Thursday, December 14, 2006

Christina Dodd SquawkBlog: Xtina Says, "Duck!"

Contest Today! Each day of Squawk Radio Week + a Day, one lucky commenting Bella wins a gorgeous Italian glass picture frame courtesy of the Squawk chicks.
Christina Dodd once said, "Michelle, you and I will be chained to the same rock in Hell." I don't think she understood I'd take that as a compliment. I mean, she's got this totally irreverent and smart sense of humor, and since she didn't follow the statement with a "bless your heart," I figured I was gettin me some praise. Her books make us laugh and cry (remember selkie boy?), and dream about heroes for whom most of us would trade Heaven. And Xtina's much anticipated December release, THE PRINCE KIDNAPS A BRIDE (marriage of convenience. prince in disguise. read it.) the grand finale of her Lost Princesses series is #19 on the NY Times bestseller list! Bellas, felicitazione and buongiorno to La Principessa...

Last year, we got this tree. It was too tall for our great room ... and the ceiling's 16' 8". Listen, don't laugh, our friends Donna and Monty gave it to us, so it was free and we didn't have to chop it down. Scott cut a foot off the bottom and a foot and a half off the top. We carried it in. (Our manly neighbor was conveniently not home to help, so I got elected to carry the "light" end. My contribution consisted mostly of saying, "Wait! I'm standing on a branch!")

When we stood it up, the tree hit the ceiling. So Scott got the loppers, stood on the ladder and cut off another foot and a half. Some might say it smelled like a Xmas tree in here. Actually, it smelled like the whole damned forest. We had to buy garlands, bulbs and lights (ya think?), and we risked our lives to decorate the tree by using extendo-pinchers and really tall ladders. But 2005 was our first Christmas in our new house, and everyone in the family thoroughly enjoyed the tree.

So … a few days after Christmas, we invited Donna and Monty to dine with us, drink with us, and admire our gorgeous tree — and that makes the evening’s events so much more appropriate.

We were all in the great room after dinner, chatting and relaxing. Donna and I sat on the couch, Monty sat on a chair facing us, Scott was on the other couch, also facing us. The tree was off to our right. And right in the middle of the conversation, Monty who is a very erudite, articulate, learned man, suddenly shouted (and I’m quoting him exactly), “Ptrmmble! Shxzmnrt! Argk!”

Later he said he couldn’t find the right words. Actually, the appropriate phrase would have been, “Timber!”

Because the tree fell on us.

It fell in slow motion (the plastic base cracked and the half-inch metal screws in the trunk bent) so Donna and I were able to scramble out from underneath, laughing wildly. (That’s Donna holding the coffee cup and Monte holding the tree while Scott gets a rope.) The guys righted it, tied the trunk to the stair railing and we all sat down and laughed some more. And every Christmas should have a miracle — only one ornament broke!

This year, of course, we’re going to be a lot wiser about our tree. No more of the trees that touch the ceiling. We’ve learned our lesson …

What absolutely marvelous mistakes (like my turkey that wouldn’t cook — I swear he died of old age) and accidents does your family remember and laugh about at Christmas? Tell all!

Please visit and !

Teresa Medeiros tomorrow,
Fri, Dec 15
Connie Brockway, Mon, Dec 18 on Squawk Radio Week + a Day
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Julie in Ohio said...

Welcome, Christina!! I have read The Prince Kidnaps a Bride and it was fabulous. The scene in the brothel was pure genious. Thank you for such an enjoyable read.

Your tree story is priceless. What are you going to do for an encore this year? :o)

I can't remember any stories right now but will keep thinking.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Buongiorno, Christina and Bellas! Squawk Week + a Day is so much fun, and I can't thank everyone enough for joining us, Squawkers, Bellas, new friends all. I can't thank you enough, but that doesn't mean I won't try to the point of obsequious smarminess.

Holiday mistake. I once defrosted a frozen bake-it-yourself pie before I baked it. It came out crispy. Does that count?

But I think the biggest holiday mistake is kind of a sin of omission. I failed to tell my kids that I'm not a good cook, so they wax nostalgic about the Christmas and Thanksgiving meals I prepare. My son once wrote an essay about my culinary skills. When his teacher showed it to Dave and me in a conference -- she with a beatific smile that said, "look what a good mother you are -- Dave and I laughed out loud til we couldn't breath.

Now, here in Minnesota (remember, we're Back Easterners here), it's pretty much as Garrison Keillor says: The children are all above average, etc. So one doesn't usually meet parents with our, um, subtle disregard for our parenting skills, as it were. Or parents who are more surprised they managed to produce children who have brains in their heads.

Point being? Not sure. I just think the idea of my poor, delusional child (he gets that from his father's side) thinking my cooking is delicious is really amusing.

So, wahooo! Xtina's here! Sorry to hear about your tree, but it's a pretty gosh darn funny story and I'm glad you shared it. :)

Julie in Ohio said...

Thank you, Michelle. You just reminded me of a Christmas dinner blunder I made.

My in laws all come over to my house on Christmas Eve. I make the main course which a couple years ago was roast beef and all the trimmings. Well, I decided to do it in the crock pot. I put it in at noon on high so it would be done by 6:30pm. It wasn't even close to being done. We ended up calling for pizza that night. My bil won't let me forget that one. He thought it funny as he passed the pizza guy, on the way to our house, that "someone" was eating pizza on Christmas. Low and behold it was his dinner.
I have been obsessive about dinner ever since. Everyone steers clear of Julie while she's in the kitchen... :o)

Christina Dodd said...

Thanks for having me, Michelle and Bellas! It's great to be here again.

Year two on the christmas tree saga ... My husband and I agreed that twelve feet is the right height -- smaller is going to look silly in that room, larger (obviously) is a problem. Scott goes tromping into the woods looking for a tree, comes back and announces, "I think I found one!" I say, "Is it twelve feet tall?" And he says ...

C'mon, you know this ...

"No, it's seventeen feet, but I'll have to cut off some of the base."


I have to tromp down with him this afternoon, approve the behemoth, and help him cut it and drag it up the hill. In my copious spare time. I'll let you know how it goes.

Christina Dodd said...

Um, Michelle? Why did I say we were both going to be chained to the same rock in hell? What horrible thing did you say/do?

Julie in Ohio said...

OMG, Christina!!
You did buy him a tape measure for Christmas with a demonstration on how to use it, right?

Anonymous said...

Oh, Christina, we've had that tree, and all my beautiful glass ornaments were smashed to smithereens. We called the living room the Forest Primeval. We finally wised up and tie even the shortest tree to any available protuberance in the wall.

The biggest Christmas "accident?" We used to have a bull mastiff named Archie, who, when he wasn't eating the heads off Barbie dolls and sleeping against the front door so you couldn't get in, ate all the salt-dough Christmas ornaments right off the tree I made and painted with the kids one year---baked-in metal hangers and all! And he lived, altho I imagine he was fairly uncomfortable.

This year we won't be home for Christmas, and I've done the most daring thing---NO tree at all. It feels weird but good. Merry!
Maggie Robinson

J Perry Stone said...

I love that story. And I've heard your infectious laugh, Christina. That alone is enough to set anyone off....particularly coming up from underneath all those branches.

Christmas mistakes….
There was the time we decided to buy my poor Sheltie booties and Rudolph (a la Max the dog in Grinch) headgear.

It was like watching a really prissy lady walk barefoot in oozy mud. And I thought my Grandmother was going to stroke out from laughing.

Poor Nessie. I took it off after about 30 seconds despite my evil family's protests.

Tiffany Clare said...

That was so not a good idea to read while at work...I'm LMAO! And in tears...sheesh! I don't think I've had any craziness like that at xmas.

But that's a story you can tell every year!

Adriana said...

Still laughing! What a treat to start off the day!

My Christmas mistake involves a cocker spaniel named Brandy but it's probably too messy to put on the page, so to speak (unless it would be old newspapers). Let's just say I took a break from my Christmas baking late one night and left the full bag of Nestle's chocoloate chips within reach in the days when we didn't know enuf to crate-train our dogs... 'nuff said!

And what fun to win a prize on my very first outing as a blogger -- this could be habit forming!

needless to say this is a great place to start!


J Perry Stone said...

Maggie, "Archie" is a fabulous name for a dog! I love those big lion types. I once saw one pick up a basketball...with his mouth.

A basketball!

Teresa Medeiros said...

Don't worry Xtina and Michelle! Lisa and I will be dribbling cold water into your parched little mouths while you're chained to that rock as we float by on our fluffly little clouds strumming our harps ;)

And I had a Christmas tree fall on me too. We had a cathedral ceiling in our log cabin and the thing was about 15 feet high and I was trying to decorate it and it fell right over on me. So I was trying to hold it up before it complete smothered me and screaming for help but my husband was having an um...private the bathroom and couldn't come running. (And he'll kill me if he ever finds out I told that story on-line and I'll be sitting on that cloud sooner than I planned.)

Wolfy said...

Christina, what a fun story. But with your husband finding another huge tree this year, I bet you are going to be tying it fast to something so as not to have a repeat performance.

Welcome to the blog, and loved your stories.

ReadingAddict1 said...

The only memorable stories I can remember have to with my babies ie cats.

One year, the cat I grew up with, ate a whole container of divinity fudge that my Mom left wrapped on the kitchen table. You know, I still have never tasted divinity yet!

Several years later we had a litter of five kittens that were about 8 months old and they kept climbing our Christmas tree and pulling off all of the dangling ornaments and tinsel. The next year my Mom decided since we weren't going to be celebrating Christmas at home, she wasn't going to put a tree up because she didn't want to go through what she did the year before, since we ended up keeping all five of the kittens (that's another story) :).

Christina, good luck on your tree situation. I agree with Julie, buy the man a tape measure and make sure he knows how to use it, lol.

My Mom won your Lost Princesses series in Oct and I can't wait until she's finished with them and passes them on to me! I've been looking forward to reading them for some time now. I might have to go steal them from her, if she doesn't finish reading them soon, lol. Is that awful of me?

nearhere said...

LOL Christina! The toil of trees is so familiar in my house; while none has ever made a lumber jack out of the household the trial of getting it at 'just that angle' or lack of angle is soooooooo annoying.

I'd have to say the biggest thing I've learned about Christmas is from my mother. (don't all good things come from there) When cooking a turkey, remember to turn on the oven. It takes longer to cook otherwise.

alissa said...

I am not a great cook to put it mildly and I had mu in-laws over for dinner. The turkey breast was hard as a rock and burnt to a crisp and I was mortified but couldn't do much about it. they over looked it and were really good sports about the entire meal.

ellie said...

When I was very young and had to prepare an elaborate dinner for relatives it was a big thing for me. I worked like a dog all day, cooking and baking and my mother-in-law forced me to do this special dinner, even though I was sick as a dog at the time too. Fever, etc. I had no strength for this but complied and at the end she remarked about the dessert. I could have thrown it in her face.

joelle said...

I did make a cake which totlly collapsed and was in chunks, so I pried it out of the cake pan, cut it into cute ittle cubed sized pieces and then added strawberries, ice cream and little chocolates surounding it. Luckily it saved the dessert and my evening.

pearl said...

Disasters! I know about them. My worst one was when I had a turkey in the oven and then single handedly brought it over to the table where it conveniently slid right onto the tablecloth in the midst of all the china, etc. Shock and consternation. All I could think was at least it was on the table and not the floor. We continued on with the meal and it was delish.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

OK, Bellas, everybody? Just stop making me laugh, because I need to get offline and go to my kids' school and help them put on in-line skates.

I'm a cat lover, too, readingaddict1, and I'm laughing thinking that most people would get rid of the cats, right? I'd 86 the tree, too. Have I mentioned I have a great big cat with a litttle, tiny head? She's named after Sophia Loren, whom no one would describe that way.

Oh, Teresa, you are all things generous! But, you're killing me here with the story about your husband. I have to be really careful what I write here, because Dave reads often, poor guy.

jperry, I love the idea of dressing pets in silly hats and stuff. I once had the meanest cat in the world, a purely ornamental black kitten named Vermeer. We slapped a santa hat on her head and Dave and I had a pic taken with her for our holiday card the first year we were married. I'm holiding her in the pic, and you can see the long, bleeding, bright red marks on the back of my hand where she scratched me while the pic was being taken.

But when you dress up dogs, they just look so long-suffering, it makes it even funnier. I love pets at the holidays. Except when they're wreaking havoc.

Maureen said...

At Christmas we remember our grandfather who would buy a tree with gaping wholes in it and then cut the bottom branches off and drill holes in the tree trunk where the open spot was so as to insert these branches into the open spaces.

CrystalGB said...

I love your Christmas tree story. You were lucky to not have had all your ornaments broken.

Mu disaster last Christmas was that I baked a red velvet cake and forgot to put eggs in it. Needless to say it didn't turn out well.

One of the funniest in our family was the time my sister-in-law forgot to take the giblets out of turkey and found them when carving the turkey.

Anonymous said...

The first turkey I made, I didn't know you were suppose to remove the insides. Needless to say, it smelled funny after a bit. Thank heavens I removed it before it was completely ruined and all still turned out well. And I would have gotten away with it, but my then husband was all too excited to tell everyone! And I mean EVERYONE!

After that, I don't cook turkey.

Julie in Ohio said...

When our cat was a kitten (10 years ago) he constantly tried to climb out tree. We eventually put the tree in the baby's playpen. It worked and thankfully has he aged, he doesn't have that want to climb. I think he's just too lazy and wants the tree to come to him.

Speaking of dressing the animals, my dh got the cat a Harley Davidson jacket. The cat went ballistic. Running around the house crying, trying like made to get the thing off.
I should state that the cat's name is Oscar. We named him that because his favorite place in the house was around the garbage can and he is the biggest grouch.

Little Lamb Lost said...

One year, our power went out on Christmas Eve. No normal cooking could be done. We ate by candlelight a meal of yams roasted under the hot coals in the fireplace and hot dogs roasted over the fire. And then shelled and ate peanuts as we all talked and laughed before bed. Santa still managed a visit though. :)

Elizabeth Bevarly said...

Xtina, I still say you look like Yuletide Barbie standing next to that tree.

We had a dog once who hiked his leg on the Christmas tree. After ALL the presents were wrapped and placed. On Christmas Eve night. At 11:45. It was all I could do to get up to the convenience store that was closing at midnight to get more wrapping paper. Which, it goes without saying, was hideous, on account of it was Christmas Eve and a convenience store.

The Christmas miracle that year was that we were quick enough to get everything out and unwrapped before it all smelled like dog pee. Though nothing was wrapped in a box that year. Just hideous paper.

And we had a cat once who climbed the tree and knocked it down, breaking my favorite spun glass peacock ornament. My hubby spent years looking for another just like it and finally found a smaller version. Now we keep a VERY close eye on the cats.

kim h said...

hi christina
love your books

Anonymous said...

Nothing as dramatic as that ever happened to us--I don't think anyway. We didn't have pets that got up on branches or anything like that. Our dog, Ivanhoe, knew that he wasn't allowed in *our* great room with its "cathedral ceiling," as my aunt always called it.

The only "off" thing that I remember was when the older of my two brothers and I baked our special "Spekulatius" spice cookies.

I know they are commercially available in some places and are usually made by Dutch companies, either here or imported from Holland.

We eagerly set off making the dough for these special cookies, at a time when my parents were out somewhere and the two younger siblings were already in bed. After all we needed all the space we could get and making them with constant interruption just wasn't as much fun.

We added the ingredients one by one on the table, them "fold" them all together to mix them. Then came the hard part. After washing our hands thoroughly, we kneaded the dough to make it come out smoothly so that we could roll it thin with the rolling pin (covered by a little white sleeve so the dough wouldn't stick to it). We then used cookie-cutters to make our shapes: stars, Christmas trees and various other designs. Some of the shapes looked a little too ragged and we decided that one didn't look all that great as a cookie and decided to eat the dough instead.

By the time the dough was gone, a few of the doughy creations had made it onto the cookie sheet but they looked so lonely and...well, they still didn't look all that uniform and fancy enough for Christmas. So we figured that five cookies just weren't enough anyway. After all, we needed at least 6 for the family.

"Oh, well," I said. "We can always make another batch tomorrow or next week." And in no time flat, the cookies were all gone and we had a funny feeling in our tummies. Maybe it wasn't *that* good an idea to eat the dough for that many cookies raw.

Julie in Ohio said...

LOL, Liz!!
Did the dog survive Christmas? I'm afraid to say what I would've done to it. PETA would be picketing outside my house...

Christina Dodd said...

All right, you guys who are suggesting that I buy Scott a tape measure ... I've always heard men are notorious for lying about lengths. What makes you think a tape measure would change that? ;)

Christina Dodd said...

Teresa Medeiros said..."So I was ... screaming for help but my husband was having an um...private the bathroom and couldn't come running. (And he'll kill me if he ever finds out I told that story on-line and I'll be sitting on that cloud sooner than I planned.)"

Yes, Teresa, right after I get off the phone with him.

Cherie said...

I remember my first Christmas with hubby. When I wrapped my mother's and mother-in-laws gifts I put "Mom" on all of the tags. I ended up giving one of my mother-in-laws gifts to my mother. She was a good sport about it and gave it back so i could rewrap it but I was still embarassed.

Cherie Japp

Anonymous said...

I learned the hard way about cats and trees the year I came home and found the tree knocked over. I have to take the blame totally for that one though - we had strung popcorn and wrapped it around the tree. And for a popcorn-loving cat...just too much temptation! And I knew he loved popcorn, so I'm not sure what I was thinking.

We just bought our dog little antlers with a bell. She's not amused.

Playground Monitor said...

holding my sides and laughing out loud!

Our first apartment had a Murphy Bed in the living room and we set our meager little tree in front of the doors to that. However, we'd failed to check the tree trunk and it was crooked. So we had to tie the tree to the doorknobs to keep it upright.

Then our first Christmas in Germany we bought a tree right after Thanksgiving. By the 10th of December not a needle was left on that tree. So we tossed the carcass and bought a second tree.

The year we bought our black Cocker Spaniel puppy, she decided to sample the silver tinsel/icicles on the tree. I found her later standing beside a pile of poop on the kitchen floor with a piece of silver trailing from her behind.

Our first kitty would nap in the tree, all splayed out on a branch.

My older son re-decorated the bottom quarter of the tree when he was three years old. I bought him his own little two-foot-tall artificial tree plus unbreakable ornaments and put it in his room. I explained he could have this tree to decorate and re-decorate as long as he left Mommy's tree alone. Worked like a charm for him and his little brother too. Hmmm, should I should suggest this to him when my granddaughter gets older or let them learn like I did. :evil grin:

And last but not least -- you used the word behemoth! We had a discussion on another message board a year or so ago about that word. A few felt it was a pretentious word and really had no use. HA! It's a great word.


Christina Dodd said...

You all are killing me! I love the cat and dog stories -- my neighbor got a three pound box of Sees Candies given to her for the holidays, and before they were opened, she put them on the table. Walked past the room later and realized they were open. Started to yell at the kids, and realized the box was partly eaten, too. Her old golden retriever had polished off everything -- box, bubble wrap and chocolates -- and lived to tell the tale. Or tail, I guess. The stupid dog was FINE.

Marilyn, behomoth is pretentious? Isn't pretentious pretentious?

Christina "I have a vocabulary and I know how to use it" Dodd (altho I'm not so hot at spelling.)

pjpuppymom said...

Christina, I love the Christmas tree story. I've been wondering what Scott would do for an encore this year! lol

I've been pretty lucky at Christmas. The only mishap I can think of was when my black lab was a puppy (7 months). She had totally ignored the tree so I felt safe leaving her loose while I took a shower. Little did I know she was just waiting for me to leave the room. I came back to discover the bottom two rows of ornaments missing. She ATE them! Of course, this is the same dog who also ate 3 remotes, a pair of eyeglasses and my husband's dentures. No accounting for taste, I guess. (grin)

Christina, TPKAB was a wonderful book and a great way to finish off the lost princesses. My favorite scene was the kitchen.

Oh my gosh, I just noticed I won the Wednesday prize! WOO HOO! Thank you!


Playground Monitor said...

Forgot to say I loved TROUBLE IN HIGH HEELS. Ballerina Brandy rocked!

Also loved your speech at RWA. I have to remind myself about perseverence every so often. Okay... every 12 hours.


Christina Dodd said...

Thank you all for the compliments about KIDNAPS and TROUBLE. I confess, they are two of my favs for a couple of reasons.

1) The scene in the kitchen. (TPKAB)
2) The scene in the elevator. (TIHH)

Every once in awhile I write something, look around and think, "Where did that come from?" Then I thank God and keep writing.

Marilyn, as busy as this Christmas season has been and as much non-work stuff as I've had to do, I need someone to give me a speech about perseverence. Maybe I should get a recording of my own speech ...

Gram said...

Thanks for another tale to brighten my day...

Anonymous said...

My husband and I had a horrific moment one year while he and my 18mo old son were decorating the tree. Daddy was on a ladder and my todder was on the ground crawling around (I was at work) when ...Daddy was stringing the lights (you know the old fashioned big colorful ones) and several light sockets were empty. Dear Hubby looks down at the boy and heard loud crunching. He was actually biting the lights off the string like a candy necklace.

We spent several hours in the ER getting scopes and x-rays on Christmas Eve. Needless to say don't string lights that look like big pieces of candy.

traveler said...

During a holiday dinner which was quite a spectacular feast, there was a container of mustard being used by the kids and my husband felt like using it but the mustard was stuck. He then shook the container like crazy and it sprayed the entire table, contents, clothing and walls. Everyone was shrieking and laughing like mad. We refer to it as the mustard incident.

Dannyfiredragon said...

That we came home one day and the christmas tree lay on the floor. Fortunately all ornaments and everything was okay, but can you imagine an over 7 feet large tree suddenly lays there. We was shocked, but then we laughed

froggie said...

I've never made a booboo myself... Oh no, not me! But when years back my sister had a cat that loved hanging around the tree. She also developped this passion for tinsle. And actually ingested some. How did we know she ate the darn stuff, well because a couple of days later she would walk around the house with shinny silver strands hanging out her backside!!! Yeah, I know... gross!

I think your husband is doing just fine in the tree department Christina. Men always have delusions of grandeur! He's just being a normal guy.

RDCICON said...

Wow Christina what great christmas memory... sadly I have nothing that can top that *lol*

Love your books, thank you for writing such grand stories, you make imagine that life is full of possibilities!!

Congrats to the lucky winners, I so envy you *grin*

froggie said...

The cat, the cat!.... Not my sister, geez!

Anonymous said...

My grandmother likes me to make her fruit mince pies, although last year was the first time in 5 years I was home for Christmas. The problem is, I like the raw pastry (before you ask it is sweet pastry). So, without fail, my grandfather tells me he can taste fingers!

orannia :)

Anonymous said...

That is just too funny (both tree tales - even though one is still pending!). DH and I only have one Christmas decoration currently (the stocking my brother gave to our cat a couple of years ago.) We still don't have a tree... and I'm sure that your tree could fit into our living room!

and as for accidents. I set my mother's antique table cloth on fire one year... trying to light the candles. Since then... no candles on the table at Christmas.

Ladytink_534 said...

Oh my! I really hope something like that doesn't happen at my moms house this year! She just bought a new house and everything has to be perfect all the time. I can't even begin to imagine the fit she'd throw if the tree fell. My luck, it would land on me!

Teresa Medeiros said...

Picture Teresa frantically blocking Xtina's number...

√Člodie said...

Omigosh, Christina! I laughed so hard reading about your Christmas tree! That is too funny! LOL! And how fantastic was it that you only had one ornament break!?!?

I don't know if I have any particular Christmas disaster stories that I can remember off the top of my head. Although, my dog thinks wandering under the Christmas tree is a natural-born right. I don't know if she's sniffing for her Christmas present or just trying to decide if she needs to mark her territory on the fake Christmas tree, but it hasn't fallen over--yet! Yeah, that's just a disaster waiting to happen. I suppose I'll know when I hear a thud from the other room and yelp from the dog! LOL!


LizbethSelvig said...

Good afternoon everyone - such funny stories; who knew you could write a whole book about tree disasters?

Christina, I identify with the size-issue, but in the opposite way. We cut our own tree every year, too, and we always get it wrong--but not height-wise. We know we've only got a regulation-height ceiling so we look for the fullest short tree we can find. (Kind of like my husband did when he picked good Norwegian peasant stock for a spouse - I identify with short and squat!) Nine times out of ten, our chosen tree is six feet tall and seven feet wide and we need to relegate furniture to the basement in order to move through the livingroom.

One year we had our most gorgeous, over-girthed tree ever and we decorated it to Better Homes & Gardens perfection. Next day we started finding teensy little flying bugs everywhere in the house. For three days they multiplied until we finally called the Orkin man who came and diagnosed the tree as the bug-producer. It was awful. The tree was undecorated in a big hurry, banished to the outdoors and replaced with a Charlie Brownish little thing - that we loved to death. Trust me.

I have no recollection how long the bugs remained. They did die out eventually, though, once the "mother ship" was removed!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Elizabeth Bevarly said...

Fear not, Julie! Foley lived a long, happy life. But he was forever barred from the living room at Christmastime. :o)

Estella said...

My dog chased the cat up the tree and, of course, it toppled over---broke almost every decoration on it. After that we tied the tree to the stair newel.

ashefrog said...

My first holiday dinner for the whole family after I was married and supposedly mature enough to be trusted with dinner, I made a canned ham with all the trimmings.

When I took the ham out of the oven and went to slice it I discovered the plasic covering. I had forgotten to remove it. I took it off as unobtrusively as possible and sliced and served the ham. Years later I heard about...

HELLOOOO!! Carcinogens anyone!!!!

I never told a sole til now except my mom who will take it to her grave which I hope to God I didn't cause. She ate the ham, too.

ashefrog said...

I never told a soul either, why I would want to tell a sole I have no idea.

Christina Dodd said...

I love you guys! I'm feeling so much better about the tree! And the Year of No Turkey! And, um, other matters better not mentioned.

I think between all of us, we could make a million on Funniest Home Videos.

santasmbslt said...

Hi Christina! Christmas was pretty tame around our house until this year. We have a six month old white Boxer who seems to have a penchant for all our cute ornements that have all our names on them!! Sigh!! So, I re-direct her and strongly suggest it's a BAD idea to eat mommy's ornaments. She hangs her head in shame and, bobbed tail between her legs, shuffles downstairs. Of course, you can't stay mad at her long because as soon as you sit on the couch she comes over and puts a paw on your arm and turns her big, sad eyes to you begging for forgiveness! I've always a sucker for the forlorn look!

principessa said...

While I was preparing a gargantuan feast feast for a huge family gathering on Christmas Eve, I put the dish of candied yams on the stove to cool off while everything else was still cooking and baking. Everyone was relaxing in the living room, having drinks and appetizers and suddenly there was this huge explosion. The candied yams had all exploded, literally hit the ceiling and then the dog started in on the yams, broken glass and all. What a mess! Everyone ended up helping out and clearing up the glass etc. No doubt I had put the dish on an element that was still hot. That taught me fast enough to be careful, but at least it was ahead of the dinner.

Sue A. said...

I haven't had any Christmas mishaps (crossing my fingers) yet, but I enjoyed hearing about everybody else's mishaps. I'm glad nobody was seriously hurt and now you have great stories to tell and can laugh about it now too.

Christina I have your book, THE PRINCE KIDNAPS A BRIDE, and it's on the top of my to be read pile.

Have a Merry Christmas everyone!

√Člodie said...


I'm so excited! I finally found a copy of The Prince Kidnaps A Bride today! For some odd reason, I couldn't find one in my area....weird! But I got it this afternoon! Whoot!

Take a wild guess what I'll be doing this evening...:D


Keira Soleore said...

Christina, how do the funniest things on the planet always happen to you? :)

Jeanette J said...

We've never had any mishaps either...yet...but it has been enjoyable for me to read about everyone elses mishaps ..they put a smile on my face

catslady said...

I was wrapping presents at 2 in the morning downstairs when I heard a loud crash - yep the tree. I swear, what didn't break fell off. It was 5 AM before I finished. But what always gets me is my two girls slept through it all and their bedrooms were on the same floor - and that included running the sweeper. The worse part was the broken ornaments from my husband's childhood :(

We had to chop a foot and a half off of this year's tree lol. They're so much bigger once you get them into the house lol.

robynl said...

the only one I can think of is spilling cranberries on someone's fine white linen tablecloth. Ouch on your tree falling over.

ev said...

Hi all- the blog wasn't up this morning when i was on, so I am just now catching up. It gave me time to think of some things LOL!!!

Christina- LOVE TIHH!! I think it is still by the bed.

As for disatsters- HA!! Welcome to Disaster Central (and considering that is what we do for a living around here, it is apropo.

I have had to put the tree on the balcony outside one year- all 3 of the cats decided they wanted to lie on the branches. I also now anchor them to the ceiling. Even though the current crop of cats could care less. Except for the ornaments I put on the bottom for them to bat around.

Our problems at Christmas are always plumbing ones. Usually the kitchen sink/garbage disposal. With 15 people here for dinner. None of whom can help worth a dang. I did the dishes in the bathtub once. I suppose the plumber should be on the speed dial, but hubby thinks he can fix it himself everytime. Including the year he put the acid down the pipes to clear them out. Then forgot. And was under the pipe when he loosened it. ouch. only minor burns. Typical for here. Thankfully the ER is literally only a block and a half away.

catslady said...

I wrote my post and then went back and read everything. I have to add I cooked a ham with the plastic (you would have thought it would have melted)too. Our dog also ate tinsel so I would decorate it minus a foot of tinsel at the bottom. I also have cats so no breakables at the bottom either. One thing I figured out ahead of time was to always buy a tree with the short, sharp needles - I've never had a cat try to climb it.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

This has been such a fun day for me, and I can't thank everybody enough, because you're really starting to get me in the holiday mood now. Hey, maybe the Squawk chicks can come back every year just to get us in really hepped for the spirit of the season. Or the spirits of the season, if that's what it really takes. Egg nog anybody?

I'm off to bed, Xtina, but I've got to say grazie mille for joining us, for bringing along your friends, and for your zany story. As our own Principessa, you are welcome any time...

See you in the a.m., Bellas!

Christina Dodd said...

This has been so much fun -- I've been reading everyone's posts to my husband and we've been laughing so much! What a great day. Thank you for having me, everyone! And thank you for the kind comments about THE PRINCE KIDNAPS A BRIDE!

Shannon said...

One year we decorated our tree entirely with candy canes and red bows. It was very pretty and inexpensive.

Candy Canes kept disappearing off the tree. After I replaced the second box I asked my husband to please eat the broken canes in the bowl and stop taking them off the tree. He had no idea what I was talking about, and the decorations kept disappearing.

On Christmas Eve we found out what was happening. It seems our kitten discovered he liked crunching on the candy canes and was climbing the tree, pulling them off, and stashing them in a sticky, gooey "nest" behind our gifts.

He is too old and lazy to climb the tree anymore, so he raids the candy dish on the coffee table to get his yearly candy cane fix.

RDCICON said...

Hey Michelle that is a good idea having them all back just before Christmas - sure makes it more festive!

Great to have you Christina

Anonymous said...

Read this yesterday morning before anyone commented and had a good laugh. Now I'm back this morning (Friday) and have been laughing until the tears stream. So funny! I'm glad everyone can laugh at these incidents now!

I too have had the cat-climbed tree--my mom solved the problem by getting lots of bell ornaments. Then, whenever the cats or dogs or kids got too close to the tree, the bells would start ringing and she'd give a yell. I am continuing the tradition with my own family! It works!

Oh, and Principessa, I too have put something on the stove to cool and had it explode. What a mess! I'm almost ready to laugh about it.

Thanks for making my day ladies!

Billie said...

One year we had a regular Charlie Brown tree that was so sad. It had bald spots so Dad drilled holes and added branches, but by doing that the weight was off and he couldn't get it to stand up straight. In the end he had to tie it to the ceiling to keep it from falling over.