Tuesday, November 23, 2010

ten on tuesday [vol. 13].

{Thanksgiving 2005}

1. What are your plans for the holidays? Do you travel at Thanksgiving? If you celebrate Christmas, do you travel then, too?

I don't travel (far) for any of the holidays, ever, because all of my family is in New Jersey. This year, for Thanksgiving we'll be at my aunt/grandparents' house in North Jersey, I'll be in South Jersey for Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day celebrations are at our house.

2. How do you make the plans for the holiday? If you have a significant other, how do you decide which family to visit?
We alternate between my mom's and dad's family each year. If it's my dad's side, we're almost always here; for my mom's side, my mom and aunt switch off every year.
3. Do you have your Thanksgiving meal at lunch or later in the day?
Usually we have an early dinner, around 4:30 or 5pm.

4. Do you have a favorite Thanksgiving tradition?
Does gorging myself on pumpkin pie count as a 'tradition'? Actually, my grandparents on my dad's side (who passed away when I was younger) used to bring chocolate turkeys for all the kids, and for a while after they died, my aunt still found and bought them for us. Not sure why that stopped, though.

We have a few current semi-traditions, like how my dad always writes something funny on the whiteboard on our fridge. Oh! And I always, always get up to watch the Macy's parade on TV. I think I've only missed a year or two.

5. After a big meal do you lounge around or get up and take a walk?
When I was younger, I used to be a ball of nerves and would start to feel sick after eating a big meal and sitting in the warm house, so I would go for a little stroll outside. Nowadays, I'm usually on the Cleanup Crew, which depending on the location of the festivities includes simply drying dishes or, oppositely, walking up and down the stairs a million times to put leftovers in my aunt's spare fridge in the basement.

6. Do you shop on “Black Friday” or do you avoid it?
Despite my love of shopping, I've never taken part in the traditional Black Friday experience. This is mostly because my mother - though she loves a great deal - hates crowds. Since I'm usually not looking for one of the major deals offered in the morning, I shop later in the day at places like Target, where there are still great sales without the general insanity. I also check online Black Friday sales that start at midnight.

7. When do you usually finish your Christmas shopping?
It depends. When I was in college - the first time I was doing 'serious' Christmas shopping - it varied because sometimes I'd put it off, but other times I'd use shopping as an excuse to avoid working. These past two years I've been out of college, my shopping has been finished extremely early because I'm super aware of it. I'm about three-quarters of the way done for this year already, and it's not even Thanksgiving!
8. Do you and your significant other exchange gifts? Is there a budget?
No significant other this year. In the past, yes, I exchanged gifts with my then-boyfriend, but we didn't have a specific budget.

9. When do you decorate for the holidays?
I have a self-imposed rule that I do not go near the Christmas decorations or music before Thanksgiving is over, unless there are extenuating circumstances (such as school stress or a special event). This is in place because I know if I start too early, I will get sick of all of it. That being said, I usually decorate the house the weekend following Thanksgiving.

10. Do you go “all out” with the decor or do you keep it simple?
Oh God, all out. My mom has such a vast array of decorations and we put all of them up. It's not too crazy, but it's a fair amount considering we don't decorate much for any other holiday. We have garlands for the banisters and doorways, poinsettias to replace the vases of regular (fake) flowers around the house, and our tree is decked from head-to-toe with a total mish-mosh of ornaments. Of course, all of these decorations are indoors, which is fine, but I always wished we could have a really glitzy outdoor display.

These questions are a part of Ten on Tuesday which is run by Roots and Rings.