Until yesterday I wasn’t really sure if I’d be the Grinch or the happy elf this year. When I went grocery shopping in the evening, I could not pass by the odorous fir wreath and just had to buy one for my table. Just in case, I also watched “The Grinch” on Netflix last night and decided that I am more excited than annoyed about this holiday season. Although this is going to be the first year for me in the U.S. that I won’t have a Christmas tree. There simply isn’t any room in my studio – or I’d have to forgo watching TV for a few weeks. But it is time to bring up my Christmas decorations and all my lovely ugly Christmas sweaters from the basement. And I have my headband in the shape of reindeer antlers somewhere, too … This is how I realized there are quite a few things I am looking forward to this holiday season:
- The Rockefeller Christmas Tree: This is the one tree that I love almost as much as Kevin does in “Home Alone 2”. I even took a personal day to go to its lighting two years ago.
- The Rockettes: Their show at Radio City Music Hall has been on my list for some time. I think this year might be the one to make that dream come true.
- Ice skating: And talking of cold. I love ice skating – it is probably the only exercise I sometimes do in winters. We already went ice skating on the Frog Pond in Boston Common this season, but I really want to try all (yes all!) the ice skating rinks in Manhattan.
- Christmas lights: I now have two cities which I can admire all the beautifully decorated houses in – Boston and New York City. I esp. like the big parks where trees are equipped with thousands of little lights.
- Cookies: I heart cookies. Always. In previous years I made almond cookies and cranberry macaroons for instance.
- Candles: I have a vast candle collection and the holiday season is the time when I burn most. It is so lovely to have candles lit when it is dark so early every day.
- Christmas music: I started listening to it on Sunday by simply asking my Alexa to play the Holiday Favorites play list which contains all the famous songs. Yes, I still listen to and still like “Last Christmas”.
- Mulled wine: I had my first cup last weekend and it always reminds me of the crowded Christmas markets in Germany.
- Snow: Since winter started early this year, we already had some snow. But white Christmas would be even better.
- Ugly Christmas sweaters: I think I have a fine selection of amazingly ugly sweaters and T-shirts that I only get to wear during these about four weeks.
- Time for reading: I wrote yesterday that I am re-reading all the Harry Potter books, but there are many more books on my reading list, like Räuberhände* (which I saw as a play on stage in Hamburg this fall), The Red-Haired Woman* or Crimes Against Magic*.
- Vacation: It is only another two and a half weeks and I can hardly wait.
- Christmas foods: I am happy that I don’t have to drive to Aldi anymore because Trader Joe’s has loads of German Christmas foods, too. Gingerbread, stollen and spice cookies for example. But I also love potato salad and frankfurters (esp. on Christmas Eve). Oh, and eggnog, although strictly speaking this is not food.
- Christmas movies: There are so many of them that I watch once more every year, e.g. Love Actually, Home Alone 1 & 2, and The Holiday.
- Decorations: Even without a tree, I am sure I have enough decorations to transform my studio into a Christmas cave.
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