HELLO FRIENDS, IT'S TIME FOR POST 7 WITH LUNA DAVID! THIS IS SUCH A FUN POST I CAN'T WAIT TO SHARE IT WITH YOU! LOOK BELOW FOR THAT AS WELL AS HER AUTHOR BIO AND SOCIAL LINKS AND ALSO THE LINKS I HAVE DONE OF HER REVIEWS! LET'S GET TO IT!!
Christmas Traditions, Luna David style…
So, I vacillated about what to write here. I thought about, and intended on, writing a sort of “Custos Christmas Short” because I think my family traditions are rather mundane... And it was a way to deflect away from myself, which I’m brilliant at usually, but sadly it kind of spiraled out of control and became too big of an undertaking. As many of my readers would suggest, and I don’t disagree, I should be focusing on at least trying to finish Book 3, rather than getting sidetracked by shiny objects, even though Bec’s objects are extra shiny and exciting. ;)
Anyhoo, I saw a couple posts from others that were fairly short, and my little short story was going to stick out like a sore thumb, and let’s be honest, shall we? I don’t have a “short story” bone in my body, so this thing I’d imagined might be a little two-to-three-page vignette started looking like it might be more like a fifteen-page monstrosity. *sigh* So I decided to go with Bec’s original request and talk about my own personal family traditions, of which there are copious amounts and are all very specific, no deviations! I may bore you to tears, and nothing here is to say that our way is better than anyone else’s holiday traditions, we just like what we like, apparently. So, here goes…
In the weeks preceding Christmas, my family does some baking here and there. Nothing super-duper big and complicated. Some sugar cookies, some Mexican wedding cake cookies, and my own personal favorite, ginger cookies. Oh lord, the ginger cookies! I’m telling you, nothing spells Christmas like my grandmother’s ginger cookie recipe. I can literally eat these things by the handful, and often do, they are that good. They are also the cookie I grew up eating around the Christmas holiday, so it is deeply embedded in my psyche as the very essence of all that is Christmas and New Years.
I’ve made the sugar cookies and the wedding cakes already, but am waiting a few more days to make a double batch of gingers because they need to be soft and fresh on Christmas eve and Christmas day. I’m telling you, there’s simply no other way. But as I write this, I’m so tempted to make an early batch, because I’m literally salivating right now. I might be obsessed. I’ve just spent two paragraphs talking about them, for crying out loud. But, they’re just. . . everything.
Umm, so where was I? Oh yes, traditions. We also take the twins to see Santa and have yet to have a successful Santa picture. For those of you that don’t know, they are 4 years old now. If you’re keeping track, that’s a solid 4 failed attempts. Their first Christmas we couldn’t even get ourselves out of the picture because they were NOT having it and were gripping onto us while screaming bloody murder at poor Saint Nick. Since then, we can pretty much only get them in the near vicinity of the rotund, bearded, happy fellow, using bribery, if we’re lucky. That’s right, I’m that mom.
We also, when possible, meet my parents and my sister and her family at a local tree farm and either cut down a tree or pick one that’s already cut. We are ALLLLL about real trees in our family. There’s just no other way. Fake trees kill my joy. We’re also very specific about what kind of tree to get. It must be a Fraser Fir. Fraser’s branches are fewer, which means you can really see the ornaments and lights and garland well. It’s all about specificity apparently. Who knew? And here I thought when I was thinking about what to write, that we didn’t have many traditions. Good lord.
We then move on to decorating. White lights, people! My kids want colored lights, just like I did when I was little, but until they raise a stink, I’m sticking with my antique (warm/yellowish) white lights, outside and in. Meaning, none of those new LED “white” lights that are actually some weird shade of blue. No. Just no. Moving on.
On Christmas eve, the ten of us go out to a specific local restaurant every year. After dinner, we part ways. My sister and her family and my parents go to a Christmas church service. My husband and I are not ones for organized religion (though I do LOVE the Christmas services that have the Christmas candle lighting in the dark, while singing Silent Night) so we bow out at that point and head to wherever we’ll be sleeping, as we have the little monsters to get to bed. Once home, we might open a little gift or two from us, usually a pair of Christmas pajamas and a toy for the kids, etc.
After Church, the family gathers back together, usually at one house, this year it will be at our house, to sleep. The kids go to sleep so that Santa can come and the adults get the “Santa” presents out. Said Santa gifts are all specifically wrapped ONLY in one specific type of “Santa paper”, which MUST NOT be used on any non-Santa gifts. They’re all organized in piles per person, with their Christmas stocking (each family has different Christmas stockings made with each person’s name embroidered on them) piled with the gifts, and always with a stuffed animal of some kind sticking out of the top for the kids. There’s nearly always calendars next to the stockings and present piles as well. It’s soon to be a New Year, isn’t it?
When stuffing our stockings, we ALWAYS include the following in the bottom of the stocking: gold chocolate coins for good luck, several clementines (cuties), and several walnuts (I truly have no idea why we put in the nuts… gotta ask my mom, probably just filler), and a candy tin that is specific to each person and always filled with chocolate nonpareils, gummy candies, and old-fashioned Christmas candies (the only ones I like are the gummies. Don’t like all the others, but they are tradition, so they stay…. *shrugs*). Then we stuff the stockings with other little gifts and candy and toys, etc. All of the non-Santa gifts stay under the tree to pass around AFTER all of the Santa gifts are opened.
When morning finally rolls around, a few of the adults hurry downstairs to start the coffee, turn on the Christmas tree lights, and start some Christmas music. All the while the kids sit at the top of the stairs and wait until the adults get their proverbial shit together, apparently. God my family is weird. So when everything is deemed ready, the kids are allowed downstairs to see what Santa brought them and everyone sits near their pile or has their pile brought to them by the kids, and we all watch as the kids unwrap their gifts and then the adults unwrap theirs from Santa, which are usually just a gift or two and our stockings, having been filled and wrapped by our spouses.
After Santa presents are done, we make some more coffee and bring croissants and pain au chocolates out with the coffee and have a little bite to eat before the family gifts are disseminated. Family gifts will be filling up the area under the tree. There are usually several envelopes added to the tree as well. These may vary from slips of paper that vary with messages from “This gift didn’t make it in time..” to “This gift certificate is good for one _____”… But sometimes, the holy grail of envelopes is on the tree, which is a treasure hunt made up of one clue that leads the seeker to the next and the next, usually about four clues get you to your final destination, which is usually something really physically big (like for bikes, or one year a kayak, etc) or is something that’s been coveted for so long that the receiving of said gift is treasure hunt worthy…
So, once all gifts are opened, the kids play with their toys while the adults get breakfast together. Breakfast usually consists of turkey sausages of varying types, scrambled eggs or quiche, strawberries, more croissants, and fresh squeezed orange juice.The kids then play some more with our toys while adults clean up the giftwrap messes, pack our things up and head to our respective homes where we usually hang around playing with gifts or take naps and basically laze around for the rest of the day until it’s dinner time.
Christmas dinner is always at my parent’s house and there’s usually some family friends that we invite to join us. Dinner is usually a pot roast, homemade mac and cheese, roasted veggies, yummy rolls and a few other things tossed in to keep things interesting. Dessert is usually not really planned, just Christmas cookies that the attendees usually bring for everyone, some chocolates, and some yummy coffee.
We’ll then usually break up into groups. Some will sit and talk, some will play games, etc. Our family says goodbye to the visitors and then we all stay at my parents’ house for one more night together, heading home late morning to laze around some more and then probably nap again. Wow, we sound like sloths.
I think that’s about it. There are probably some other things I forgot along the way. What surprised me about writing this is I honestly thought this would end up maybe four paragraphs, thinking we didn’t really have that many traditions, but good lord, once I started writing and remembering everything I realized we have a ridiculous amount of traditions! And everything has to be just so and if we deviate someone will point it out and it will be fixed or done correctly the following year.
Fun times! So from our obsessive compulsive, tradition laden Christmas family to yours, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Kwanzaa, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Festivus or just have a happy winter season and New Year. Much peace and love all around.
Hugs to all, Luna David and family… <3 font="">3>
THAT WAS GREAT RIGHT? BELIEVE ME IF YOU HAVEN'T MET LUNA OR READ HER BOOKS, SHE IS AS AMAZING AS SHE SEEMS AND SO IS HER WRITING! HERE IS HER AUTHOR BIO AND SOCIAL LINKS!
Luna David is a wife, a mother of twins, and now, an author. When she’s not begging her little ones to stop--throwing things, hitting each other, pulling the cat’s tail, having meltdowns, screaming, eating stuff off the floor, yelling at each other, playing with their food, running into the street, and destroying the house--you’ll most likely find her writing.
She loves anything book, coffee or dark chocolate related and can’t think of a better way to pass the time than to combine all three. She can’t remember a time when she wasn’t addicted to reading or creating her own stories, if only in her head. It wasn’t until recently that she began to believe she could actually put those stories to paper.
She is blessed enough to have wonderfully supportive family and friends and she counts herself lucky every day that she gets to not only be a stay at home mom to her kids, but to also pursue her dream of becoming a published author.
BELOW I HAVE MY REVIEWS OF THE TWO BOOKS IN LUNA'S CUSTOS SECURITIES SERIES, AND LET ME TELL YOU I CAN'T WAIT FOR BOOK 3 AND I KNOW I AM NOT THE ONLY ONE! IF YOU HAVEN'T READ THESE BOOKS, GRAB EM TODAY!
WELL THAT'S IT FOR POST 7 GUYS, THANKS SO MUCH FOR JOINING ME AND THANKS LUNA FOR AN AMAZING POST AND WORKING SO HARD ON IT! SEE YOU GUYS FOR POST 8 LATER TODAY!!