Dec 282013
 

Christmas was very busy for us this year.  For the past five years or so, I have hosted Christmas dinner at my house, but my mother asked to host it this year and who was I to say no to my mom?

The holiday festivities all started on Christmas Eve, though, when we put out some cookies & milk for Santa.

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Oh, and we scattered some Reindeer food all over our deck and yard – you know, just to make sure we were dragging glitter inside the house every time we walked in from the outside the Reindeer could spot our house from the sky.
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Dec 262013
 

I know some people observe the traditional 12 days of Christmas before they take their Christmas tree down. Others take the tree down on New Years day. As for me, I like to take my tree down on Christmas night. Yes, you read that right. Lucky for us, we had some down time on Christmas morning while the kids were playing with their new toys, so we didn’t have to wait all day to get the tree out of the house – it went out Christmas morning.

I figure that once Christmas is over – it’s over and I like to get my house back to “normal” as soon as possible.  For the most part, Christmas morning in my house looks something like the aftermath of a tornado, so having the tree taking up precious space that I need to occupy with all the kids new toys just doesn’t work for me.

So out to the curb it goes.

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Dec 252013
 

Merry Christmas!

I love Christmas music and I have to confess that I listen to Christmas songs all year long – not just at Christmas.  There are very few Christmas songs that I don’t like, but I decided that I’d put together a list of my ten favorites.

In no particular order…….

Sleigh Ride by The Ronettes

Christmas Eve in Sarajevo by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra Continue reading »

Dec 242013
 

Last year, we finally jumped on the Elf on the Shelf bandwagon.  The boys had been nagging incessantly asking for one for a while, so I caved and “Snowy” made his first appearance last December.  At the time, I had seen people posting all sorts of clever EOTS (Elf on the Shelf) antics on Facebook, Pinterest, etc, and I decided that I should do some mischievous things with our elf, too.  How hard could it be, right?  I mean, people were posting pictures galore all over every social media outlet known to man……

And there lied my mistake.

I know some people  just moved their elf  nightly, which is what I should have done, but instead I started having Snowy do naughty little things right out of the gate.  Last year he toilet papered our Christmas tree, colored our milk green, got himself tied up by some army guys and all sorts of other things that involved way too much planning and work.  But by then I was committed, so I had to come up with a months worth of shenanigans for him to get into.  I was so happy last year on Christmas Eve when it was all over.

On December 1st of this year, Snowy came back to our house and I was ready this year dammit.  I spent a while on Pinterest gathering inspiration and without further adieu, here are a few of the things that Snowy got himself into this year:

He used one of the boys slinkies as a swing:

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Somehow he managed to get trapped inside this jar by Ironman: Continue reading »

Dec 232013
 

Hi Masshole Mommy readers! Chris here again with another guest post.  

It’s perfect timing for the holiday season and I wanted to talk about the importance of giving the wife/girlfriend the perfect Christmas gift.

Your significant other has probably been hinting probably for at least the last six months about what they want.  But ladies, guys are thick-skulled, so they don’t pay all that much attention and don’t listen really well.  So, if you didn’t cut out a picture, put it in an envelope with the exact change, safety pin it to his shirt, drive him to the store and gave him the salespersons name to speak to  – then YOU ARE NOT getting the gift you want.

Now, fellas there are some do’s and don’ts for gift giving and I am speaking from experience.. 

1. Don’t give Love coupons for back massages or foot rubs.

2.  Don’t give a Tiffany’s Box with something other than Tiffany’s inside of it.

3.  Don’t give something that is for the household (Blender, mop, or new car headlight).

Do buy tickets for shows (hint: pick a show that you will most likely hate the most and get those because she will love them). Continue reading »

Dec 212013
 

A few weekends back, we took the boys to see the lights at the Taunton Green.  Taunton is a smallish city near by to us and they have been lighting up the Green in the center of the city for 100 years now.

Some years we just drive by and other times we actually get out and walk around a little bit.  This year, we got out and checked out the lights close up.

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Dec 192013
 

A couple of weekends ago, we took the boys over to the La Salette Shrine in Attleboro, MA. Each year, the people that run the shrine light up the grounds with over 300,000 Christmas lights and it’s really something to see. For some odd reason, it’s always about 25 degrees colder on that small chunk of land than it is anywhere else in the state of Massachusetts, so they sell hot toddies and hot chocolate at numerous stands throughout the property to help keep you warm.

I remember going there as a child myself and other than the addition of a carousel – it hasn’t changed one bit in all the years.

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Dec 182013
 

Recently, our family went to visit The Enchanted Village at the Jordan’s Furniture store in Avon.  The Enchanted Village is a group of fully decorated holiday scenes with dozens “magically” animated figures.

Here’s a little history on the Enchanted Village:

The Spirit of Boston’s Holidays 
Throughout the 1960s and into the 1970s, Jordan Marsh displayed the Enchanted Village in its Downtown Crossing store. The heart-warming display quickly became an integral part of New England’s seasonal celebrations. Until 1972, when Jordan Marsh closed the display, a trip to The Village was a traditional event.

A Tradition in Jeopardy
The Enchanted Village remained closed from 1972 until its rebirth in 1990. Then, in 1998, when Macy’s purchased Jordan Marsh, the Village was sold to the City of Boston for a City Hall Plaza display. In 2003, a lack of funding forced the Village to move to the Hynes Convention Center. By 2006, Boston stopped displaying The Village altogether. In 2009, the Village was put up for auction.

A Local Custom Continues
Jordan’s Furniture purchased the surviving pieces of the Enchanted Village at auction in May of 2009 and restored the vintage collection to its former glory. The Village is on permanent display here in Avon, and is open for all to enjoy during the holiday season. Whether you’re reliving your youth or starting a new family tradition, Jordan’s hopes your holidays are as enchanting as the Enchanted Village.

I went to see it with my family at the Macy’s store a few times back in the 90’s and then I went once or twice when it was set up on City Hall Plaza.  In 2010, when they announced that they were going to house the display at the Jordan’s Furniture store in Avon, I was psyched.  The store is only about 20 minutes from my house and that meant that my kids were going to get to grow up seeing the really cool Christmas attraction.

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Dec 132013
 

A couple of weeks ago we took the boys to have breakfast with Santa.  It was a fundraiser that some friends of mine put on to benefit Children’s Hospital in Boston and this was the second year that they had this event.

What seems like a million years ago, I worked with this awesome lady named Ellie.  Before her & I met, she lost her granddaughter, Emily, to a rare genetic disorder called Zellwegers Syndrome when Emily was just a baby.  Because of the care that Emily received from Children’s, the family tries to raise as many funds for the hospital as they can in her memory.

At the event, the kids all got to meet & have a picture taken with the big man himself:

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Eat pancakes (regular or chocolate chip) and bacon. Continue reading »

Dec 112013
 

**Disclosure: As a member of USFamilyGuide, I was given a family four pack of tickets to attend this event, in exchange for promoting on my site and writing up an honest follow up review post. All views shared are mine and were not influenced in any way**

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“This holiday season, fall in love with the heartwarming tale of Janice, a little girl who looks forward to riding the Train to Christmas Town every year with her brother and Grandmother. This year is a little different though, as readers of the story already know. Accompanied by a bag full of surprises, woodland friends and jolly elves, Janice relives happy memories as she rides the train to Christmas Town once again”.

My family and I took a ride on the Train to Christmas Town from the Cape Cod Central Railroad a couple of weekends ago and I wanted to tell you a little bit about our experience.

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Dec 092013
 

The weekend after Thanksgiving, we got our Christmas tree.

When I was growing up, my parents always had an artificial Christmas tree.  You see, everyone in the house (including me) was allergic to pine trees, so instead of everyone suffering – my parents just went the fake route.  Even though my sister, brother and I would beg year after year for a real tree, they insisted on keeping the artificial ones because of our allergies.  Now that I’m a mom I totally get it, but boy, did I hate our fake trees when I was a kid.

When I moved out of my parent’s house years ago, I insisted on getting a real Christmas tree despite the fact that I’d be sneezing for an entire month straight – and that’s exactly what I did.  I got the tree the Sunday after Thanksgiving that year and I suffered miserably with that thing in the house, but that didn’t stop me from getting real trees every year since.

This year was no different.

There is a bait shop right behind my house that sells trees every year and that’s where we always go to get our trees.  It’s awesome because we just walk it home & there is no worrying about tying it to the roof of the car and getting it home in one piece.

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Since we always go early in the season, there are tons of trees to choose from. Continue reading »

Dec 052013
 

Yesterday I posted about our awesome family Christmas card photo shoot.  Man, I am still patting myself on the back over how good they came out…..

But I digress.

With five people that were going to be in the picture, there was no way we’d get it right on the first try.  Surprisingly, it only took six or seven tries before we got it right, though.  It was the coldest day of the year at that point and it was only about 30 degrees out, so we were freezing out there in t-shirts – which definitely motivated us to get it right quickly.

Anyways, here are a few of the cuter outtakes from out photo shoot:

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I showed you the picture that I chose for our cards in my post yesterday and as soon as we got it, we ran inside.  Then it was time for a little fun before we started the process of removing all that make-up.
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Dec 042013
 

If you are my friend on Facebook, then you already probably know that I had something pretty cool planned for my family’s Christmas cards.  Actually, I went so far as to say that it was EPIC and I really think they turned out awesome.

First thing’s first, though.  Although the idea for the pictures was our own, we never could have pulled it off without the help of my good friend Denise McDonuts.  Her and I met through blogging a few years ago when she started stalking me, but she’s become a real-life friend.

Let me start by saying that our original plan for pictures didn’t pan out for a couple of reasons – which are boring and you probably wouldn’t care anyways, so I’ll spare you.  What we ended up doing was a spin on our original idea and we knew with Denise’s help, we could make it happen. You see, Denise is a make-up artist and does the make-up for the monsters, zombies, etc at the Hanover House of Horrors (in Hanover, MA) at Halloween time. Chris and I knew this and asked her if she would do our make-up for a family Christmas picture and thankfully, she agreed.

Are you curious about what the heck we did for our pictures?

She sent me a list of a few things we needed for our shoot, which I was able to get at a costume shop in Plymouth, MA:

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Oct 312013
 

**Disclosure: As a member of USFamilyGuide, I was given a family four pack of tickets to attend this event, in exchange for promoting on my site and writing up an honest follow up review post. All views shared are mine and were not influenced in any way**

train22

This holiday season, fall in love with the heartwarming tale of Janice, a little girl who looks forward to riding the Train to Christmas Town every year with her brother and Grandmother. This year is a little different though, as readers of the story already know. Accompanied by a bag full of surprises, woodland friends and jolly elves, Janice relives happy memories as she rides the train to Christmas Town once again.

The conductor will welcome you aboard and punch your ticket as you find your seat in warm, decorated cars. Meet Bumblebee the Polar Bear, Wabash the Squirrel, even Zephyr the depot cat and laugh along with Elves while they’re busy serving cookies and cocoa, and leading guests in singing Christmas carols. Upon arrival at Christmas Town, Santa climbs on board and walks through the cars greeting each child with holiday cheer and his signature “Ho, Ho, Ho”! Continue reading »

Dec 232011
 

Festivus for the rest of us

Oh, how I love Festivus. It’s the perfect excuse for people (like me) who are looking for a reason to complain (not that I need one).  Airing Festivus Grievances is all about entitlement.

For those of you who never watched Seinfeld and are unfamiliar with this joyus celebration, Wikipedia defines Festivus as “a secular holiday celebrated on December 23 as a way to celebrate the holiday season without participating in its pressures and commercialism”.  The Airing of grievances is supposed to take place right after the Festivus dinner has been served.

And at the Festivus dinner, you gather your family around, and tell them all the ways they have disappointed you over the past year – Frank Costanza

The airing of grievances is just part of the celebration, though.  A “Festivus pole”,  which is literally just an undecorated aluminum pole, “Feats of Strength“, and the labeling of easily explainable events as “Festivus miracles” are what make Festivus so crazy awesome.

And because I know you expect nothing less, here are my Festivus grievances for this year.  And just for shits & giggles, I’m delivering them in 140 characters or less.  BOOM.

1.  To the parents who stop/park in the school drop off lane till the kids get inside!It’s a rolling drop off & you’re making me late for work.

2.  That damn Christmas Shoes song makes me bawl my eyes out every single time I hear it….I wish they would stop playing it.  For good.

3.   Dear makers of tinsel.  Damn you to hell for inventing such a irresistably messy decoration that I just have to have.

4.  Dear Lincoln Chaffee, govenor of RI – it’s a CHRISTMAS TREE, not a holiday tree.  Idiot.  Some things should just be left alone.

5.  To my kids: If you use the last of something, put it on the grocery list. New poptarts don’t just magically appear in the cabinet you know.

6.  To the driver who cut me off & slowed down:I get that you’re more important than I am. You’re probably on the way to cure cancer right now.

So, in the spirit of the day, go on and leave me a comment with all your Festivus grievances.

Dec 142011
 

I hate yankee swaps.  With a passion. But before I start my rant get started, it was brought to my attention recently (like yesterday) that yankee swaps were a New England thing.  I’m not sure if there is any truth to that, but for those of you who may be unfamilar with the concept of a yankee swap, I’ll sum it up as best I can.

In Yankee Swap each participant brings a wrapped, unmarked present to be swapped.  There should be a monetary value of the gift assigned prior to the swap (usually it’s a $10 or $15 gift), so that everything’s fair money wise.  It would totally suck if someone spent $50 and someone else brought a set of stupid Nascar decals, right?

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Dec 122011
 

I love Christmas time.  I really do.  It’s such a fun time of the year – at least it is to me.  I especially love all the decorations. I remember when I was a kid, I’d go into stores with my parents and just stare in wonder at all the beautifully decorated trees, wreaths and centerpiece arrangements.  I would stand there and dream about being a grown up some day and having the prettiest tree ever.  You know, something like this:

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Dec 112011
 

This list came on a Christmas card the other day and it was too good not to share.

  • Did you get any under the tree?
  • I think your balls are hanging too low.
  • Check out Rudolph’s Honker!
  • Lift up the skirt so I can clean underneath.
  • Did you get a piece of the fruitcake?
  • I love licking the end till it’s real sharp and pointy.
  • From here, you can’t tell if they’re artifical or real.
  • Can I interest you in some dark meat.
  • To get it to stand up straight, try propping it against the wall.
Dec 052011
 

Have you actually tried a chestnut that was roasted over an open fire?  I did – and after I gagged over it for about 30 seconds or so, I spit it out.  It was so bad that I couldn’t even bring myself to swallow it.  And trust me, I’ve swallowed plenty of foul things over the course of my life.  I can’t put my finger on whether it was the taste or the texture that grossed me out more and since my husbands experience with one wasn’t much better, I know it wasn’t just me.

Wondering why I was even eating a roasted chestnut?  You know you are. 

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