Friend Makin’ Monday: Christmas Questions

The holidays are really upon us. I’m feeling just a twinge of stress already. This week’s Friend Makin’ Monday questions couldn’t be more timely. I want to preface my responses by saying that I love the holidays. I love the scents, the lights, the decorations and the overall sentiment of giving and kindness. However, I absolutely hate the gift giving and sense of commercialism this time of year is associated with. I am doing my best to instill a different perspective in my son. His father grew up in a third world country where Christmas is a religious celebration to mark the birthday of Jesus. The day is also known as Dia da familia (Family Day) and is marked by cooking and eating as a family. I would like my son to know that kind of Christmas, but the resistance from my family is very very strong.

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section at: so everyone can see your FMM questions. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

Christmas Questions

1. How will you celebrate the holidays this year?  Normally I have a Christmas brunch at my house so Carlos can be home for Christmas. For the first time we will be celebrating Christmas at my sister’s home in the Boston area with my sister, her boyfriend, my mother and her husband. I won’t get into the reason why we are having it at her house. My son is not very happy about it. Frankly I could care less at this point as I hope to spend the holidays with my husband and son only next year somewhere outside of Massachusetts.

2. What’s the weather currently like where you live? It is rainy and damp today which is making it feel much colder than 44 degrees. The rest of the week looks sunny with temperatures in the low 40s. I’m still running outdoors and that makes me happy this time of year.

3. Do you decorate your home for the holidays? If so, share a picture please!  Yes I do. Carlos and I finished yesterday. I’m almost embarrassed to show you my decorations so I’ll just show our stockings. For some reason my iPhone photos came out like crap for this post. I’m sorry.

Stockings hung from the chimney

Stockings hung from the chimney

4. What is your favorite Christmas movie?  Miracle on 34th Street

5. What is your favorite Christmas songs?  Silent Night

6. Do you have an advent calendar?  We do. My son goes to Catholic school and he got this little Advent calendar in his religion class.

Advent Calendar

Advent Calendar

I had to capture my son’s first preschool photo in there. Awwww! Also the Santa statue is one that I painted as a child years ago at a place called the Plaster Fun House. I have no idea how it has lasted this long, but I put it out every year.

7. Do you prefer color lights or white lights?  I love the simplicity and elegance of white lights. However, Carlos really wants colored lights so maybe next year.

8. What is your favorite food to eat over the holidays?  I’m a sucker for Christmas cookies, peppermint bark and my neighbor’s homemade fudge.

9. Do you display a live tree, or do you prefer fake trees?  We have a fake tree. I wouldn’t say I necessarily prefer it, but it’s easier. I have never had a live tree. I love having the tree up, but I don’t exactly love the process of setting it up and decorating it. The lights are a pain in the neck every single year. I just bought new ones last year and half of them were burnt out this year. My husband very nicely informed me the first Christmas we spent in the U.S. that decorating for Christmas is not his thing. It goes without saying that there are no Christmas trees in Mozambique. He has a very difficult time with all the hoopla surrounding the holidays here. I can’t say I blame him. Holidays in Mozambique were the best. I miss them a lot.

Anyway I got off track a bit so here is a picture of my little fake tree.

O Christmas Tree

O Christmas Tree

10. What would you need to make your holiday perfect this year?  Well I guess after my commentary above spending the holiday in Mozambique again would make my holiday perfect.

I know I sound like a grinch. I’m not seriously! Carlos enjoys a perfectly normal Christmas by our standards here in the U.S. He has been to see Santa. He writes a list of things he wants. We bake Christmas cookies and shop for gifts. We also donate to Toys for Tots and give a bag of mittens, hats and scarves to his school. This year we will shop for the food pantry down the street and find out how we can get more involved.

Carlos is thinking about what more he can add to his list.

Carlos is thinking about what more he can add to his list.

Now it’s your turn to answer this week’s questions.  While you’re at it maybe you could try to answer a couple for me.

For those of you with children how do you balance the commercialism of Christmas with the true meaning of Christmas? And how would you respond to the question, “why doesn’t Santa go to Mozambique?”

Don’t forget to visit Kenlie’s blog and link up in the comments!

5 thoughts on “Friend Makin’ Monday: Christmas Questions

  1. Hi Aimee! I have to get my Christmas decorations up! All that’s up is my Christmas lights in my own room and a holiday wreath on the door. K is coming home from Pittsburgh on Saturday, so I’d better get going!

    🙂 Marion

  2. Aimee…I’m starting to feel the stress a little too! (even though I review my massive “to-do” lists every day and reorganize them nightly!) I always feel that December is a whirlwind and flies by faster than any other month. I agree with you…the commercialism of Christmas is sad…my most favorite memories of Christmas have to do with…putting up the tree (a real one every year!!) and then enjoying it every night, watching Christmas movies (have seen about ten this year so far), and the feeling of peace knowing that I HAVE everything I need already. Snuggling up on the couch with my family is the BEST feeling ever. Hopefully your Christmas with family will not be so bad, enjoyable even. Kimm and I go to her parents on Christmas Day (I work the night before) and then have our own Christmas on the day after Christmas. It’s my favorite! I think you did a great job with the tree and am sorry you have always had so much trouble with the lights….I don’t think we have EVER had trouble with the lights. So far so good with Christmas temptations as well…I haven’t made any of my own candy/cookies yet and no parties or anything so I’m going strong 🙂 I would love to hear more about Christmas in Mozambique!

  3. I love your stockings hung over the stove! The long mantle / shelf is awesome.

    That would be a tough question why Santa doesn’t go to Mozambique. I don’t even know how I would answer that!

    But their customs sound wonderful!

    stopping in from FMM – Merry Christmas!!

  4. I’ve always said I couldn’t imagine not being with my mom (I suppose the rest of my family too, but to me, mom is really the core) on Christmas, which is why my hubby is stuck always going back to my folks’ house for Christmas. But one year I would consider spending it in Italy with his family there. I think Italian celebrations would be quite different from Mozambique undoubtedly, but more of a focus on the reason for the season and less commercial, so probably more like Mozambique than the US, particularly in the poorer part of Italy where his family lives.

  5. Love the stove and the stockings hung! We have no fireplace, nowhere to hang stockings. Holiday in Mozambique sounds like the way to go. We try and cut back each year; buy less, focus more on family time. We don’t exchange gifts with many people beyond our immediate family so shopping is getting easier. Most of my gifts are homemade food stuff for the adults in the family. We involve the kids in buying for a family in need. It does get crazy this time of year, the past few years I have been hatin’ on the holidays, this year I am feeling more into it. Though the fact my MIL bought herself a gift for us to give her (which works out fine) — that we will give her money for — and she will in turn will give it to us as a gift, reminded me how silly it really is! I think your outlook on it is just right.

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