Hey you.

Guess what’s coming up in 41 days?

I must say I do love holiday shopping. Mostly because I do 99% of it sitting right here at the box. Two years ago, I went with my daughter-in-law and her mom to do the whole Black Friday, get-up-at-2-a.m. thing. It wasn’t as bad as what I thought it might be, but I ended up coming home with fewer items than I wanted. So, I went back to chair shopping, and I really do like it. Merchants are much more savvy to the online holiday shopper now, and they fashion their BF sales to meet those needs. I like it.

Do you have a special “event” that you make out of Christmas shopping? Any fun traditions? I’m always up for starting a new one. That, and I love reading your stories.

What’s your favorite thing to bake over the holidays? (Or if you don’t bake, tell me your favorite thing to eat.) Jury’s still out on how much I will bake this year, since I can’t eat just about all of it. Blah! I have committed to makingĀ cake truffles for my high school choir again, while of course saving some back for the family, but not sure what else I’ll make. I’ll take your ideas. Gotny?

7 thoughts on “Psst…

  1. PKPudlin

    In my years at Siberia-cuse, and continuing to today, I got tired of being sick over Christmas. Since then, I have refused to visit a mall between Labor Day and Easter. Just too many germs in one enclosed place. Cyber-shopping has worked for me. Lots of times I can get an item no tax/no shipping, so I save a little scratch, which is always nice. The down side is I have to wait for it to be delivered, but that’s a small price to pay.

    I have made my family’s gifts for many years – usually with sewing/embroidery but more recently with jewelry as well. That is, unless they ask me for something specific, of course, in which case I will endeavor to acquire that item as well. This means that by the time Black Friday rolls around, I’m done or very nearly done with Christmas projects. It’s gotten to the point where the girls will ask me to make them something – they’ll find a pattern they like or will send me a picture and I’ll do my best. It kind of spoils any surprise element, but they get something custom made that they like and will wear/use. I haven’t had any complaints!

    As for baking, I’m not gifted in that department so the girls and/or hubby get the kitchen to themselves. Sometimes I’ll bring my project to the kitchen table so we can have each other’s company (which is what it is all about, no?), but not be in each other’s way.

    Busy hands; idle mind.

    1. Rat Fink Post author

      Siberia-cuse, HAA

      I’m glad to see someone close to “my age” who also does the chair shopping thing! Unless you’re doing it for the social/family togetherness (which is also great and fun), I just don’t see the point in fighting the crowds. Now I will say that the physical stores have the added element of touchy-feely; sometimes I miss that and have minor apprehensions about buying a gift I can’t actually manhandle first to check for quality. But 99% of the time — I’m with you — stay in, have a hot drink, and get the shopping done!

      I still love the little change purse you made for me. How I wish I had that talent! I’m sure your daughters couldn’t care less about the “spoiled” surprise when they know they get awesome stuff made by mom, with love. :-)

  2. David

    My first Christmas tradition is not to think nor doing anything regarding Christmas until after Thanksgiving. It is mostly a fruitless tradition as it is hard to ignore the trappings that start filling the store mid-October; and now on Nov 14th my friend is asking me to think about Christmas that is 41 days away…sheesh, da noirve!

    I do have a few other traditions…I am a multi-source shopper so cyber sales are great from the comfort of the home and can be executed in total secrecy. With sons living at two end of the continent that is the easiest and quickest way for me to get gifts to them. Up here in the High Country we are a bit shopping deprived (but hey, we do have three, count em three Walmarts) but Phoenix is a simple 90 minute drive. I do have a special store where Liz gets something from every year, it specializes in vintage pioneer women “stuff.” She always loves it and has no idea where or what the store is…they know me by name. :)
    Every year on Christmas Eve I read the Story from the Gospel of Luke, the Grandkids and family are at the ranch and we open their gifts. When we have pumped them full of candy and sweets we kick them out and Liz and I open our special gift to each other.
    My favorite tradition is that I am the chef for the Christmas morning brunch…I love doing the cooking and they all let me. Staples for this feast are always my Great-Grandma’s cinnamon coffee cake, also her old fashioned custard pies and Mimosa’s. Have yet to come up with this years menu but last year it was blackberry cream cheese infused waffles, turkey sausage, bacon, Southwestern eggs benedict, fresh fruit salad and my world famous, to die for, fried potatoes. Did I mention mimosa’s…

    I’m hungry!

    I do love Christmas but if pressed I would say that Thanksgiving is my most favorite holiday.

    1. Rat Fink Post author

      *Three* Walmarts?? One is too many…yikes!

      What wonderful traditions you have in the East family! I especially like your secret store for Liz. That must make her feel so special — how fun! We also have the Christmas Eve tradition here at our house (the kids go to umpty-leven in-laws’ and other parents’ homes for Christmas Day, usually), and I hope it can stay that way as my sons’ families get larger.

      And look at you, Chef David. What’s better in my mind than Christmas brunch with cinnamon rolls and Mimosas? Hmmm. Hafta get back to ya on that one. :-)

  3. Rae

    I guess I would say that it’s a year where, for the first time, I get to start setting my own traditions with Heffe in our little family. Kinda neat. What might stick for a year or two: Spending Christmas day, just the two of us. What might not last until next year: Setting the Christmas tree up on November 12th. I know it’s “too early”, but we don’t have decorations on it yet, so it doesn’t count… right?

    As far as shopping goes, I never really enjoyed it because I know what happens to our bank accounts when we do it. My grandfather who passed away this September would, even in the summer months, have a beanie on his head and encourage us all to do the same. So, for my family, we’re making various styled (a little more fashionable) beanies for everyone and including a gift card to here or there. Sending them all in a big box because schedules being the way they are, Christmas Eve is out for us. Sort of sad, but I guess it’s all part of growing older.


    1. Rat Fink Post author

      Beanies — what a fun family thing! So, when is the designated wearing time? On Christmas Eve/Day, when everyone gets together? I’ll bet you have some cool photos from years past.

      And there is everything good about establishing your own Christmas morning tradition, just the two of you. I know I did that when my boys were little, and I’m glad to see that my sons and their wives are beginning to do the same thing. When you’re a young family (with or without kids), you’re always the ones traveling. I feel kind of guilty about that, although I never minded it when I was young. But you and H need some special holiday time, too — especially since you’re so busy every other day of the year.

      And a fir without bulbs is just a fir. :-D


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