Christmas 2018 – The Cheery Version

’tis The Season

Park Vista High School - Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade 2018Thanksgiving is the holiday kick-off. It begins with the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, which ends with Santa. The balloons had to be held closer to the ground because it was one of the windiest (and coldest) Thanksgiving days in New York in history.

The highlight for me … the Olaf balloon of course!

Fun discovery: one of my cousins was in the parade as one of the featured high school marching band performances. That’s her on the left.

Cookies

Next on the seasonal agenda … cookie baking. Too. Many. Cookies. An old friend posted a picture of gooey butter cookies she made, and I had to try them. They definitely have a hint of gooey butter cake taste, and the recipe has been added to my holiday cookie list.

Christmas cookiesI made more cookies than we could eat, even after gifting a bunch to our family!

Of course, the very basic chocolate chip cookies are a staple and must-have every year.

Then a new chocolate cookie recipe, one made with white chocolate chips and the other with mint chocolate chips. The latter will be a repeat for sure.

The raspberry thumbprint cookies are mandatory. They are a favorite of one of my sons. So much so, that he ate all I had left Christmas night!

Shopping

First stop: Target (followed by a Starbucks Chestnut Praline Latte).

I finished most of my shopping pretty early. Things were scaled back this year, which I think is a good thing since we all buy whatever we want throughout the year.

Christmas no longer has to be the time to get so many things. The spirit of giving is what it’s about.

Nordstrom’s goes all out with decorations! Nothing was purchased here; I just thought it was pretty.

Nordstrom's at Christmastime

I visited The Outlets at Castle Rock three times within a week. That’s saying a lot since it’s nearly 30 minutes away! The Outlets at Castle Rock

The Outlets at Castle Rock

Office Party

My work holiday party was at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science this year. It’s still pretty small since most employees work from the home office in Austin. Both my supervisor and my manager came to town this year. It’s always great to see them in person since I work remotely from home.

Decorations

I had a vision of 4 feet tall flocked evergreen trees (advertised on sale at Hobby Lobby) on either side of the fireplace this year, but they were sold out. I ended up with 3-foot trees with multi-colored blinking lights. I wish I had chosen something with white lights. I’m generally not a fan of colored blinking lights. However, the hearth was more festive than it’s been at Christmastime in recent years. [Not pictured: the main tree with white lights in the living room.]

Christmas Movies

There were lots of classic, Hallmark, and even Netflix original movies watched this holiday season. These movies are often sweet and enjoyable with happy endings, and I find them fun to watch while relaxing on days off work.

The Aftermath

Empty shirt boxes and gift bags are folded under the tree, and a few gifts are lying around on couches. Those and all Christmas decorations will be put away by the end of today. It might be the first time ever that my decorations are taken down before the year is over. I’m ready to start a new year without dragging any part of the previous year into it for a change.


Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

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