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Hot Cocoa or Hot Chocolate: A Matter of Taste
It's hard to find good writing now a days. But you have done a great job with all these sharing hot Cocoa and hot Chocolate. That's interesting. Thanks for sharing.
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My top favorite Christmas Sitcoms: All from M*A*S*H , Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley. Step By Step - I'll Be Home For Christmas
His Name is Bud
love this story! Thanks for sharing your memories.
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I will do that fresh cut of the trunk.....that was my problem last Christmas.....the tree lost so many needles....even tho it was fresh....the problem was....since I didn´t cut the trunk....the tree...
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Long-winded Christmas musings and observations in operating My Merry Christmas.
General Christmas For blogs talking about all things Christmas.
Old

Shaking the Tree of Tradition

Posted 11-29-2011 at 01:34 PM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)
Updated 11-29-2011 at 01:37 PM by Jeff Westover

Inspired by a forum post by a new user, I decided to take up the idea of "coding" the presents under the tree this year. There are nine of us living in the house and there just happens to be nine famous reindeer on Santa's Sleigh so come Christmas morning everyone is going to have to figure out who "Rudolph" is...and all the others.

I announced this the other night when we did our annual drawing of the names.

Each Thanksgiving weekend it has been our tradition to draw names and discover who each of us would be secret Santa to for the season.

The secret Santa gig wasn't just a present to open on Christmas morning (last year's secret Santa gift budget was $5.12 per person, so you can imagine how inventive those gifts can be). Being a secret Santa also means doing anonymous acts of service above and beyond the norm leading up to Christmas. If you're smart, you'll do different things for different folks through out the season just to throw off...
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Passing the Black Friday Torch

Posted 11-25-2011 at 11:54 PM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)
Updated 11-25-2011 at 11:56 PM by Jeff Westover

With every passing day I'm becoming Archie Bunker.

(I said that to my kids once and they said Who?).

I'm grumpy, I'm opinionated, I'm resistant to change and I tend to wax longingly for the past.

At Thanksgiving dinnner my older teenager children eagerly detailed their plans for Black Friday. Try as I might to get them to My Merry Christmas I'm unsuccessful and they had no real idea that Black Friday as they used to know it is no longer.

In years past I was content to get the kids up at 4am and head out the door with them to do some people watching and to go out to breakfast somewhere. I used to think that as a Dad that made me hip.

But this year when the retailers crossed the threshold of midnight on Thursday to start their sales I put my foot down. I'll do 4am. But midnight? No way.

Besides, we've long past the point where the main reason I went was because I had a drivers license. I've got...
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Old

Thanks, You Turkeys

Posted 11-23-2011 at 12:02 AM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

Every once in a while I'm impressed with myself. That's a guy thing too many of us get trapped in even when we're younger and usually it has to do with our looks, our cars or some sport team we don't own or play on.

But at my age I'm down to just ideas and this idea of having folks call in with their gobbles for Thanksgiving is sheer brilliance.

It is just so MMC, you know?

This week is **busy** and I'm up to my neck with contacts who for whatever reason wait until the week of Thanksgiving to say "Hey, we want to post about our new album on your site" or "Review my book please" or "I lost my password".

I'm like everybody else. At this time of year I want to enjoy my holidays and here that would be writnig articles, doing podcasts and making videos.

The work of the season is something I love but as we get bigger there are just so many things little things I have to tend to that take up time but just have to be...
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Like Peas and Carrots and Whiskers on Kittens

Posted 11-13-2011 at 11:05 AM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

I don't know why it is bothering me so much this year. And as I reflect on it, I'm probably the only person in the world who notices this problem. But it is getting to me to read so much in the media about how sick people are of the "early" Christmas. It is just non-stop this year. The whining just goes on and on about how Christmas has taken over Thanksgiving.

Why does it have to be either one or the other?

I've never looked at Thanksgiving separate from Christmas. At the same time, I've never looked at it separate from Halloweeen. They are all part of the same -- the season. They go together like peas and carrots.

As I was working on the Thanksgiving podcast last night I found myself in tears over parts because in my most personal spots Thanksgiving is a time of great sacred significance to me.

I think it is because I've become a weepy old man in these years where my children spread their adult wings and turn my hair gray....
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Cookbooks are here!

Posted 11-08-2011 at 07:17 PM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

26 cases and 356 pounds of material was shipped to my house and received today -- the largest single shipment by UPS ever to my house.

The neighbors were gawking.

Once I got it all inside I eagerly opened the top box and pulled out the first fresh copy of The Sweet Treats of Christmas.

It was a great Christmas moment, I have to tell you. What a thrill to see the finished product -- something that we never planned to do that just came together from a groundswell of support in the community. I can't wait to ship them out and get reactions from folks about them.

My Mom is going to get one tomorrow. I know she'll be stunned. When I told her about it a month or two ago she seemed at first a little lukewarm. Mom doesn't cook much any more.

But when I told her the story of its creation and how it is made up of recipes from real people from all over the world she perked right up. "How do I get one of those?"
...
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