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Let’s End 2011 Warm and Fuzzy

December 28, 2011

I know the holidays are pretty much over and we are in the home stretch to 2012. But as I mentioned last time, I only recently began to actually enjoy the holidays. And any day now, I’m going to start complaining about how I have to take my tree down but I’m too lazy to do it. Maybe I should just be like my downstairs neighbors who last Christmas I watched through their window (I promise I’m not as crazy as I sound) put up their Christmas tree and they haven’t taken it down since. That’s two Christmases out of one Christmas tree decorating session. And it doesn’t seem to bother them that they leave their tree up year-round. I mean, when we nod at each other at the mailbox, I don’t feel any regretful vibes coming from them.

Anyway, while I’m still rocking the spirit, I just have to share with you the things I’m thankful for this holiday season (um, besides the obvious: family, friends, job, roof over my head, health, ice cream …)

  • Top 10 lists. Like Top 10 Moments of 2011. Only this year, they are getting cutesy and making it Top 11 Moments of 2011. I’m all in, people.
  • Time to get crap done. I washed the laundry, swept, mopped, did the dishes, made the bed and took out the trash yesterday. No, I didn’t fold the damn laundry. But that’s still pretty good.
  • Pictures of kids crying on Santa’s lap on Facebook.I mean, ugly sobbing crying, because when you are young, that big fat, hairy guy in a red suit can be scary as crap. After years of being told not to talk to strangers, once a year, you are expected to sit on a stranger’s lap and tell him your deepest, darkest secrets. Oh, I understand this kid crying on Santa’s lap thing doesn’t rock for everyone (the parents who had to stand in line at the mall for hours to witness this moment for one, the Santa actor, for two). It just rocks for me because it makes me feel slightly better about not having kids yet.
Kid crying on Santa's lap

Photo courtesy of Tommie MPhoto courtesy of laughingmonk

children crying on Santa's lap

Photo courtesy of laughingmonk

  • Gift cards. Okay, people. Don’t get all, “Christmas isn’t about the presents” on me. I totally agree. But let’s just pretend for a second Christmas were all about the presents. Gift cards make good presents. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some shopping to do.
  • Thoughtful gifts, but more importantly, thoughtful gift givers. Okay, so gift cards are great because you can select whatever you want, but nothing beats a really thoughtful gift. Given by a thoughtful gift giver. Who you are lucky to have in your life. I have a few of those.
  • The warm and fuzzy stories on the news. No one wants to hear about death and violence about two days out of Christmas. So around the holidays, all the major news networks turn into about 50 percent fluff news – soldiers returning home to tearful reunions with children, the life of a Christmas tree seller, etc. Enjoy it now, because after January 1, it’s about to be all elections, all the time.
  • Children around for Christmas. My older sister Debbie just moved from the West Coast to New Jersey. It’s still a bit of a drive to get here, but having her close by has been simply wonderful. And having her two sons here for Christmas really made the holidays more enjoyable for me. In fact, it was the first year I’ve ever been around kids for Christmas. There is absolutely nothing like watching your nephews opening up presents from Santa with sheer joy.
kids opening Christmas presents

My nephews opening Christmas presents

My nephew Dallas - very happy with his Elmo

  • New Year’s plans. I actually have plans I’m excited about this year (and they weren’t agonizing to make like New Year’s plans usually are). Chef got VIP tickets for some friends and me for the New Year’s Eve celebration at the restaurant/club where he works. It has the makings for a fun night.
  • Hawaii is almost here. Okay, I know, enough already. You are freezing your butt off and winter has hardly begun and you don’t need me bragging about my trip to Hawaii. But damn it, I never got over cancelling my honeymoon. I was really looking forward to that vacation. And I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned this, but I love the beach the way I love ice cream. The way that delicious foods make your mouth salivate, I feel like the beach makes my eyes salivate. Okay, that sounds grosser than it is.
  • Chef connected Netflix to my TV. Hello, endless hours of How I Met Your Mother and old 80s and 90s movies. Big, Swingers or Risky Business, anyone?
  • With the New Year comes a new season of the Bachelor. January 2, it’s on. Crazy women, a naked butt and the quest for true love love that will last four months, here I come.

How have your holidays been? What are you thankful for this year? Any fun New Year’s plans or resolutions for 2012 you would like to share?

Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.


24 Comments leave one →
  1. December 29, 2011 2:05 pm

    I absolutely love the crying kids pictures too!!! One of my friends used that as her Christmas card this year. Her kids will hate her in about 18 years!

    • December 29, 2011 11:19 pm

      Haha, Angela. I love how parents embrace those pictures. I can’t imagine sending out a crying kid picture on a Christmas card, but more power to them, I guess! 🙂 Happy New Year!!

  2. December 29, 2011 2:29 pm

    I’M SO STOKED ABOUT THE BACHELOR!!!!

    (….and yes, I’m yelling. Because I’m SUPER STOKED! Can you tell?)

    Not that Ben (or is it Constantine???) is all that exciting. But the craziness that will undoubtedly ensue always makes me feel like my life isn’t all that bat-sh*t crazy after all.

    😉

    Happy New Year to you, Catherine!

    • December 29, 2011 11:18 pm

      Mikalee,
      GLAD I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE STUPID EXCITED! Or the only one who can’t tell the difference between Ben and Constantine. LOL! By the way, have you ever checked out I Hate Greenbeans? This blog does HILARIOUS Bachelor recaps. Almost as fun as watching the show. http://www.ihategreenbeans.com/
      Happy New Year 🙂

      • January 3, 2012 4:03 pm

        Oh. My. GOD! I was thinking of you so many times last night — Brett and I were DYING at that episode. And I just subscribed to your blog recommendation…very funny.

        Is it my imagination, or does Jenna give a bad name to bloggers — and women — and women who blog?

        😉

  3. Aunt Patty permalink
    December 29, 2011 6:53 pm

    I am thankful that my father was able to enjoy 3 generations of his family. I am thankful that he has given me the opportunity to take this final journey with him. And even though we have gathered at my home for christmas every year, this year we were able to enjoy my niece and her family (yes, I am talking about your sister). I love my family very much and every moment my dad and I can spend with each and everyone of them is special.

    • December 29, 2011 11:15 pm

      Aunt Patty,
      It was wonderful to share Christmas with Bummer this year as well. It’s so wonderful having him closeby for this time of his life, and you are a wonderful daughter for taking such good care of him. I had a lot of fun at your house. Look forward to it every year 🙂 Love you and happy 2012!!

  4. Just Saying permalink
    December 29, 2011 11:06 pm

    BACHELOR!!!! Can’t wait!
    Love your post!

    • December 29, 2011 11:14 pm

      Thanks!! GOD it’s almost pathetic how much I can’t wait for Bachelor. Love that ridiculous show.

  5. December 30, 2011 12:30 am

    I know a girl who keeps her Christmas tree up all year, but changes the decorations for each themed holiday as they come along. (Valentines, St. Patricks and so on.) Kind of a funny alternative to taking down the tree. (Or to leaving it up all year like your truly awesome neighbours, who are my new idols, by the way.)

    • December 30, 2011 5:03 pm

      Ha, that’s a good idea, but it does sound like a lot of work. What I need is an effortless way for this tree to be updated or taken down… while I’m sitting on my butt watching TV. Why can’t they sell a Groupon for that? Haha 🙂

      My neighbors are my idols too – I’m watching anxiously to see if they take it down this year!

  6. Deb permalink
    December 30, 2011 7:16 am

    i have to say christmas day was my most favorite day this year. Woke up on one wonderful womens house, went to another (aunt Janice) dads and then aunt pattys…it was the best day ever!!! even though i hate my job, i love the fact that i can get in the car and drive to where i am loved for being me…I LOVE YOU!

    • December 30, 2011 5:04 pm

      You guys had a VERY busy day but it was wonderful to share part of it with you! And Dallas and Ty were so cute with their presents. I’m very happy to have you nearby so we can enjoy all sorts of holidays together LOVE YOU!

  7. December 30, 2011 8:10 am

    Crying children on Santa’s lap cracks me up. I’d love to know from Santas if more children cry than don’t cry.

    Have a wonderful New Year’s Eve!

    • December 30, 2011 5:05 pm

      I know, we need a stat for that, thoughtsappear. I’m really curious as to what the ratio is 🙂 Happy New Year!!! Enjoy!!

  8. December 30, 2011 9:37 am

    I think all the kids in my family have cried sitting on santa’s lap, me included!

    • December 30, 2011 5:06 pm

      Ha! I’m the youngest child, so there are like zero pictures of me, so I wouldn’t know how I reacted to Santa 🙂 Bet I cried though. I’m a crier through and through. Happy New Year 🙂

  9. simplystacia permalink
    December 31, 2011 12:44 pm

    I think I’m also excited about the Bachelor. The crying chick in the commercial…yikes!! I’m soooo looking forward to that!!!

    • Catherine permalink*
      February 6, 2012 9:56 pm

      Missed this comment! How are you enjoying it? Kind of a tame season, but interesting nonetheless!

  10. December 31, 2011 2:32 pm

    I like your recap, Catherine, but you need to get those clothes folded! 🙂

  11. January 1, 2012 12:14 pm

    I’ve never watched any show of Bachelor. But then I haven’t had a tv for past 15 months or so. And don’t plan to get one.

    I actually don’t think crying children with Santa, funny/amusing thing, because some of those kids are frightened. The parents have to spend time calming down the child. Maybe I’m missing something here…

    It’s been over 10 yrs. since I’ve had any nieces and nephews around for Christmas but yes it’s wonderful to watch young ones. I live in a different province. They range from ages 26 to 2.5 yrs. There are 7 of them from 3 sisters. I am the oldest sibling so I have witnessed the growth of the next generation. (Cycling only makes me look younger.)

    Hope you have a great time in Hawaii –we were in Maui in 2009 and in Big Island & Kauai in 2002. Yes, we did a bit of cycling also. We were lucky to coincide our Maui trip (early Jan.) when the mama and baby whales hang out on the south side of Maui. Makes for easy whale sightings!

    • February 6, 2012 10:06 pm

      I was just kidding around, Jean! Sorry my humor doesn’t quite play well with you 🙂
      Hawaii was FABULOUS! I’d love to go back (minus the terribly long trip) to see some other islands. And maybe do some cycling!!

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