There are a lot of reasons to get ridiculously excited about the holidays. The holidays for me begin with my birthday, which was October 24th. A week later is Halloween, and while I turned 29 this year and fully realize that it is probably the last year I am able to dress up like a slutty Strawberry Shortcake, I’m glad it’s over. Because it was cold and I was not wearing nearly enough clothing. And I wanted a weapon. Everyone else in my group had a costume which required a sword, or nun-chucks or something violent. I had a pink bonnet.
But that’s beside the point of this little story here. After Halloween comes Election Day, and while I was just intimidated at the polling place this year by a little old lady handing out fliers for the County Assessor’s race, I did my civic duty and cast my vote for more Illinois politicians who will inevitably end up in jail or being an epic disappointment. Think I’m jaded? It’s Illinois, people. Really.
Then finally Thanksgiving rolls around and I can bust out the family sweatpants – yes, we have family sweatpants for all major holidays. Don’t be jealous because my family is that much cooler than your family. Thanksgiving dinner always results in interesting dinner conversation while my grandmother sits there with her mouth open trying to figure out where she went wrong, and who the hell are these people? Are we really related? But it’s on the drive back from Thanksgiving Dinner when I start listening to Christmas music, which of course makes me happy. Decorations go up the following day. And then the holiday party invitations start rolling in. Here’s a brief breakdown of what my holiday party schedule generally looks like:
- The Office Party – Thankfully, I have a small office and we only do a dinner out somewhere. But I’ve gone as a date to a few office holiday parties over the years (was never asked by the same person twice, oddly enough). You know what is not appropriate at these parties? Getting drunk on open bar cocktails, straddling Santa and practicing your striptease aerobics moves on the giant candy cane decorations. Just take my word for it.
- The Ugly Sweater Party – This evite gets a “NO.” I like to look pretty and wear sequins and be sparkly for the holidays. It’s the only appropriate time to do so.
- My Holiday Party – Cocktails, music, good friends and good cheer. And maybe this year no one will knock down my Christmas tree. And maybe, just maybe I won’t wake up on my dining table with a string of lights wrapped around my leg (shining brightly!) and holding my tree topper in my hand with bits of garland in my hair.
- Christmas Eve & Christmas Day – Family. I don’t even pretend to be Catholic anymore and have stopped attending midnight mass altogether. Christmas Eve has become a nice dinner out with a lot of wine, followed by eating a lot of cookies and playing drinking games with my parents and siblings to the movie Bad Santa. Need I remind you of holiday sweatpants? Christmas Day involves more drinking but includes presents. WIN!
- New Years Eve – This changes yearly. I’ve done the big hotel parties, the bar parties, the house parties, the lay on the couch because I’m sick parties, the random yacht club parties (where tragically my BlackBerry went for a swim in the lake last year), and every year I say I’m doing nothing. This year, it is looking like a night at home, maybe with a few close friends and a lot of liquor. I’m spending too much money the following week in Mexico, so I’m going to take it easy. I hope.
‘Tis the season, people. Join in the fun and let’s get this party started!
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