Sunday, December 19, 2010

Traditions by Number

The eternally annoying "12 Days of Christmas" song breaks down the holiday into numbers. I guess nothing gets the party started like seven swans 'a swimming and six geese 'a laying and FIVE gooold-en rings!

In honor of my five favorite holiday traditions, I thought I would do the same thing.

Behold, my holiday traditions list by numbers:

1.5- number of hours spent at the ballet

24- number of songs in "The Nutcracker"

3- number of times my sister and I giggled after making inappropriate comments while ogling the hot men in oh-so-tight tights

28- number of feet in The Jefferson's Christmas tree

- number of pounds of gingerbread used in the gingerbread house we saw this year

1,500- number of gum drops on said gingerbread house

2- number of hungry teachers after leering at this gingerbread house

40,000- estimated number of lights on our favorite tacky Christmas house

30- number of peanut butter cookies I baked for Christmas

0- number of peanut butter cookies remaining as of 12/19

And here is a breakdown of these traditions:

1. Watch The Nutcracker

My mom used to take my sister and me most years after buying us our new holiday dresses. It's a tradition that I still love with all its swelling music, glittery tutus, and adorable kids. This year, I dressed up and went with my sister, the ultimate girly night.

2. Visit the Jefferson Hotel

Dan and I always visit this a five star hotel in downtown Richmond each year to take in their decorations. Its known for top-notch service, a gorgeous staircase... and the fact that it used to have an alligator that lived in its indoor fountain. (Yes, really. I know- very weird and exotic and kind of creepy...) Now that the last one passed away in 1948, they just have this guy, decorated in his Christmas best:

Anyone who reads my blog knows my husband is a sucker for embarrassingly cheesy photos. Here's the one he demanded that I take:

We always stop to see the giant Christmas tree,

and the other Christmas decorations,
and see the gingerbread house, which deserves its own category, so proceed to #3:

3. Smell the gingerbread house

They have to rope it off to keep the ravenous away...

Yes, this is still at the Jefferson Hotel. Every year, a local team of bakers makes a new life-size gingerbread house fit for Hansel and Gretel.

Not sure if you can read this sign, but here are some of the facts about this creation:

And here is the front door:
Isn't all the intricate candy decor amazing?

This year, the bakers even made a wedding cake snow man out front:

And a cake Christmas tree:

Who's hungry?

This ends our trip to The Jefferson, but brings us to our next free holiday activity:

4. The Tacky Light Tour

Dan always maps out the houses with the most wattage, and we check them all out.

(Picture via here since mine didn't come out that well)

This year, Bethany came along with us to our favorite ones:
The owners lost a son, who adored Christmas lights even as an adult. To memorialize him, they put out a plague and drape their home in every light and decoration possible. It has always touched Dan and me as a true labor of love.

It takes our breath away every year.
Moving on to our last tradition, which takes place at home:

5. I bake cookies, and Dan helps eat them. Don't think this tradition needs much clarification!

See this post for the recipes. Don't say I didn't warn you about the dangerous nature of the cranberry-white chocolate ones...

So there you have my favorite traditions by number! So much better than a partridge in a pear tree, right?

Thanks to The NewlyWoodwards Blog for hosting a Linky Party about favorite holiday traditions! Fun idea!
Oh, and just because I have time to do stupid stuff like this, check out this video of Dan and me dancing our little elf butts off! (Dan is very limber as an elf...)


Josie said...

Ooooh, those cranberry cookies look so delicious!
xo Josie

Kim @ NewlyWoodwards said...

Looks like such fun. I love your traditions and that you've kept them for so long.

Thanks for linking up this week. And, I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with many more cookies. ;O

Ellie said...

What a fun way to log (and blog) some of your Christmas favorites! Mom used to take me to the Nutcracker every year too. Merry Christmas!

Heather said...

Love this post. I love traditions and you've got some great ones.

Hattie said...

oooh! I've never been to see the Christmas decorations at the Jefferson. Thanks for the fun idea!

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