Holiday Round-Up

This holiday season has felt bonkers, and it FLEW by. I feel like I can safely say this has been the busiest holiday season I can remember. Thankfully, I got over my grinchiness by early December and I’ve been enjoying the holiday whirlwind. I will say, though…I still don’t know that I’d say I feel particularly Christmassy…I feel happy and excited and I’ve been enjoying myself, but I don’t have that cozy, warm, nostalgic feeling that normally comes with the holiday season. I’m going to chalk it up to unseasonably warm weather (up until the past couple of days, anyway), the fact that I’ve been so busy (with both holiday and non-holiday related activities) and that Christmas really seemed to sneak up on me this year. I feel like LAST Christmas was only a few months ago! Is this how the rest of my life is going to go?? Yikes!

Anyway, I thought I’d check in and give a run-down of I’ve been up to over the past few weeks.

After a really nice Thanksgiving spent with family, we went to pick out our tree and got to work decking the halls. For the past two years, we’ve bought our tree from a pop-up lot set up by our local Lion’s Club. It may not be as festive as going to a farm to cut our own tree or as cost-effective as buying a tree from a big box store or the sketchy guys who set up outside McDonald’s with a trashcan fire and a sign that says “ALL TREES $20,” but we really like the guys who work the lot and it feels good knowing that we’re helping a good cause. As always, we set our tree up while watching Bad Santa…although this year, we also added “A Very Murray Christmas” to the mix.

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I decided to branch out from all boring bulb ornaments this year, and I’m loving the results

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I decided I wanted to keep my birthday pretty low-key this year, so we celebrated with a dinner at the Melting Pot (I had never been and everyone kept telling me it was worth checking out), and and evening wandering around Longwood Gardens (a local institution that has a legendary light display every Christmas). It was a really nice, relaxing weekend – everything I was hoping for after a non-stop few months.

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Post dinner shot

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Huge Longwood tree

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Jeff and I both thought this tree was awesome with the lights all the way down to its roots…the lights even continued over to the other side of the footbridge!

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Birthday celebrations continued this last weekend with a birthday/holiday dinner with a few of my closest gal pals at my favorite restaurant, Terrain. It was great to get together and spend a couple hours laughing over wine and delicious food. One of my friends was even sweet enough to MAKE me a beautiful pallet sign for our house, and I can’t wait to decide where to put it!

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Obligatory latte shot from dinner

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Beautiful sign!

I’m off work today and tomorrow, and I’m getting ready to embark on my yearly Christmas cookie bake-a-thon. I’m baking a whopping THIRTEEN different types of cookies this year, and aside from the usual chocolate chip and my signature butter pecan cookies, I’m trying a couple traditional Italian cookies that my grandma used to make every year, along with a couple of totally new cookies (like frosted eggnog cookies and chocolate-cherry shortbread cookies). I think Jeff and I are going to catch up on the new season of Serial while I bake (along with lots and lots of Christmas music…mainly Hanson’s “Snowed In”, natch), and then I’ll pack up our yearly care packages to some of our close friends and family, along with our neighbors and co-workers. If baking about a million cookies and listening to 10 hours’ worth of Christmas music doesn’t get me in the spirit, I don’t know what will!

We also have a meeting with our travel agent this evening to discuss our honeymoon – eeeeek! I think I might be almost more excited for our honeymoon than our actual wedding…well, maybe not. It’s a toss-up. Suffice it to say that I’m EXTREMELY excited to nail down our final plans and actually start booking!

Other than that, Christmas will be here in the blink of an eye…only 4 days! I’m pretty much all ready…I have a couple tiny things left to wrap, but other than that I’m all set.

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I maybe went a liiiittle overboard with the gifts this year…also, can you tell which gifts Jeff wrapped? :-p

I hope everyone is having a very merry holiday season, and that you’re enjoying time with friends and family! Cheers!