A Very Jewish Christmas
December 08, 2006

I am in the holiday spirits. Raised totally Jewish, I grew up in a household where we NEVER had a tree. We were not one of those families. Holidays were spent at the movies and in Chinese restaurants with the rest of the Jews. We were from Miami after all. But how I loved Christmas. I am told at age four I was pointing out the pretty. Something about large, bright, shiny objects that amused me. I have a thing for fireworks too. Just the general holiday thing makes me smile. Seriously those trees smell so good, lets not even get into how gorgeous they can be all decked out. The crisp air (yes even in Florida), the cheer, apple ciders, cookies and lights. Lots and lots of lights. The Christmas House was a favorite stop, where they gave away candy canes and had non-stop caroling. As a cheer me up, I did drive abouts looking for the best lights and whole streets done up to the nines.

Junior year of high school, Rachel and I, in a crazed brake from our work, decided we wanted a Christmas tree. In January. We set out to find the remains of a tree dragged to the curb by the gentiles in our neighborhood. What we were planning on doing with this is still a mystery to me. And a lesson we learned shortly after we maneuvered our find into the back of her Jeep. With dead pine needles all over the place, we drove back to her parents house. Her mom stared at us with a quizzical look (which, in retrospect, was actually the appropriate response) and asked what in god's name we planned to do with a half dead, already used Christmas tree, in January at a Jewish home? Given that we did not have a single answer, we dragged the tree, with a trail of needles, to the end of her driveway and left it for the garbage pick up.

Today at last (!) I can say I have my own tree. Having a Catholic "roommate" means I get to decorate and celebrate. Oh yeah, bring on the x-mas. Instead of ogling fondly, pointing out every single house with lights, and enjoying the mall decorations, there is real Christmas in my house. Wahoooo......

We have a tree named Moe. He is decorated to a tee. Including a very crooked silver star he wears on his head. We have multi-colored tacky lights and a slew of ornaments both purchased (some shown above) and the rest given as gifts. We hosted a small "I love Christmas So Very Much" party and friends generously brought Moe some lovin'. There amongst SEC football, prosciutto wrapped bread sticks and veggies, we adorned him with all his trimmings. There were no cheesy Christmas songs, after all Gator football was on. But it was the start of what I hope to be a tradition. Not just of friends and food (oh and football of course) but of warm holiday memories. We asked for toddler donations to Metropolitan Ministries as well. Trees, ornaments, family and holiday happiness right here. Not a dead tree in January. A live one, the weekend after Thanksgiving twinkling with lights, goofy reindeers, and holiday spirit. Finally, my testimony to the season. It is not just about the glitz and glamour of it (as I have learned and actually really do love) it is about the people, the warmth and the making of memories.....under the tree.


Blogger acaligurl said:

hooray for moe!! and i like the picture in your blog. i heart pretty, sparkly, baubles!!!

8:44 PM 

Blogger magnetbabe said:

I bet it has got to be exciting for roommate to experience you getting your first tree. My stepmom is Jewish and she's the craziest Christmas fiend in the family. She cooks extravagant dinners, over stuffs the stockings, homemade cider, etc. Us gentiles really take it for granted, I guess.

9:10 PM 

Blogger e.b. said:

I just hung some Chanukah decorations as well - it is quite festive in here now. I presume many many more years of this will perfect my tastes and skilss. This is only the start....

11:07 AM 

Blogger brookem said:

Our tree's name is Blitz. Moe sounds nice- it's cool you're incorporating both traditions into the holiday.

10:29 AM 

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