"For it isn't the holly, it isn't the snow. It isn't the tree nor the firelight's glow. It's the warmth that comes from the hearts of men [and women], when the Christmas spirit returns again." (Anonymous, from my sister's Christmas letter)
One woman has singlehandedly brought the Christmas spirit to my office. Her name is Jena and she's a relatively new employee in our Publications Marketing Department. Talk about Christmas spirit: She has been counting down Christmas on the department whiteboard for a month, she baked cookies for our company party on Friday, she and her coworker did a great rendition of "Baby, It's Cold Outside" at the party, and she twisted the arm of everyone on our floor to get us to join the company-wide Secret Santa. I joined and was lucky enough to get Jena as my Secret Santa.
I pretty much figured it out on Day One when my gift came in a soap-opera-wrapped box with a rhyming note, "On the first day of presents, my Secret Santa gave to me, a gift that's as vintage as can be." That girl scoured my blog, learned all about me, went to the Salvation Army and found this amazine felt-and-sequins mobile for 89 cents. Most people got a few chocolates or a coffee. I got this incredibly cool decoration that is so me, I could hardly believe it. Isn't it adorable?
Well, the next day I got some fruity candy in a yoga tin and snowman mug, then some Asian-themed notepaper, then a knitting loom accessory. On Friday we got our final gift and mine included this amazing vintage Christmas apron, which she found on eBay. I don't know if you can see in the photo, but it is all tiny pleats and in excellent condition. (Doesn't it look nice with those biker boots?)
That night I wore my new apron for a fondue party we hosted for six of our friends. (Oops, I mean seven. I almost forgot little Lincoln, shown at left with my friend Karen practicing to be a mom!). We had cheese fondue, then beef, chicken, shrimp, broccoli, potatoes and mushrooms in broth (better for you than oil). Dessert was Christmas cookies and the famous Schlumpf Tom and Jerrys. (Not to self: next time a half chicken breast and half sirloin steak per person is enough meat.) Everything was a hit, including the apron. Thank you, Jena, for bringing the Christmas spirit to 205 (our office) and to me!