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Holiday joy still happening here. 

#dickens

We’re having a Christmas movie marathon of sorts and have successfully gone through:

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation 

*side note: my holiday isn’t officially kicked off until I see Chevy Chase get nailed in the face with the attic ladder.

Elf 

A Christmas Carol

Tonight….I’m thinking, Christmas with the Kranks. 

The Christmas Carol version we watched this year was the one Jim Carey did for Disney many years ago. 

We took Reagan to see it for her birthday when it was released in theaters, and she never wanted to see it again. It freaked her OUT.

At the time, I thought she was just being the dramatic little diva she can be, but after watching it again (because I only saw it the one time) I can see why it upset a younger child…

Ah well, parenting fail. We all have those. So she may never read Dickens. There are worse things.

I do have to say, though, this particular version was brilliantly done. I don’t think it gets enough credit for how dramatic it is, and the social justice implications that it holds. Jim Carey is one of those talents that is a kaleidoscope of possibility. His interpretation of so many of the characters from this beloved story is exactly what it needed to be told to a new generation. If it didn’t scar them too much in the process.

I’ve seen a lot of cutesy versions in my lifetime. And I appreciate them driving home the message in a way that can be related to by all ages. But the true Christmas Carol was NOT a lovely, neat-and-tidy kind of tale. 

Aren’t we so good, as humans, to sanitize things and make them into something more digestible and easy to live with?

#apronlife

The weekend was full of holiday baking. 

My mom was down with the flu, so our annual holiday baking extravaganza was cancelled and I was left to my own devices.

Which, on the whole, wasn’t terrifying so much as disappointing. I mean, I DO know my way around a kitchen. I definitely missed her company, though. I did, however, make travel arrangements for her, my grandmother, sister, and myself for late February. Yay!!!! Something to look forward to!!

But, back to the baking.

We (mom and I) always make these homemade cinnamon rolls…..and….I’ve never successfully attempted them on my own.

But the di was cast, and it was time to put on my big girl panties, er, apron, and give the attempt my best effort. For Mom, and for Narnia!

I dove headlong into that pastry recipe with all the gusto of a seasoned professional. When that yeast started bubbling, my anxiety started subsiding, and when my dough actually doubled like it was supposed to, I knew I was in the clear! 

I did it! All by MYSELF!!!! It’s only taken me a decade to get to this point! šŸ˜‚šŸ˜‚šŸ˜‚

Look how pretty….

It’s not that this is a super complex recipe, I just don’t do well with….chemistry in baking. So I was super proud. Also because I was supervising Reagan’s baking project while trying to remember how many cups of flour I had already used. It’s really pretty impressive that these turned out.

We did a couple of simple things also, like…..

Firecrackers

And some traditional, rolled in sugar cookies before we do the ones decorated with royal icing.

All in all, the holiday baking went off without a hitch and I was way less stressed this year because I didn’t have the half a dozen gifts yet to buy weighing on the back of my mind. Because I’m DONE. 

Yes, me. Ms. Procrastinator extraordinanaire was finished (with the help of Amazon Prime) with more than a week to spare. *Mic drop*

#brunching

My book club, the Monday Night Page Turners, decided, since we were late meeting in November and everyone is so busy in December, that a holiday brunch and gift exchange would be fun.

So, instead of our usual gathering and book discussion at my house, we carpooled into the big city on Sunday and had the loveliest of brunches at Table 100.

When there is a Mimosa/Bloody Mary bar, it kind of made this venue the obvious choice for our celebration. 

In addition to the fabulous atmosphere and cozy corner table, we were entertained by a jazz trio that came around and played requests. Someone with our party suggested “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”, and the bass player actually hit a few licks before convincing us all to do a Jingle Bell sing-a-long, which he said, and I have to boast, that we were the best table he’d had to do so. 

Just look at us. As one of our members exclaimed upon our exit (and she swears it wasn’t ONLY due to her cocktails): “We are freakin’ delightful”.

I have to agree

The food was to die for. I ordered the brisket and eggs and didn’t leave a scrap on my plate.

My Bellini wasn’t bad either, but it tasted more like a Mimosa. No complaints, just not what I expected.

I don’t usually attend or host holiday parties, except for the one that my employers holds each year. But this was an idea I could get behind: A group of people I thoroughly enjoy, eating food someone else made while making a mess someone else must clean up. 

And I tipped our server handsomely. Because he was “freakin’ delightful” also, and made our celebration all the merrier.

#backtowork

Yesterday it was back to work, but only for 5 days. Then it’s a long weekend and lots of quality time with my family. They’re even saying we have the slightest chance of snow on Christmas! That would certainly top off one of the best Decembers I’ve had in recent memory. 

But even if it doesn’t, I’m content with the fact that at least it’s not going to be a balmy 78, but an appropriate 40ish degrees on the big day. 

Happy Holidays indeed! I’m enjoying the heck out of mine.

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