Five Question Friday: Decembr 16, 2011

The wind is ferociously howling outside our windows tonight as I work on this. Winter is just days away and we’ve already had two light snows. I’ve been working on “My Etsy” shop (see link in the menu across the top of this page), choosing which cards to sell, and that means looking through pictures of summer flowers and butterflies, and thinking of warmer climes. Even so, I must admit that snuggling under the warm blankets, peering out the window at wind-whipped trees while tapping away on another 5QF, a cup of hot chocolate within arm’s reach, is rather comforting tonight.

This has been a slow week for me. Once I handed in my final final, I didn’t quite know what to do with myself. That will change I’m sure, but I have enjoyed the slow pace of the last few days. Sometimes taking time to stare out windows as my body recovers from too many late night study sessions is just the thing to rejuvenate my spirit.

So, while in this mellow mood, let’s go to the questions! Enjoy!

1. What’s the best Christmas present you’ve ever received?

The best present I ever received in my life was a gift from my three children. This was years ago when they were quite young; I think Mary, the youngest, was in kindergarten or first grade. The had no money to buy us an anniversary gift but they wanted to do something. Being artists every one, they made paper book marks and went house to house throughout our neighborhood selling them for a nickel apiece, all without my knowing. They were able to earn about $2.00 this way, which they took to a dollar store (I don’t know how they managed that, but someone drove them) and bought four glasses–“real crystal,” according to Tim, the oldest at 8- or 9-years-old. The glasses had flowers painted on them along with stripes. Unique glasses, but those glasses were the best gift I ever received. Sadly, the glasses broke rather easily and within days we were down to just one glass, which I wrapped and put out of harm’s way, to no avail. I never forgot those glasses, nor how much they meant to me. For a five-year-old, a six-year-old, and an eight- year-old to come up with the idea and then to pull if off amazes me. It was a sweet gesture I shall never forget.

2. Worst/Funniest White Elephant gift ever received?

I don’t know. I’m scanning my brain to remember but can’t think of anything. I have not attended many office parties or participated in gift giving that involved gag gifts. If anyone reading this who has known me for many years, call or facebook me if you remember something. I WILL include it if you refresh my memory, but I’m not recalling anything at the moment.

3. Is your Christmas tree plain and simple (white lights and matching ornaments) or is it wild and crazy (colored lights with lots of ornaments collected over the years)?  Is your Chanukiah plain and simple, or is it elaborate?

Well, our Chanukiah (Menorah) is still packed away this year and in storage quite far from where we are presently living. We have two that we use; the large, ornate silver one is Richard’s to light, and my smaller, pewter Chanukiah sits next to his in front of the window. This year we will go the simple route, though. I will pick up a couple of inexpensive menorahs at the Jewish bookstore near our home. We will light them, after all Chanukah is to celebrate the miracle of lights, eat some latkes and maybe share a story or two. We will do this for eight nights.

4. “How” do you iron your clothes? The old-fashioned iron/ironing board way, the shower, back in the dryer, etc.

Iron clothes??? Are you serious? I didn’t know that people still ironed! I take clothes straight out of the dryer when the cycle finishes. If I’m not there at the exact time, I spritz the clothes with water and throw them back in the dryer. I do not iron.

5. How much baking do you do for Christmas and what are your “must make” items? (I’m looking for recipes here, peeps…)

I don’t bake much anymore. For one, most of my kitchen tools and utensils are out in storage. Our kitchen is teeeeny tiny making it difficult to work in. But the real reason I don’t bake, I don’t rally enjoy cooking or baking. Now that the kids are grown and out of the house, I will fess up and tell every one that the kitchen is not where I want to be spending my time!

That’s it for this week. I look forward to reading what y’all have to say. Enjoy your weekend. ūüôā

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Five Question Friday: November 18, 2011

Good Friday everyone! I do hope you all are waking up to wonderful possibilities today. And for those who are struggling for whatever reason, may you find the strength to get through your day, and comfort for having weathered the storm, whatever it is.

Nothing much has happened this week other than studies! By mid-December the quarter will come to an end and I will have completed one of the toughest required courses in this program. (The other mind-melter comes in the spring quarter!) Since not much else is going on, let’s get on with 5QF!

1. Do you have a go to song that always puts you in a good mood?

I have so many “go to” songs and music I don’t even know where to begin. MANY songs of many genres fit this bill. There is one however, that comes to mind right away. Not your everyday fare, but oh so uplifting! Maybe not your cup of tea, but I love it! dance to it! hum it! Enjoy. ūüôā

2. Are you a real Christmas tree kinda person or do you go with a real fake one?

We are not Christmas tree kinda people here. Nope. Not at all. Instead, around this time of year we celebrate Chanukah. We will light the menorah for eight nights, have a few latkas with applesauce, sing a few songs, visit friends and relax. Chanukah is not one of our major holidays, but it is certainly a beloved holiday by many.

3. What are you thankful for?

Too much to expound upon here. Soooo…. I’ll send you to my gratitude blog. Click here. There you will find many things for which I am thankful! ūüôā

4. Which fashion fad from the past do you wish you could wear today?

Nah…. ¬†None. Absolutely none. The clothes I wear aren’t so faddish anyway.

5.¬†Do you wait until the “low fuel” light comes on before you fill up the gas tank?

Absolutely. Isn’t that what you are supposed to do? Makes my husband crazy. He thinks that one should never let the gauge go below the half-way point. I say, “why not?” After all, isn’t that what the low fuel light is for, to let us know when it is time to fill up again?

 

 

So, that’s it for this week. Have to get back to the books, but this has been a nice break. Y’all enjoy your weekend, and I’ll see you next Friday from KENTUCKY!

Five Question Friday: Sept. 2, 2011

Good morning, and time for another Five Question Friday. ¬†I hope your week was excellent! Ours was hectic, as many of you know, but we are both in one place now, and in a sweet little apartment that fits our present needs. ¬†So in spite of boxes and “mess,” we are confident that this is the place for us at this time. ¬†Now, on to the five questions, here they are!

1. Shoes in the house –¬†yay¬†or nay?

Yes, we allow shoes in the house. ¬†I sometimes think about how nice it would be to have everyone leave their shoes at the door, but then I would be¬†the enforcer and become a nag . . . all the time. ¬†That really doesn’t suit my personality, so it is definitely shoes in the house!

2. What do you call them — flip-flops, slippers, thongs, etc?

I’ve always called them flip-flops. ¬†Always.

3. What song are you almost embarrassed to admit you know all the lyrics to?

I don’t know about embarrassment, but I know most of the words to American Pie (but then I think just about everyone from that era knows that one.) My husband and I like to sing “I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow” when we are traveling. ¬†Don’t know why, but we do. Then there is “Gloom, Despair and Agony on Me,” which the last time I checked, my kids hated. Of course that might have something to do with the fact that when one or all of them were whiny and complaining, I would go off into a rousing rendition of the ditty. I may have ruined my kids. I’m not sure. I am sure though, that there are more songs that I embarrassingly know the lyrics to, but these are the first to come to mind.

4. What is the best quality to have in a friend?

Best quality? ¬†That’s a tough one. ¬†Kindness, love, fun, loyalty (but not blind), honesty, support, listener, sharing, playful, laughter. . . The list is endless. ¬†It’s these qualities together that make for friendship. ¬†It’s the stick-to-it-ness of growing and learning together, sharing the ups and downs of life, being there for each other, calling each other out when need be. ¬†So many things. ¬†There is no “best quality,” friendship requires many qualities.

5. Do you know what you want for Christmas?

Since we do Chanukah, I’ll tell you a little about that holiday. ¬†We celebrate for eight days to commemorate the successful Maccabean revolt in which we regained our Holy Temple. Sadly, Antiochus and the Seleucids whom he ruled, desecrated the temple¬†and contaminated the holy oil for the menorah¬†as well (simple explanation), except for one¬†vial that contained enough oil for one day. ¬†The Hebrew people decided to burn the oil, but miraculously the lamp burned for eight days instead of the one, giving the people time to press fresh olive oil to replenish the lamp and maintain the required perpetual flame. Thus, we light candles each night of Chanukah, starting with one and then adding another each night till the last night when we light 8 candles. Historically, parents and teachers gave¬†gelt (coins) as reward to children for studying Torah during Chanukah. The dreidel game began as one way of teaching children the history of Chanukah. Other Chanukah traditions emerged through the years adding to the festivities of the holiday. ¬†Gift giving was not a part of Chanukah until recent years when Christmas became such a big celebration along with gift giving and receiving. ¬†Jewish parents wanting their children to feel more a part of the mainstream culture while at the same time maintaining a Jewish identity,¬†began giving gifts to their children each of the eight nights of Chanukah. ¬†You will most likely not find this widespread practice outside of the Western culture where Christmas and gift giving are synonymous. ¬†We do not take part in this latest custom, but we do sing, eat latkes (potato pancakes} with applesauce), read Chanukah stories, and of course, light candles.

Now it is your turn.  I look forward to seeing your answers!