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1/1/13 2:03 P
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emoticon Please go to the 2013 Question now. Thanks! emoticon

Eastern Shore of Maryland
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1/1/13 2:02 P
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Terri, I always ask my boys to do that---so plan on getting one at the wedding. And if my sister's kids are there, will make sure I get one with them for my mom.

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1/1/13 12:58 P

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I got a new cruiser bicycle from dDIL2 (who drew my name) and they also got Steve one for his birthday, so our yard sale bikes are destined to be retired, I guess. I got a case of canning jars from DS3 & his fiance (cute and thoughtful); however, my favorite "gift" was a family photo with everyone in it. It's been a few years since we've managed that, so I was particularly pleased. The only one missing was DD2's husband, but they've been apart for about a year and can't decided whether to finalize their separation and divorce or not--so I didn't really feel like I was missing any family on this occasion.

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12/31/12 8:27 A

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My Mom gave me a big hunk of beef tenderloin. Since I'm trying to reduce serving sizes of red meat, it will make about 8 delicious filet mignon dinners for DH and me.
In-laws gave cash, always welcome.

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12/30/12 12:27 P
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My FitBit! LOL

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12/30/12 12:23 P

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Quick--before Cathy does--favorite received gift this year? For me--new flying pans that will actually STAY non-stick! I got 2 from hubby and 2 from sister (who had my name this year) so I can get rid of the old ones!

Dianne
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12/30/12 7:53 A
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Just to let you know, I will be starting a new Question for 2013 topic ---probably later today or tomorrow or Monday---be prepared---LOL

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12/29/12 9:47 P

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Works for me!! I'll be in Tahoe in March and in San Jose in June--DD1 will get her PhD then!! But I'd be happy to visit CA another time--can't see enough of my DD1!

Dianne
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12/29/12 3:12 P

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We might need to organize a chickfest at my house!

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12/27/12 10:14 P

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HEY -- I want to be adopted TOO!!! Then we could play games ALL the time!!! AND I'd FINALLY be able to live in my log cabin "dream home"!! emoticon


~ Carol from Central Ohio ~

~ "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away." Anonymous

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12/27/12 2:24 P
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Oh, I promise, you would notice me---LOL---and yes, dh would sleep with all the noise around him. Hey, that means you all were having fun if you did not hear the phone.

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12/27/12 1:41 P

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You two are so funny! You know, you could just come in and grab a plate and might not even be noticed until we sat down to play cards! Bahahaha!

We have two recliners in the living room and our BIL usually falls asleep in one and Howard could have the other--while the kids chatter and play all around him and the noise is such that we couldn't even hear the phone ringing when the adopted kids' grandparents called~ (oops--we're probably in trouble for that one)



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12/24/12 9:36 A
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Me, too! LOL

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12/23/12 9:38 P

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Terri--If I lived close enough, I'd want to be adopted!! LOL

Dianne
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12/23/12 11:18 A

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As a little kid, we went to my dad's parents' for Christmas Eve with all of that side of the family, had Christmas morning at home, and later dinner at Mom's parents' with all of her side of the family. We moved away when I was 12 and then it was mostly just us unless we went to visit.

When I married Steve, my parents were divorced by then and my maternal grandmother gone. The other grandmother didn't speak to me since I chose to live with Mom after the divorce, so she was pretty much out of my life. His family had lots of traditions in place and I adopted them. His birthday is the 24th and they always had a birthday party for him at his dad's parents' house with the cousins, complete with cake and ice cream, balloons and all--then they cleaned up and switched gears and it was Christmas. He never felt that he missed out on anything--he thought it was great that everyone got presents on his birthday :) They would have Christmas morning at home and his mom's parents would come over EARLY to watch the kids open their gifts--I'm talking like 6:00 a.m! They would go home after brunch and regather for dinner. It was easy because they all lived in the same town. We continued doing this until we moved away and Steve always had to work through the holidays because of his job with the highway dept.

We have always opened gifts on Christmas morning with our kids until DS2 married a girl whose family also lives in town and has a ton of traditions. Now, we get together on Steve's birthday for his party first and then Christmas. We don't do Santa in a literal sense (never told the kids that he filled the stockings, etc.) so we all open our stockings together right after Pop's birthday party (because they're all hanging in my living room--all 29 of them!). Then we exchange the gifts from drawing names (grands with each other and adults with each other) and the grands open gifts from us and my mom. They save their gifts for each other for their own Christmas morning at home. I make a special Christmas breakfast and anyone who wants can come over and eat with us, and then we'll have dinner with anyone who doesn't have other plans.


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12/23/12 7:31 A
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Dianne, that is a good plan that your dd1 has---we used to open family gifts on Christmas Eve at my grandmother's--which took the edge off the waiting---and I always gave my sons new pjs for that night so they would look good in the pictures the next morning---LOL

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12/22/12 9:46 P

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Growing up, we always opened our gifts on Christmas Eve--I don't know if that was the German or Danish tradition but we we always have done that. My girls get their Christmas stockings on Christmas morning--those are the gifts that Santa brings.

When we moved out here, we knew we couldn't get to our parents' houses for Christmas--WI and TX were just too far. So we don't have to split up our holiday. My siblings do get to my parent's house either before or after the holiday. Sister's husbands family isn't real friendly to my sister so she never gets much notice of when THEY are doing Christmas. So she has learned to just set it up with my folks and they either fit around or not.

So far, DD1 and hubby come out this way for Christmas every 2 of 3 years--they stay home one year of each 3. I feel blessed that she wants still wants to come out here--cause my example isn't a good one. (They go to his side first one year, then come to see us--next year it is us first, then his side--and then they stay home at THEIR house.) I don't know how long they will continue this pattern but I am so glad they are!

Dianne
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12/22/12 7:58 A
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We used to do Christmas on Christmas Eve at my grandmother's house---sadly, that has changed----esp. with Andy and Shari having different schedules for the holidays---and now with Taylar and Michael, her family always does Christmas Eve----so we are kind of in a turmoil here on Christmas traditions for the family. Looks like there will not be a day when we all can do it together this year---maybe we should set it for the Sunday before Christmas like they do. We pretty much stayed home on Christmas day so the boys could play with their new toys----told dh's mom she needed to come to us that day as there were no little children at home then who wanted to stay with their toys---that worked when the boys were younger. One tradition I started was putting a roast in the crockpot on Christmas morning---that way we could have dinner whenever---if guests came, it could stay in there til they left. And Dh always cooks bacon for Christmas morning. I am sure things will change when Michael and Taylar have kids--then we will have to start new traditions.

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12/21/12 10:12 P

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Have a new question (because I'm curious!):

WHEN DO YOU CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS WITH YOUR FAMILY?

Especially if you have a "blended" family or "in-laws" etc that you have to "coordinate" things with?

Do you have traditions you follow?? Like my neighbors always have Christmas with HER side of the family on the Sunday before Christmas and they always go to HIS side of the family on Christmas Eve -- then they spend Christmas at home just as a "nuclear" family....




~ Carol from Central Ohio ~

~ "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away." Anonymous

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12/17/12 6:58 A
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One Christmas my mom did not take me shopping for my clothes---we did not agree on colors and pants were hard to get long enough---so I did not think I was getting any---well, everything I opened was gray---my fav color at the time---I got pants, sweaters, sweater sets, vests, a dress, skirt---and a pink blouse to go with the vests---I loved it---it was the best surprise of all.

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12/16/12 8:31 P

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When I was a sophomore in college, I bought my mom an electric typewriter. This was 1976--no computers but a nice typewriter was wonderful. She used that SO MUCH--I think she put it away in the late 80s--it was well used until then! My dad had to help me--it was $50 and I just didn't have that much--I did have a credit card (with Sears) so he helped me with payments. Really helped my siblings, too--Mom typed our term papers!

Dianne
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12/14/12 8:53 P
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One Christmas Andy wanted to go with the youth group on a ski trip---we told him we could not afford it---but secretly made arrangements for him to go---and he never guessed even when the youth leader said there was another going that was a surprise---we bought him a bunch of things he needed for the trip and wrapped them all up with a note saying he was going on the trip. He was shocked and so happy. Wish he would remember that when dealing with Reagann not wanting to go home from us.

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12/14/12 6:05 P

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I think my favorite gift I've ever given had to do with things we got my parents -- we "splurged" and got my mom a diamond tennis bracelet and my dad a really nice watch we had engraved... My parents NEVER do ANYTHING for themselves -- and don't tend to have "nice things" -- so it was SO fun to get those for them. They were much appreciated and still are...

Also alot of our "memorable" gifts have to do with Jake... Like I gave my husband a tshirt the kids and I had made that said "Jake's Dad"... My sister-in-law gave us ornaments -- one for Sam and one in memory of Jake the first Christmas after he died... My husband gave me an engraved heart shaped key ring that said "Happy Mother's Day" then had "Sam, Jake & Luke" with the date on the back.... A friend of mine wrote a poem for Jake's 5th bday -- then matted it and framed it for us... etc etc...


~ Carol from Central Ohio ~

~ "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away." Anonymous

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12/14/12 2:43 P

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WooHoo Betsy--nice gift!

I gave Steve a motorcycle for Christmas one year. He had seen it for sale at someone's house when we stopped at their yard sale in about Sept. and later sent me back to buy it. I made arrangements with the folks to hide it there and make payments on it until Christmas. I told Steve it had already been sold (I just didn't tell him it was to ME). Then, the boys and I snuck it home and parked it under DS's bike cover in the yard (then hid DS's bike in the shop). Steve walked right past it and never gave it a thought until he opened the last gift--a tiny little box with a key and the registration. Now THAT was fun!

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12/14/12 11:55 A

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I loved giving DH a leather flight jacket from LL Bean. Unfortunately he had a terrible cold so he could not enjoy the fact that I wrapped myself in it to surprise him but he loved it anyway. He has had it for years and still wears it with a new zipper and a proudly sewn on Air Force
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12/14/12 7:56 A
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I loved doing a stocking for Taylar last year---pink and everything in it was pink---I had soooo much fun shopping for that stuff---and she was so funny as she opened up all the goodies.

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12/14/12 7:49 A

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New Question--favorite gift to ever give OR receive?

My DD wrote a "why I love you, Mom" in her own handwriting and framed it--that is one of my most precious possessions!!

Dianne
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12/3/12 6:50 P

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LOL Terri! I know our pastor and his wife once left a son--they had 4 boys and a girl--but for 30 minutes at a rest stop in the early 70s--two cars, both thought kid in the other car. So that doesn't bother me--Cindi is right that is the LENGTH of time--and they don't call a friend to help him out?? Anyway--those left a bad taste in my mouth...

The made for TV movies don't do too much for me--I like my White Christmas....

Dianne
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12/3/12 4:08 P

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Well when you see a trashed house that is mysteriously immaculately cleaned, by not just a child--but a MALE child--you know it's a fantasy!

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12/3/12 3:45 P
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I always wondered how he got his house all cleaned up before they got home----LOL---but I could not imagine leaving a kid---although I might have been tempted back in the past---but when you have a bunch, I could see that happening, esp. if you are not all traveling in the same vehicles.
Do you all have a favorite Christmas cartoon show? I love the original How the Grinch Stole Christmas and absolutely detest---dare I say HATE---Charlie Brown' Christmas. They are so mean and cruel to him and just think it sets a bad tone that it is okay to treat others that way. I probably overthink that one like Cindi--LOL

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12/3/12 12:43 A

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And I understand your situation. The issue in the movie that bothers me, (and I admit its been a while since I saw the movie) was the parents got on an airplane and were traveling a long way before it occurred to them. That's what bothers me. In both the movies it wasn't a case of a few minutes, but it was days and large distances being traveled before they realized anything. I think your situation is understandable in having just taken younger children, you were adjusting. We all have stories about being new parents and starting out the door to get ice cream and remembering you have to pack up a baby. Its the degree in the Home Alone movies that bothers me. But, I still like movies. I just have to stop over analyzing some things.
Cindi

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12/3/12 12:01 A

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I do get that, Cindi. I don't mean to make light of the issue of child abandonment at all. The day Steve left ours at the restaurant, it wasn't funny either. We had just taken guardianship of our youngest 4, and I felt particularly bad about the whole thing. It only got "funny" much later. I felt like we were being watched by our entire community--many who thought we were out of our minds for taking on 4 more kids at that point in our lives. (Our youngest was 16 at the time) Then, the first thing we do is "lose" one.



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12/2/12 11:28 P

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It bothers me, too that parents could forget their child like they do in those movies. I can see what happened to your daughter, but the movie the degree that the movie presents is really bothersome. I guess I come at it from being a therapist and having seen or heard some of the things I've heard. I have a hard time laughing at the Home Alone Movies. But, there are a lot of Christmas movies that if you really think about them and the message they convey, they aren't so funny or cute. But, the romantic in me still likes Christmas movies. Which is something I do miss since we don't have television.
Cindi

Edited by: CINDILP at: 12/2/2012 (23:30)
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12/2/12 9:47 P

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I ordered White Christmas on Netflix but it says it will be a long wait. I'm sure that all the Christmas movies will be in high demand right now.

Dianne, I cracked up about you being mad at the parents on Home Alone--that's because you have an engineer's brain and think logically and are so organized. I have to admit that I have, over the years, forgotten a kid here or there...nothing too serious, but like being late to get them from school or something because I lost track of time. Steve actually left DD2 at a restaurant one time because she was in the rest room and he thought she'd gotten in the car with DS1. Fortunately, our town is so small that the owner of the restaurant called me (I was at work in the coffee shop about 100 yds down the street and he was coming to pick me up) and gave her a refill on her soda while she waited for her Pop to get back. She was about 9 and wasn't at all ruffled by it but it was a good lesson for Steve! Not even GOOD dads think like moms!

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12/2/12 7:37 P

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It's a Wonderful life and Miracle on 34th street are fantastic. And there was a Hallmark movie called Single Santa Seeks Mrs. Claus. Did anyone see it? It had Steve Guttenburg in it as Santa's son. I love Christmas shows and music. Not much for stupid funny, tho. Polar Express is great too.

Delta Co. MI zone 4


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12/2/12 6:41 P

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Cathy -- were you thinking of Miracle on 34th Street? Can't remember if it's about Macy's but it's definitely set in NYC...and has multiple versions etc.

I saw Christmas with the Kranks -- with Tim Allen & Jaime Lee Curtis -- but can't remember it too well either...!!

Might have to try to watch some of the movies mentioned here!


~ Carol from Central Ohio ~

~ "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away." Anonymous

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11/30/12 8:48 P

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Wow!! The Home Alone movies are okay--but I get sad/mad at the parents that they could leave a child behind!! That just doesn't fly in my book!!

We do not have any traditions regarding watching TV or movies--but we do have special carols playing when we do Christmas Eve dinner and then presents (we open on Christmas Eve and Santa brought whatever was in the stockings).

I may have to look up some of these movies!

Dianne
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11/30/12 1:35 P

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I don't remember seeing it--who's in it?

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11/30/12 8:40 A
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Does anyone like Christmas with the Kranks? what a comedy of errors---LOL

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11/29/12 11:52 P

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Okay, I just ordered White Christmas on Netflix because I don't remember seeing it and I don't know what song you're all talking about.

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11/29/12 5:32 P
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I always get weepy with that song---but it is a good one. I don't really care for Polar Express myself---think it might be the graphics in it---and I don't like the Grinch movie but love the Grinch TV show----Love Lucy Who in Whoville.
What is the movie called about NYC and Macy's parade? there are several versions and I can never remember which version is the one I like best---but know it is not the oldest or the newest version.

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11/29/12 3:01 P

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Terri, I agree with your opinions on the Santa Clause movies with Tim Allen, sometimes they just don't know when to quit making essentially the same movie over and over and over and.....

DD1 does not care for The Polar Express at all but I loved it. Tom Hanks was fantastic doing so many different characters.

DD2 is going to a Christmas movie tonight, I think it is called Rise of the Guardians. The preview didn't look that exciting to me but she said, " It's a free movie since I paid last time."

Another sappy and obvious movie is "Christmas Shoes" but I like it anyway although I do like the song better.

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11/29/12 2:47 P

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Dianne, I did not know anything about that movie until after I married Jay. I had never seen , "It's a Wonderful Life" either. The song . "Sisters" is fantastic but only when it is done by the men! :) Everyone gets complete agreement from me that stupid funny is not enjoyable. My family LOVES "The Muppet Christmas Carol" and it is now tradition to watch it as soon as Carolyn comes home for Christmas. We also listen to a recording of it in the car when we go to and from Mass on Christmas Eve.

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11/29/12 2:12 P

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I do like "It's a Wonderful Life." It's one of those sappy movies with a really great message--and I love Jimmy Stewart! I also love Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" with George C. Scott as Scrooge.

I'm agree with Cathy, though. I like a lot of Christmas movies as long as they aren't stupid humor. Can't handle much Chevy Chase or Ben Stiller but I did enjoy Home Alone 1 and 2. I liked Santa Clause with Tim Allen, too--Oh, and Polar Express! I've got to get that one from Netflix pretty soon.

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11/29/12 11:54 A
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Tough one---think it was a TV movie called "The Wish List" where she wrote down these wild things she would love to have for Christmas and her friend put it in the Santa Letter box---and things started to come true---she worked at a perfume counter in a department store. But I like almost all Christmas themed movies----The first 2 Home Alones, Unaccompanied Minors, The Santa Claus movies(3rd one is only okay) are some of my favorites----and I do understand the movie where he wanted to be seen from outer space---LOL. I know a lot of people like A Wonderful Life---but I really don't care for it.

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11/29/12 11:45 A

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New Question--best Christmas movie? Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye in White Christmas. Favorite song in that movie--"Sisters". I remember watching that as a kid on TV in black and white and that song and movie just struck something with me!

Dianne
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11/9/12 2:33 P
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Yes, have the whole series---and have reread them several times.
Terri, I agree, guess I should have had the elephant back when I had a bit---LOL---oh, my, don't that ever really occured either---LOL

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11/9/12 10:25 A

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If I had an elephant--I'd work on an act and then take it to Circus World Museum on Baraboo, WI and do the act there. I lived in Baraboo for a year and went to the 2 year campus there before heading to Madison. Some of the people I went to Boo-U with are (or were) at Circus World.

Cathy--you like those books, too? I have the whole set--should reread them--but I skip Clan of the Cave Bear--makes me upset the way she was treated....

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11/8/12 1:03 P

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what money?

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11/8/12 8:22 A
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Hmmm, wonder what elephant meat tastes like---never hear of them eating that in Africa---but in my Jean Auel books--Clan of the Cave Bear---they hunted Mastadons and ate that meat so would think they would be a good supply of meat at least---LOL
I think I would use my elephant to haul that big trunk out of the way in the back yard---wish I could burn it like Terri does---but living in the city can be a problem. And I am sure my gd would love to ride around on its back. Maybe I would create an act and take it to local shows and fairs. But where the heck would I keep it? no garage!
But if you have a statue of an elephant, make sure that is does not face the door or all your money will flow out the door---Chinese thought?

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11/7/12 11:15 P

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An elephant? I'd probably CAN it in preparation for the hard times that are likely to come! ;)

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11/7/12 7:40 P

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Ride it? lol In reality I guess I would donate it to The Milwaukee Zoo because I loved going there when I was young and I also loved introducing it to our children when they were young.

Like Cathy, I forgot about this thread as well. We have a small airport in our city and airports nearby so we are used to plane traffic and it was eerie after 9/11 not to have any due to the grounding of all air traffic. DH is a veteran of the USAF and he saw and heard a plane in the sky and reported it to the government. He got the twelfth degree but they thanked him and looked into it. Since we live in Wisconsin, it turned out that it was actually a government plane doing border patrol. Until that moment I had never thought about how we actually are a border and COULD be a good place to attack, it was very unsettling.

As far as Thanksgiving goes, we are very traditional but we have changed where we celebrate a our children have aged and family circumstances have changed. When our children were little we would celebrate Christmas at theThanksgiving holiday with my dad and his wife since they lived a distance away and Dh's mom didn't. After my dad died and his wife made it clear she didn't want to have anything to do with us, my sister ( who lives in the same town as stepmother) and her family started coming here so Jay and I made the traditional dinner for them. After my bil lost his job and started to DJ,they couldn't come here so I said we should volunteer at the church and just eat with those people. We did volunteer but DH would not HEAR of joining them to eat as he feels it is taking food away from them. He can't grasp that part of the warmth of the situation is dining WITH others from all walks of life, not just those who have nowhere to go or can't afford a meal. After volunteering we went to Waupaca, about a 30 minute drive, to dine with his brother and our sil. They have traditional food but gourmet style. We almost always bring dessert, I make the pumpkin pies and Jay makes apple. When we served at our house we used the Taste of Home cookbook and made apple cran pear sauce, a sweet potato casserole with apricots, pineapple and pecans ( not quite traditional but a variation,) and turkey with sausage pecan stuffing. We also had mashed potatoes and gravy and pies for desesrt. One Thaksgiving tradition that the kids have is watching an old videotape of a cartoon called "Mouse on the Mayflower."

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11/7/12 4:04 P
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NEW QUESTION---from Mestena---What would you do if someone gave you an elephant?

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11/3/12 5:19 P
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One Thanksgiving, Michael, my youngest, and I spent it home alone---he had chicken pox---and my MIL was in bad shape and the family had been told they had better come see her---so my dh and other 2 sons headed up to see her and had dinner with my SIL----good thing I went ahead and cooked a turkey and dressing for Michael and me as my SIL did not even send us platters----but my MIL did die the next morning so it was good that they got to see her---Michael and I were the only ones who did not get there---but she was in a nursing home and he could not go because of the pox---at least he was scabbed over so that we could attend the funeral

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11/3/12 5:06 P

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I've always been a little non-traditional. I've always liked changing up traditions. I guess I have some oppositional defiant in me. When we married, we worked to make our own holiday traditions that were what we wanted. I go out of my way to make healthy foods and things we like. I have one son who was born Thanksgiving, so we have birthday cake instead of the usual deserts.

Some of the places where we served churches, my husband and I have been involved doing community Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. We've had some great years doing those. One community the ministerial alliance sponsored the dinners. We got donations for most of the food from grocery stores. The basics were provided, turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing. The only requirement was to bring a favorite holiday food or dish. We would ask to know how many to plan for, but all were welcome. If the weather was bad, dinners were delivered. It was done for those who couldn't go to where their family was. Usually elderly were the ones thought of, but we had all ages come. One year we had a truck driver's family. They wanted to be with other people while Dad was on the road to make it special. And we also welcomed the unexpected family members who would come, but grandma can't cook like she did, so we said just bring them to the dinner. There was no cost, but one year people wanted to take a free will offering to help with any future expenses. At that point we had a number of laypeople who attended the meal yearly and wanted to keep it going. They did most of the work at the last one I was at. In most of their cases, they didn't get together with family until the weekend, so it gave them something to do on the holiday.

Going back to the being non-traditional. One year for Thanksgiving, I thought we'd do something totally non-traditional and go to a hotel and swim and go out for dinner. It was a great idea until my younger son got sick with an ear infection. So, Wednesday night while we were waiting for his prescription, I bought a frozen lasagna and some salad and other easy foods for the kids. I wasn't wanting to cook anything. My older child who wouldn't eat turkey or any of the other foods on Thanksgiving was so upset with me when we had our supper on Thanksgiving and there was no turkey. Now he loves turkey and we don't let him forget that year he didn't like turkey and was so upset we didn't have turkey.
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11/3/12 3:22 P

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I love the Christmas idea--I will bring that up.

Dianne
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11/3/12 2:37 P
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Dianne, maybe you should check with your church on that ---maybe the pastor can contact other pastors and it could be a joint effort. I am sure there will be lots who just might need this. And another idea---how many people lost their Christmas decorations---maybe people could go thru their items and things they don't need or use any more could be put out for people to use in decorating their houses this year. I know I would be heartbroke if I had lost all of mine and would really make me feel better.

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11/3/12 1:19 P

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Tradition was always to eat WAY to much!! LOL

I must have squash in some form--soup or just baked. We have done just a turkey breast if it is just us--I'm the only one that likes dark meat. We must have hubby's garlic herb bread--we do it in the bread machine and everyone loves it. And cranberry "jelly"--the canned stuff--the girls MUST have that. But we really will try other things.

This year, I'm wondering if the church might do a dinner for people who are displaced from their homes. Just saw that one town won't have gas for 6-8 months--so no heat...that will be so hard for people. It IS like Katrina in many ways....

Dianne
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11/2/12 4:49 P
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Good one, Terri----just kept forgetting about this thread lately.
I do a lot of our family's traditional foods but sometimes try a new recipe----I have to make my grandmother's dressing and corn pudding. I did find a new recipe for sweet potatoes that cook in the crock pot which makes it much easier to have a dish that does not take up the oven----but I only fix that if my sister is coming as my family is not big on them---although dh likes them---it uses applesauce so is definitely less calories than one with those marshmallows---and it actually smells pretty good. I learned to do the corn pudding back when I was probably 12---and Mommom always said mine was better than hers so that was always my job to make it---which was funny as I did not eat it---but I actually tried it the other year and I liked it---LOL----my dh loves it. Now my MIL always had mac and cheese along with mashed potatoes, dressing, and sweet potato bread---now, I cannot make that---I know my dh wishes I did, it was not like anything I ever saw---maybe I should get the recipe from his sister sometime---but I think half the flavor came from the old pie pans she used for it.

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11/2/12 4:49 P

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I forgot to answer my own question! emoticon

I don't remember having set traditions as a child except that we celebrated with family--sometimes Mom's family and sometimes Dad's.

After I married Steve, I was brought into their family traditions and we always celebrated with his mother and her parents. His sister, was single at the time, would always join us and continued to do so with her husband after she married. The menu never varied much, although we were allowed to add to it. Grandma made the homemade parkerhouse rolls, Mom made the turkey, gravy, dSIL made the bread stuffing and green jello salad, I made the mashed potatoes and green beans with bacon (I didn't care for the casserole), and then we had to have pumpkin and apple pies. It was okay to bring something extra, but not to leave anything out. It's still pretty much that way.

A couple of years ago, I brined our turkey for the first time and we really loved it; so, I will do it again this year. I think we'll add a ham to the menu too, as we'll have a few extra people this year and all the side dishes will go just as well with ham as they do turkey.

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