I have a confession to make. I'm not ready for Christmas. I hear songs on the radio and I can't believe the Christmas season is already upon us. It's overwhelming to me when I think of all the things I want to do.
We don't have big families and they're kind of spread out around the country. Our jobs don't allow us to get away for the holidays, so we usually have to find other times for catching up with family. Nine years ago, when my youngest was only 6 months old, my husband's parents took the whole family to St. Lucia in the Caribbean. All 16 of us! It was truly the most wonderful Christmas and one of my favorite times. Another time we all went to Grandpa's house in Arizona. I really enjoyed the cacti decorated with lights and Santa hats.
Our family traditions include decorating with lights in the yard, more than on the house. I love seeing a blue bush there, a red tree there, all along the driveway. And the big wreath on the house. It's six feet in diameter and looks great from the road.
Last weekend, I made candy with my friend Martha. We did this last year for the first time and discovered that there are some candies which are so amazingly good that they are worth the work. My favorite is the caramels. Which is pronounced "care-a-mels" according to my husband. This year, I made a batch that I think got cooked a little too long and the caramels were so hard you couldn't even cut them. Depressing. The second batch came out perfectly. I didn't test my thermometer before cooking, so I'm partly to blame. We also made marshmallows; well, Martha did while I wrapped about 300 pieces of caramel in wax paper. My peanut brittle came out just perfect. I believe in peanut brittle at Christmas. It is just so yummy! I need to make some maple fudge, too.
I can't think of a single thing I need for Christmas. Well, maybe one of those plastic sheets to put under a quilt when you're doing free motion to help it move around more easily. Leah Day sells them on her website, I think. I'm a big fan of Leah's. She really inspires a lot of people. I would also enjoy a good massage.
Every year, we get felt stockings at WalMart and the kids decorate them with glitter glue. The kids love it. It's one of the things my husband likes to do. The kids are already upset that I have to work on Christmas. Somebody has to do it. Maybe I can come up with something fun for them to do while I'm at work.
I'm seeing all kinds of neat ideas for Advent calendars. I like the one with toilet paper tubes at maya*made's blog. Very clever.
I think I'm through with my rambling post. I know I can catch a little Christmas spirit if I put my mind to it. That'll be my project for this week.