Sunday, December 9, 2007

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like . . . .

CHRISTMAS! We have a dusting of snow again, and the little pond in the moutains at the trail head over the pass has a skim of ice on it, and Alaska Ship Supply has their stock of trees on display. In case you're wondering, the four footer on the right is $82, the hazard of living on a rock in the Bering Sea.

Here is my Christmas Quiz answers:

1. Eggnog or hot chocolate? Umm, neither . . . I like good coffee (my Dad and brother make exceptional coffee) or this Christmas punch that has been in the family for as long as I have - not sure what's in it exactly . . .

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just put them under the tree? Santa puts presents by the tree, or by the stockings.

3. Colored or white lights on tree/house? I'm 44, so when I was little there wasn't all these lighting options - there were big colored lights that got very hot and dried out the tree and burned your hand if you were adjusting an ornament and brushed against one. Today, I like both, and lots of 'em.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? Not usually.

5. When do you put your decorations up? We're decorating when Goldfish gets back from vacation. Normally anytime after Thanksgiving is fine with me.

6. What is your holiday dish (excluding dessert)? For breakfast we always feasted on all the leftovers from the open house on Christmas Eve. For Christmas dinner my brother cooks a mean roast - prime rib, rack of lamb, you name it, he's the master.

7. Favorite holiday memory as a child. My Mom passed away in 1994 so my very favorite Christmas memories have her in them - we would have an open house Christmas Eve (my Unlce does this now) and have lots of company over, we would "make a tape" for my sister who lived in Colorado at the time so she could "listen in", and we would chose just the right present (just one!) to open Christmas Eve. My Mom did lots of baking, and she would wrap presents in her bedroom and place them at the top of the stairs for me to bring down and place under the tree as she got them wrapped. My Mom was amazing . . . . My other favorite memories are of when my boys were little.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I don't remember exactly when and how but I remember I held on to the magic of Christmas longer than most. I think I still believe in Santa, actually . . . .

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? One gift on Christmas Eve - sometimes the adults don't open one but the kids always do.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? I admire folks that decorate with themes - my Uncle puts up 4 or 5 trees, each with a theme, each brilliantly executed. My favorite one is the log cabin theme one he puts up in the study. There is also a teddy bear one in the dining room, a Star Wars theme on in the hallway, and one or two more. I used to have some old ornanments but my house burned to the ground in 1995 or '96 and I have been very slowly collecting a few every year to replace those ever since. When I lived in a log cabin on a lake 4 years ago a cabin themed tree would have been sweet. Out here I'm working on a driftwood tree idea with beach combing finds hanging on it. To supplement the mandatory regular tree . . . .

11. Snow! Love it or dread it? I love snow - except for two years in Kentucky when I was in the Army I have lived in either Maine (23 years) or Alaska (19 years) so snow is a part of who I am.

12. Can you ice skate? Sort of . . . it's not pretty . . . .

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? I don't really remember gifts, I remember time spent with family and friends. My sons know me really well and always pick something sweet.

14. What’s the most important thing about the holidays for you? Being with family and friends.

15. What is your favorite holiday dessert? My sister's homemade pecan logs.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? One that has continued for a long time is me, my brother and my Dad having an annual meeting of The Holey Sock Society on Christmas morning. The idea is to see who can show up wearing the most holey, mutilated pair of socks. We even do it over the phone.

17. What tops your tree? The tree at my Dad's house is topped with an angel that has hair from my older sister's first haircut!

18. Which do you prefer, giving or receiving? Giving, by far. I am not materialistic, the things I treasure are my family and rocks, shells, bones etc that I drag home from exploring the world. I love getting stuff for others though . . .

19. What is your favourite Christmas song? The Halleluyah Chorus

20. Candy canes. Good on the tree, good in a stocking, good all the way around.

21. Favourite Christmas movie? I like the original Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. The Bumble used to terrorize me when I was little and I love how the guy throws his pick up in the air then sniffs it and licks it and says "Nothin".

22. What do you leave for Santa? When I was little I left milk and cookies - now that I'm part of the delivery team, I recommend everyone leave Santa a 2008 Harley V-Rod, black with black annodized all the way around. I mean, Santa deserves it, right? Merry Christmas everyone!

Feel free to answer a question or two in the comments section!


Anonymous said...

Damn, Steve, I could probably buy and ship you a 4 foot tree for less than $84! :)

Mom said...

Little Bro,
I remember and have many of those Christmas tapes. They are one of my treasured memories living so far away. Mom really did make Christmas special. There was never a question of her love.

One of my favorites was making the manger scene. I loved how Nan decorated her presents but I remember a snow globe that Damma gave me was always so special.

Did you listen down the grate for Santa? Another one of my favorite times was sitting on dad's lap with all but the Christmas lights turned out and dad singing Silent Night.

Love ya

Zack said...

3. I remember the big colored lights we used to have on our tree. Those are my favorite too, as they add much more to the tree. Don't see those much anymore.

6. Favorite Holiday dish: Easy! Everyone knows I can't stay away from the stuffing. It might be because T never really liked it, and I never understood why. So it intrigues me every time.

7. Every Holiday season I always have this memory of Grandma and Grandpa's house as a child. Most of the time it is triggered by a smell of some sort. I haven't quite figured out what that smell is yet, maybe some candle, or baking, or a mix of some things. Well, it smells like Christmas. At least that is what Christmas smells like to me. That is by far my best Christmas memory. Always will be. I am not quite sure what was going on then, as i was very very young, but that smell will always be there. I do vaguely remember were the Christmas tree was, and that Trevor was there. Must have been a good Christmas. Oh can't forget the real Christmas trees.

9. One gift on Christmas Eve.

10. That sounds like a great idea he had. Christmas tree themes? Not bad. If only I had more rooms.

11. Just as you said Dad, I love the snow. Needs to snow before every Christmas.

13. I think the best gift I can really remember is my TV that Dad gave me, about 6 or 7 years ago. That I am still using, and the same one that Trevor helped me move into my apartment, by himself, up three flights of stairs, without asking for assistance and without batting an eye. Which years before, we both had to lift out of the box when I got it.

18. Giving, definitely. It is part of the Christmas spirit which lasts year round. Although I can't do it as much as I would like.

21. Hit it right on the red nose! Also my favorite Christmas movie.

Well I answered a little more than I had expected, but there you go. Good way to look back at the Holidays and remember what they are all about.
Love you Dad, and everyone else
Happy Holidays

Frosted Flakes said...

My favorite christmas memory is spending time with my family and enjoying the stories my mom tells of her childhood. Love ya

AlaskaSteve said...

Wow Zack, great answers. Maybe too great, I'm sitting down in our Seattle office around a bunch of folks I don't really know with leaky eyes - must be something in my contacts, can't be the tough guy from Dutch Harbor crying . . .

love you - Dad

Jennifer McKenzie said...

I got leaky eyes too. These are awesome, Steve.
But the Holey Sock tradition made me laugh!!!! What an awesome tradition.
I totally wish I could leave a Harley for you. Santa definitely deserves it.
I hope you're having fun in Seattle.

Anonymous said...

AS a Mom and now Grandma for almost 7 years I really like #22. But yes we still put out the plate of homemade Christmas cookies, glass of milk/eggnog, after hanging the stockings.We could open the stockings Christmas am but the presents were after Christmas breakfast dishes washed. I miss my folks too. Merry Christmas to you and Happy Holidays