometimes a soda. We would also leave out a little something for the reindeer as well, usually carrots or celery.