Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Countdown Begins...."By Invitation Only" Christmas Post

Once again it's time for our monthly "By Invitation Only" international blog party !
International Blog Party
Of course, it's about Christmas.

it was truly a challenge to come up with something which might top last year's Christmas post...
so we thought & thought and decided it would be two-fold:

we could tell everyone about OUR MOST WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS,
who, what, where, what we wore and all the people surrounding us...

or we could describe our idea of A FANTASY CHRISTMAS, with fantasy guests, fantasy
destinations and so on.

Pinned Image

& finally, if you only had ONE TANGIBLE GIFT TO GIVE,
what would it be?

Now, having thought about this one for a long time...
I fully realize how difficult this topic can be.

the Lodge at Vail in Vail Village

before I begin my Christmas story I would like to thank each one of the valued and valuable
members of the lovely "By Invitation Only."
knowing how very busy all these creative women are, because I am busy too, 
only makes me love them
more for persevering along with me on this little journey.
I believe we are onto something very special which can grow and blossom...
I owe all of that to their continued contributions.
Blowing each of you a big kiss, my lovely friends.

we have a special guest posting with us today,
Pamela Terry of the brilliant blog From the House of Edward,
you will find her link below.
I am delighted to have her participation, knowing how wonderful her post will be even
before I've read it.
Thank you, Pamela !!

The one tangible gift I would give would be the establishment of a trust fund
to pay for the education of my grandchildren, and for a student who was
deserving but didn't have the way to pay for all the ancillary expenses even if one
received a scholarship.

I will encourage my grandchildren to stay in school as long as possible, even
earning a PhD in whatever field they have chosen, because this is the key
to success in our world.
This is also the key to understanding our world, the difficult place that it is.

& this, my friends, is what I would love to wear this holiday season...

we started having Christmas Eve parties early in our marriage,  they were always pretty much the 
same, even the same guests...and they were always gay and ending with us going to
midnight mass.

somewhere along the way, I think one of my best girlfriends had a condo in Vail, we began going to
Vail, Colorado.
none of us could ski in the beginning, and in the beginning we didn't know one didn't have to
take ski lessons on top of the mountains when it was -30 degrees...somehow we
survived, learned to ski, and began looking forward to the times we could return to this magical place.

Vail is a very cosmopolitan and international ski area.
Aspen is very laid back in comparison.
& we loved Vail because this is the place where it had all started, and eventually
we were familiar with the trails, the ski buses, the lift lines, the lift tickets, the liquor store
way down the highway, and the grocery market in the village where everything was priced
5X more than if we drove 5 miles down the road.

we had friends from Houston who came there too, in addition
to the girlfriend who started it all.

we also holidayed in NYC, but Vail was the Christmas destination for many years.
we would rent a big house or condo really close to the ski areas, invite my children's friends,
and our friends...and they all accepted.  for the kids it was just so much more fun to have
their own groups to do things with, and for us it was just as easy to have 10 as to have only 2.

we always put up a big tree and decorated it with big wide red ribbon & lights,
nothing more...it was festive and easy.
piles of simply wrapped gifts for everyone to open...
but the real gift was the trip itself.

those were the days of perfect ski wear, Bogner ski pants are still the only ones I will ever wear,
& yes, I prefer the stretch ones with the stirrups under the foot.  I am not happy with the way I
look in the bulkier pant which goes over the boot...you can guess why, I know.

apres ski wear....now, this was truly important...furs (oh, yes) because it was so cold,
little boots worn while walking to dinner, but your high heels in a drawstring bag so you could quickly change into them upon arrival at the restaurant.

isn't this magical?

the little gifts
Splenderosa's Cutest Ever Necklace
Fashionable on one side
Fabulous on the other
on the website

oh yes, there was plenty of this...horses, as well as dogs, in the snow...
& a sleigh ride during Christmas was an absolute must.
it simply didn't matter to any of us that it was COLD, we worried about the animals, but
not ourselves.  my husband bought the entire evening from the sleigh owner so he & the horses could take the rest of the night off.

typical Rocky Mountain construction, always with natural stone work somewhere.

I think you understood the beauty of a family holiday in the snow of the 
Rocky Mountains...coming from Texas we rarely have snow & then it never lasts long...
so being away in this beautiful destination was a delight for all of us.

We cooked, we watched movies, we laughed out loud at everything,
we made complete fools of ourselves (the parents) while the kids learned
to ski backwards with no problem.  
We made lifetime memories which I cherish.

& have yourself a merry little Christmas now.....