Random Christmas Crap & Happy Hanukkah!

I only say crap cause that's the mood I am in today.

It really should be "Random Christmas Cuteness", but who wants to read about that?

Yeah, me neither.  

But, since you're here....

I was part of Kori's Secret Santa Exchange.  So much fun!  I had a wonderful SS who did me up right:

Everything arrived in this cute box...


Lots of goodies, including a really cute necklace and box of adorable ornaments!  It should be noted for the record that this box of treats also included some m&ms, jelly beans and a copy of People Magazine with many hot men inside.  Those items were immediately taken to the bedroom and enjoyed behind locked doors.  


So a big thank you to my Secret Santa, Shelly!

On to something else.. (I told you this would be random)... my mantle.  

We have a fake tree... hey, it's near a live wreath, so the smell is there.  I love our tree, it's a "pencil tree", tall and then, covered in white lights.  We got it last year and it was so beautiful without a single ornament that we leave it alone.  Sometimes less is more.

I do, however, decorate our mantle.  This year, I went with a brown and blue theme.

The picture is crap (see, I knew I'd find a way to work the "crap" in somewhere).  In person, it is so pretty.  Those cone trees are all brown crystals and that blue bow.. PURE BLUE SEQUENCE. DELISH and DELIGHTFUL.

Here is one a bit closer:


So where are the stockings?  On the banister.  Candy Man's grandmother made these, how beautiful is mine?
I think she captured my "essence" and position in the family.

I would also like to mention that my son's PUBLIC , California elementary school has a holiday performance.  With Christmas songs and all.. I know, crazy right?  They also say the Pledge of Allegiance AND leave the word "God" in it... crazy rebels, I love them for it.

Here are a few pics of that:



When I was growing up, we had as many Jewish kids as Christian kids in my school, and our Holiday performances celebrated both.  It was wonderful learning all about Hanukkah, making Dreidels, eating chocolate Gelt.  I am so grateful for growing up where different cultures were embraced and differences were not only tolerated, but celebrated.  

To all my Jewish friends, Happy Hanukkah!!!

Comments

Jenni said…
Your decorations are lovely! I love the brown and blue together!
Rhea said…
I LOVE your mantle. Very cute.

And those stocking are great!

And you got an awesome Secret Santa gift. It's so much fun to receive surprise goodies in the mail.

That's really great your public school is rebelling a little. I like it.
S Club Mama said…
That's so beautiful! I love the "R" decorations...I should invest in some "S" ones. Very beautiful. I love the framed picture behind the mantle.

And I love that his PUBLIC school still says the Pledge and sings CHRISTmas carols. Today my husband was telling me how Rick Warren was saying that back in the day tolerance was more of a mutual respect versus something where you have to agree 100% on things. I like that.

PS Have I told you how much your comments and friendship mean to me? Thanks!
Tenakim said…
You did get some great goods from your SS. Love you 'random'- purging randomly has to be good for the soul! Merry Christmas
CaraBee said…
My hometown used to do a Christmas Pageant that all of the kids participated in, from grade school to high school. Then a few years ago, they changed it to a "Holiday Festival", which felt like they were caving to the PC police, but at least they were still doing something. Recently, they canceled it altogether and I am so sad. I'm glad to hear your son still gets to have that experience.
WheresMyAngels said…
I got three bags of candy from my secret santa that won't be in the photo (if I ever get my camera to working again), cause I was hitting them. My husband stopped drinking so he is like a woman with PMS. I didn't know men could down chocolate the way he is.

I love the blue on the mantel.

You know, I thought they had stopped the pledge in schools years ago. Until one day I was somewhere and Mercede knew all the words to it and it.
Swirl Girl said…
I'd love to see the pencil tree.

Last night we put the kids in the back of the SUV without seatbelts and carseats and let them just 'flop around' back there and drove through the 'hood looking at lights and decor.

Then wrapped all the gifts when they went to bed. (and numbered them so each will get equal wow factor gift each night of the 8 (anal retentive much?))

Tomorrow we'll make latkes and open presents ..
{leah} said…
I love your mantel!! I wish I had a mantle to decorate....

Yeah for Christmas programs and Dreidels!!
LORI said…
I'M A BIG FAN OF THE BROWN AND BLUE, AND YOU DID A GREAT JOB TRANSFORMING THEM INTO CHRISTMAS COLORS! VERY NON-TRADITIONAL CRAP! (I WORKED CRAP INTO MY COMMENT AS WELL, THOUGHT YOU'D APPRECIATE THAT!) WHERE DID YOU FIND THE BROWN CONE TREES? I WOULD LOVE TO HAVE A SET OF CONES LIKE THOSE!!!!!
Elyse said…
Thanks for welcoming me to SITS. Love all your decorations :)
~Elyse~
Heather said…
Last year, Elijah's class did a Christmas around the world month, where they studied and celebrated Christmas in several different cultures. It was a great learning experience for him, and for me, as well.

I love that your school had a Christmas program! Truly rebellious.

And your decor, beautiful.
Anonymous said…
Very cool gifts and your mantle looks beautiful!

I agree...why can't schools leave the Christmas stuff in and celebrate and learn about the other holidays as well????
Anonymous said…
Whoa! You got an awesome Secret Santa!!! LOVE that box! I want it!
Aunt Julie said…
Our neighbors lit the Menorah last night, and we joined in the festivities. What a jolly time of year!
Lovin' your mantle!

Also, I grew up in a predominantly Jewish town and I have to be honest I get super excited for Hanukkah, too! The kids and I have been playing with their Dreidels all week!
Casey's trio said…
Your mantle is beautiful! Love it...and that secret santa box looked chock full of goodies.
nikkicrumpet said…
Your mantel looks so pretty! And I know what you mean...it looks gorgeous and you're all excited to take the pictures...then the pictures remove all sparkle and glamour right out! My camera did it too :( I applaud your school for having the courage to allow a Christmas song....amazing!
Lula! said…
I love The Boy performing in all his school Christmas program joy. Awesome.

I love your mantle. I've seen it in person. This makes me feel both smug and blessed, and I just had to say this in your comments. 'Cause I can. 'Cause I love you. Lots.
Unknown said…
LOVE the mantle decorations! LOVE the pencil tree with white lights and less is more theme...
Hope you have a wonderful Holiday season
Fifi Flowers said…
GREAT words to live by on that box! ENJOY! Fifi
Becky W said…
Love your decoration and your secret santa stuff!! I also agree with you on allowing everyone to celebrate the holiday season in their way!
Jen said…
Ooo, I love your mantel. I wish that you could come over here and help me with a few decorating ideas.
Kristin said…
We can't even sing happy birthday in William's school. I guess they don'e want to offent anyone without one...oh wait.
Ash said…
Happy Hanukkah indeed!!

My son also learned about Kwanzaa at his public school - not something I was ever privy to. He taught me all about it -very cool.

Love your mantle. And the stocking - perfect!
Katie Says So said…
i am LOVING how you have your mantle decorated!
Jennifer said…
Your mantle does look great! And you did have an awesome secret santa giver! You gotta a lot of great loot!
Anonymous said…
D and I LOVE that they say the pledge of allegiance everyday.

Cute pictures. I didn't see him during the show. Wasn't it sooooo cute when they stamped their feet and turned to the side at the very end?

What's tall and then?
mommytoalot said…
Your mantel looks awesome!
Love what your Secret Santa gave you..pretty cool.
have a great Monday
He & Me + 3 said…
Nice secret santa gift. Wow! I would hide in my room too. Love your mantle. Just beautiful. Just popped over from sits...first timer. Great place you have here.
Anonymous said…
I love the Queen stocking, I might have to find a way to get one of those myself.

happy holidays.
Unknown said…
I love all of your decorations!!
Your mantle is gorgeous! And wow on the box of goodies - so nice. Thanks for sharing pics with us of your holidays so far. :)
Live.Love.Eat said…
If ever there was good crap, here it is. Awesome secret santa stuff and beautiful mantel. I love the blue and brown!!!!! And Amen to singing CHRISTmas songs and saying GOD! Love it!!!!!
Cute blog today! :) Have a beautiful & fun-filled Christmas....xo...deb
antibloggedy said…
I love M&Ms Jelly Beans are my favorite and Hot men in magazines are good too......Damn, I will have to go to the store and get all those things. I think that is a perfect gift for a friend to enjoy.....I may steal the idea..
Jenners said…
Oh that gift box looks lovely and fun!

And I love your mantle! Very classy and eclectic ... I love it. I always try to pull off stuff like this but just don't have the knack or the eye. And now that my husband has hung the TV over the mantle, I have no room either!
Great secret santa.

I love that your school did a Christmas program. My son's class re-enacted the Christmas story. He was a wiseman, and I loved it.

Have a great night.

Pam
debi9kids said…
OH! I bet your tree is fantastic! I love the motto...simple IS better.

The mantle looks fantastic and that pic was not crap ;)
Have a beautiful holiday!
sassy stephanie said…
I luv luv your mantle.

You totally scored on the exchange. Even the box rocks.
Ashley said…
Great gifts!

Merry Christmas and Feliz Navidad from Colombia!
Preston said…
What a wonderful Secret Santa. I also am grateful for being exposed to different cultures and their various celebrations. I hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday!
Unknown said…
I go back and between crap and cuteness as well...you are perfectly fine to feel whatever you want is what I say.

That is awesome to hear about your son's school. I think it benefits kids to have varied and different experiences.

You certainly lucked out with a great secret santa gift...and I agree, even the box rocks!!!

New to Sits,

Marlene
Pseudo said…
I did a Fall Swap with some bloggers and it was a lot of fun. We did thrift store and CD's.

Happy Holidays (and all that crap).
Unknown said…
I love the handmade stockings...I'll have to find mine that my step-grandmother made me forever ago!
Orah said…
Hi, I am a SITS Hanukkah celebrator and I wanted to say how nice it is that you appreciate the culture of others and share those feelings. I devoted a whole blog to my love of Christmas music, because frankly, Hanukkah songs are "CRAP". I looooooooove that word.

Happy Holidays.
Lisa Marie said…
I love your mantle and your colors just wonderful, L
Great pictures!! I love the little mohawk look.

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