Devine site

A little bit about my day, my family, and my knitting.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Oh, Xmas tree....

Today was the day I decorated out holiday tree. I know, I'm Jewish and NOT supposed to have one, but we are a product of our environment, aren't we? I grew up in a house that had a Jewish mom and non-Jewish (step) Dad. My grandma Vinelli was no less than a real grandma to me, and we celebrated Xmas at her house each year. So mom had a small tree for my dad, though I don't think it fazed him one way or the other. When I married, my Irish-Catholic husband who converted to Judaism, asked if we could have a tree just until we had children, and being a lover of sparkly things and happy times, I consented. We had a 7 ft. fake tree which I happily decorated each year. My one stipulation was that we have no holiday lights on the outside of the apartment/house (which held fast for many years until our neighbor George wanted to have both sides of our attached homes look the same. He and Ann, his wife, were so great, how could we refuse, so light up we did). I ALWAYS lit my Hanukkah candles - I wouldn't even DREAM of having an electric menorah. When my first daughter, Alison, was born, I just couldn't bare to get rid of the tree. Besides, my in-laws celebrated Xmas, and while I still lit my candles, it was not as traditional for me to do the Hanukkah things as much as it was to exchange gifts for Xmas and have Xmas dinner with the families (although we did have latkes every year, homemade, of course). When we moved from NY to Florida, we accidently forgot our fairly new, beautiful tree. "Well," I said, " we ARE Jewish so we can now forgoe the tree." But I was in Michaels, where my son worked, and they had beautiful trees. He got a GREAT discount, 50% off, so I bought a 9 ft. tree, and finally got the wooden cranberries that I had always wanted to use instead of garland. The tree was beautiful in our apartment. Unfortunately, the next year we didn't have the same type of vaulted ceiling in our house so the tree had to go. "Well," I said, "we ARE Jewish so we can now forgoe the tree." However, the kids were not too happy about that so I bought a 4 ft. tree....which they resented because it wasn't a HUGE tree (in fact, Alison called the 9 ft. tree "the Nutcracker tree." That was our last Xmas together. The following year I had left, and, living alone, once again said, "Well....forgoe the tree," and I did....that year and the next. When I moved in with Gerry....that was a different story altogether. This was HIS house and so there WAS a tree...a REAL one! I was delighted (have to admit, I really missed the tree). And ever since, we have been going out two weeks before Dec. 25th to buy a REAL tree, and I am in charge of decorating it (YEA!). Gerry puts lights outside, and I even gave in and okayed two white-lighted deer with moving heads - sounds tacky but they're so pretty. Doing the tree and cleaning up afterward took the better part of the day.
Tonight we took Suzzette and Brian out for dinner to celebrate her pregnancy (and added his birthday to the celebration, as it's on Tuesday). We ate at one of our favorite restaurants, J. Alexander's in Boca Raton. We always get the same thing there...a marinated steak called Steak Maui, Chicken Pasta soup (which we shared) and Alex's salad - everything is chopped and it's delicious. We were all going to go to the movies, but first stopped into Whole Foods Market. When we came out, Suzzette didn't feel well so we took them home, then went to the movies ourselves. We saw Closer, with Julia Roberts and Jude Law. Gerry wasn't too keen on it but I liked it (not LOVED it, though). It was a story of love, cheating, guilt and more guilt. It did jump around a bit.
The weather has gotten very cool for South Florida....low around 70 daytime and in the 50's at night. Brrrr! I am so glad that Alison taught me how to make socks..I love wearing mine when it's this cool. I am on my third pair now, for my friend's son, but instead of making them in black, as he requested, they are dark blue/green. I just love making them. Soon I will have to make a scarf for my brother Randy, who wants cashmere, or something really soft. I will have to consult with my knitting guru daughter.
I am also really happy about the coming New Year's Eve. We are going to join our friends John and Melinda at their timeshare at the Cocoa Beach Resort (ours is there as well). We will meet them Dec. 30th, at night, and on Friday night spend NYEve at CityWalk, Universal Studios, Orlando. We are going to go in 2 cars, because after the fun of the evening, Gerry and I are going to go to The Villages, about 1 hour from Orlando, to stay at his brother's new house. They gave us a key, to use it whenever we want to, as they are not moving in for another 2 years. Gerry is going to take that Monday off so we can stay a few days. How cool is that?
If I don't get some sleep I will look more awful than I usually do in the AM. So, goodnight for now!


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