Sunday, December 19, 2010

TSS - 12.19.10

My Christmas break has officially begun!

I finished grading the last final Saturday morning and finalized all semester grades by noon.  It has been one hectic week, filled with all work and no play, but I am very anxious to have the next 2.5 weeks off and become reacquainted with blog friends and free time.

I plan to continue my old routine of waking up early and leisurely drinking two cups of hot coffee while reading your blog posts of the past two weeks.  I managed to take advantage of a Starbucks special and should have enough Christmas Blend coffee to last until the New Year - which will be a very pleasant way to begin each new day.  I am very anxious to catch up on all the new Novel Challenges being offered next year (by last count there have been close to 100 new additions) and I am sure that there will be several that I cannot resist.  I failed miserably at reading challenges this year - but hope always springs eternal. Are there any particular challenges about which you are excited?  If so, please share!

I finished all Christmas shopping about a week ago, but I have yet to wrap a single present.  I hope to focus on that this afternoon so that I can begin the baking routine tomorrow.  There was one point in my life where I would bake close to a dozen different Christmas cookies each year, but sadly that is simply not feasible now. We will be a small gathering this holiday as my mother is not sure she can make all our traditional festivities, my daughter will be celebrating Christmas with her in-laws in Memphis, and my son will be splitting his time between our house and his girlfriend's parents.  There are some cookies that absolutely must be baked or it simply would not be Christmas:  M&M cookies - chocolate covered pretzels - angel bites (although the rest of the world knows it as puppy chow) - bishops bread - decorated sugar cookies.  This should be manageable and provide enough sugary treats for our small gathering.

Even though I have not yet had a chance to read any of the Virtual Advent Calendar tour posts - I have volunteered to write one for tomorrow.  I hope to read several of the past entries this afternoon in preparation of writing my own.  Last year I wrote about our Italian Christmas Eve tradition - this year I think I might write on the need to adapt old traditions to new times.

I am working on a new system for next semester that will allow me more time to do the things that I want to do, while still teaching the classes that I am contracted to teach.  Hopefully all the details will be worked out before the New Year and I can head into 2011 with a lighter workload which will allow me to pursue other interests in life.  I truly believe that all work and no play is not a good recipe for a joyful life.

I hope this final week before Christmas allows you time to relax in the midst of the preparations.  I certainly plan to catch up on some much needed reading, relaxing, and creative pursuits of all kinds.

 I look forward to visiting all your blogs over the next few days!


  1. So glad you'll finally be able to enjoy the holidays! Our Christmas is moving into another stage this year as well...I'm looking forward to reading your Virtual Advent post on changes in holiday traditions. This year is just the beginning of ours; the next two years in a row will have a child leaving for college so I need to prepare myself for those very different Christmases as well.
    I didn't do well with challenges last year either but there are a few that I simply could not pass up: A Year of Feminist Readings, Back to the Classics, YA Historical Fiction, and Books to Be Read Challenge. I haven't actually signed up yet but am preparing a post and will sign up after Christmas. I'm going to try and organize my reading better and then not sign up for anything else until the RIP challenge in October. Surely I can manage that!
    Enjoy your coffee and baking :)

  2. Hooray for Christmas break! And hooray for joyful living:) This all sounds wonderful. Enjoy!

  3. All of my cookie baking has gone by the wayside...I fear that might be the straw that breaks the camel's back! Plus I don't need to be eating that stuff. As for challenges, I am swearing off them this year. I'm burnt out on them. The only thing I am doing is taking the TBR Dare, where I read nothing but TBR books from Jan. 1st through April 1st. It will do me good!

  4. I'm with you on the all work-no play philosophy and hope that I can incorporate more play in my life in 2011. This will mean unplugging more often (not that blogging is work, but it isn't necessarily play either), but I look forward to focusing on some of the details of the here and now.

    I hope you and your family have a lovely Christmas, Molly.

  5. So glad you're enjoying the holidays, and that you finally have some free time.

    I have only signed up for a couple of challenges so far...the one that intrigues me now is the Ireland Reading Challenge.

    I'll be investigating further....

    Here's my salon:

    (click on my name)

  6. Hope you get to relax and enjoy the holidays now that all the grading is done. I outsource the wrapping to my husband because I wrap like a 4-year-old child!

  7. Glad to hear you can officially relax a bit; enjoy your holiday Molly (and happy belated birthday):)

  8. I love Christmas baking, but, find that I tire so much easier now, so, have cut down a bit. Still, there are some that just HAVE to be made, aren't there?

    Enjoy your daily reads, Molly, and your richly brewed coffee. What a nice ritual to start the days of your break.

  9. I am amazed by the amount of festive baking that so many bloggers do. I definitely want to do that too this week. I am hoping to make a couple of recipes. I want to try M&M Cookies - they are a must.

  10. Our Christmas will be quiet this year too. I hope you enjoy your break!

  11. I only get Christmas Eve and New Years Eve (plus the weekends) off from work. :( Enjoy your break and have a very Merry Christmas!


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