Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Christmas in January

As I've said before, I'm not big on dates. Now, don't interpret this to mean that I don't care if you forget my birthday. I do care. A lot. I love birthdays and firmly believe that they should be celebrated on the actual day of your birth. But when it comes to more minor holidays, I'm fine with celebrating whenever the mood strikes, or (more accurately) whenever the price is right. That's why our home is currently adorned with a lovely live poinsettia plant and a gingerbread house, 2 traditionally Christmas-related items that were conspicuously absent from our home during the entire month of December. When visiting a botanical garden (the indoor portion--I don't live in the tropics where January is ripe with flora) on Friday we were given a poinsettia upon exiting. For free. The best part is, we didn't even have to pay to get into the garden. So we commemorated our splendid free outing that afternoon with a free plant. I don't care that the rest of the christian world is tossing out their poinsettias now that Christmas is over. I'm proudly displaying my new plant.
Whilst (don't you sometimes wish you were British so that you could get away with writing uniquely British words and phrases? Since Mary Poppins is British, I'll take that liberty on this blog every now and then) grocery shopping at Trader Joe's on Saturday, I noticed they had gingerbread house kits on sale for $2.99. You couldn't make one from scratch for that amount. I know I've sworn off unnecessary nonconsumable purchases, even if they are a great deal, but I couldn't resist this one, for a few reasons:
a. it's really consumable. No, I'm not going to eat it, but in theory one could. If there were some kind of natural disaster in my area and we couldn't get out of our home to get food, this gingerbread house could sustain life.
b. it provided a great excuse for us to use up some leftover Halloween candy. Yes, you read that right. We still have Halloween candy lying around.
c. it entertained us all for a good hour or so. So when you break it down, $2.99/hour for entertainment for 4 people is not bad at all.
d. over the Christmas holiday, Una saw several gingerbread houses at homes we visited and was quite taken by them.
Monday was the day we worked on it and in the last 24 hours, only 2 pieces of candy have been picked off (for the record, not by me). Not bad, if I do say so myself.
Gingerbread houses in January? Why not? Una doesn't care when we did it, only that we got to do it. Let me tell you, I'm sure glad we performed that winter time ritual for $2.99 instead of $14.99.
Likewise, I'm thrilled that we waited until January to get a free poinsettia instead of paying for one just a few weeks earlier.
Suddenly I'm wishing that like David Sedaris's family, I were Greek Orthodox, so that I could celebrate several religious holidays a week or so after the rest of the world, thereby benefiting from the tremendous markdowns that occur the day after every major holiday.


Mrs Furious said...

good idea on the gingerbread house. I might make a Valentine's day house!

Mary Poppins said...

mrs f--a valentine's day house would totally work (i'm thinking those conversation hearts and red hots would make for some adorable decorations). or how about calling it a hansel and gretle house and it would be appropriate in any season?