Getting into the Holiday Spirit

December 19, 2011 § 5 Comments

I love Christmas and I have no trouble getting into the spirit of the season, as a rule. But this year is different. You see, we’re in construction … we’re adding a Florida Room on the back of our house where the Lanai and birdcage used to be.

New Florida Room

Who wants to use an unfinished Florida Room as a backdrop for a gorgeous tree? Next year we will have a great new place to decorate and party … but not this year!

What to do? What to do? How can one get into the holiday spirit without decorating and baking?

I know! We’ll go to Disney World. Now, don’t get me wrong. We’re not planning to spend Christmas week with the swarms from around the world. We’re smarter than that! We went the first week in December!

Wilderness Lodge Tree

We  “ooo’d & ah’d” over huge, theme decorated trees in all the hotels. My favorites this year were the trees at the Animal Kingdom Lodge and Wilderness Lodge.

After contemplating these trees, we proceeded to count ‘hidden Mickeys’ on all of the gingerbread creations – the Gingerbread House at the Grand Floridian,

Stitch's Bakery

Stitch’s Bakery at the Yacht Club,

The Carrousel at Boardwalk.

Hidden Mickey!

(I found all the hidden Mickeys on these last two this year!)

Nothing like the smell of gingerbread and the sounds of carols in the air to get me in the holiday spirit!

I’ll finish my shopping this week – I don’t believe in buying Christmas presents before Thanksgiving – no fun in that! Of course, stocking stuffers are different – I find these all over, in craft shops and in catalogues. Those are fun!

And while I’m shopping I’ll listen to my Christmas CDs in my car – Josh Groban, John Denver, Liberty Singers, King Singers, Boston Pops. Let’s see … that’s five different versions of Silent Night, Little Drummer Boy, and the Twelve Days of Christmas … hmmmm!

As to Christmas Day itself, Sarah has invited us to her house this year (it was our turn, but she graciously volunteered). After worship and the Christmas cantata (Christmas is on Sunday this year, after all), we’ll return to her house for presents and a dinner of ham, green bean bake (why not!), twice-baked sweet potatoes, fried apples – to go with the ham, don’t you know! – dinner rolls, orange slices from the oranges of our own trees, and salad. The desert will depend on what I get for my birthday – cake or chocolate pudding pie. We shall see! I will probably add a pecan pie, however. Pecan-anything is a Summers-Sanders’ favorite!

After dinner, we’ll call family and wish them a Merry Christmas and tell each other that we loved the presents received – and we always do. I have a philosophy – whatever someone gives me, I love. Then it will be naptime (another Summers’ tradition from days of old!), followed by a favorite Christmas movie.

The spirit of the season will have been fulfilled; old traditions observed; new traditions begun.

Whatever your traditions, I wish you joy this holiday season!

Merry Christmas or Happy Chanukah – or, as in the case of some friends, both!


§ 5 Responses to Getting into the Holiday Spirit

  • Ellie Totten says:

    A very Merry and Blessed Christmas to you and yours, Mary Lois. We enclosed our lanai this year – it’s where I do my writing. I know you and your husband will enjoy the finished product – but getting there can be a challenge. Best of luck!


  • Mary June Stringer says:

    Merry Christmas to you, Tom, and Sarah. We all have lots of traditions from our past and it’s fun to include them with the new ones of our present lives. I saw Betty Summers at Olive Garden this week. Her daddy was Leeman, a cousin to your dad and my mom. Betty looks more like my mother than I do. She said people always said she looked like Juanita. Kind of makes you look twice. Again, have a HAPPY BIRTHDAY and MERRY CHRISTMAS. At least, you are one cousin whose birth I don’t remember. ha Love to all, Gerald and Mary June

  • Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas. Happy Birthday, too!

  • Our family Christmas traditions include putting the tree up on Christmas Eve and taking it down on Epiphany; an Italian Catholic thing, and listening to “Christmas in Sweden,” a recording of Swedish carols made perhaps 50 years ago.

    In our family anything done on this auspicious holiday becomes a tradition. How else can you explain listening to a recording of an unabridged reading of “Alice in Wonderland” as the traditional accompaniment to tree decorating?

    Happy birthday-Christmas season MLS!

    • One tradition from our childhood was hanging our stockings up on Christmas Eve, then listening to Dad read Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol”.

      The next morning we awoke to the smell of kollaches (Czechoslovakian sweet rolls with cherry or blackberry or appricot preserves in the middle and almond flavored hard sauce on the top!) and the sounds of Christmas carols. For many years it was presents first, kollaches second. Now it’s kollaches first and then presents and then phone calls to family and friends.

      I love Christmas traditions, whatever they are!

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