SantaBama

Yes, indeed, yet another Christmas parody for your amusement. Since our president seems to be in such a giving mood, I thought adapting this Christmas classic to reflect his generosity was appropriate. And really Santa Baby translates so well into SantaBama, doncha think?

SantaBama (to the tune of Santa Baby)

SantaBama, slip a freebie under the tree, for me
I’ve been an awful good girl
SantaBama, and hurry down to Congress tonight

SantaBama, an out-of-space budgetary coup, from you
I’ll wait up for you dear
SantaBama, and hurry down to Congress tonight

Think of all the grants I’ve missed
Think of all the wants that you could assist
Next year I could be oh so good
If you’d pay for my Christmas list
Boo doo bee doo

Barry honey, I wanna smoke my pot and really that’s
Not a lot
I’ve been a libbie all year
SantaBama, and hurry down to Congress tonight

Bama cutie, there’s one thing I really do need, the deed
To a GM factory
SantaBama, and hurry down to Congress tonight

SantaBama, I’m filling my stocking with unemployment checks
Sign your ‘X’ on the line
SantaBama, and hurry down to Congress tonight

Come and trim my Christmas tree
With entitlements bought with bribery
I really do believe in change
Let’s see if you believe in me
Boo doo bee doo

SantaBama, forgot to mention one little bone, a loan
I don’t mean to pay
SantaBama, and hurry down to Congress tonight

Hurry down to Congress tonight
Hurry down to Congress tonight

What do you want from SantaBama?  Hurry I think the lameduck session may already have adjourned.

WC

Shoe string Christmas

Perhaps this year more than ever, people are looking for ways to cut down expenses. Of all the expenses a person may have, Christmas is right up there. Holidays are especially tough when you are just making ends meet, whether because you are under-employed, on unemployment or just seriously trying to cut back and pay down debts.

Though if you are like me, you aren’t willing to pass on Christmas altogether. Whether you have kids or not, Christmas is often the time of year that people want to celebrate.

How to celebrate Christmas without breaking the bank

Gifts/decorations: Gifts probably take up the majority of the Christmas budget and they can be a challenge, especially if you have a large list or a big family. Places where you may find some bargains:

Thrift or consignment shops: If you are a diehard, savvy shopper, finding bargains and treasures in second hand and consignment shops may be right up your alley. My local thrifts shops are pretty good and I have found things like:

Prada handbags (under $10)
Art deco silverware
Christmas decorations (vintage and otherwise)
Christmas movies
High-end label clothing

Dollar stores are also good places to find:

Stocking stuffers
Decorations
Wrapping/bows
Some food items

Other discount stores: Stores like, Big Lots, Marshalls, TJ Max, Ross and box stores like Sam’s Club and Costco – often offer closeout items at deep discounts and you can get anything from designer clothing to movies and books.

Online merchants: Like Amazon, Ebay, and Overstock also offer items you might otherwise not be able to afford and can be great places to find vintage, unusual and hard to find items.

Cutting corners—when you’re really broke
I can hear you now, yes, all good advice, but what if you can’t even afford discount stores? Believe me, I understand and I’ve had some pretty broke Christmases myself. On my brok-est Christmas, all I could afford to send anyone was a Christmas story I wrote. I printed it on Christmas stationary and sent it to everyone on my list. It wasn’t fancy or expensive but it came from the heart and surprisingly it was a bit of a hit.

Yet another year I couldn’t afford a Christmas tree but that didn’t stop me and I decided to improvise. I found a good sized tree limb that had snapped off a tree in my neighborhood, spray painted it silver, put it in a tree stand and covered it with my large assortment of Christmas ornaments. Unconventional, yup, but in fact it was one of my favorite holiday trees ever. Following through on my nature theme, I collected pine cones galore (lots of pine trees in my area) and also spray painted those silver and gold and piled them into baskets with pretty ornaments. The cost was about $5 for the spray paint, everything else was just the effort and creativity involved in putting it together.

What about Christmas dinner?

One of the great things about Christmas is the food, but a typical turkey dinner for Christmas can cost a pretty penny, even if you cook it yourself. If you are a host or hostess for Christmas dinner, why not consider getting together with friends/family and do a potluck dinner? Each person is only responsible for one dish, which don’t have to be traditional – how about Christmas lasagna or Christmas stir-fry? The joy is in the sharing of the meal and contributing to it, not necessarily the menus. Pot lucks also reduce the time spent in the kitchen, saves money and maybe even makes the meal more festive because everyone has added to the feast.

Christmas cards

Not everyone sends them but for those who do, between the cards and the postage you can drop a good bit of cash. In lieu of traditional Christmas cards you could:

Send free ecards. There are several sites online that offer free e-Christmas cards from funny to sentimental – many of them quite beautiful and no postage.

Christmas postcards. Either buy them or have your own made. Places like Staples and Office Depot or local print shops can take a festive photograph and make them into personal postcards for a relatively nominal fee. And the postage for postcards is about 30% less.

Buy cards at discount stores. If you prefer to still go with traditional cards places like your local dollar store and Big Lots often have a large selection for mere pennies of what you would typically pay.

The bottom line
While most of us have our own image of what makes a great Christmas and we get disappointed when we can’t make that happen, it doesn’t mean that Christmas is impossible or miserable. The bottom line is this, where there is a will there is a way. You can create a wonderful Christmas on a shoestring if you want to and if you have to. And honest to God, sometimes those are the very best ones of all because we really had to be creative and resourceful to do so.

No matter what kind of Christmas you have, I wish for you the merriest and happiest—and that you are surrounded by people you love on that day.

WC

copyright 2010

Yummy Christmas Food

 

If you’ve ever celebrated Christmas you know how good food can taste.  Here’s a little bit of a different recipe (for me anyway) to consider for Christmas dinner or a holiday bash.

French Canadian Trifle

FOR THE CUSTARD:
4 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. cornstarch
2 egg yolks
2 cups milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

FOR THE TRIFLE:
1  8” x  4” pound cake or sponge cake
2-4 tbsp. marsala, rum, or brandy
1 cup strawberry jam
2 cups fresh raspberries
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 tbsp. sugar

1. For the custard: Mix together sugar and cornstarch in a large saucepan. Add egg yolks, and whisk to combine; then gradually whisk in milk. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until custard thickens to the consistency of thick cream, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl, and add vanilla. Cover surface of custard with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming, and refrigerate until completely chilled, about 2 hours.

2. For the trifle: Cut cake into 2” X 1” pieces. Arrange a layer of cake pieces in the bottom of a large trifle or glass bowl. Sprinkle cake with some of the marsala; then spread a layer of strawberry jam over the cake; then scatter some of the raspberries over the jam. Pour some of the custard over the berries.
Repeat layering, ending with custard. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Remove trifle from refrigerator about 1 hour before serving.

3. Just before serving, put heavy cream and sugar into a large, well-chilled mixing bowl. Beat cream with a whisk or an electric mixer fitted with whisks until cream holds soft peaks. Do not overbeat. Decorate trifle with large dollops of whipped cream.

 

Wow, I think I gained 5 pounds just reading the recipe.

WC

 

More Little Known Christmas Facts…

Since these little lists are popular this time of year, I managed to dig up more Christmas trivia which may help you in your next holiday game of charades.

  1. Christmas clubs came into existence circa 1905 which were special savings accounts in which people deposited a set amount of money regularly and to be used for Christmas gift shopping. (Hmm, sounds like Social Security to me)
  2. In early England, a  traditional Christmas dinner was a pig head prepared with mustard. (I wonder if that’s where the term pig-headed came from)
  3. A 1995 survey found that 7 out of 10 British dogs get Christmas gifts from their  owners. (Something tells me that Americans are probably right up there with this)
  4. The first state to recognize Christmas as an official holiday was Alabama, which  began in 1836. (Gotta love them southerners)
  5. Contrary to popular opinion, Black Friday (the Friday after Thanksgiving) is not the busiest shopping day of the year. Black Friday actually ranks 5th to 10th on the busiest day list.  Typically, the Friday and Saturday before Christmas are the two busiest shopping days of the year. (Kinds makes those camping shoppers outside of WalMart look pretty silly, huh?)
  6. American billionaire Ross Perot tried to airlift 28 tons of medicine and Christmas gifts to American POW’s in North Vietnam in 1969. (No wonder he looks so elfin)
  7. What do Little Larry, Puny Pete, and Small Sam have to do with Charles Dickens? Well they are the names he considered using for Bob Cratchett’s disabled son before he came up with Tiny Tim. (I can only imagine his rejects for Scrooge)
  8. Good news for all you greenies out there. Christmas trees are edible. Parts of pines, spruces, and firs can be eaten. The needles are a good source of vitamin C. Pine nuts, or pine cones, are also a good source of nutrition. (Though you probably don’t want to eat the ornaments)
  9. Ever wonder why merchants get that Christmas merchandise out so early in the year? Well, during World War II it was necessary for Americans to mail Christmas gifts early for the troops in Europe so they would receive them in time. Merchants joined in the effort to remind the public to shop and mail early and voila a commercial tradition was born.
  10. Another nice tidbit for the greenies – For every real Christmas tree harvested, 2 to 3 seedlings are planted in its place. (And too, most Christmas trees are grown on Christmas tree farms, not removed from the forest.)
  11. The largest living Christmas tree in the world is over 160 feet tall and you can check it out here.
  12. Ever wondered what figgy pudding is?  I have. You can get the history and the recipe here.

Otay, that’s all the whacky Christmas facts I have for the moment, but stay tuned you never know when some other whacky thing will surface.

WC

What’s your Christmas personality?

 

Well my Christmas personality is:

Spirit of the Festivities

Whether it’s stringing cranberries, decorating the tree, or singing Christmas carols, you are in the spirit of Christmas. You aren’t greedy. Even if you’re not religious. Christmas is a great holiday for you.

What’s your Christmas personality? Take the quiz here

Which of Santa’s Reindeers Are You?

Which of Santa’s Reindeer are you?

Santas Reindeer

Comet

Like Comet you are always happy. Nothing seems to get you down and you can always put a smile on people’s faces

Find out which of Santa’s Reindeer you are at Quizopolis.com

Fun Quizzes

That’s right, I’m cheerful little Comet. Click the link and check out your reindeer profile. Oh come on, it’s fun!

WC

Christmas for the Troops

While we are still just beginning to plan Christmas and work out our lists – there are thousands of troops halfway around the world standing the watch. And while I believe we all want them home for Christmas, that’s not happening yet.

If you would like to send some Christmas cheer to the troops check out the following organizations below:

Operation Enduring Christmas

Trees for Troops

Operation Care Packages

For as little as $10 you can give a little bit of Christmas to our troops – funny how so little can mean so much, isn’t it?

God bless our troops, their families and loved ones and Merry Christmas.

WC