I've been in full holiday mode. We brought a Christmas tree home, we hung the stockings, and we put out the menorah. Our tree has twinkling lights, my favorite kind, that fade in and out slowly. So slow that if you're not looking directly at it, you would never know the lights are fading in and out, like Gatsby's green light across the bay. I could get lost gazing at our tree. Underneath it sits a little village with a bakery, a library, houses with porches, and a lighthouse with it's beacon flashing from the Christmas lights I draped around the town. The village is full of townspeople including carolers outside of the church, ladies with shopping bags, men cutting down trees, and children throwing snowballs. That is, there were townspeople until Mordechai chewed the innocent farmer who was churning butter. Now the villagers are safely tucked away in their tissue paper until I find a safer spot for them. The farmer is in critical condition, but nothing some super glue can't fix.
Last week we had our holiday potluck and gift exchange at work. We all brought in some delicious sides like mac and cheese, corn souffle (so yum!), and rosemary sweet potatoes. It was a delicious feast and we ended it with presents. There are eight of us, so as you can see, so many presents! As I type I have two candles burning in different rooms because I can't pick just one, both gifts from the girls at work. Everyone is so thoughtful, so sweet, and extremely fun. I love working with these girls. As much as I try to teach them things, they end up teaching me sometimes too.
There was also an event for the event industry (my favorite kind) which were the vendor's choice awards. Vendors get the chance to vote for their other favorite vendors in the area. It was an event I definitely wanted to attend because the sponsored photographer was my own wedding and family photographer, Live Happy Studios. I also love getting to chat and have fun with the vendors we work with on a regular basis. Normally we see each other during an event setup or email each other because of an upcoming event. These events are great opportunities for us to not only network, but to enjoy the company of the vendors we have gotten to know. The theme was winter and ice and there were silvery white rock candy hanging from trees at the candy bar and snowflake shaped gobos spotlighted on the attendees. The venue was the Orchid Garden at Church Street Station; with it's 1920's architecture and white wrought iron fixtures, it was a great backdrop for the theme. This gem has been hidden in downtown Orlando and recently went under renovations to bring it back to it's glory.
The weather in Florida has been cool lately, making it feel even more like the holidays. Being from up north, I try to wear boots on Christmas day but nothing makes it feel less like Christmas than sweating in boots. Our old house is like a copper pot, holding the heat like a greenhouse in summer and keeping in the cold air during winter. Warm socks, a cardigan, and a cup of tea are all it takes to make it feel cozy. Just add a holiday movie and a knitted blanket and it's perfect. Are you ready for the holidays?