Holiday Time

October 8, 2007

Yesterday morning when I woke up, it felt like holiday-time. The air was cool, and I just wanted to snuggle back down under the covers, which I did for a while.

Thinking about the holidays put a smile on my face, and I started thinking about my favorite ones. Thanksgiving, Christmas. Then my mind wandered, and I was making a list in order of favorite, and then I thought about how those had changed over the years.

1. Thanksgiving
This one became my favorite somewhere in college. When I was younger, I’m sure Christmas would have trumped Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is all the fun of Christmas – family, food – without the stress of buying presents. Plus, one of my favorite things to do is pour through the Martha Stewart magazines, my collection of cookbooks, and foodie websites, and Thanksgiving gives me a great excuse for a couple of months leading up to it to spend my time doing so.
Last year, it was just Raju, Milo, and I. We spent the day stuffing ourselves silly – but no turkey was had. Instead we feasted on oysters and bloody marys while watching football, and we had prime rib for dinner. It was wonderful, but this year I want turkey.

2. Christmas
What kid doesn’t love christmas? I remember barely being able to go to sleep the night before, being all keyed-up from the events of Christmas Eve. When I awoke the next morning, there would be a split second of bliss where I was snuggled under the covers, away from the cool air (much like yesterday morning), before I would remember, “Oh yeah! It’s Christmas!!!” and jolt out of bed.
No matter how old I get, or whether I’ve opened presents the night before, I still get that feeling when I wake up on Christmas Day.
And even though finding the perfect present is stressful (not to mention getting that present to Tennessee) Christmas is still pretty high on my list. Lately I’ve taken to just making most of the presents, which is awfully fun. I think everyone likes the homemade presents — if not, they’ve yet to say anything.
Plus, ’tis the season for sausage balls! I don’t think I’ve ever eaten sausage balls other than around Christmas time. Once, my mom made some for me before I went to school. She served them to me in my room, or maybe put them under my tree in the room, with a glass of orange juice, and gave me a suede jacket (I guess an early Christmas present?). That was a good morning.

3. Valentine’s Day
When I was very young, I’d wake up early, before Dad had to leave for work, and we’d all exchange Valentine’s gifts. Mine was always candy and sometimes a stuffed animal or something (I still remember the little white dog on a red pillow Dad gave me…). Valentine’s Day, like Easter, means I get to eat candy for breakfast. Chocolate, to be exact.
For many years, I’m sure this holiday would be further down the list, but since this is the day Raju and I celebrate our anniversary, it’s been pretty high on the list for almost 6 years and counting.

4. New Year’s Eve
I love any holiday that celebrates with lots of champagne! Bubbly is indeed a wonderful way to start your year, though I think me along with others in my family have decided the Southern tradition of eatting Hoppin’ John on New Year’s Day is not particularly lucky for us.

5. Easter
There’s just some satisfaction I get from biting an easter bunny’s ears off. My Mom and my aunt still send me either chocolates or money for chocolate, and just this past year I tried to get Raju into biting bunnies’ ears off (he just didn’t get it). I do miss coloring the easter eggs — maybe next year I’ll try it, just for the heck of it.
I remember the year I went egg-hunting at Jodi’s house. I never got to do a lot of easter egg hunting, and I was excited about going to this one. However, at the end, when we were checking out the loot we had found, one of the people that had organized the egg hunt told me I couldn’t have one of the eggs I found (it had a dollar in it) as it was meant for someone else. WTF??? Not so big on the egg-hunting after that.

6. Fourth of July
Fourth of July is a bit iffy for me. I love fireworks, I just hate the usual trek you have to make to watch them. And it usually involves sitting in the grass if you forgot a blanket. Grass makes me itch. It’s a lot of planning, walking, itching, and time involved for 30 minutes of light.
However, Raju and I have gotten lucky a few times with the firework displays. When we were in Kansas City, we once drove directly to a place in Overland Park, parked, and found a place to lay down and watch the fireworks overhead. In San Jose, we can simply take the lightrail downtown. Last year we didn’t feel like even doing that, and we discovered we could see several displays from our porch. Cool!

7. Halloween
Much more fun as a kid than now. I remember trick-or-treating with my cousins once, and my cousin Josh and I would run ahead of the others (who were younger) and get all of the candy from the bowls left on doorsteps of people who weren’t home. I know it was mean, but damn it was fun.
I always went trick-or-treating at my grandmother’s house, and when I got back in, I would sort out all of the candy I didn’t like and feed them to my dachsund, Odie. I’m sure Tootsie Rolls have no chocolate in them, because I probably fed him 5 lbs or more of those things, and he lived to be 17 years old.

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