Friday Fun Facts

03 Dec

Hi and welcome to Friday Fun Facts!  Come play along and learn something new about me, and I’ll learn something new about you.

Can you believe it’s already December?  Funny how this time of the year makes the days and weeks fly by.  So much to do and never enough hours.  Since we are now into chilly December, my posts this month are going to reflect the holiday season. 🙂

With Thanksgiving behind us, we started getting out the Christmas holiday decorations.  The tree is up and decorated, the wreath is hung on the front porch.  Lights are glowing in the windows and I even have my plastic Santa face from when I was a kid hanging up.  It’s a little worse for wear, but to me it wouldn’t be Christmas without it.  My husband was even so kind as to buy a more up to date version for me a few years back…and it lights up!  They remind me of my childhood, when this time of year was extra magical 🙂

Even as an adult, this is always a fun time of year.  I love unpacking and sorting through Christmas ornaments.  I admit I have a small—well, okay LARGE—problem with ornaments.  I always manage to find several each year that I love and HAVE to buy.  I can tell you in all honesty that I would have no trouble decorating 3 or 4 full grown trees—maybe even the one at Rockefeller Center…lol—and I’m sure there’d still be some leftover.

As I sorted through the storage bins containing all the boxes of ornaments, deciding which ones to display this year with the new ones I bought (shhh..don’t tell my husband, he thinks I should stop buying them…hehehehe), I couldn’t help but reminisce.  Pulling out the ornaments that my kids made in grade school…the one made of puzzle pieces spray painted green with their picture in the center, the popsicle frame with their picture in the center, a cardboard circle colored with crayon and a picture in the center.  Are you noticing a theme here?  Lol

At the bottom of one certain bin I came across a cookie plate with each of my children’s names printed on it.  It was the plate that they would put cookies on, along with a glass of milk, and leave out for Santa before they went to bed.  A tradition from my own childhood that I passed along to them, and one I hope that they’ll pass along to their own children if they take that route.

There are so many other traditions.  And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that tradition is more than security, familiarity and a comfort.  It’s family!  It’s a beautiful thing to look back on.  No wonder this time of year is always reflective and peaceful.

We have more traditions than just the cookie plate.  As I’m sure a lot of you do too.  Baking and decorating Christmas cookies, reading a special book on Christmas Eve, a special ornament hung in the tree (more like hidden) with a special bonus gift for the person that finds it.  Oh, too many!

From the time the kids were born until they reached their late teens, I would buy them a Christmas ornament with some personal meaning or accomplishment for that year.  I’d have their name and the year engraved into it…a keepsake for each of them later.  Or when we’d get together with parents and siblings, nieces and nephews, we’d do an ornament exchange.  In order to get your ornament you’d have to sing a Christmas song (with microphone…we didn’t play around people…lol), or someone would read a Christmas story and we’d pass the ornaments around in a circle until they stopped reading…the one you held was the one you kept…stuff like that.  Fun and memorable traditions.

Some traditions are temporary and some span generations and are passed down from family to family.  There are families that will start their traditions for the first time this year, there are traditions that have been forgotten but will be restarted.  Even more that will be revamped and tweaked to fit our ever changing lifestyles.

Which brings me to…Drum roll please!   Today’s Friday Fun Facts question…

There are so many ways to celebrate and have fun and be together.  What is your favorite tradition during the holiday season and is it one you carried on from your childhood, or something you started when you had your own family?

Can’t wait to hear your comments!


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33 responses to “Friday Fun Facts

  1. Cheryl Yeko

    December 3, 2011 at 2:20 am

    Hi Christine, you got me beat. I’ve been busy with my final edits and haven’t cleaned the house in a week, let alone put up a Xmas tree!

    Guess what I’ll be doing this weekend :>)

    Our Xmas tree is rather unique. My husband is a car guy and I have 3 grandsons. Our tree is loaded with cars and car related stuff. I at first made a fuss when this tradition started, but after a few years I figured I was outnumbered and now just go along with it. With the lights and the pretty bows that I’m allowed to put on it, it is actually very pretty.

    Hope your holidays are fun!!


    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:27 am

      I like the sound of your tree….something unique is always fun! If you have time you should post a picture of it on your blog!

      Happy Holidays Cheryl!

  2. Zee Monodee

    December 3, 2011 at 2:21 am

    Lol, your holiday season sounds like so much fun.

    For us here though, December is full-on summer, so our tradition is… family BBQs. 🙂 It’s something we started my husband and I when we got married, and every year we hold the end of year BBQ and invite everyone over. These are some of the best family moments I know. 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:29 am

      I better not tell my hubby…he’ll want to start a Christmas BBQ tradition! I love it though. Seems odd to be here covered in blankets and drinking hot cocoa and knowing you’re in shorts slathering bbq sauce across the grill! lol

  3. Callie Hutton

    December 3, 2011 at 2:27 am

    Christmas??!! Is that on it’s way?? Yikes. Been so busy, it (almost) slipped my mind–what’s left of my mind, anyway. The one thing we still cling to is going to the tree farm the weekend before Christmas and cutting down our own tree. The kids love it, and we feel like the Griswolds (except hubby doesn’t drive our car under a truck.)


    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:30 am

      I miss the smell of a real tree, but we gave up that tradition years ago. My sister in law used to own a tree farm, and we’d head up there too and pick out a tree, cut it down and drive it back home (minus the semi incident) to set it up. Was always a lot of fun!

      Thanks for coming by Callie…I’ll shoot you an email before the holiday to remind you to shop for presents…lol

  4. jerridrennen

    December 3, 2011 at 2:43 am

    The kids and I always bake Christmas cookies together, though they usually tire of the process and leave what’s left to me. Also, Christmas day, they wake us up really early to open presents, even now that they’re mostly grown.

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:32 am

      LOL…my kids and I would do cookies to, but for some reason whenever it got the point of decorating the Christmas cookies I was on my own. What a long process it was. I’d start out very creative but towards the 50th one, I just slapped on some frosting and called it good.

  5. Angela

    December 3, 2011 at 3:02 am

    Wow! I love the ‘sing for your ornament’ idea. Cool!
    Our Christmas’ have changed over the years. When I was growing up, we always made homemade cinnamon rolls on Christmas Eve day while baking the dinner rolls and pies for Christmas dinner. Those yummy cinnamon rolls were Christmas morning breakfast after presents. My husband’s family tradition is homemade blueberry muffins on Christmas morning. When we married, we blended the two traditions and both are available on Christmas morning. We’ve been married 28 years and I can still count on his mom calling to see if he got his blueberry muffins 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:34 am

      lol…I love your tradition! Funny that your hubby’s mom still calls to check on the muffin status!

      I’m getting some ideas here for new traditions…might have to do the cinnamon roll one here! Sounds like the perfect light breakfast 🙂

      Glad you stopped by Angela.

  6. Neecy

    December 3, 2011 at 3:11 am

    I started the kids with Elf on the Shelf a few years ago. I originally bought him for my house, to keep the grand kids in line, then my girls wanted one for their kids. So you know I went out and purchased one for them too.
    The elf comes Thanksgiving night and the girls just love it, just as much as the grand kids. Elf finds a new place to hide every day and he leaves on Christmas Eve to help Santa deliver all the presents to the good boys and girls.
    Of course we have the cookies, and the countdown to Christmas chocolate calendars hanging up, but Elf has made a huge impact on kids and it’s fun to watch the grand kids look for his new hiding spot in the morning.

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:36 am

      Denice…I love it! You’ve taught me so much this year. Pretzel jello and now Elf on a Shelf. Something I’ll have to remember if I’m ever lucky enough to have grandkids…no hurry there though…my kids are just now leaving the next 🙂 lol

      • Neecy

        December 3, 2011 at 4:26 am

        My family started early! This December will be 25 years for my hubby and me. That’s more than half of my life! So, I became a grandma before most!

  7. D'Ann Linscott-Dunham

    December 3, 2011 at 3:32 am

    My daughter and I are a lot like you, Christine! We have ornaments and more ornaments. We love them, though, so much! Every year we add more. I collect snowmen, and have a pile of them. For the last few years, I haven’t had room for them. But this year, new house, so they’re out!

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 3:37 am

      YAY…another ornament collector! I think we might have to start some kind of group! lol

      I did the snowman thing for awhile….and the santa one too…now it’s just whatever grabs my attention and lately it seems I like the ones that play music or move.

      Thanks for visiting today D’Ann 🙂

  8. Ally Broadfield

    December 3, 2011 at 3:52 am

    We also go out and cut our own Christmas tree each year — one for upstairs and one for downstairs, because I have an ornament acquisition habit similar to yours. Here in Texas it’s not quite as much fun as it was in Michigan where I grew up. We rode in a horse-drawn sleigh to go get the tree there. Still, the memories will last forever. The kids and I also bake and decorate cookies every year using my grandmother’s top secret sugar cookie recipe. It has the added benefit of forcing me to mop the kitchen floor (which I hate to do) at least once a year since EVERYTHING get sticky!

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 4:04 am

      Love your traditions! Now I live in Michigan and always have, and we’ve never taken a sleigh to cut down our tree…sounds like a beautiful memory!

      Too funny about mopping your floor…the sacrifices we make for family eh? LOL

      Glad you came by Ally 🙂

  9. Karen

    December 3, 2011 at 5:54 am

    We used to make a day out of cutting our own tree. At the time, we lived in the mountains and had to find a 15′ plus tree to fit into our log cabin. We’d trudge into the snow ever deeper into the forest to find just the right one. Sadly, we had to give those up when we moved and two of our children developed allergies. I really miss live trees.

    It doesn’t quite seem like Christmas now until we put up four large Christmas balls that my husband’s mother made when he was a child. Between his family ornaments and mine, and all of the wonderful handmade ornaments our children and grandchildren have made, we never buy new. Yes, some are getting a little ratty around the edges, but the memories generated when we add each one to our tree can’t be replaced.

    Of course, I become a baking dervish during the holidays, too. Always have at least one day with all of the grandchildren decorating cookies.

    Thanks for the thought-provoking blog, Christine! I’ll remember it as we start our decorating this weekend. Must be ready before my son (my baby) comes home from the service with his buddy!

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 7:29 am

      How exciting that your son and his friend are coming home this weekend!

      Like you I have a ton of ornament passed down from family, but I also can’t resist adding to my collection…I just love to memories and the feelings as we decorate the trees with old and new ornaments.

      Have an amazing weekend with your family Karen. So glad you stopped by and shared your traditions 🙂

      • Karen

        December 4, 2011 at 12:49 pm

        Thanks, Christine. Son isn’t here yet. He’ll be here for week over Christmas which is MY Christmas present. :))

  10. Nancy Jardine

    December 3, 2011 at 6:41 am

    We always have a freshly cut tree, (about 9ft usually) and I’m a sucker for picking out one that is lopsided, or a bit bare or something – mainly because, since my daughters were young, we’re always in a hurry to get our Venison burgers. We eat venison at other times (have great Scottish venison on our doorstep) but the tree lot we go to has the most amazing burgers on a freezing…or snowy… or rainy day when we tree buy!

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 7:29 am

      I love that Nancy! That’s a fun tradition…and you can never go wrong with a wonderful burger!

  11. Jennifer Lowery~Authorj

    December 3, 2011 at 6:58 am

    Wonderful FFF this week, Christine! So happy you do this each week. My family loves tradition, especially around the holidays. My kids always do advent calenders, which are homemade, and we spend hours tying Hershey’s kisses to yarn strings! Also, our Christmas tree is decorated with things made by family. There is nothing on the tree that isn’t hand-crafted. I still have the wooden painted ornaments my mom made while my dad was stationed in Germany—I was 1 so they are very old, lol! I have cross-stitched ornaments I made when I was younger and painted ornaments we made as a family the past couple years. Oh, and can’t forget the holiday dinner with my Grandma’s slushy punch. It just isn’t Christmas without it. Thanks for the fun blog! Happy Holidays!

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 7:32 am

      Happy Holidays to you too Jennifer! I love advent calendars and the fact that you make yours. Wish I had done that when my kids were small, that would’ve been a great craft for the holidays!

  12. myrahmcilvain

    December 3, 2011 at 7:45 am

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful family traditions. My granddaughter is coming Sunday to help me put up our tree. I’ve had a grandchild helping every Christmas for a long time. We start when they can walk and go from there. For several years the ornaments are all down low. I’m no decorator so it’s handy to tell visitors that the grandchildren did it.
    OUr family tradition means opening one gift at a time so everyone can see what each member received. One year we opened all at once and we were all disappointed.

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 9:20 am

      Hi Myra! That’s a nice tradition. Especially when you have a lot of people. It would be disappointing to rip through packages and then miss what everyone else received!

      So glad you came by 🙂

  13. Trish

    December 3, 2011 at 8:46 am

    When we were little Dad used to bake a cake and then we’d sing happy birthday to Baby Jesus. It was a fun way to bring the focus back to the true meaning of Christmas. Last year we started that tradition with our own little ones. What a treat to see the fun from a parent’s viewpoint!

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 9:21 am

      Hi Trish! Love that tradition….I bet it is exciting to start that same tradition with your own kids!

      So glad you stopped by to share 🙂 Happy Holidays!!!

  14. Kristina Knight

    December 3, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    great topic, Christine! My favorite tradition is one we started just a couple of years ago – at both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner we have a ‘thanks’ moment. At Thanksgiving, we go around the table and each say what we’re thankful for. Sometimes it’s silly, sometimes serious…And then at Christmas dinner we each choose one person and say why we’re thankful for that person…that one sometimes gets teary. But among the decorating and baking craziness, those are my 2 favorite traditions.

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 2:10 pm

      Oh that’s a good one Kristi! I can only imagine the emotions around the table.

      Thanks for coming by to comment 🙂 Glad you enjoyed the post.

  15. mirriamsmyth

    December 3, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Baking. 🙂 I started doing it when I moved out with my sisters. We’d spend the four or five days leading up to Christmas baking everything from nostalgic chocolate chip cookies to delectable Italian or Russian cookies, from sweet Italian pastries to melt-in-your-mouth truffles. We don’t live together anymore but we three still bake up a storm around Christmas and email pics of what we’ve made. 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      December 3, 2011 at 11:00 pm

      Love that Mirriam! This time of the year brings out the baker in me too! Love all the creations you can come up with, and sometimes I even amaze myself.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      December 4, 2011 at 2:24 am

      I can only imagine the mouth-watering treats! Sounds like a yummy tradition Mirriam 🙂


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