love actually movie

Top 10 Christmas Seasonal Products (List-cember #2)

Oftentimes it’s the greatest things that are stamped with two of the worst words in the English language: Limited Edition. And with the Christmas season now completely infiltrating department stores, TV Channels and radio stations, leaving few seconds of the day without a twinkle, a jingle, or a ho ho ho, it’s important for us to take advantage of the LE benefits associated with this otherwise intimidating time of year.

So in the hopes of preventing you from missing out on some of the best things this season has to offer, here is a list of the top 10 Christmas Seasonal Products.

Enjoy them while you can, as often as you can!

10) Snow Globes512161ce-c381-4636-b976-cfedeabb9eb7

One could argue that these are not actually seasonal because they are sold year round, but those spring/summer/fall knockoffs almost always contain glitter rather than snow, and they are not and will never be called “glitter globes”, so let’s just agree to agree because there’s no disagreeing with that fact. Speaking of facts, my sister buys a snow globe from Target each year and they’re adorable.

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9) Winter Oreos
I love these because they give me (what I consider to be) a valid excuse* to buy Oreos.

“Oh look! They’re Christmassy! Must have.”

*Note: I use varying versions of this excuse whenever Nabisco releases a new flavor, changes their packaging, and/or Target moves them over one aisle.

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8) Starbucks Red Cups2jukhstm-2500-1667

I’m not a coffee drinker, and if I’m being really honest, my favorite product from Starbucks is their old fashioned donuts, but this doesn’t negate the fact that I love their seasonal cups. They always find a way to summon me through the double doors for a hot chocolate. Speaking of which…

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7) Hot Chocolate

I get it, this is another “glitter globe” situation, but let’s not waste time arguing. Let’s just agree to agree to believe that hot chocolate tastes best when the world is cloaked in tinsel and reindeer, when your breath is fogging up the air and you’re standing there trying to look wintery and adorable when in reality your hands are numb and your forehead is itchy as hell from the trendy beanie you’re wearing, and when you pile a warm mug high with marshmallows before sitting down to watch Frosty the Snowman with your family, only to immediately burn your tongue, causing the rest of the Christmas season to be essentially flavorless, but also great and magical and the stuff dreams are made of.

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6) Fiber One Pumpkin Bars

Have you ever wanted to participate in the pumpkin spice phenomenon of fall/winter but don’t want to do so in an intense way (i.e. lattes and cookies and cereal and candles and underwear—probably) and are looking for your “dip toe in pool” opportunity? This is it.

WARNING: These contain addictive properties, thus causing the healthy and balanced 90-calorie promise to be void once you’ve had 5 in 5 minutes…

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5) Christmas Albums

Much to the chagrin of Apple iTunes and music providers everywhere (because I know they work endless hours every year solely to earn my $8.99) I don’t often buy new Christmas albums. Ever since I was little my family has had about 6 CDs we’ve turned to for our Christmas music, and so I usually just stick to those. However, I can’t deny that I love seeing all the Christmassy album artwork popping around come December. This year some of my favorites feature Brett Eldredge tossing a shimmery ball to himself, Kacey Musgraves wearing earmuffs, and Pentatonix dressed as the only group of carolers I ever hope come a’ knockin’ at my door.

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4) Christmas Themed TV Episodes

I briefly thought about doing an individual post about “the best Christmas episodes ever,” but after doing some brief research, I found lists far more entertaining and comprehensive than mine would have been, so I’m going to let those writer’s keep doing what they’re doing. That being said, here are just my top 3:

4c) New Girl – The 23rdtumblr_lw71xajcmt1qgjybho2_250

The end of this episode just makes me so happy. The friendship, the lights, the undeniable Christmas spirit of strangers who had every right to be upset that Jess & co. showed up on their street in the middle of the night, screaming for them to turn their Christmas lights back on, it’s all magic.

4b) Friends – The One with the Routine
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Need I say more?

4a) Saturday Night Live – Jimmy Fallonjimmy-fallonI have always been a big fan of everything Jimmy Fallon does, so I was over the moon excited when I heard he was coming back to host the Christmas episode of SNL in 2011. Naturally, he exceeded all my expectations and gave me all the joy.

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3) Love Actuallylove-actually

I know, I KNOW. Glitter globes. I get it. Yes, you could watch Love Actually every day of the damn year if you wanted to, but it’s just not. the. same. They make so many “but it’s Christmas!” references throughout the film, causing you to always walk away with some “but it’s Christmas!” plan for you own life, thus making any other viewing period sub-par than Christmas time.

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2) Christmas Cookieschristmas-cookies

My family has an entire day in December (which not-so coincidentally is this Saturday) dedicated to baking family cookie recipes, making me an expert on this subject, and qualifying me to make the following statement: Christmas cookies rule all and you can never eat too many*.

*Yes you can, and in doing so you will almost certainly wake up at 2 a.m. and spend a solid hour kneeling on the bathroom floor in your snowflake pajamas regretting everything, while simultaneously looking forward to doing it all again next year.

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1) Ritz Snowflakes

To be honest, these are the entire reason I wrote this list. I could have easily just called it “The One and Only Christmas Seasonal Product You Will Ever Need, Ever”, then pasted a picture of these and went on my merry (Christmas) way. But then I decided that they’re not really the only thing you will ever need, ever, they’re just the only product I’d run up and down the aisles at the grocery store searching for after the first of December. So, I just made them number one and worked my way down, ultimately resulting in The Greatest List of Christmas Seasonal Products You Will Ever Read, Ever (if I do say so myself.)

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Have any Christmas season staples you turn to come December?

Let me know!

Miss a List-cember post? Find them all here.

Classic Love Scenes I Couldn’t Be Part Of

When I was little, love to me was like the locked room of my grandparents’ house. I always knew one day I’d have to break down the door with savage curiosity, but until then I’d just sit in the living room watching Growing Pains and eating cottage cheese.

As I grew up, I watched a number of romantic movies that taught me what love was “supposed” to look like. (They also tried to convince me that every couple that falls in love is essentially perfect and blemishless, but I was eventually able to call BS on that.)

Sometimes as I watched the movies, I transported myself into the character of the female lead; I wanted to see how it felt to be told by someone that I completed them or that our story still wasn’t over. And most of the time, when the lines worked, I understood my character’s choice to ride off into the sunset. Other times however, I couldn’t even begin to relate.

Here are some examples of those times:

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Movie: Pearl Harbor

Scene: Danny (Josh Hartnett) takes Evelyn (Kate Beckinsale) for a private flight.

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Romantic right? They’re own private flight. They’re all cozy and Danny is hot and Evelyn is hot but also slightly scared and excited. Everything is going great and I’m there, I’m in the scene, I’m the goddess that is Kate Beckinsale, and I make one simple request: “DON’T FLIP THE DAMN PLANE.” (Minor paraphrasing, of course.) But what does Danny do? You guessed it. He flips the damn plane.  And I get it, I really do, you little rascal.  As we flip, the fear I feel will supposedly morph into adrenaline and then evolve into excitement and hunger, resulting in our ultimate baby making back in the hanger. But for me, if I was Evelyn, the whole “no flip” thing would not be a suggestion. “DO NOT”, I would say, “DO NOT DO A BARREL ROLL WITH THIS DAMN PLANE. It’s nothing against your piloting shenanigans, I just have extremely bad motion sickness and I WILL vomit all over this sexy red dress. Then chances are, we don’t make a baby and Ben Affleck doesn’t get to tell you you’re going to be a father right before you die. It will all be bad. Just land the plane and we’ll grab a milkshake.

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Movie: Titanic

Scene: Jack (Leo DiCaprio) saves Rose (Kate Winslet) from jumping off the boat.

titanic

I’m not great in heels; I accepted this fact a long time ago. In addition, 90% of my wardrobe is leggings and T-shirts, so getting into the character of an elegant British woman who wears long gowns and kitten heels is already a bit of a stretch, but I’ll work with it. There I am, walking towards the back of the Titanic, ready to jump off the edge into nothingness. Unlike Kate’s stride, mine is a bit like a baby deer and my ankle rolls a few times, but I’m so desperate to get away from my shithead fiancé and controlling mother, I ignore my shoes and keep walking. As I gimp, I’m unaware of my subconscious hope that Leo shows up, but as I take my suicidal stance, he appears.  Before I see him however, a 4th and final ankle roll sends me tumbling into the water.  Leo considers diving in after me. He pictures us swimming to an undiscovered shore and starting a life together, thriving Blue Lagoon style. We’d forgo clothing and he’d draw me like one of his Amazon girls, and we would name our first child Iceberg, an ill-advised ode to the frigid jump that brought us together. He pictures all of this whilst I’m in mid-fall, then realizes that although I had a lot of potential to be the love of his life, he could surely find someone in New York with much less baggage. He then steps away from the edge, goes back downstairs and kicks that Italian guy’s ass at poker.

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Movie: Love Actually

Scene: Mark (Andrew Lincoln) confesses his love for Juliet (Keira Knightley) via doorstep sign montage.

love-actually

The thing with this scene is not that it wouldn’t work for me, it’s that—unlike the movie—it actually would. Yes, yes, I know that I, Juliet, “we”, are already committed to another man, and in my own life I would never dream of doing such a thing. But wearing Juliet’s shoes, I would step off that porch and run away with sign-guy. It would be scandalous and completely out of character and I’d probably drown in guilt. But then, when the apocalypse set in and zombies ate all of my friends, I’d realize that I clearly made the right choice, because as it turns out, sign guy is a badass. Though I’d probably end up leaving him for Darryl. What? It’s the apocalypse and my second husband is severely unstable! Give me a break!

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Movie: Love and Basketball

Scene: Monica (Sonaa Lathan) challenges Quincy (Omar Epps) to a one on one game to win his heart.love-and-basketball

This one is doomed pretty early due to the fact that I have almost zero basketball skills. There is a crack in the cement of my parent’s backyard that I can shoot layups from all day without missing, but I wouldn’t exactly define myself as someone who’s “got game.” I’m the person that dives in front of the ball when it’s being “checked” because I think it’s the first pass I’ve ever had a shot at blocking. The display I’d put on in a one on one game would never provoke Quincy to offer up double or nothing. He’d probably just shake my hand and pat himself on the back for dumping me in college. Now, there is a strong argument that could be made regarding the likely hood of this game ever happening due to the aforementioned lack of skill. This proposal would work far better if I wanted to break up with someone. Example:  if I was dating David Beckham and I was just sick of his perfect body and delicious accent, I might challenge him to a series of penalty kicks for his heart. If I win, I keep it, but if I SOMEHOW manage to blow it, we break up.  See? I would be setting myself up for failure.  So proposing a game of basketball to WIN the love of my life?! No, that would not be my best idea, but there’s no need to get technical….foul! Basketball pun? Right? AM I RIGHT?! #slamdunk. I’ll stop.

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The main lesson I’ve learned from both love in movies and love in real life is that it never looks the same. I think we all have our own path to follow and it doesn’t always include Lloyd Dobler standing outside our window with a boom box…although I hope mine does.

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