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Hot Cocoa or Hot Chocolate: A Matter of Taste
It's hard to find good writing now a days. But you have done a great job with all these sharing hot Cocoa and hot Chocolate. That's interesting. Thanks for sharing.
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His Name is Bud
love this story! Thanks for sharing your memories.
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Rethinking Christmas Priorities

Posted 01-15-2010 at 02:26 PM by Sapsorrow (Maman Noel)

Seeing that tomorrow is my first prep day, I thought I'd get down on "paper" what matters most about the Christmas experience so that I won't lose track of it. My ultimate goal is not to plan Christmas all year every year, or even to end up with Christmas on my brain for 365+ days this time around, it's to give myself the time to learn to do it right come next Christmas. Then I hope to pack "doing it right" into the brief November to December timeframe you find in mainstream Christmas planners like the one you can download from Martha Stewart.

The top things that make Christmas into Christmas for me are as follows:

1. [I]The lights![/I] This year my parents put nothing but tinsel garlands and lights on their tree rather than pick a losing battle with their toddler granddaughter and three ([B]three![/B]) new kittens. I thought it was the prettiest tree I'd ever seen, not naked at all! I like string lights year round, but Christmas means...
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January 13th, 2010

Posted 01-13-2010 at 08:57 PM by Sapsorrow (Maman Noel)

Today hasn't been a Christmas planning or prep day (not every day will be, thankfully), but I do tend to have stretches of time with the baby on my hands and nothing to do but think so some ideas percolated through.

Without a doubt, food and scent are huge parts of Christmas for me. This is why I'm most looking forward to the cookie baking spree, mulled wine, eggnog, and the grand dinner we're hosting. What occurred to me is that cooking 24/7 "from 6th to 6th" wouldn't make for the best Christmas, but I can nevertheless keep the aromas going with some balsam incense and a few sugar cookie scented candles by the oven. Took me long enough to conside this obvious solution, didn't it?

Now, we eat pretty humbly throughout the year. A lot of our food is free thanks to gardening or other hobbies, and relatives that hunt or farm, and the "cuisine" on our table is simple. Consequently, we don't need to budget and bargain hunt for groceries during...
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January Monthly Magic Plan

Posted 01-12-2010 at 04:08 PM by Sapsorrow (Maman Noel)

Here's my to-do list for my January prep day, I was wondering if anyone could give me feedback:

1. Buy and download "Groundhog Day" for Groundhog Day/Candlemas.
2. Get new printer cartridge and print Valentine's Day cards.
3. Pre-order a dozen heart shaped whoopie pies from bakery for Valentine's Day.
4. Buy February birthdays' birthday gifts and at least one of their Christmas gifts per.
5. Clean out Christmas chest. [Just did that ahead of schedule.]
6. Set up Christmas chest in the closet.
7. Wrap and discretely label all gifts that have arrived.
8. Affix all Christmas card envelopes with return mailing addresses.
9. Address and fill out at least ten Christmas cards.
10. Finish first draft of Christmas short story (which will eventually, along with photos, go in the cards).
11. Buy gift wrap on clearance. [Half has been ordered, half has been delegated.]
12. Buy a round of stocking...
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January 12th, 2010

Posted 01-12-2010 at 04:00 PM by Sapsorrow (Maman Noel)

Oops, I'm already missing a few days here and there. Good thing my resolution wasn't that I'd blog everyday! Maybe next year?

Anyway, I haven't been idle. I set myself the goal of picking up gift wrap supplies on clearance, and yesterday I stumbled on a bunch of gorgeous fabric tote bags from Barnes & Noble for $2.50. These were Christmas themed and very decorative, so I snapped up a bunch, plus a few $1.75 globe printed ones. I'm the world's worst gift wrapper, I always resort to gift bags when I'm able, so why not invest in quality ones that can be used all year? Since the amount I'd have to pay for shipping these was the difference between what I was buying and the threshold to get free shipping, I decided to spend that on a few Christmas items rather than pay for shipping. One of those items was Dover's thrift classics edition of Christmas carols, already cheap and also on sale.

I've decided that, since I'm setting aside time every month to prepare...
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My first Christmas memory

Posted 01-09-2010 at 09:56 PM by pattilynn (Christmas Memories and other thoughts)

I must have been about 4. My mother, brother and I lived in a top floor one bedroom apartment. (in a house that was converted. might have been victorian)This was 1961 or 62.

We had a tree no bigger than I about 3ft on a table, near a window. my brother was a baby at the time and we shared the bedroom but for some reason I slept on the daybed couch that Christmas eve night.

I remember waking up in the warm dark of night and lifted my head to see many presents under the tree on the floor. I know I didn't get up but went back to sleep. I don't remember the day.. but I remember that warm dark of night and the gifts.
_______________________

Another memory I have is walking with my mother and brother down the main avenue of my home town , maybe age 5 or 6.... It was dusk ( I don't remember where we were going) snow on the ground, bundled up well from the cold. We walked because my mother did not drive.

On our walk , we passed...
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