Good morning and Happy Monday!

Today is the first day of my vacation – a staycation if you will.  (Of course my alarm went off at 6:00am because I forgot to turn it off. I did, however, force myself to stay in bed until 8:30. )

So, here I am, all snug and warm in my apartment while it’s 20 degrees outside, just sitting down with my second cup of coffee, ready to watch a little Humphrey Bogart on TCM and I’ve got this nagging feeling that there’s something I’m supposed to be doing. First I shrugged it off as just a touch of guilt that I’m not yet being productive, that the rest of my office is at work toiling away, coupled with the fact that I’m actually taking time off and not going anywhere *coughFloridacough*…when it hit me.

This! This is what I’m supposed to be doing this morning! Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy our Monday chats (even if they are a bit one-sided). But despite the fact that over the course of the past week I’d come up with various topics – and discarded them – I had completely forgotten that I needed to do a blog post.

holiday, Christmas, staycation, S.A. Young, baking, cookies

Since, I obviously have nothing else prepared, I’ll just tell you what I plan to do with the rest of my week in the run up to Christmas.  The shopping is done and the last box has been mailed, as have the cards. So, top of the list: baking!  My tiny “Barbie’s Dream House” size kitchen will look churn out enough cookies, in so many shapes, sizes and states of decoration, to choke a Keebler elf.

Some of the cookies will go with me on Wednesday to my office where we will have our annual “Yankee Swap” as part of the holiday party. For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, I’ll explain. Everyone draws a number. Number 1 goes first, picks a gift, opens it up and shows the crowd. So it goes with everyone picking a gift in turn. They can then either keep the gift or swap it for any of the others that have already been opened. Number one gets to make their decision after everyone else has gone, since they initially didn’t have a choice. The goal is to avoid coming home with this year’s version of a Chia Pet. (We always refer to the worst present as a Chia Pet – last year it appeared in the form of a battery operated ear-wax remover. Fun times.) One of these years everyone is going to show up with booze and/or lottery tickets, since those are the gifts that get passed around the most.

Then there are the movies I plan to see. I have made my list and cross-referenced it with theaters and show times and I will get to as many as I possibly can.  This is my idea of heaven. But I have to get busy. I can’t possibly make my Golden Globes and Oscars picks until I’ve seen everything.  Well, I could, since the “front-runners” are decided for us before the films have even been released, but that’s a discussion for another time.

holiday, Christmas, staycation, S.A. Young., Grinch

And of course I will make time for drinking wine with friends and watching holiday classics like National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, It’s A Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street (both versions), A Christmas Carol (any version except Jim Carrey’s, but I’m partial to the George C. Scott, as well as the musical Scrooge with Albert Finney) and of course, How the Grinch Stole Christmas (animated version only).

As you can see, I have a lot to do this week and all of it with one purpose, to celebrate the season. Next Monday will be the day after Christmas and we’ll all be wondering how it came and went so quickly. I hope you have some time, amid the hustle and bustle, to do things for pure enjoyment, the things that mean the holidays to you.

holiday, Christmas, staycation, S.A. Young

Merry Christmas, dear readers. See you next week!