1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I prefer wrapping paper...but sometimes gift bags just make more sense.
2. Real tree or artificial? Real. I love real trees...until the needles start falling off and I start cursing the darned thing for the rest of the season and think maybe an artificial one wouldn't be such a bad idea...but I always come back to the real ones.
3. When do you put up the tree? Um, I still haven't put up our tree. It's sitting in a bucket of water next to the garage. We usually do it the third Sunday of Advent, but we had a very full day yesterday, and John is working today...he is off tomorrow, so we will do it then.
4. When do you take the tree down? After Epiphany.
5. Do you like eggnog? It's pretty good. I like Bailey's Irish cream better! We usually make some on Christmas Eve...but none for prego momma this year, so I may just stick with a virgin eggnog.
6. Favorite gift received as a child? Hmmm...that's hard. I remember getting a swatch watch one Christmas. I desperately wanted one, and my mom said they were too expensive and I would lose it, but she got me one anyway, and it was *SO COOL*. A couple of weeks later I left it at the playground...I was crushed, and so embarassed to tell my mom, but she was very cool about it.
7. Do you have a Nativity scene? Yes, see Advent week 2 post below.
8. Hardest person to buy for? My in-laws, for sure. They have everything they need or want and not really any hobbies we can supplement or anything. Always an issue...
9. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Hmm..I can't remember a specific gift. I remember one Christmas when I was 14 or 15, I found all the gifts before Christmas and opened them (sorry Mom!)...that Christmas really sucked. lol...serves me right I guess.
10. Mail or email Christmas cards? I really don't do many cards at all. I will email a note with a Christmas picture to a couple of long distance friends I don't see often, and I'll send a Christmas picture with a note to my in-laws with their gifts, but I don't do Christmas card mailings any more.
11. Favorite Christmas Movie? I *love, love, love* A Christmas Carol with George C. Scott. And Charlie Brown Christmas. And of course, It's a Wonderful Life.
12. When do you start shopping for Christmas? As soon as possible, and I do most of it online. I have one more thing to pick up for Kain, and candy for stockings, then I'm done, woohoo!
13. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Not that I remember!
14. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Does the Bailey's Irish Cream count? :) I love peppermint bark, and peppermint milk shakes...and I make a really yummy, really easy, really fattening hot chili cheese dip that sits in the crock pot when we are gone to Christmas Eve mass,,,then we come home and have that, put the kids to bed, and have Bailey's. :)
15. Clear lights or colored on the tree? White lights, much to my daughter's irritation. I do put the colored ones outside.
16. Favorite Christmas song. O Holy Night. Also love What Child is This, and I remember crying to Away in a Manger when I was a kid...because Jesus didn't have a "crib for a bed". :)
17. Travel at Christmas or stay home? We travel, but just less than 2 hours away to see my family.
18. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer. Yep!
19. Angel on the tree top or a star? Angel
20. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas morning, except for a pair of new pj's and a new ornament the kids open Christmas Eve.
21. Most annoying thing about this time of year? Just one? Ok, I'm really irritated by non-Christians that celebrate Christmas in a totally secular way and then get irritated the Christmas is "too Christian". To take one of the most holy days of the liturgical year, secularize the heck out of it, and then be irritated that it's still a Christian holiday to the rest of us is just profane and insulting. Christmas is a Christian holiday. If Christianity offends you, then don't celebrate a Christian holiday, celebrate something else!