Monday, December 01, 2008

Getting in the Spirit

Today is December 1st, and the holidays are just over there on the horizon. I know it's tough to get into the spirit of things, especially if you're surrounded by Scrooges and Grinches. I've run into more than my share lately, and if you don't do something about it they infect you with their bad moods and you end up turning into one.

I think we need to summon the Publishing Fairy, sprinkle some magic blog dust around and see if we can't get three wishes granted -- that should spread a little goodwill (and if that doesn't work, we can always summon the Publishing Ogres, Remainder and Oop, to go after the grumblers and complainers.)

So: in comments to this post, tell us something that you're doing to get into the holiday spirit (or if the spirit is eluding you so far, just toss your name in the hat) by midnight EST on Wednesday, December 3, 2008. I'll pick three names at random from everyone who participates and grant each of the winners a BookWish*. This giveaway is open to everyone on the planet, even if you've won something here at PBW in the past.

*A BookWish is any book of your choice that is available to order from an online bookseller, with a maximum cost of $30.00 U.S. (I'll throw in whatever shipping costs are involved.)

108 comments:

  1. We've decorated the tree, started outside decorations, and are playing Christmas music throughout the house.

    One thing that helps...keeping me away from the stores during Christmas. Large crowds do it to me every time. I just get very quiet and soon will be simmering with anger.

    So no shopping downtown for me this year... LOL.

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  2. I've started putting out my Christmas decorations and trees and I've been eating way too many of the holiday treats and goodies that are filling the grocery stores already. : )

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  3. Since neither my sister nor I have kids, I miss the excitement of Christmas from a child's perspective. I recently ordered the DVDs of the Charlie Brown Christmas, along with the TV classics of Frosty, Rudolph, etc... When they arrive, I'm having a little viewing party with all my child-less friends and reminisce about how much those Christmas specials got us excited about the season as kids... I hope this will motivate our group about the Christmas season and encourage us to keep the inner-child alive during the season.

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  4. I've started lino-printing Christmas cards in my bedroom/closet/annex/enclosed-veranda-room-thingy (that's a recognised room designation in old Queenslander houses).

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  5. To get in the holiday season I've been making and giving away a lot of cookies, fudges, and other treats. I've been planning a lot of surprises for friends and family and I'm also getting ready to put the tree up. Dec. 17 in honor of my grandmother's birthday. I'm also celebrating another break from school, as the end of the semester for me is the 10th! Woo-hoo!

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  6. Our tree is already up and beaming colorful light-y goodness into the living room. I have an obnoxiously shiny green and red wreath on the door, and I'm going shopping tomorrow for Christmas cookie supplies. I'm a big holiday person, anyway, but with a 4 year old in the house, it's easy to get in the spirit by just tapping her excitement. :)

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  7. We've already busted out the eggnog, dusted off the old Christmas Story VHS (yeah, we still have a tape player, the old dinosaur), and decked the halls.

    My son has submitted mailed his list to Santa already...what with the economy and all, Santa needs a little extra time to get it together.

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  8. We had our work Christmas party on Friday night (yes it was still November then).

    But I too have trouble getting in the Christmas spirit as my bother with my nephew and niece moved away so no Kids to create the atmosphere.

    plus as i get older i want to have my Birthday acknowledged before i move onto Christmas (since the Bday is the day before - that does not really happen - the joy of December presents)

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  9. I'm just pulling out my snowmen collection and other Christmas decorations. I like doing it early and then leaving the snowmen out through the winter.

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  10. It snowed here (really light snow and it's quite rare here snow this early) and it really put me in the spirit that it is christmas in 25 days ;).

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  11. I haven't started yet but I shall be writing small flashes about the meaning of Christmas... for demons.

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  12. There isn't a whole lot of Christmas spirit around here, for one reason and another, but we'll be putting up our advent calendar later :).

    Okay, hat it is!

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  13. I bought my Christmas tree this weekend and decorated it yesterday. It was enough to get me into the spirit because I didn't have a tree the last two Christmases because my husband and I went on vacation. He's a bit of a Scrooge but I think he's getting better!

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  14. madscientistqld6:35 AM

    tossing my name in the hat please

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  15. I've got the tree up, decorations out, scented soaps from Bath and Body by the sinks, and my favorite Christmas dishes and glasses ready to use!

    I love the idea of having a Christmas special viewing party!

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  16. Oh, it's not hard for me to get into the spirit of Christmas.

    I flat out love the holiday. Not just because I love getting presents, although I'm materialistic enough to admit I ♥ presents. ;)

    But I love buying them for my kids and my family, friends. I love the lights, I love taking my kids to see Santa and watching a Charlie Brown Christmas and Nestor the Long-eared Donkey. I love taking them to the zoo to see the lights. I love taking them shopping so they can use their allowance money to buy gifts for their sibs and best friends. I love the looks on each of their faces when they open their presents. The Christmas carols we sing at church. Eggnog.

    All of it...lol. I'm going to try and start a new tradition for us this year where we read the Christmas story.

    Don't let Scrooges and Grinches get you down, PBW. ;) You could always write the worst ones into a book...that might make ya feel better.

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  17. We baked cookies and decorated the tree yesterday -- I love that all of our ornaments come with a memory, and my DD never gets tired of hearing their stories.

    Christmas is a wonderful time of year!

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  18. I haven't gotten the decorations up yet but I have ventured out for some shopping. I've managed to get quite a bit done. I've also got the radio set to the station that plays all Christmas music and I find myself singing along often. Please throw my name into the hat.

    Cheryl S.

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  19. I've been baking my little heart out. Nothing like making a house smell like Christmas to get in the mood.

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  20. I love Christmas, so getting into the spirit is easy. Yesterday we hauled out some of our boxes of decorations and began having fun with them. The tree will go up this week, and the lights on the house. All good. :)

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  21. It's after Thanksgiving and there's snow on the ground. Today I pulled out the Christmas themed wardrobe. Soon the Christmas baking will commence.

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  22. We started listening to Christmas music before October. We needed a little Christmas. *g* The kids "helped" cut and decorate sugar cookies in holiday shapes. And we've been enjoying looking at all the lights. Big holiday event will be seeing the botanical gardens' light display.

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  24. I am thinking about taking the photo for the Christmas card. And I am thinking about pulling out the Advent calendar. Sorry, I am not a Christmas person. My goal is to avoid the overstimulation of malls.

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  25. We invited our friends over for glühwein last friday, to celebrate both the season and the fact that we just moved to an apartment where they don't shoot people just outside the door.

    They just closed down the shelter here, so this year we won't celebrate with the homeless. Or our families. Strange, that.

    I do hope, however, that we read or watch the Dickens classic this year, anyway. Traditions...

    ("A Christmas Carol" was the first ever book I read in English).

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  26. I've been buying all the raffle gifts for my company party.

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  27. I haven't done anything myself, but one of my neighbors put his decorations up this weekend. That went a long way toward de-Grinch-ing me. =o)

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  28. Decorating and baking. Maybe not in that order.

    And sharing the baking... because what does a single girl really need with that many dozens of cookies?

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  29. I looooove eggnog lattes, and they only taste right in December. One sip is enough to get me into the holiday spirit.

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  30. I got our Christmas lights up outside this Saturday. It was too nice of a day to pass up. And earlier that day, we took our two kids on the Santa Trolley, which they absolutely loved. That was nice.

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  31. I'm stopping by my parents' house after work to hang their lights--no doubt there will be a mom-cooked meal at the end, and when I get home, there should be a large box of seed ornaments to decorate a pine tree that stands outside our kitchen window.

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  32. I am putting up a tiny tree in my apartment window and I just plain refuse not to have some yuletide spirit. ( just plain refuse !! )

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  33. Just throwing my name into the hat. Not into the holiday spirit yet. Once my to do list gets shorter then I can slow down and enjoy the holidays.

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  34. My concert band did our Christmas concert yesterday, which is always the official start of the season for me. Our tree and ornaments are stored at my parents' place (we live in a condo so no real tree allowed), and we'll pick them up next weekend and then set the tree up. That'll get me into the spirit.

    That, and I hope to be done my shopping in a week or two. :)

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  35. Anonymous10:16 AM

    I have found the cutest stretchy jingle bell fabric collars for my two Great Danes! Do you know how hard it is to find big dog stuff? It's like trying to find big girl stuff! Anyway, I've already tormented them by making them wear them. And I have found some children's reindeer antlers which fit them too. I feel a Christmas photo coming on!
    Tami
    Jacksonville

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  36. We went to hear the Trans-Siberian Orchestra on Saturday. :)

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  37. I am going to decorate the tree and I have been listening to Christmas music and doing some online shopping.

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  38. Anonymous10:35 AM

    Top 5 Reasons This Christmas Season is Starting Off Right:

    1. Tree's up in record time (T-25 days to Christmas.)

    2. Generous quantities of leftover turkey, dressing, and sweetpotato casserole is still in the fridge for post-holiday consumption.

    3. Exactly zero (0) trips to the emergency room this year, following family gatherings with multiple (and extremely active)children < age 5.

    4. ~ 60% of Christmas shopping finished (most done online), with remainder to be done rather easily.

    5. Favorite NFL teams still in contention.

    Life is good.

    KTB

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  39. I'm starting by packing away the Fall decorations, does that count? We'll be away over the holidays so I don't see a point to spiffying up with all the doodads in the basement storage closet when we won't be here to enjoy them over the holiday. I celebrate Hanukkah -- so normally it's 8 nights of enjoying it all.

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  40. Stacked all my Christmas music right next to the stereo. Made Christmas collages with the kids. Putting together a giant Amazon order for gifts. Saw the first Advent candle lit at church yesterday.

    I LOVE Christmas. :D :D

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  41. Well, let's see. I got my picture taken in front of the fireplace WITHOUT burnin' my butt! And the tree skirt is under the Christmas Tree..my absolute favorite place to hang out this time of year. Oh, and there're ribbons allllll over the place for me to whap but NOT eat. What else could a mancat possibly need to be in the Christmas Spirit? I know! The Nativity Scene! Eminently whappable!

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  42. We're in the middle of a freezing rain storm here and it's hard to feel much Christmas spirit but since it's the first of December we began Santa's Good Deeds. There's a kid bowl and a mom bowl. Each one has 24 slips of paper with a "good deed" written on each piece of paper. The fun part is the kid deeds were written by me and the mom deeds by my daughter. Today, she has to rub my feet for five minutes and I have to eat half her vegetables at dinner.

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  43. I shouldn't be in a good Christmas mood, having been laid off a month ago and no new job in sight. Thank goodness for a solid savings plan, a decent severance package and UI!

    To defray costs this year, I decided to make Christmas presents. The adults are getting baking and the kids are getting scarves. 5 of the 12 kids are going to get their gifts late because they live in Canada or because I want to make something a little more special for them. Which will take more time. But I love knitting and may even try crocheting so I can get some of these done on time.

    I'm also playing Christmas music on my iPod/iTunes while I clean the house, write and look for work. And next week we're going to find a tree. Which we will put up for the first time in over 4 years. Long story. Let's just say renovations and Christmas trees don't get a long. :)

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  44. Hello,
    This year is the first time in 14 years that I will be spending Christmas with my own family (as opposed to friend's family which was great as well)and I get to spend it with my 3 year old nephew. His joy and excitment in the holiday season has definitely sparked my own!
    Season Greetings Everyone

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  45. Keita Haruka11:27 AM

    I'll be baking cookies for Yule and handing them out in little packets to my family. I'm afraid that's all I can do this year. I'm saving up for something more important. ;)

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  46. karmelrio11:38 AM

    My SO and I hung icicle lights in the front window yesterday, and hoisted our Charlie Brown Christmas Tree.

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  47. I have a December bday so I always put up my xmas tree on my birthday. This year I'm going ice skating too and going to the xmas market downtown.

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  48. I've pulled my Christmas decorations out of the attic and started decorating. I'm also getting my Christmas card list together!

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  49. To get in the spirit, I'm trying to cat-proof my house decorations. This may not sound festive, but believe me, I'll be able to focus on the holidays much better when my cat isn't chewing on the twinkle-lights.

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  50. It's my first year out of my parents house. So I'm excited to decorate my own place for the first time. I just bought a tree and I'm going to decorate this weekend.

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  51. I finished all my Christmas cards and put my tree up.

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  52. On my blog I'm giving away about $1500 in prizes, including 2 Kindles, a Vera Bradley purse, gift certificates, books and more. I feeeeel the holiday spirit!

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  53. Me and my mum always put the Christmas tree up on the first Sunday of the month so im waiting impatiently for that!

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  54. Tammy2:34 PM

    About the only thing we've done so far is make cookies.

    So please toss my name in the hat.

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  55. Desiree2:36 PM

    Well my holiday cheer started off with my bank account being ripped off $1000 this weekend by an atm thief (effectively cleaning me out) who must have cloned my bank card at some point. Its going to be a merry merry bo-hum-bug for me!

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  56. For the most part, all I'm doing is allowing Christmas themed music to play in my house. Decorations will probably come out the week of Christmas itself.

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  57. Not into the Christmas Spirit yet. Hopefully soon. Toss my name in the hat, please.

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  58. Started my Christmas baking for friends.

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  59. We helped my 4 year old write her very first letter to Santa. She pointed out pictures of toys that she liked, and then asked how to spell them. She did all the lettering on her own, with only a few hints about how to write a letter or two. Her Pre-K class has only studied through M, so I think she's way ahead of the curve!

    Then, we decorated our tree, and even my 1.5 year old helped to hang ornaments (OK, so the jingle bell ones were removed from the tree as often as they were replaced...but he's 1!)

    Christmas with small children is such a neat experience :)

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  60. We've put up the tree, me and the little gremlin, we bakes a bunch of cookies, and are talking about what night will be best to go out around our neighborhood and look at the lights.

    I love Christmas.

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  61. Please, toss my name in the hat.

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  62. Getting Holiday cards ready for snail mail.

    Will remove Tree from its box home this week. :) New tree for us. A smaller one since the children are grown and away from home.

    I am counting our blessings that hubby is still drawing a paycheck. Hubby is donating money to help an employee who was laid off today.

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  63. So far, I bought stamps for my Christmas cards, picked out said cards, and I'll get started with signing tonight!

    Christmas baking starts this weekend. :)

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  64. My kids are just now old enough (2.5 and 5) to do some crafts without having the youngest destroy everything. We've been making Christmas ornaments that I made when I was younger (reindeer made from clothespins and sleds made from popsicle sticks) and it's been great! My mom's been helping me remember how things went together and we've been sharing stories about my sisters and I from when we were younger and making the same things. The 2.5 year old is scary-good at painting (the pieces of wood, me, her fingers, etc) :).

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  65. We're going through a heat wave at the moment so most people are going to the pool or the beach to cool off. I haven't put up decorations yet as my 20month old twins like to eat angels and christmas balls.

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  66. My parents have already put up both of our Christmas trees and begun the arduous task of decorating the house. I have helped hang up a few of the ornaments, but I will be doing more this week as we prepare for my family's annual Christmas Open House. I'll be baking a bunch of mini-cheesecakes (cherry chocolate chip, peppermint, lemon, and pumpkin).

    Another thing I'll be doing is I'll be going out to buy some gifts for those less fortunate while I'm buying gifts for my family.

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  67. I'm trying to get in the spirit. Really, truly I am. DH and I spent Thanksgiving with family - 4 hours away. Was a downer cuz SIL was mourning the passing of her mother - yet harbored hatred toward her, too. Yuck. Going there Christmas, with promises from SIL to do better. Jobless, no more unemployment benefits, full freezer and lots of canned goods. Sigh - if I start making a gift (I beadweave) then surely the spirit will hit!

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  68. I threatened to give my son's dog away if he didn't do better by her. Yes, I'm a freaking scrooge and I heartily dislike Christmas--this one will be fairly small...the children have been warned (but the bills are paid and I have a roof over my head and a job). That said, I did do some shopping today.

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  69. Tree the first up. Outside lights up...second tree coming...

    ~Jana

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  70. We planning to decorate the tree this weekend. I've been checking out the deals for Cyber Monday, but I haven't bought anything yet.

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  71. I need to ease into the holiday spirit. We have bought some presents and now I have to come up with a list of remaining items to be bought. I am not ready to deal with the decorations yet, maybe next week.

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  72. I've organized a Crafty Holiday Card party for next Wednesday. My friend and family are invited to my apartment for warm drinks, cookies, and holiday music. We'll use glitter, glue, construction paper, paint, and more to make holiday cards.

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  73. Sorry to hear some of you have such problems! My dh and I are giving away the remaining Beanie Babies in our collection to a children's home. That gets us in the spirit whether anything else is going right or not.

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  74. AnnaM.6:26 PM

    We've never really decorated for Christmas INside the house, only put up the outdoor lights. This year, I've been looking for frugal ways to deocorate and involve all my small kids in making things to pretty up the inside of the house.

    So far we have the tree, paper chains, paper snowflakes, pictures of winter things they've drawn.

    Next we're going to try to make handprint wreaths and try new and different cookie recipes, plus any other cool, cheap things I can think of.

    Anna

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  75. Tomorrow the carpets get their yearly cleaning. Once that's done, the Christmas ficus will get decorated, and I'll start with my cards and baking. Yay. :)

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  76. I'm making cookies by the truckload. We've been playing Christmas music at the bookstore so some of it is good, some is pretty laughable. Now to find a properly humiliating holiday collar for Big Kitty!

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  77. I'm listening to Christmas music.

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  78. i listen to Christmas music and once the Tree is up I'm ready!

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  79. I've been planning what to get for my family. =)

    For my mom - a fried apple pie kit. Homemade fried apple pies, and little squares of pre-cut homemade dough in plastic baggies, so she can freeze it and make tasty pies whenever she wants.

    For my baby sister, who is learning to play guitar- sheet music, or possibly tablature books.

    For Teh Man- Scotch. For sharing
    =)

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  80. I decorated the day after Thanksgiving and have already watched The Christmas Story.

    And I bought a bar of holiday scented soap.

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  81. Alison C9:04 PM

    I went out with my eldest after she found out about the Jolly Red One to go Santa Shopping for her two younger siblings. We had a magical time.

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  82. I haven't done anything yet, but I'm hoping I'll get a chance to spend Friday baking cookies with a friend.

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  83. I pull out my Christmas books to get in the mood..ya know the ones with all the pictures, recipes and decorations to make! That normally does it. Plus the kids know..it's going to happen soon, and the food baking begins!

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  84. I've been trying to convince everyone that anyone who was crowding the as-yet-unopened doors of any store on Black Friday should be arrested for accessory to manslaughter and spend at least a week in jail.

    I mean, really. This "get the best deal before anyone else!" insanity has surely gone too far when someone is trampled to death trying to get into a store, don't you think?

    Oh. Wait. That wasn't to get INTO the spirit. Um...probably just toss my name into the hat. Not feeling so cheery this year. *sheepish*

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  85. I'm getting "in the spirit" by trying to get away from holiday music! They're already playing it far too much, and it's driving me nuts.

    (Yes, I am Grinchy. Need you ask? :p)

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  86. I put Christmas decorations indoors right after Halloween. Before Thanksgiving, the outdoor decorations went up.

    Easiest way to get in the spirit is to see & appreciate what I already have.

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  87. Anonymous9:48 PM

    We have started sending out Christmas cards, drinking hot chocolate, listen and sing Christmas songs and gone Christmas shopping.

    Terri W.

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  88. Um... the spirit's eluding me thus far, but I'll throw my name in the hat nonetheless.

    I suppose a Bookwish might help me get in the mood. :)

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  89. I was in the spirit of Christmas in July. Now, not so much. Feeling kind of Grinchy unfortunately.

    Please toss my name in. :)

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  90. I'm not putting up any decorations this year, since I'm allergic to both real and fake trees, but I have started my Christmas cards and find myself humming carols. Trying not to get sick of the holiday before it comes. I work retail, so that's been pretty difficult. :)

    Wishing everyone a happy holidays and all that stuff too. :D

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  91. Anonymous12:28 AM

    we usually just cook good food but i decorte teh office at my work only

    kh

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  92. I started humming Christmas Carols as soon as the sun set on Thanksgiving. I grew up with that rule, but I love carols :).

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  93. Dana H5:21 AM

    We tried to make a gingerbread house, but it kinda ended up more like a gingerbread shack. :) The roof kept caving in. Poor little gingerbread family. But we still had a blast making it. And I think we're going to try again next weekend.

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  94. I've ordered CDs of all the choral music I used to sing as a child, and I'm planning to go caroling.

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  95. I'm planning to get BF something very nice and relaxing. And I can't say what it is because I'm afraid he might see it here. :)

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  96. We went shopping on Black Friday for the first time in YEARS, and it was actually fun!

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  97. So far, I've been decorating the house and shopping. We put up small trees in both the kids' rooms this year, which was fun. Every year, the kids and I bake cookies for trays to take to our local nursing homes for the holidays. We will probably start those in about two weeks time. I hope all of you have a happy holiday, whatever you celebrate!

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  98. Funding is short this year (again) so I am getting in the spirit by remembering I have very supportive and loving family and friends who understand why and don't care what their gifts are. I am also reminding myself I have other things to offer them besides gifts, and, in the end that is far more important.
    This year I wish for them love, laughter and a warm place to be themselves.
    And when I think of them having that, I am instantly in the spirit of the season.

    Mary2

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  99. My hubs and I are going through the TV listings and being sure to DVR all our holiday favorites--Rudolph, A Charlie Brown Christmas, plus all the horrific chick flicks he won't admit to liking. I've got my office at work decorated and this weekend we're planning on holidaying up the house. And of course now I've got my all waking hours holiday music on AccuRadio.

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  100. Three trees up and "Peace" cards bought!

    Rashda

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  101. Driving around looking at Christmas lights really put me in the holiday spirit. :)

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  102. Driving around looking at Christmas lights really put me in the holiday spirit. :)

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  103. Tamith11:48 PM

    When in doubt, bake cookies.

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  104. How I get into the spirt of Christmas is go to the Festival of Lights (donate a new toy for addmission) Then its off to the South Hills to find the prized Christmas Tree for the year. Next is to the House that is famous for having millions of Christmas lights, Then its to the local collage to listen to Christmas music. Next is crafting a Christmas project with my children,and finally sitting around the tree with family drinking home made hot chocolate. Between all that is trying to find my $5.00 gift for the family gift exchange.

    Wow can't wait to see how it ends.

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  105. To get into the Holiday spirit I'm planning a day of baking. I'm making cookies, tons of them and giving them out in plate fulls to neighbors, friends, family and anyone else I feel like giving to. Giving away cookies is not new and might not be as awesome as being able to hand everyone I see a hundred dollar bill, but it does cheer people up to know they are thought of and I enjoy doing the giving both of myself and of the cookies.

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  106. I dug out our box of Christmas decorations, threw away old stuff that we hadn't put up in years, and organized what was left. We're probably not getting a tree until the 13th because our dogs' tails are hell on ornaments. They've gotten better over the years, but still...

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  107. I'm getting into the spirit by posting a Christmas carol on my blog every day until Christmas. I also changed the theme to a Christmas/winter theme. I don't have much decorations, and I live in a Muslim country, so there aren't many decorations anywhere else either. But I do have a small tree, which I'll be putting up later this month.

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  108. I put out some of the pretty woodcarved figures from the Erzgebirge. I collect some of those, esp. the trees. The photo is from 2006; I got a wood by now. :)

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