It’s Chanukah right now and Christmas is right around the corner. I love the holiday season. The food, the family…the paid holidays off of work. This week I’m going to delve into the specifics. Here is the Benchmark 5: My favorite holiday things.

  1. The beast. Every year for Christmas, since high school, I have gone to visit my aunt and uncle in Colorado. On Christmas, we go to my uncle’s sister’s house for dinner. Her husband grills up a 20+ pound prime rib roast every single year. It is SO good. If pressed hard enough, I may own up to going to Colorado for the beast first and second to see my family.
  2. Friendsgiving. Very few of my friends in Los Angeles are from here. They disperse for the holidays. So, we started a tradition of doing Thanksgiving dinner together before we all part ways. Everyone contributes and it turns into a grand feast.
  3. Presents. People are lying if they say this isn’t one of their favorite parts of the holidays. I’m not going quite as shallow. This isn’t getting presents, in general. No. I’m referring to the presents that you wanted, but didn’t necessarily ask for. The ones that the person giving them to you knew you would love, because they know you so well.
  4. Christmas Day movie. It’s an old joke that Jewish people go see a movie and eat Chinese food on Christmas, since that’s all that is open. I go spend time with my uncle’s Irish Catholic family ever year. However, we bring a bit of our Christmas tradition to Colorado as well. We go see a movie every Christmas Day and then have Christmas dinner that night. I may have a mixed faith family, but our traditions have become one and the same.
  5. Latkes. Potato pancakes, for those of you not in the know. I’ll eat just about any potato product around. Not sweet potatoes, though. Gross. Latkes have always been a favorite of mine. Fried potatoes with onions and egg and flour to bind them together in their pancake form. This past weekend I tried to make them using frozen hash browns. They didn’t hold together well, but they sure were some delicious hash br-atkes.

What are your favorite parts of the holidays?