1. Egg nog or hot chocolate?
Both please, but not at the same time. Currently, it's is 20-some-odd degrees outside and I am making hot chocolate (sugar-free Swiss Miss, yum). I will probably buy a little amount of egg nog as it gets closer to Christmas; as I'm the only one in our household that drinks it, I don't get a lot of it. :)
2. Does Santa wrap presents or just set them under the tree?
We wrap ... although we aren't really into the Santa thing around here. N1 is just getting old enough that she's noticing this bearded man and can identify who he is.
3. Colored lights or white?
I like white for the inside/tree, and if I could get lights up on my house, they would be colored all the way.
4. Do you hang mistletoe?
5. When do you decorate for Christmas?
I like to do it the weekend before Thanksgiving which I know is horribly early. However, every year we either go out of town with my side of the family or go North to visit DH's family, and it overwhelms to have to come back home, with children that will need several days of re-entry into their normal routines and to need to find time to put the tree up. It's such a relief to come home, and all the decorating is already done!
6. What is your favorite holiday dish, excluding dessert?
It's a tie between two. Long ago, when we would have a traditional Christmas meal (turkey, etc.) my Mom or Grandma would make egg noodles and we would have those over dressing or potatoes. I actually just bought some today to make for us because I was craving them. (I blame the baby completely). :) The other is our family's taco dip. Several years ago, my side of the family switched to having a Mexican food dinner on Christmas Day. My favorite part of the meal is our taco dip appetizer. It's fantastic!
7. Favorite holiday memory as a child?
Probably driving around looking at lights in our pajamas. We didn't do it often, but I'm hoping to do it this year with our girls (especially N1) because she's big enough now to really get into it!
8. When and how, did you learn the truth about Santa?
I don't remember ... I don't even remember if my folks did Santa.
9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
In our family, everyone gets a new pair of pajamas on Christmas Eve to wear for Christmas morning so we open those.
10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
Totally random. It will never make the home decorating magazines that's for sure. I have the wooden ornaments that my Mom made when we were little, and then some miscillaneous ones that I picked up over the years - a few Disney ones, a few Star Wars ornaments (my Dad bought those for me the year I turned 30), and others. I love the tradition of buying an ornament every year to remember something significant, but some years it just hasn't fit the budget.
11. Snow. Love it or hate it?
Love it! Love it! Love it!
12. Can you ice skate?
Um, no. I tried a few times when we lived in Canada, but you kinda have to, but let's just say, my Mom's dream of raising the next Dorothy Hamil or Michelle Qwan were sadly broken.
13. Do you remember your favorite gift?
I'm terrible about remembering this sort of stuff, but the first year that Travis and I were married he bought me a new study Bible that I use all the time. It's a keyword study Bible with notes on the Greek and Hebrew meanings behind the words. Love. It.
14. What is the most important thing about the holidays to you?
Trying to slow down and take time to enjoy the holidays, instead of filling the calendar so full that I can't. I enjoy holiday parties and the extra music rehearsals that happen for church events, and such, but I am finding out (a bit more every year) that I would much rather be home with my girls, popping popcorn, watching Rudolph, and making construction paper garlands for the tree as the norm and making the parties and the go-go-go more the exception.
15. What is your favorite holiday dessert?
Gingerbread/molasses cookies. Yum. Must make a batch ASAP.
16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
When we are home (in TN) for Christmas, going to our church's Christmas Eve service and then our yearly tradition of sharing Christmas Eve with friends at their house, visiting, and taking pictures. And, other than the mall traffic, I really love shopping for presents and trying to find the perfect ones.
17. What tops your tree?
A stuffed snowman. It doesn't cause head injuries when the tree is knocked over, as it has been twice this year already!
18. Which do you prefer, giving or receiving?
Both. I couldn't pick between them. It was a sad day for me when we started drawing names on my side of the family. I mean, I'm glad because it's definitely helped us financially this time of the year, but I miss not being able to buy for everyone. And, really, who doesn't LOVE to open a gift!?
19. What is your favorite Christmas song?
Lately, I've had Amy Grant's old song, Heirlooms in my head all the time, from her very first Christmas album. As far as a hymn, I just love O Come All Ye Faithful. I have wonderful memories of that song from college and as an adult and just love the melody. There are so many others that I love, but that would not make the "favorite" mark: Bing's White Christmas, his version of Jingle Bells with the Andrews sisters (rocketh), all of Amy Grant's Christmas albums, etc.
20. Candy canes. Yuck or yum?