Saturday, December 15, 2012

Getting Ready for Christmas

Here comes again, the Holiday Season. We love Christmas. I started decorating the house the weekend before Thanksgiving. Many routines this time of a year are fun for us except for holiday shopping. Also, this is the time a little bit of coordination makes a huge difference. Timing is everything.

December 1st

It was a busy day. It started with Marilyn's appointment with Mr. and Mrs. Santa. She had a picture with them. We make Christmas cards with it. This year, she was nervous while shooting for some reasons. She might worry if she was on the naughty list. Was she a bad puppy this year?

Barkery, her favorite store, offers pictures with Mr. and Mrs. Santa for pooches every year. We got an early appointment. The store was still quiet. We didn't get a chance to see many dogs this day, but usually it is quite entertaining to watch how all dogs respond to the photo shooting situation.

Here, Marilyn meets her new fiends and treats. She always finds everything here is her favorite. She enjoys their recognition, "Hi Marilyn!" whenever she comes into the store. We never see any unhappy dog at this place. Marilyn is not an exception. Whenever we get to the parking, Marilyn recognizes where she is. She goes banana. She gets anxious to get out of the car. Her excitement takes her to a wrong door every time, guaranteed. I guess she is so focused to get to a door, not "the" door.

While we were there, she started Christmas shopping. "Sniff, sniff... This looks good. That smells so yummm. One for me, one for me..., two for me..." To her, Christmas is time for giving to "herself", oh well. If she could talk, she would give Santa a long long list after the photo shooting. It could be easy shopping for him. Everything on her list should be in this store.

She checked out every squire inch in the store. All her reachable shelves, the kitchen and behind the cases. She looks like helping, but she was checking out the goodies.

Their cases are filled with Holiday theme cookies. Marilyn was ready to try out every single one of them.

They just look like treats for people. Of course, we can eat them. Probably they are healthier than people treats since they don't have any suger, plus all natural.

Anyway, that was the first stop. We headed out to a Christmas tree farm in Littleton. The snow set a mood for holidays. We saw many families and their dogs here.

To Marilyn, this is the first time to join us to get a Christmas tree. The place we used to go doesn't allow dogs in their farm. She was pretty excited with her first Christmas tree farm and motivated to find a perfect one. Her footwork was light.

It is like a treasure hunting to find a perfect tree. You never know what you find. Trees' imperfections stimulate our imagination for how they could be our perfect tree. We walked around, circled around trees, compared some, then finally Marilyn approved. "This is it."

That night, her accomplishment for the two missions of the day brought her early night-night time.

This evening, there was a tree lightening ceremony at the town center. The common is beautiful and I look forward to it everyday I come home. This is the only thing to be happy to come home after dark.

December 2nd

The tree was set in the dining room. It was ready to get decorated.

Another big thing for Christmas is cookies. I spent a day for baking. I hope they are enough for people we give them.

This year, I used 7 boxes of butter, two dozens of eggs, 5 lb. of flour, 0.5 lb. of almond flour, 5 lb. of sugar, 2 lb. of brown sugar, 1 1/2 lb. of confectioner sugar, and some nuts, cocoa powder and spices. I cannot imagine any other occasions for this much intense baking session.

Surprisingly, it was not stressful at all. I had a great time making them though I'm not a cookie person. I think this is the only occasion for me to make cookies in a year.

Only thing I need to be careful is the caramel popcorn. I'm not a big popcorn person either, but caramel popcorn could be my big trouble. It's so addictive. I have to give it away real quick, otherwise I find myself empty the whole container. Yes, it is wholesomeness of butter and sugar... Tell me about it.

By the end of the day, we finished decorating the tree.

December 8th

We had an open house with our friends. We asked our guests to bring a dozen of cookies. Yes, it was a cookie gathering. It was a bit crazy with a lot of people, but a nice and relaxing time. It was nice to see friends we hadn't seen for a long time. It looks like it's going to be our yearly event.

December 15th

I shipped out all packages in the morning. Once this is done, I can be finally relaxed. This year, I sent my friends home made hot chocolate mix, caramel popcorn (sure, you've got to give it away as soon as you make it.) and some cookies.

Today was a giving day. Marilyn turned to be a Santa Paw and delivered cookies to our neighbors. We'll do a couple more visits tomorrow. Somehow, she got cookies as she delivered some. How that works? I can hear she says it works great!

Anyway, the time for merry continues.

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