Seen, snagged, … that’s what I just had to do when I spotted this survey over at Amanda’s. Reminiscening past Christmas celebrations surely helps make the holiday spirit resurface at least temporarily – even better if you’re listening to the right tunes while at it. I’ve filled out the survey before but hey, Christmas happens again every year, too, so why not?!
Egg Nog or hot chocolate?
Hot chocolate all the way! At best made from scratch by my mum with that pinch of love added :). Egg Nog is out of question in anyway due to the eggs but I was actually the weird child enjoying my mum’s egg nog-frosted cakes around Easter years and years ago.
Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?
Neither. Some are wrapped but most hide in bags my mum sewed years and years ago – we’ve been re-using them every year since.
Coloured lights on tree/house or white?
White lights. It’s fun walking past the houses of others decorating like crazy but constantly looking at that would give me headaches.
Coloured lights on tree/house or white?
No. I’ve only ever heard about that concept and seen it in a few movies. It’s apparently only a tradition in the UK and US??
When do you hang your decorations up?
Is it bad that I don’t have a set date for this? Let’s say around the end of November.
What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert) what’s?
That one’s easy and my whole family would agree: my grandma’s Rotkohl [in the above picture]. It’s red cabbage sauteed, braised with seasonal spices, vinegar, sugar, apples and some secret ingredients. It’s so.incredibly.delicious. Maybe it doesn’t sound like much typed out but the fact that I don’t miss the meat as long as I get seconds and thirds of this should tell you.
What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?
Right now there isn’t a lot yet and you know we’re this close to Christmas Eve. One wish, however, is a subscription to my favourite business magazine, brand eins. Sounds nerdy or boring? So far from it.
Do you open a gifts on Christmas Eve?
Yes! We actually open all gifts on Christmas Eve because that’s the main holiday over here. Unless we see other relatives the next day we don’t give or receive any more gifts on the following two days.
How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
Given we don’t celebrate at the same house every year – alternating between my parents’, my grandparents’ and one of my aunt’s houses – it differs every year. At my grandparents’ it’s a lot of traditional figurines [that I adore], straw stars, …. Obligatory are only the red candles.
Snow? Love it or dread it?
I’m divided about this. Christmas without snow isn’t really Christmas, is it? But I could do without the dirty mush it turns into soon. Looking at the current forecast I’d better bring out the flip-flops [you know, the ones I don’t own …] OR ask my dad to get one of those snow cannons used in skiing areas ;).
Real tree or fake tree?
Let’s get real: only real ones perceive that complete Christmas-cozy feeling. We’ve never had fake ones. Getting ours from the hillbilly vendor living far off in the woods used to be the dad-and-daugther tradition we had. Only not anymore now I won’t be able to go home any earlier than 23rd. At least I’ll get to decorate it with my sister.
Do you remember your favorite gift?
That’s a tough one. I got a lot of amazing gifts throughout all those [already 23! – craziness] years. A memorable one was the dollhouse my grandpa built himself – complete with teeny-tiny light switches in every room that turned the lights on.
What’s the most important thing about Christmas for you?
Hands down being with my family. Especially now that I rarely get to see them in-between holidays.
What is your favourite holiday dessert?
Get ready to be shocked if you’ve been reading for a while because – it’s not chocolate. My mum’s cinnamon parfait beats everything else. The name says it all: it’s perfect.
What is your favourite tradition?
Going on a walk with the whole family – grandparents, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins and my siblings. I’m not sure we’ll see them all this year as we’re celebrating at my parents’ with my grandma and grandpa coming. The remaining family members live several hours away and I only get to stay until the 27th.
What tops your tree?
You caught me off guard here. Depending on where we celebrate this decisions up to the man of the house. I think my grandpa has some kind of golden star and I’m not sure about my uncle and dad.
Which do you prefer, giving or receiving?
Giving because it’s wonderful to see somebody’s joy upon opening a gift to find something they didn’t expect but that fits them perfectly.
What is your favorite Christmas song?
Another tricky one. We don’t sing the same ones every year – plus they’re German – so I’ll go with those that I’m playing over and over on Spotify. Two of them are “All I want for Christmas” because it reminds me of the cute scene in my favourite movie [see below] and “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” as we used to sing it in the school choir. So yes, mostly songs that bring back memories for me. Isn’t Christmas time all about the memories??
Candy canes, yuck or yum?
We hardly have any of these over here and the only ones I’ve spotted at random weren’t even vegetarian. I’m a fan of mint flavours, though.
Favorite Christmas Movie?
There’s just one answer: “Love, Actually.” I’m this close to buying the DVD every year but then refrain because I want it to stay that special Christmas movie. Who knows about this year, though …?
What do you leave for Santa?
Ah, this is going to make me – and likely the whole of Germany – look so bad: we don’t leave anything out and never did. Before you start throwing candy canes at me, though: We celebrate on Christmas Eve and Santa doesn’t come through chimneys around here but enters through the door. Maybe he planned it this way so he’d have more room left in his stomach once he drops the gifts overseas? Which would make us really kind for not tempting him, don’t you agree?!
Do you prefer to shop online or at the mall?
If I had it my way – and that’s how we did it in recent years – I’d enjoy a whole afternoon out with my mum buying presents. Now that I’ll have to go on the five hour journey home via train I had to go the easy route of ordering online and having the packages delivered to my parents’ house. It takes away from the cheery holiday spirit completely, though. 😦
Christmas letter or Christmas card?
We largely stopped sending cards years ago and while I pondered sending out a few letters this year time ran away from me. I’d rather write surprise letters throughout the year [remind me to start again!], though, when I have more time to dedicate to every single one.
Happiness-inducing today: The helpfulness of my boss. I know what you’re thinking … but hear me out: she’s been really helpful and even lending an ear when I needed it for some decisions I’m currently making. Plus you know none of my colleagues reads the blog so I’m just being honest here because it truly made my day.
Stay in touch!
Your turn: Answer as many of the questions as you’d like yourself!
And: Should I buy “Love, Actually” on DVD??