“…freshly cut Christmas trees smelling of stars and snow and pine resin – inhale deeply and fill your soul with wintry night…”

Yesterday was the perfect start to the countdown to Christmas. The play, Meet Me in St. Louis, was wonderful. The cast had great voices and the scenery was cleverly built so the pieces could be turned. Summer became fall and fall became a snowy winter complete with a snowman. It was the Saturday matinee in the very same theater where I spent so many other Saturdays watching movies when I was growing up. The marquee is the same, the ticket booth is still on the side wall and the upward incline leads to the seating areas just as it did when I was a kid. Missing, however, are the teenagers making out in the back rows, the candy counter on the wall between the two aisles and Al and his flashlight patrolling those aisles and shining his light on evildoers throwing candy. The stage isn’t very big, but it seemed huge with all the characters dancing and singing together.

After the play we walked down the street to Felicia’s for dinner. As we walked closer to the restaurant, we could smell the food, especially the garlic. The restaurant was crowded and you got a table only if you had a reservation. We did. The garlic enticed me to order shrimp scampi. It was delicious.

After dinner we took the long way to my sister’s house, the same way we used to walk to and from school. There were so many houses with lights, it was amazing. Even their fences were decorated. I had’t seen so many lit houses in a while. I stayed with my sister for a bit then took all back roads to the highway. I wanted to see more lights.

The ride home was uneventful and boring. The city, as usual, had a stretch of bumper to bumper cars, but beyond that the traffic lightened, and the ride was quick. The radio played Christmas songs and I sang along. I got home in good time, gave Gracie some hugs, patted the cats and got comfortable. Today is house decorating day. I’ll go up and down the cellar stairs several times hauling the decorations I want to use this year. I’ll have to go to the back for the boxes as the front boxes were last year’s choices. Tomorrow is tree day. I can hardly wait. I love decorating the tree.

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16 Comments on ““…freshly cut Christmas trees smelling of stars and snow and pine resin – inhale deeply and fill your soul with wintry night…””

  1. olof1 Says:

    Sounds like a great evening! It’s always fun to go to a play and never wrong with a visit to a restaurant. Too long since I did either.

    The wind blows strong here again, at least it sounds like it does. Gale force they say, I guess it’s the warm winter that makes it this windy, it rarely blows this hard when it is cold but the few times it does it is hellish.

    I have to see if they have put up any christmas lights in the village I work, out here it’s very little of that and my guess is that it’s even less in that village 🙂

    Have a great day!

    • katry Says:

      It was a fun evening. We do it every year, and the play is always something to do with Christmas.

      The sun just came out after clouds all day. I started watching the football game at 1 and they had sun and blue skies and are only an hour from me. Luckily the sun finally made its way here.

      Lots of lights this year!!

      Have a wonderful evening.

  2. flyboybob Says:

    Is that the same Meet Me In St. Louis as the movie with Judy Garland? I guess Broadway musical writers are running out of new ideas between the fourth version of Oklahoma and the second version of South Pacific. My favorite Christmas movie, “A Christmas Story” now has been made into a Broadway musical. That movie contains the ultimate over protective mother statement, “you’ll shoot your eye out”. My mother said those exact words in 1957 when I asked for a BB gun for my 10th birthday. My parents bought me a camera instead.

    Tonight we are going out to our favorite Italian Resturant in our old neighborhood to celebrate my wife’s birthday. It’s one of those old school places where the smell of garlic attacks you at the front door. My biggest disappointment in Italy was the lack of garlic in the food. I guess I’m used to the Americanized version found in places like Northern New Jersey where the children of NYC’s mafioso members settled after their parents went to prison.

    When I was a kid in New York, I would have loved to have been invited to an Italian family for Christmas Eve to enjoy their feast of the seven fishes. Sometimes I wish that I could trade my family for one that has more fun and less complaining.

    My father loved making potato pancakes, Latkes, for Chanukah. I am not a fan of that holiday tradition of Eastern European Jews. I love the Ottoman Jewish tradition of eating jelly doughnuts. Both traditions involve deep frying in oil to commemorate the miracle of the oil lasting eight days in the temple in Jerusalem.

    • katry Says:

      There never was a play until after the movie. New songs were added as we didn’t recognize a few of them.

      The man that played Ralphie is one of the producers of the play. I saw him interviewed just before the play opened.

      In East Boston, you can find those old school restaurants. Our favorite is called Santarpios, and it is in such a spot that getting a parking space is a miracle. When any of us was fling into Logan my mother and father would pick us up and my dad would take us all to Santarpios for dinner. He was the best parking space finder. That place never disappointed.

      In Italy there is a huge difference between Northern and Southern Italian food. Only Southern food has a lot of garlic. Maybe yours is a Northern Italian restaurant.

      I love potato latkes.

      I figure we all have relatives we’d be happy to trade.

      • flyboybob Says:

        Unfortunately, I was in Northern Italy near Milan in the lake region. I could see the Alps from my Hotel room. Everything I ordered and looked like the same dishes that I had enjoyed here but tasted bland. I guess living so close to the Swiss has influenced their food. Most of the Italians who immigrated here in the last century came from Southern Italy including Sicily. Italians have a unique perception of time. Starting a class or meeting on time usually means thirty or forty minutes late. They are like Mexicans with an extra thousand years of practice.

      • katry Says:

        It must be for meetings the Italians take their time starting as I didn’t have any trouble in any other areas. That would have driven me crazy. I would have started on time-all my management courses when I was getting my masters made a big deal about starting on time regardless of who wasn’t there.

        Southern Italian food is what most of us think of as Italian food, lots of olive oil and tomatoes.

  3. im6 Says:

    A new addition to my Christmas music collection. Sending this one out to, who else?, My Dear Hedley…

    • katry Says:

      I love this. What a great find, and I’m sure My Dear Hedley will love it too.

    • Hedley Says:

      Im6 and Kat
      This is way cool, it’s no “Little Donkey” but it’s cool.

      Do look up the story of Nina and Frederik, it is really something. Nina became a regular on Morecombe and Wise and was very much part of Christmas TV.

      Thanks again for thinking of me

  4. im6 Says:

    I’d never have put two and two together. Nina is Nina van Pallandt, who became an actress and made several films, including one of my all-time favorites, Robert Altman’s “The Long Goodbye.” She also sang the following song, which is from the soundtrack of “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” (and written by John Barry).

    • katry Says:

      I probably would not have put it together at all. This is a Bond movie I never saw in total. I just wasn’t a George fan so I don’t remember this song.


  5. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Sounds like the evening was entertaining and lovely. And tasty, too. 🙂 I will look for Felicia’s.

    The sun was out today. The dogs and I got to sit on the front step a couple of times and soak up some vitamin D. Well, I soaked up the D. Dogs don’t need to. We took a couple of nice walks as well. It was practically spring-like outside.

    Enjoy the evening.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I have been hauling up decorations from the cellar. Earlier this afternoon my back gave it up so I stopped. Later I OD with Advil, and I just spent almost an hour moving crates and boxes. There are still some I haven’t been able to get to in years, and I am curious. They were way back, and I had been crawling on plastic boxes without falling so I accepted my good luck and gave up for the night. I did manage to bring up two of my ornaments boxes. I even know where the lights are so I can be ready for my tree. I need to bring up the tree stand and that will be it for a while.

      I do have my moose egg nog glasses replicas of the ones from A National Lampoon’s Christmas vacation. I have my small crock pots for appetizers, but I know where those are.

      Working on my lists of ingredients for cookies and Christmas dinner will be my task, after the tree, tomorrow.

      The evening is late so sleep well!

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