December 5, 2012

Humbug


I've always been coo-coo for Christmas. Of course I loved it as a kid, then when I went to college I was the lunatic playing Bing Crosby in October and stringing popcorn and cranberries to decorate the dorm. When I got my first apartment I was so excited to get a real large tree and picked the biggest one, even though it overwhelmed the tiny space. I always wanted my tree up before Thanksgiving and one year I even got a second tree when the first one dried out too early. So the Christmas spirit was never lost on me... until recently.

The last few years my enthusiasm for the holidays has really started to wane, and this year I am just not feeling it. There are a lot of reasons, but I think the biggest one is that Christmas used to represent a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and also an excuse to get busy making jams and knitting hats and baking cookies. 


These days I actually really love the rhythm of my everyday life, and most of my interests and passions are already incorporated into the way that I live. The holidays just seem like a giant disruption, spending money, traveling, even the tree taking up space in my living room... I just want to crawl under the covers and thaw out in January when life is back as it was.

But now that we are fully into December, I am doing my best to shake the Scrooge mentality. Obviously I don't want to spoil the celebration for my guys, so I'm just going to suck it up and try to channel the Christmas enthusiasm of days past.

We aren't getting our tree until next week-end, but we decided to get into the spirit just a little by browsing and picking up some greenery for the mantle. I do always love seeing all those trees lined up, and Little Smith was impressed too although he was very sleepy and did a face plant into the gravel about 10 seconds into our shopping trip (which is why he looks like the one saying humbug in most of these pictures!).


Once we loaded up on the glorious smell of pines and sampled the most killer squash cornbread pudding ever (seriously so good I made James take off his hat and go back to score me seconds), we were all feeling a little more festive.

Of course the best part was that the market is right by our garden, so we stopped on our way home for a short walk and a little snack of kale.


Have you ever seen anyone so pleased with himself over kale? James loves to eat it raw (ick!) and is ridiculously obsessed. Maybe Santa will fill his stocking with kale this year... if he's very good.

So it's been a slow warm, but I am finally gearing up for eggnog and stockings. It is a magical time of year, and I can't wait to see what Little Smith thinks of the lights and tree. If there's any humbug left in me, his reaction will surely be the cure.

20 comments:

  1. Little Smith will love the lights and tree, I am sure! A child's excitement is so encouraging..

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  2. I went through the exact same thing-- look at is as a positive, you are actually living Christmas & enjoying your life on a day-to-day basis! As Little Smith grows in to the holiday, as you so rightly point out, his glee will become infectious, no worries!!

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  3. Haha, you made me giggle with the idea of a stocking full of kale! Yumm-o, I'll take it! Yes, raw too. Let me tell you about the glorious kale salad I eat whenever we go to Whole Foods.... oh, I'll spare you.

    Anyway, how soon is too soon for a live tree to dry up, anyhoo? We just got out first real tree last weekend, and it's already getting brittle and the ends of the needles are yellowing. And, no... I haven't let it dry up. It gets a gallon of water each day! Fingers crossed- three more weeks to go!

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    1. I know, I seem to be the only one who isn't a fan of raw kale! As for the tree, if it's still drinking you should be fine. Once it stops taking in water and the level doesn't change over the course of a day, you're on the way to fire hazard :) How long that takes depends on when the trunk was last cut and how long you waited to get it into water. If you wait too long, a sap seal can form that doesn't let it get water unless you re-cut the trunk. Sugar or soda in the water is also supposed to help. That's everything I know about trees! I am sure your's will be just fine and beautiful through Christmas.

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  4. Aw, I love how cute you are! And W's pants are awesome. His whole outfit, spot on.

    That last picture of Big S. is so great. I don't think I've ever seen a picture of him smiling a bigger smile! I have actually (surprisingly) never tried kale raw... but I think I'm on your side on this one- ick!

    I hope you shake that grinch off your shoulder! It certainly doesn't seem like you are humbug about it with those rosy cheeks and sweet smile! :)

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  5. I'll be trying to scrounge up some Christmas spirit with you. I've put up the tree and am trying, but am just not so into it this year. I, like you, am pretty happy with the every day and while I enjoy the seeing family part, I'm not so into the extra money being spent, the forced get-togethers with a little nursing baby when I'd rather stay snuggled at home, etc. Hopefully this year will be fun though and next year even better. I must say, you look beautiful out and about with your guys. :)

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  6. Has he ever had raw kale salad? I'm a HUGE believer in it! It's SO good and I think it would convert even those wary of the raw kale. There's a woman Craig works with that makes the most amazing raw kale, cabbage, cashew and ginger salad. I've been after Craig to get me the dressing recipe so I can share it....hopefully soon! And lady! Get into the holiday spirit before the season is over! (To be fair the only thing I really do is put up a tree and cut up shopping bags.)

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    1. I don't think he has and I'm sure he would love it. I should investigate some recipes :)

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  7. Love the photos! Little Smith looks so cute wearing the beanie, and you're a pretty mama! :)

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  8. Aw, poor Little! I can understand why you're not into Christmas this year. It seems our society is getting more and more into the superficial reasons of Christmas. I saw Christmas decorations out in October this year, and Thanksgiving is always buried by it.

    Go back and get more squash, and hopefully, that will do the trick! :)

    Do you guys eat kale chips? Really yummy, but I don't think I could eat kale raw.

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  9. Yep, I hear ya.

    It is disruptive, that's a good word for it.

    I'm jumping in, but I can't say my whole heart is in it. I do like a good solid reason to decorate though.

    OMG your outfit!! (She says while looking at her stained sweatpants.)

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    1. Thanks, and believe me, I have lots of days full of stained leggings too :)

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  10. It's funny... I've never really been into Christmas. Sure, I love a good tree and I'm obsessed with egg nog but, other than that, I'm all set when it comes to all the hubbub. Until we had Alice! And now I want to celebrate the holiday but I can't seem to talk my husband into it since we aren't at all believers in the religious meaning behind it all (and the crazy commercialism is hard to support, too).

    And my husband makes a killer kale salad and it is delicious! But really, the raw kale is just a vehicle to transport the fatty and rich homemade caesar dressing!

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  11. You are so adorable! I love your whole outfit. And I love big and little Smith's outfits too :) I can understand that feeling- even me the crazy Christmas lady. I always start strong and really enjoy it, but it also stresses me out and can make me crabby. So there you go. I am one big conundrum.

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  12. Little Smith is so adorable. I know what you mean about the disruption of the routine you have perfectly crafted and enjoy. I'm sure the older and more enthusiastic about it little Smith gets the more you will too.

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  13. Beautiful pictures as always! Christmas changes when you have children. It's fun to watch their reactions, but you don't have as much time to focus on your desires, and traveling becomes very complicated!

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  14. Make it two: I am please with kale myself, and also love it raw! :) How interesting, you expressed thoughts that visited my mind this holiday season. We talk over it and decided not to have a heavy decor this year, just a little tree. We also decided to stay away from all that craziness with gift giving and receiving. We are in our third year of "consumable gifts only" mode. :)

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  15. I have felt that Scrooge feeling too but this year was the first in the last 5 or so when I felt genuinely excited about Christmas. The boys are my reasons for this because this year they are STOKED about lights, decorations, toys, and Santa!

    p.s. You look so gorgeous shopping for Christmas trees!

    xo
    cortnie

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  16. I don't mind a bit of a minimalist approach to Christmas myself - helps me to cope with the crazy busyness that the month of December always seems to bring for us!
    Ronnie xo
    p.s. I don't think I've ever tasted kale!

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  17. I share your sentiments and would rather sit in quiet throughout December while the rest of the world goes crazy. But for the sake of my boys, I'm making a little effort! Does James eat the kale as is? We make it into smoothies but I don't know of anyone who eats it off the leaf! I do quite like picking parsley and eating it as I go round the garden, and my son does the same with sorrel. All green leafy goodness!

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