1. Favorite Holiday Song & Movie I am more of a fall weather fan, so when the temperatures drop after September, I always watch “Dracula,” with Winona Ryder and Gary Oldman. For Christmas, it would be a “cold weather” film, but not necessarily a holiday film. I like watching “Cold Mountain” and “Gone With The Wind” during the holidays; my kids watch “Elf.”
2. Favorite Holiday Family Tradition. We go to see light shows at the beach. Every year, there are lights all along the boardwalk, on the hotel lawns and even on the sand. Some of the lights are nautical themes and others are Christmas. It’s fun to stop, get hot chocolate and just drive down the boardwalk -a place usually filled with people is a line of cars.
3. Favorite Holiday Food? Who makes it BEST? I usually do all the cooking for the holidays. Sometimes, I make a turkey but I have done other things like ham, lamb and one year we grilled steaks Christmas day. My kids like to wake up to the smell of warm cookies Christmas morning, so I try to do peanut butter cookies or sugar cookies with a Hershey’s Kiss in the middle.
4. Which of Santa’s reindeers describes you? Vixen, but only Mr. Borrell knows about it.
5. Do you decorate your home or office for the holidays? Religious or Secular? A mix of both? My husband’s office is decorated. Sometimes his staff does it, but we’ve gone up together and done it ourselves, too. At home much of our decorations are typical – wreaths, lights, a snow village, and the tree. I have several small Christmas trees on table tops and one of them is probably 45 years old. It is made out of green tulle and has held up pretty well. My mother made it, as well as the others, but those are made out of garland and done more recently. Outside, my husband decorates the barn with lights. Our best thing is a palm tree. We planted it when we got married and it came up to our knees. Now, 13 years later, it is about 15 to 20 feet high. He wraps Christmas lights around it, to keep it warm and to remind us of what we grew together.
6. Favorite Holiday Book(s)/reading. I have “The Night Before Christmas.” A neighbor gave it to me in 1966, when I was 3. She wrote a note on the inside front cover and I remember looking at it, when I was about 6 and wondering if I would ever be able to write cursive. She was an elderly woman, very sweet. She was probably born in the late 1800s and I am sure she read it to me, though I can’t remember her doing so. I have the book and it is in very good shape.
7. This or That ~ Hot Chocolate or Egg Nog? Hot Chocolate. Turkey or Ham? Turkey. Religious or Secular? Secular. Santa or Frosty? Santa. Hot Toddy or Hot Cider? Hot Cider.
8. What is your favorite part of the holiday season? A change in our busy schedules. The kids don’t have homework, so they get a break and so do I. Least Favorite Part? They are home for two or three weeks and everyone starts getting restless after the first week.
9. Let it Snow or Holiday in the Sun? I am going to break away and say Holiday in the Sun. I have been through a number of Christmas days that were snowy and you couldn’t get outside. That is nice but about mid-afternoon, I start to feel caged in. I have never tried it, but it would be cool to sit on a beach somewhere in Puerto Rico Christmas morning, order a frozen drink, get a poolside massage and go swimming. What a life!
10. Favorite Childhood Holiday Memory? I used to have a Christmas pin, probably in about 1968 or 1970, that I loved. It was of Santa’s face and you pulled a short string under it and his face would light up. When I would go out to visit family friends with my parents, I would wear that pin and be so excited to show it to people.
11. Stay up late and Wait for Santa or Bed Early? After all the presents are set out, I go straight to bed. My kids are still young enough to enjoy getting up at 5 a.m. (or earlier if they can), so I have to get some sleep before the morning rush.
12. What is your Holiday wish?? Cures for some of the diseases that are affecting so many people – Alzheimer’s, cancer, AIDS. I would love to hear about a major breakthrough that would end the stress, anxiety and fear these illnesses bring to patients and their families.