Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Christmas of Firsts

Hello again to all. I guess I am going to spend a large portion of my Christmas break updating Jonny's blog :) With only three days til Christmas, I began thinking about how this Christmas season has differed from previous ones, and I realized that so far, this Christmas has been a Christmas of firsts.

First First: A Christmas of Engagement

As all of you are well aware, this is my first Christmas as one-half of a to-be-wedded-whole. While this is mostly a joyous occasion, it has raised some questions that, until now I did not have to worry about. Like, where do we go for the traditional candle-light Christmas Eve service? Do we eat pizza or gumbo? Is it made of wood or aluminum? (who can tell me where that line is from :) While Jonny and I have mostly decided how we will split time between our two wonderful families, this is the last time we will get to split up on Christmas Eve, thus making this holiday a first true glance at how we may celebrate Christmases to come.

Second First: Eggnog

I am all about Christmas-time-only foods. For me, this usually includes making sausage balls, red and green M&M cookies and Chex Mix for Jonny. This Christmas I made the aforementioned standards, but this year I wanted more. I decided this would be the year of Eggnog. Every year I see it in the grocery store and I wonder to myself, "What's all the fuss about?" So this year I decided, I'm jumping in the eggnog pool head first and tried some. Verdict: I LOVE THIS STUFF. I must have drank like 12 glasses already. So far I have only tried the right-out-of-the-carton stuff, with a little Blue Bell mixed in, but I have a homemade recipe that is FAB! and will be making it as another standard for next year.

Third First: Christmas Bread

Some what keeping in line with "Second First", and succumbing to the surrounding influence in other places al la internet land, I decided I would try my hand at making my first batch of Christmas bread. That is a labor of love kids. I started at 7pm and just finished at like midnight-thirty. I made three loafs: One for Jonny, one for work, and one for the Monette's. You can see how it turned out. I think for my first attempt it is pretty darn pretty... I'll let you know how it taste when I meet Jonny in the morning for work and sample it for breakfast.

All in all, I'll deem these Christmas firsts a success!

(Notice Tucker staring intently at that platter ever-ready should disaster happen. - Jonny)

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Dents are Alive With the Sound of Music

Hello to all our blogging friends out there. This post is being brought to you by the other half of Jonny on the Spot. I thought I would update Jonny's blog and share about our weekend... although most of you who read this were there and know about it .

Wow. What a weekend. It was great to have our friends and family gather together to celebrate our coming union. Everything was wonderful. If yesterday and today serve as any clues about whats to come, I think I will be humming "Five dogs, no fleas" and "Communication is the key" til AT LEAST the end of the week. That toast was truly a Dent-doing. As I have thought about it, I am reminded of one of the first trips I made to the farm. It was for a Thanksgiving dinner. After our food had settled, we all gathered in the living room, hymnals were passed around, Karl played the keyboard and everyone took turns calling out their request, singing solos while the rest joined in, in four part harmony. I remember taking it all in and thinking "I better get ready for all the musical moments that are about to unfold in my life." As I think back to that Thanksgiving, I am always reminded of how much the Dent family loves one another. It was such a sweet moment and I realized that, for the Dent clan, singing and music, is one of their many love languages. I can think of other countless moments where this has been the case. I am always in awe of those moments when the kiddos are all together and somehow Jonny finds a gituar and Anna Grace and Cavett end up dancing to the singing and playing of "Grandma's Feather Bed" or some other Dent standard. There is such joy and love in those moments and they are so precious to me. As the sisters toasted to us and our lives together, I will always remember it, not only as a clever way to wish us well, but also as a very appropriate expression of Dent love. I look forward to many more moments in song, and who knows... if Jonny and I strick it rich, maybe we can give those "Two loving grandmas" and "Four super aunts" those "Tweleve happy children".

Friday, December 5, 2008

Christmas Music

So, as soon as thanksgiving is over, it's all Christmas music all the time with Amber. In the car, at the house, and everywhere else. That's fine and all. Music is one of things people most enjoy about Christmas. But some artists think any piece of audible garbage put down on a Christmas album gets a free pass. They could not be more wrong. They could try, but they would fail.

So here are my top ten most HATED Christmas songs.

#10- "Feed the World" by Band-Aid, The song is awful, the artists are too full of themsleves, and the group name is a pun so lame its worry of a country song

#9- "Happy Christmas/War is Over" by Celine Dion, Lennon's original was passable but having this French Canadian wail it out as if it were "All By Myself" is misplaced at best and sonic assault at worst.

#8- "Christmas Shoes" by Newsong, when I was first told about this song I thought it was a joke. I see it as a slap in the face to all evangelicals. Just because I like Jesus doesn't mean I have no artistic standards.

#7- "Santa Baby" by Madonna, this song is only like three lines long then repeated over and over in the same whiny voice. Is that tone supposed to seductive? Cause its not. Why would I enjoy that anyway? Oooooh yeah, get the jolly fat old guy all hot and bothered! That's the stuff! Or am I supposed to find her blatant gold-digging humorous?

#6 "All I Want for Christmas is You" by Mariah Carey, take the title of the song, paraphrase it a couple of different ways, and you've probably got all the lyrics already. I hear this one the most on the satelite too. I think she thinks if you add jingle bells to the track a pop song its magically transformed into a Holiday standard. It must be a Christmas miracle!!

#5 "Ave Maria" by Harry Conick Jr., this one is a shame cause Harry otherwise makes a great X-mas CD. He's a complete miscast for a song like this. A crooner sings Ave Maria? Really? It reminds me of the Robert Goule skits on SNL. If I wanna hear it butchered I can go to any Catholic wedding. Guarunteed the bride's got at least 3 cousins all fighting over who gets the dubious honor.

#4 "Favorite Things" by Rogers & Hammerstein, this one's a nod to Amber. It's a good song don't get us wrong. But it is not a Christmas song at all. You'll notice its the middle of the summer in the musical when they sing it.

#3 "Sing Noel" by Some Children's composer, doesn't popular airplay but its still horrendous. And the fact that the CCC does it every year on regional TV is ten miles past embarrassing.

#2 "My Grown Up Christmas Wish" by anyone, I know what you're thinking. "Oh, but its on that Amy Grant CD!" Big whoop. A chick wishes for world-peace at X-mas. And folks in hell want ice cream. Asking for it like a gift under the tree completely misses the mark if you want to bark up that tree anyway. You want the world to be better? Well you can't change human nature, but you can change your own actions. If you want a REALLY bad version though, check out Kelly Clarkson's errrr.....attempt at it.

#1 "Where are You Christmas" by Faith Hill, no explanation neccessary. Its so bad I can't even attempt to mock it.