Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The Christmas-y Tag!

The esteemed Victoria @ Stori Tori’s Blog nominated me for this tag. Thank you, Victoria!


Post the picture on your blog. (Since I have no clue where the original picture is, and I’m too lazy busy to track it down, I’ll just use the one on Victoria’s blog.)
Answer the questions.
Tag up to 12 bloggers.
Make up 10 questions for the other bloggers.

What is your favorite Christmas treat?

Can I say all of them? No? Okay. I think I’m going to have to parrot Victoria and pick wassail because I can never get enough of it. As a general rule, we tend to make it only around Christmastime, and I might get a chance to have some on maybe one or two other occasions throughout the year, which means it’s a pretty big deal for me when it’s available. I also love German apple pie, but I make it every Thanksgiving as well, so it’s not specifically a Christmas treat. So yes, wassail, final answer.

Are there any special traditions that your family has to celebrate Christmas?

Every Christmas morning, my sister, my cousins, and I get up early and scurry downstairs to open goody-stuffed stockings in the blue half-light of the morning. (Who says you have to quit this tradition when you become an adult?) Then my aunt cooks an asparagus bake (at least, I think that’s what it is), and it’s super yummy.

At around ten o’clock, once all the sane people drag themselves out of bed and consume enough coffee to reenter the land of the living, we gather around the ginormous Christmas tree in the living room and listen to the Christmas story before we dig into the presents. After oohing and ahing over everyone’s loot, we retreat to our respective burrows where we nap or eat candy or binge-watch Doctor Who until around three o’clock when we troop downstairs to perform our solemn duty and devour the Christmas feast. Later on in the evening, we usually peek at what’s in theaters and, if there’s something we want to watch, we’ll head out, but it’s not exactly a set-in stone tradition. Sometimes we go the day before or the day after.

Of course, this year, since we’re not going home for Christmas, my sister and I will have to pick and choose which traditions we will be able to follow and which ones we will have to reimagine. For instance, we won’t be going to theaters on Christmas Day, but we do plan to see THE FORCE AWAKENS on my birthday (New Year’s Day).

Do you enjoy getting presents for you friends and family? Do you buy your gifts or go the homemade route?

I love getting presents for the people I care about, but sometimes it can be stressful because I always worry I’ll get someone something they don’t want. Usually I buy gifts because I don’t have a whole lot of extra time for crafty things, but one year I bound books for people, and one year I went on a major knitting kick and made a couple pairs of mittens for my mom. You’d think, since I’m a writer and a creative person, that I would feel more confident in giving handmade gifts, but I find it a lot less stressful just to shop for pre-made items.

Is it cold where you live? Have you ever had a white Christmas?

In Maine, where I used to live, it can get super cold, sometimes even down to the single digits (Fahrenheit). It’s very common to have a white Christmas there. Here, though, I’m not sure of the exact temperature range. I just know that it’s a fair deal warmer. A few days ago, we had a teeny tiny snowfall but, sadly, nothing accumulated.

What’s on your Christmas list this year?

More books.
A Lamborghini.
Even more books.
Another Lamborghini.
Other books.
More coffee.
Gift card to a bookstore.
Gift card to a coffee shop.
One million dollars.

You get the picture.

What’s your favorite Christmas song?

What does your Christmas tree look like?

Like amazingness.

Okay, so my iPod camera isn't spectacular. But trust me, the tree does look better in person.
Also, look at all those presents!
What are you reading in December? (Anything festive?)

I haven’t read anything festive this December, but I have been binge-reading A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS. Also, I plan to re-read Jane Austen's PERSUASION because it’s kind of my own personal tradition to at least start it around Christmas every year. And, of course, I’ll tackle whatever books I get for Christmas.

Are you an organized little elf or are you still shopping/preparing on Christmas Eve?

Let me just point out that I am almost 5’7” tall, so “little elf” might not be an accurate description of me. I’m more like a Mirkwood elf. That said, yes, all my pre-Christmas shopping is done. Usually I end up buying a few more odds and ends after Christmas because I always forget to add someone to my list and then I remember and freak out a little and rush to the store to get something cool but not completely useless for them. But I do try to finish the majority of my shopping two weeks in advance so I’m not panicking about last minute gift buying and wrapping because honestly, why kill the holidays with unnecessary stress? Stress can come after, like when you realize you forgot to buy a gift for your best friend (not that I’ve ever done that, but it could happen).

How early do you start to get into the Christmas spirit?

Pretty much right after I finish eating Thanksgiving dinner.

Do you make any Christmas crafts? Decorations? Send physical Christmas cards?

No, sorry, I believe you have mistaken me for an interesting person. On some level, I’d like to be that cool crafty girl who sends homemade cards to everyone, but I have neither the budget nor the motivation, so I’ll just have to stick to being mildly jealous of those who do.

What’s the menu for Christmas Day?!

Food. (Bet you never saw THAT coming.)

Okay, in all seriousness, we’re making ham, mandarin orange salad, Christmas salad, stuffing, corn pudding, and probably a few other things that I’m forgetting. We’re also making pie (tri-berry and German apple). Our fridge is a little bit full right now (translation: GAH, WHAT DO WE DO? THERE’S NOT ENOUGH SPACE!), and I think we might end up eating leftovers until December 2016, so yeah.

What makes it FEEL like Christmas to you? (Weather, specific tradition, food, smell, person, etc.?)

Honestly, the air smells different when it gets colder, and the world just has this blue and grey cast to it in December. It feels rather nostalgic, in a good but painful way. It’s like this every year.

Do you have relatives coming? Excited? Nervous?

Nope, I have no relatives coming for Christmas day. My dad’s twin and his wife live relatively close to me, and we’ll probably meet up with them sometime after Christmas, but that’s it.

What famous Christmas character do you most identify with? (Scrooge, Elf, Tiny Tim, the Grinch, Santa, etc.)

Umm, maybe Elf because sometimes I get obnoxiously excited about Christmas.

If you were to start a new Christmas tradition, what would it be?

I think it would be a nice tradition to buy an entire bookstore every year, just for me. I’m not sure how we’d fit that into our budget, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.

What Christmas movies do you like to watch this time of year or what’s your favorite?

Most years we watch IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE on Christmas Eve, so I’d have to say that one is my favorite.

What’s your favorite Christmasy book or book with a favorite Christmasy part?

Would you doubt my love of Christmas if I said I didn’t have one? It’s weird, because as much as I get excited about Christmas, I enjoy experiencing it firsthand rather than consuming it secondhand through media. I’m not a huge fan of Christmas-themed stories, so I tend to avoid them. (Probably the main reason why I enjoy IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE is that I’ve watched it with family so many times, it’s become almost a scrapbook of memories.) I think if someone wrote a Christmas novel with tragedy and betrayal and murder, I would be down for that, but most Christmas stories are too happy feely and gold-colored and Christmas for me is blue and muted so they just don’t fit the mood.

Well, that’s it little coffee beans. I’m not going to think of new questions or nominate anyone today because Christmas is so close, and I imagine a lot of you will be busy. But, if you really want to do this tag, by all means, knock yourself out.



  1. I get this vague feeling YOU MILDLY LIKE COFFEE. XD Have you ever tried chocolate covered coffee beans? (I have no idea if that's just an Aussie thingXD) but they are divine. It's like eating a coffee and a chocolate and...yum.
    Aw, and your tree DOES look nice! :D
    You have a lot of nice traditions *nods* And we used to always go to the cinema on the 26th of December, but somehow that tradition fell. Merp. We ALWAYs eat ice cream though, these special ice creams in the shape of Christmas trees. :') Best tradition ever.

    1. Hmm, I don't know what would make you think that. *sips coffee* I actually have some chocolate-covered coffee beans sitting on one of our shelves. :) They are amazing, aren't they?
      Aww, thank you! I really like it. We actually still have it up.
      Ice cream is delicious. I approve of this tradition. *takes notes*

  2. YOUR CHRISTMAS LIST. It is also mine xD I just want books. And I'd totally be into your Christmas tradition :)

    1. :D Books are certainly one of the highlights of my Christmas.

  3. So I had to Google what wassail was and ... huh, it actually looks really good! And hmm, it seems like a very bookish and coffee-ish Christmas for you XD You do have loads of presents underneath a very classic and gorgeous tree! YOUR CHRISTMAS TRADITION SHOULD BE A THING. Pfft, who cares about budgets, Santa can go into debt for us.

    1. Wassail is really good! Sorry I didn't explain what it was. I kind of forgot there are people who've never heard of it. It definitely was a bookish, coffee-ish Christmas, which is totally the best kind. :) The tree greatly appreciates your complement. :) And yeah, we had quite a few presents, and more came in after I took the picture. IT SHOULD TOTALLY BE A THING. Budgets are lame--who needs those?

  4. Wassail and mandarin orange salad! Yessssssss! I still have some in my fridge. XD I'm 5' 9" *holds out fist for Mirkwood Elf fistbump* I hope you had a Merry merry Christmas! What was you favorite gift?

    1. They were delicious! I bow to your superior height. *Mirkwood Elf fistbump* Also, it's super exciting to come across people, in real life or online, who are my height or taller. You are my new favorite person. I had a wonderful Christmas! I hope you did as well. :) My favorite gift was probably the books I got: Winter, the Across the Universe Trilogy, and See How They Run. What was your favorite?

    2. Haha. ^ ^ Yaaaay! Oh that's hard. XD But probably my new phone. I reaaaaally needed a new one.

    3. I know, it's so hard to choose. :) I'm glad you got a new phone! That is super exciting. :)

  5. Mirkwood elf. Yes! I love it!

    My golly, it gets cold in Maine! I've actually never had a white Christmas, hardly a white anything. I live in Texas. We get slush. . . maybe once a year.

    You have an awesome Christmas tree!

    Ah! Persuasion is so awesome! Jane Austen rules!

    1. *bows deeply* Why thank you. :)

      It does get super cold in Maine. I'm so used to the cold, I haven't broken out any sort of coat yet now that I'm in Virginia. I seriously doubt I'll need to. Yeah, Texas just isn't good in the snow-making department. But it's great if you're not a fan of shoveling snow.

      Thank you! It makes me happy. :)

      Persuasion really is, and Jane Austen is wonderful. :)

  6. Yes! Finally someone else who loves "I Heard the Bells"!! And your Christmas list is awesome. I too would like a Lamborghini, but I'm not sure how well that one would go over. I've never heard of wassail, but it looks pretty good.

    1. *high fives you* I'm so glad you love it! It's such a wonderful song. :) Yeah, surprisingly enough, I didn't get a Lamborghini for Christmas. People would probably hate me if I actually asked for one. :P You've never heard of wassail? You poor, deprived human being! It's super delicious. :)

  7. Your Christmas tree is very cute! And I too would like to get a million books for Christmas, but also, I'm not much of a Christmas book person, either. *shakes head* Just not my style, I guess.


    (But what is so great about Lamborghinis?)

    1. Aww, thank you! Books make excellent Christmas gifts. :) Yeah, Christmas-themed stories just don't tend to appeal to me.

      PFFT, WHEN DO I EVER KNOW WHAT I'm DOING? In my defense, I've only seen clips of the movie, enough to get the gist, but I guess I never logged Buddy's name in my memory. *hangs head*

      I'm actually never quite sure what to say when people ask me that. I just really, really like them. I would say because Batman drives one, but I really liked them before, so I'm not sure what to tell you. It's possible that I was born already in love with them. :P

  8. So... Christmas was a month ago now. Oh well. We are supposed to keep the spirit all year and all.

    I have actually never had wassail; my only experience with it is hearing about it in a song in the Little Women movie, but they seemed to quite enjoy it.

    Casting Crowns is beautiful. I adore that song <3

    I think the bookstore idea is a brilliant one. *nods* And budgets smudgets. We'll figure that one out after we've read all the books. ;)


    1. Pssh, better late than never. :P And you're right, the Christmas spirit really ought to last all year.

      You've never had wassail?!? I'm going to cry now. *cries* *burst into full out sobs* *melts into puddle of tears*

      It's such a great Christmas song. :) (But who am I kidding? I listen to it all year.)

      I'm glad you're onboard. I always figured you to be a thoroughly sensible person. I like your plan. *nods* :D

      Thanks for commenting! :)