Friday, December 22, 2006

Rocki St. Claire GuestBlog: Christmas And Clooney...What's Not To Love?

Contest!!! One lucky commenting Bella wins a signed copy of KILL ME TWICE -- PLUS -- a DVD set of "Oceans Eleven" and "Oceans Twelve" courtesy of Rocki!
A few months ago, Roxanne St. Claire admitted one of the most shocking things we've heard here at RBtheBlog -- and, Bellas, we've heard some shawkahs. So she offered to come here on this last business day before Christmas to set the record straight.

Her visit comes at a great time: None of us really feels like working today anyway, and Rocki's December reissue of the first novel in her Bullet Catchers series, KILL ME TWICE, has just hit the shelves. It's got an excerpt from each novel in the series, including THRILL ME TO DEATH (read the RBtheBook feature). So, grab a mug of office nog, offer up a warm buongiorno, and enjoy Rocki's #1 reason to get into the Season...

Buono Natale, Bellas! Can it be just two short months ago when I whispered my darkest secrets on a blog comment, right here at Michelle’s party? In case you missed that day, I blithely admitted that I don’t love Christmas. (Gasp!) I also admitted, a paragraph later, that I do love George Clooney. So, I’m not totally abnormal.

It’s not that I don’t love Christmas…I don’t love everything about Christmas. And, who knows? If given the opportunity to explore him in depth, up close, real personal and with two free hands, perhaps I could fi
nd a flaw on George, too, a little something I didn’t love. I’d welcome the opportunity to try. Right now.

My secret was revealed when I joked that I am the
least likely writer to do a Christmas story because it isn’t my favorite holiday, and yet, here I am, celebrating the release of not one, but two, seasonal anthologies this year.

And I was jazzed because I’LL BE HOME hit the NYT extended (thank you, Linda Lael Miller fans) and A NASCAR HOLIDAY had merited a wee mention in Vanity Fair…the one with George Clooney on the cover. And that’s how Clooney and Christmas came to be co-topics in one blog.

I can devour George in total (especially dressed like he is in the convertible) but I tend to take the holidays in bits and pieces, more like tableaux-style moments that I try to capture and appreciate. In between, there’s a lot of stress, a lot of crowds, a lot of guilt, a lot of work.

But, oh those moments. Like when we sit down with dear friends to the overflowing Christmas Eve table to celebrate the Italian tradition of the Feast of the Seven Fishes. (And my husband, the Italian in the family, has cooked every delicious morsel – what’s not to love about that?) I get seriously cheery at the first few notes of Bruce Springsteen’s whimsical rocker version of Santa Claus is Coming to Town. I love the thrill of unearthing a particularly beloved ornament that has been tucked away in the attic, out of sight and mind, but still so much a part of the family that you wonder how you lived without it for a year.

And what’s better than the toe-curling delight of finding the perfect gift for someone you adore? Or that first sip of coffee on Christmas morning, that one last millisecond of suspended time before the room explodes into chaos and cooing and thank yous and hugs. I love opening cards with pictures of friends I partied with in my twenties, who now have grown children. And oh, yeah, I sure enjoy that first bite of an icing-lathered sugar star cookie.

Yes, Mrs. Scrooge, there are plenty of Kodak moments in December and I do my best to seize them all.

But to be honest…there’s a multitude of stresses that I don’t cherish. I really don’t appreciate it when my favorite oldies station switches to all holiday music the day after Thanksgiving. I’m not crazy about the pink flamingo lights that have become popular down here in Florida, and, to be honest, reindeer sweaters don’t look good on anyone. I loathe the “I fo
rgot somebody” panic, and I don’t relish having to park a mile from Wal-Mart when I’m on a hunt for the makings of a shepherd’s head gear– you know, the costume I found out I had to make the night before the pageant?

Like many writers, I dread December deadlines, and I always seem to have one. And, if you, as I have, ever lost a loved one during this season, you know the bittersweet pang of missing someone who would have made the moment even more perfect.

But when you weigh it all, there’s more to love than not about the holidays…it just ain’t all frothy nog and
mistletoe kisses.

And speaking of kisses, let’s go back to George.

All right, bellas, fess up…anything you don’t like about the holidays? How do you maintain joy during the season of stress? (Reading good books is always my suggestion!) What is your single favorite moment of the month? And, most important, how do you feel about George?

Ho ho ho and happy holiday moments and memories to all…

Visit Rocki at !
Encore! Grazie, Bellas, for teasing me out of the cranks yesterday, and cracking me up with your Canna quotes to go along w/ yesterday's Fabio Cannavaro photo. Out of all my faves, I chose the one that would most likely make me a happy girl -- and showed the quote's author was payin attention during Hot Topic Week. So, vivi anna, you win the copy of Jacquelyn Frank's "Jacob!" Vivi's Canna quote? "Michelle, you've been a naughty b*tch, haven't you? You get your pretty little *ss over here so I can spank it." You had me at naughty b*tch, Canna.


Playground Monitor said...

I'm first! I'm first! Buongiorno, Rocki!

I just hate the crowds and the rude people. Sometimes I just want to shake somebody and tell them to take a chill pill. That's why I try to shop before December 1st or do it online. Today I braved the Harley dealership to get something for my hubby who just got himself a Harley. Imagine that -- I'm a Harley babe now. *g*

Maintain the joy? Well... as you said, reading. A nice massage. A manicure and pedicure. Some personal retail therapy (I slipped some new undies in on the credit card while I was shopping for Christmas presents -- don't tell my DH). Do you see a pattern here? I've also Tivo'd a bunch of Christmas movies and I've watched at least 2 a week for the past 3 weeks. They're all just schmaltzy Christmas romance with a happy ending but they get me in the Christmas spirit.

Single favorite moment of the month? Late on Christmas Eve when I stuff the stockings. My kids are grown and out of the house but they still get stockings and will until I'm in the nursing home and simply can't do it any longer. They know it's from me; I know it's from me. But that little bit of the Santa magic still exists at our house. And this year the grandbaby got a stocking added to the collection hanging from my mantle and I got to buy stocking stuffers for her too. I have an idea, though, that my favorite moment is going to become watching her open her first gift from us and seeing the look of utter amazement and joy that only comes from a small child.

How do I feel about George? To be honest, I've seen about 3 episodes of ER with him, and I've seen Oceans's Eleven, The Perfect Storm and Oh Brother, Where Art Thou. Not a big sampling, huh? But he sure is cute and he seems to be aging quite well. If he showed up in my bed one night I'd let him stay and eat crackers. *g*


Jennifer Y. said...

I have always been a George fan since his Facts of Life and Roseanne days...he is still a good looking man. I haven't seen any of his latest movies though...I think the last one I saw was Ocean's 11. I did feel bad when he lost his pig.

I am not a big fan of the holiday rush. I don't like the crowds, traffic, and busy-ness of the season. I like things to move at a slower pace and things seem to be rushed at the holidays.

Reading is a great way to deal with stress. I would much rather be reading than fighting shopping crowds or dealing with other holiday issues.

My favorite part of the month is seeing family that I don't get to see that is nice to be able to spend time with least some of them...LOL.

Stacy~ said...

Yeah, George is a sexy guy, and I love his sense of humor and how he hates the media and that he loved his pet pig and is in mourning for him now. What's not to like? He was great on ER, but I haven't really follow his movie career. He was in a movie with Catherine Zeta Jones that I saw, playing an attorney who falls in love with her. Fun movie.

I also hate the crowds, especially when people are so rude and not observing the holiday spirit LOL. And I hate it when I forget to get a gift for someone. It has happened a time or two.

Thank God for reading. I finished Lord of Scoundrels and LOVED IT! Jess is on my list of all-time favorite heroines, and Dain was pretty amazing too. If you haven't read it, you have to. It's amazing.

I don't know if everyone will be around the next few days, so if you're off with family, have a safe and merry holiday, and I hope Santa brings you everything on your list.

Julie in Ohio said...

Welcome back, Rocki!!!

I am a Grinchy Scrooge this time of year. I don't like crowds. I don't like wrapping. It took my kids literally pushing me to get the tree up. We won't get into the stresses of the season. I'm so strung out, my hair has more body than I do...

How to maintain the joy? LOL. I think I just proved that joy has nothing to do with this season. However, a little Xmas music and smiling happy kids usually bring me out of the funk.
On the other side, screaming fighting kids will put me back in in a heartbeat...

Fav moment of the month of December is December 26th.

My feelings of George are purely visual. I haven't seen very many movies he's been in and that includes the Ocean movies. I usually catch him doing interviews and I love his sense of humor.

Julie in Ohio said...

Stacy-- You have a great holiday, too. I hope Santa is good to you.

ev said...

Marilyn- does this mean your new avatar will be of you in a leather corset?? And I don't feel so weird giving my 22 year old daughter a stocking now. She asked if she would still get one. I had to consult with Santa. She will get up at 6, open it, and go back to bed, I can guarantee it.

Stacy- forgetting to buy someone something is when that box of unwanted (never used) gifts comes in handy. That and gift bags and tissue paper.

julie- I agree, although my fav time is about 8pm on the 25th WHEN THEY ALL LEAVE!!!

I think my fav part of this year's season has been opening todays blog and seeing George. I love George. He is hot. He has always been hot. I have seen just about anything and everything he has ever been in. Did I say he was hawt??? He's hawt. Very.

Now this is schmaltzy, but one of my favs is all the feel good stories on TV this time of year. It always makes me realize that there is hope for this planet yet. I always get a good cry in there somewhere, and my heart is lighter for it. I can tell the Big Day is almost here. I was up at 530 (morning, not afternoo) baking cookies. No matter how prepared I am, I always have a ton of last minute stuff to do. At least this year I won't be up all night wrapping. That is done. Cleaning (my least fav thing) on the other hand, is a whole nother story. That is probably my least fav thing of all.

ev said...

Did I say George was hawt?? yummy.

Julie in Ohio said...

Upon rereading my comment, I think I may have laid it on pretty thick. I don't *hate* Christmas. I love watching my kids open their presents. To see the smiles of joy on their faces really make the eternal stresses worthwhile. Like Ev, I like the holiday movies. They're heart warming and are just good fun.

Anonymous said...

On the Grand Scale of things, I hate that so many people spend money wastefully on things that they don't need. I realize Christmas brings out charitable impulses, too, but one trip to Wal-Mart makes me think the US is consumed by plastic perversions (ooh, wait, that sounds like a good thing). I wish families would not indulge their kids with any more stupid killing games and slip them a good book, even if it's a graphic novel.

I've actually stopped stressing over Christmas, cut back on the card-sending, baking, shopping, decorating, etc. The only thing that's important is spending time with my family. I suppose it makes a difference that my four kids are grown-up and we have different priorities more Cabbage Patch and Star Wars toys to hunt down.

I just like to listen to the kids laugh while they're playing cards or Dirty Scrabble after Christmas dinner. I don't even have to be a participant.

And George---well, he's Old School and very, very suave in photos. And I bet playful in person. It's too bad I live in Maine and he's in California and Italy or I would probably be a drooling stalker at his gates. Maggie

pjpuppymom said...

Morning Rocki!

I'm a newbie Bella so for me it's welcome instead of welcome back. I picked up I'LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS the other day and can't wait to curl up on the couch with some Kahlua laced hot chocolate and dive into it. (the book too...grin)

I like George but he just doesn't rev my engine, even though he's very handsome and sexy. I think I'd love to be his friend. I'd especially love to be a friend he'd invite to his place on Lake Como!

I admit it. I love Christmas. Love, love, love it. The day after Thanksgiving I put on the Christmas music and start decorating my house. Outside decorations are minimal but inside, according to one of my neighbor's children, "it looks like Santa's house". Baking is my therapy and, during the holidays, I indulge in a lot of therapy. It makes me happy to create gifts of love and I adore seeing the smiles and sparkly eyes of the people I deliver my goodie plates to every year. I delivered a tray to my hair stylist yesterday and when I opened the door to the day spa practically the entire staff was standing there waiting for me. LOL The receptionist had seen me pull in and passed the word.

What I don't like about Christmas is the number of people who have forgotten what the season is really about. To them, it's all rush, rush, rush. They're the ones in the stores pushing and shoving others aside to grab that 'must have' gift and scooting in front of you to snatch that parking space you've been patiently waiting for.

I've always loved Christmas but I admit to getting caught up in the stress of getting everything done for a number of years. That changed five years ago when my husband died. I vowed then that I wouldn't sweat the small stuff, that I'd enjoy every aspect of the season and not get stressed over the things that did or did not get done. I've managed to keep that attitude and, because of it, the Christmas season has become more enjoyable and meaningful to me than ever.

My favorite Christmas moment is the end of the Christmas Eve candlelight service at church when the entire congregation files out of the church, glowing candles in hand, and sings Silent Night. That single moment fills my heart with such joy. I don't have the words to describe it.

Merry Christmas and Happy Reading!


Estella said...

I am with you, Roxi. Christmas is not my favorite holiday. My favorite moment is after everything is cleaned up on Christmas night.
Oh yes, George rocks!

Kati said...

SIGH! PJ, I'm with you girl! I adore Christmas. I love the feeling it gives me. I love the music (especially Anne Murray's Christmas album, which is in my singing range). I love the food. I love giving gifts, I love how excited the kids get about Santa. I just really, really love the holiday.

I do get stressed about my house being clean enough when my mother stays, but hey, once it's clean, I love it!

Now, George. The thing I love best about George is that he uses all that hotness for good. He is extremely active in the fight to end the genocide in Darfur. He testifies in front of the UN, this week, he opened a hospital in Lousiana. Seriously, he's a truly good person, and even as pretty as he is, that's what makes him so sexy to me. But, if anyone is wondering what to give me for Christmas, I'd take a month at George's house on Lake Como in Italy with him. Just him. But Brad can come by to visit, without Angelina. Now, see, that's a sammy right there! ;-)

ev said...

maggie- I'll bring the bibs!

estelle- george can rock me anytime!!

pj- 2 years ago mine had a heart attack and 3 surgeries. I agree with you whole heartedly. I refuse to get stressed if I can help it anymore.

Oh, and I forgot to address the Flamingo issue. We have a collection. Gets bigger every year. This year there were enough ornaments to put up a 3 foot tree, with the flamingo lights. Let's not even talk about the ones that are hiding everywhere in the house. Hubby should never, ever said that they were tacky. He never knows where one will show up either. and the light up one in the yard gets seasonal scarves for the holiday's. Of course, we have snow, which is different than flamigos in FL- at least you don't expect them here. I think the next time he does something to tick me off, I will redo our bathroom in them.

krissyinva said...

I don't like rude people, I had an incident at Walmart the other day that left my jaw dropping. I also think that all the bad drivers come out at Christmas. They mall/Walmart area is especially bad where the speed limit is 15 and stopsigns are everywhere. I almost got sideswiped twice the other night by people not stopping at stop signs doing about 50 MPH.
I guess my kids really help me maintain the joy. They are just so excited, it's an instant pick me up. Also I have to say that the "nice" people kind of seem to stick together and help each other out more even total strangers.
My single favorite moment is watching my kids open their presents. I love how first their eyes light up, then you see a smile across their face, next thing you know they are jumping up and down screaming at their brothers and sisters to look!
George, George George-- I fell in love with him on ER and I still love him. He has timeless good looks that make most women of any age fall for him. Sean Connery is the same way.

ev said...

I had some idiot backing out of their drive the other day, didn't look where they were going, and I was on the other side of the road. they pulled so far out, I ended up in the ditch rather than get hit. Thankfully I have a 4 wheel drive and just drove out. They never even looked!!

i worked too many years in retail, and always joke with the cashiers. I had one tell me the other day I was the nicest customer he has had. That made my day. I told him (with a long line behind me) that I knew how stressful for him it was and how rude people can be. I hope they heard me in the line!! LOL

I hate rude people. I mean, how hard is it to stop and let someone out from a side road, or answer a question if someone has a problem?

Tiffany Clare said...

What I don't like about the holidays?

hmmm...that would be all the travelling, even though I have two small kids, the family still expects me to travel to them! And they are not close! And I have four dinners I need to attend...not this year though, I succesfully maneuvered a visit from a friend from very far away, so it's unfotunate that I will only be able to make two stops, well after the xmas rush.

Should I feel guilty? I don't, but I needed an xmas break this year.

Playground Monitor said...

does this mean your new avatar will be of you in a leather corset??

Yeah... when George's deceased pig flies. I have a black leather bomber jacket for safety and that's about as "Harley babe" as I get.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who curls up on the couch and cries over Christmas movies.

I musta missed the part about the house on Lake Como. I've been to that area and it's beeee-autiful! We can eat crackers in bed there rather than my house. ;-)


Jennifer Y. said...

I like the Christmas movies as well. I have recorded quite a few of them lately to watch later. The Hallmark Channel and Lifetime show some good ones.

And George does do some good things. His father has aged well too (Nick Clooney). Did you know that George's cousin is Miguel Ferrer, the actor, who was most recently Dr. Macy on Crossing Jordan? He is Rosemary's son. Random George trivia for ya!

Jennifer Y. said...

Oh, and I like the mature yet humorous nature that George seems to have. Very attractive.

Vivi Anna said...

Grazie, Michelle for the honor winning best Canna quote!!! LOL


Damn straight I was paying attention during Hot Topic Week...we share some similiar tastes I believe... ;-)

I love love love Christmas. I hate the crowds, and the malls, and the rush everyone is in...that's why I do all my shopping online and don't go to those places during December. I love decorating, and baking (and if you knew me that would be a shock) and listening to Christmas music. I love how excited my girl gets and the counting down sleeps, and on Christmas Eve we go out for a long walk aroudn the neighborhood and look at all the lights, come back have some hot chocolate and sit around the tree and cuddle. Love that.

I love when my whole family comes over and we exchange gifts, eat lots of food, play fun laugh-till-you-pee-your-pants games, and just be together. Family is what makes my Christmas so wonderful.

And sharing the joy...

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all my Bella have become a fabulous part of my life over this past year! I'm honored to know yous.

Oh and George is HAWT! Thanks for sharing him Rocki!! If only for a day!

Playground Monitor said...

I clicked on that photo of George sitting on the convertible and by George (no pun intended) they could do a remake of "To Catch a Thief" and let him play the Cary Grant role of John Robie.

Jennifer, did you watch "A Perfect Day" with Rob Lowe on TNT the other night? Good movie. And Rob Lowe's pretty easy on the eyes too.

I forgot about George being related to Rosemary. To show you how old I am, when I was a little girl I had two baby dolls named Rosemary and Betty (Rosemary's sister in real life).


Gram said...

George is fine.
Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because there is no stress, just food, friends and family.
Christmas is better now that I am older and the kids have it at their houses. I just have to get there.
Happy Holidays to all of you.

ev said...

Vivi- I am coming to your house. No one here plays games and I love them- especially when you change the rules and they are X rated!!!

Marilyn- you are right about the remake. It might just be worth it too. I usually hate remakes, but enjoy the Oceans 11 one.

CrystalGB said...

I maintain joy during the season by playing Christmas music and watching Christmas movies.
My favorite moment is watching the children open presents.
I think George is a good actor.

Jennifer Y. said...

Marilyn: I missed the movie the other night...not sure what I was doing. Wonder if it re-airs.

Oh, and one of my favorite ER moments was when Rosemary Clooney sang on there.

Does anyone remember the sitcom Clooney did called E/R? It was in the mid-80's but I saw re-runs in the 90's on some channel. I think Elliot Gould was also on it. Clooney had some crazy hair back in the day...but still looked good.

robynl said...

Overall, I enjoy Christmas; sometimes it takes me a while to get the spirit but eventually as I get chores accomplished and everything comes together I get in the spirit.

I relax by having a cup of egg nog, sitting with my puppy in the big chair and watching movies.

George Clooney is the Man! I loved him on ER. Hunka hunka!!

Playground Monitor said...

Jennifer (and anyone else interested)...

In A PERFECT DAY, Rob Lowe plays Robert Harlan, a man who, after being unexpectedly fired from his job, pursues his lifetime dream of writing a book. Basing it on his wife’s experience with the death of her father, he constructs a heartwarming book that quickly captures the imagination of readers everywhere. But after he achieves enormous success, he begins to lose sight of the things he loves the most, including his wife (Paget Brewster), his young daughter (Meggie Geisland) and his friendship with his agent (Frances Conroy). It takes a disturbing prophecy from a mysterious stranger named Michael (Christopher Lloyd) to wake him up and make him realize how much he has truly lost.

Here are the next showtimes on TNT:
Friday, December 22 at 11:05 p.m. and Sunday, December 24 at 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 a.m. (All times ET/PT) Please check your local listings.

Even my husband enjoyed this.


alissa said...

Geroge is great! But Christmas is too much of everything at once and then it just stops the day after. I sit home and drink my herbal tea and reat to my heart's content.

ellie said...

George definitely has that special charm and magnetism.
Christmas is too busy and frantic for me. I prefer to stay put or even better take off for a wonderful holiday for that entire period, like Italy.

joelle said...

I enjoy the holiday but now the preparation that is required and the hectic busyness of it. George is something else. I do my daily walks which are really helpful in maintaining an even keel.

pearl said...

TGhis is a busy month in our house since both my son's and I are born in December so that is my favorite part of the month. Celebrating our brithday's together since one son was born on my birthday. I can cope with the holiday as long as I have my daily workouts. George is hot!

sharon said...

I look forward to December since it means a new year is soon to be and a hopeful future. I love the holiday but it is a stressful time with too much to do but I take it slowly and then I sit back and listen to Andrea Bocelli and read.

traveler said...

George is the man! December is a meaningful and special month to me. It is a family celebration which is so warm and closeknit that I wish it were more often. I prepare a wonderful feast and enjoy this time together with family and friends. It is over too quickly and then another year starts. I hope you enjoy this holiday and best wishes.

Jennifer Y. said...

Thanks Marilyn for the info!

Just saw that Ocean's 11 with George comes on tonight at 9 EST on TNT!

Jennifer Y. said...

Is A Perfect Day based on a book Marilyn? Sounds familiar.

Unknown said...

I love George...
Mr Kate actually got to meet George in London but he was more interested in talking to Arnold the governator and he didn't get me George's autograph!! I could barely speak to him for a week or two..Mr K, not George.

I love watching my 4 yr old experience Christmas. Her little face just makes all the effort worthwhile!

ps we're having a contest over at Lust Bites-please come and play!

Unknown said...

George is a great actor! Loved him on ER. I haven't seen the Ocean movies yet. Favorite Christmas moment is watching nieces and nephew opening their presents. Things I do to help stress during the holiday is read a good Christmas book, listen to Christmas songs, and watch all my favorite Christmas movies.

Maureen said...

The crowds, lines and walking from store to store are the things I don't like. On Christmas Eve when the stores are closed and whatever I don't have I can't get, that's when it's time to celebrate with family and that's my favorite part.

Cherie said...

Got to go with the crowds as well. My favorite time is christmas Day when my toddler's face is so happy as he opens his gifts from Santa and Mommy and Daddy. George is a good actor.

Cherie Japp

Roxanne St. Claire said...

Hey Bellas, methinks I struck a Christmas chord. All the stress and rudeness aside, I love reading all your "moments" -- it's a great way to get into mine!

LOL, ev, on the Flamingo collection. Actually, I don't hate the flamingos...but don't get me started on those inflatable Santas! And whassup with the Homer Simpson in Christmas gear that is popping up everywhere? Is that also a Florida thing?

Hallmark Channel has been running some great romance Christmas movies...and some not so great. I caught Unlikely Angel with Dolly Parton the other night that was just really a tough two hours, but my nine year old loved it.

Kate P, you mentioned a four year old. I think that is the absolute magic age for Christmas. They so totally "believe" and their excitement level is just off the charts on Christmas Eve. I loved that. Mine don't believe anymore, but like Marilyn, I will do the stockings until I can't stuff them anymore. They love those! I put them outside their doors on Christmas morning -- a tradition I started in an effort to buy more sleep. Never worked, btw.

I'm off to bake with my daughter...another Kodak moment. Glad you guys love George -- he's an inspiration of many of my heroes.


Playground Monitor said...

Jennifer, it's based on the book of the same name by Richard Paul Evans, who also wrote "The Christmas Box."


Jennifer Y. said...

Unlikely Angel is one of my least faves too Rocki...they also have been playing Dolly's Smokey Mountain Christmas quite often on CMT.

One of my faves as a kid was the Olivia Newton John tv-movie called A Mom for Christmas where she is a store mannequin that comes to life...don't know if it has come on this year yet or not...wonder if would have same appeal years later.

Thanks Marilyn...I thought that was where I had heard of it before.

I am making fudge, chocolate bark, and a cake...should be interesting since I can't cook.

Cathy M said...

Well, as far as George goes, what's not to like. I hate being so busy going everywhere and visiting everyone that I can't just enjoy the simple joy of the holiday. I just want to stay home, spoil my kids with a daily batch of goodies, have time to read a new book, and have my family around the table at dinner time.

ReadingAddict1 said...

The worst part of the holidays that I don't like is when they start Christmas in September! I think that is why a lot of people are sick of Christmas by December. I do get most of my shopping done before Thanksgiving, but not because of the Christmas displays (In fact I pretend that they don't even exist until after Halloween, LOL). I get most of it done early so that I can relax during December and remember what the season is really about (not the commercialism of it). My favorite single moment is when the family is all together, healthy and happy :). (George has always been a favorite of mine. You can put him under my Christmas tree anytime with or without a bow... *grin*)

Unknown said...

LOVE Christmas, HATE the commercialism.
LOVE seeing family members open their presents, HATE all the prep time before they come over.

Vivi Anna said...

Does anyone here get the day after Christmas blues? After all the prep, all the anticipation of the big day, I get depressed the day after. That's why I've started a new tradition with myself...I safe up a little something extra for myself for after Christmas and go spend it on myself when all the hoopla is over and I can leisurely enjoy it.

This year, I put a nice lump sum for myself since I've been such a good girl all year long!!!

ev said...

Rocki- No those stupid blow up things are everywhere you look. The only one I want is the big, black spider to put on my porch roof for Halloween. although I have seen a big blow up flamingo.

The other day at some store, I saw they had Valentine's Day stuff ready to go out, sitting behind the counter. Shoot me now. Please.

Jennifer Y. said...

Vivi: I know what you build all this excitement and anticipation for one day and then the day after you are left going, "Now what?" I saved some money and birthday and holiday gift cards that I received so I can go shopping and buy myself something special after the holidays.

principessa said...

I enjoy the day with family since it is so important, rare and memorable to be with close family at this time but the stress and extreme amount of time devoted to running and spending is a total waste. Pity since it is over so quickly as well and everyone just continues on as before. It has more meaning than that but it has become lost in the masses and our new values.

KimW said...

How do you maintain joy during the season of stress? (Reading good books is always my suggestion!) What is your single favorite moment of the month? And, most important, how do you feel about George?

I try not to think of all the things to do before the holiday and try to start early. Just the thinking part can bring you down.

My favorite moment was when the lights finally starting working on the Christmas tree. It was just about to take flight after hours of trying to find a bad bulb. lol

Oh, and George...yummy! I can never tire of watching, listening and looking at him.

Sue A. said...

I think Christmas is really for the kids. As an adult I can't help seeing the commercialism, the excessive waste and feeling guilty when some of else have more while some have nothing.

So I hope everyone can find the child in him/herself and hold on to some of the magic in Christmas.

* * *

Does George seem to be getting better with age to everyone? I swear he gets yummier each new year than the last.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Well, Bellas new and old (you know what I mean), what a day.

Here's how I'm getting in the Christmas spirit this year: I keep stopping by here and reading what you do at the holiday. It's the thing that's keeping me focused this year, I kid you not. :)

I'm so glad you're all here. You have such marvelous ideas, and are so generous in sharing how you celebrate, as well as what drives you batty.

Speaking of which, my mum's due in in a couple hours, so I'm vegging, reading, listening to an old Take 6 Xmas CD, and generally trying to get right w/the season.

Oh, BTW, Dave came home a little early today and we spent time reading together and just hanging til the kids came home. So, I have you to thank for that, cause you hinted (broadly) to him that he should take care of me a bit.

I'm not sure what's gonna be up here at RBtheBlog for the next couple days, but I'll try to post daily so that if we need to escape, we've got someplace to go besides to the egg nog bowl. :)

Jennifer Y. said...

Hugs Michelle! I am glad we can help and I hope everyone has a great holiday!

We are going to spend the next few days at my brother's house. It is the first Christmas since we lost my grandaddy and my granny is coming to spend the holiday with us. The kids will help cheer us up...hard to be sad around a 7-year-old, three 3-year-olds, and a 6-month-old. I don't leave until tomorrow and will try to check in each day!

Jennifer Y. said...

Oh and YAY Dave!!

Julie in Ohio said...


The next few days are gonna be craziness for me and mine so I don't know if I'll be able to get online. I just wanna say to all, HAVE A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS.

The best part of this Christmas for me has been the Bellas. You have given me a shoulder to whine on and a reason to laugh my butt off. Thank you!!

catslady said...

I don't think I could do Christmas in 80 degree weather lol. Loved French Twist by the way :) and George!

My favorite thing during the holidays is the tree trimming/dinner that I have before Christmas. All the commericalization is the worst.

Robin L. Rotham said...

George is definitely a fine bottle of wine and getting finer every year.

My favorite "hits of the 70's, 80's, 90's, and today" station also switched to Christmas music on Thanksgiving, which wouldn't be so bad if they didn't scrape the absolute bottom of the quality barrel in the quest for variety. Just play the good ones till we're sick of them, already!

My favorite thing about Christmas is the Christmas Eve church service -- that's when the real meaning of the season finally hits me, stripping away all the commercialism and stress. I just sit there, surrounded by my lovely family, singing carols and listening to the homily, and sigh with contentment.

Wishing you all a blessed holiday season!

Anonymous said...

Christmas should be a wonderful, reflective, giving time of the year. For those who are able to put blinders on and avoid the massive commercialism surrounding us, I give a reverent bow. (I guess you can pronounce that any way you like). It's tragic to hear about families that put themselves in near bankruptcy in the hopes of making others happy. I wish the season could be simpler. The simple giving of a gift. The gathering of families and friends.
Years ago we lived in a small Vermont town with a 200 year old church. I have wonderful memories of attending church services in a church warmed by a wood stove with a neighborhood boy pulling on a rope to ring the bell calling everyone inside. Outside a soft snow whispered down on us. That epitomized Christmas. And did you ever listen to the quiet on Christmas Eve?
Now to get to George Clooney. He's sort of today's Cary Grant. Smooth, sexy, absolutely sure of himself and purely delectable.

Playground Monitor said...

Take 6 Xmas CD I love Take 6 and they got their start right here in my town when they were all in college together. The campus is only about 5 miles from my house. I've even seen them live.

I hear ya Robin on the all-day Christmas music starting at Thanksgiving. My husband came home the other day ranting about it. They had that station on at his gym and he had to do his cardio exercise to The Twelve Days of Christmas sung by the Muppets. Of course, Miss Piggy sang the "five golden rings" part. If I head "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas" one more time I might scream.

Whatever happened to good old songs like Walking Round in Women's Underwear? *g*

We have warm Christmases here sometimes; sometimes it's colder than than a brass commode seat. But I just got an email from a gal in Australia and she was complaining about 120 degree temps. Ouch!

Glad you got some down time with Dave. *snicker*


Liz said...

I hate the crowds and how rude some peolple are.
Best part is being with all my kids and grandson and surrogate children
And George is still a Hottie.
Favorite moment Christmas Eve when all the pressies are under the tree everyone is asleep and I just stare at all the lights on it and reflect on special moments with each family member

Jennifer Y. said...

I must say that I have never heard that song Marilyn. I have had "I want a hippopotamus for Christmas" stuck in my head for the last few days though.

kim h said...

glad to have you here again, i just stay home and spend time with the family.

ev said...

It is 330 am eastern. I just got home from grocery shopping. I believe I was the only one in the store. If the shelf was empty they found it for me. I think I will do my shopping like this all the time.

When you get tired of hearing the same old Christmas music or just need a change up, may I reccommend Twisted Sister's A Twisted Christmas. Just try not to let the sight of Dee Snider in spandex give you nightmares. On the other hand, the cd was so bad it was good. They actually have the melodies running through most of the songs, but with a heavy metal flavor. Too put it mildly. And the 12 days of Xmas- go to itunes and plug in the album. The words are on the review. Way too funny. And yes, I still listen to heavy metal. LOL


Vivi Anna said...


I hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday. I likely won't be by for the next few days. I have a deadline kicking my ass and I want to spend quality time with the kiddo.


catslady said...

My favorite Christmas music CD's are by Garth Brooks and Vince Gill. One song, The Gift, always makes me cry.

ev said...

cat- i was listening to that song last night at a party. It always makes me cry too.