holiday cheer

Congrats to my holiday contest winner, Catherine S.! I was so impressed with all of the correct answers I received. To refresh your memory, the trivia question was this: Which two characters from Take Me There appear in So Much Closer? Both first and last names are required. The correct answer: Rhiannon Ferrara and Danny Trager. In So Much Closer, Brooke meets Ree doing some moon sketching near the Zen garden. And Danny is spotted at Strawberry Fields jamming on his guitar with the other Beatles fans. Connecting my books in little ways like these is something I’ve loved doing from the start. I’m actually working up to something way bigger. Vague much? Sorry, it’s a top secret endeavor. But all will be revealed eventually…

More holiday cheer is in the house. You know how I’ve been obsessing over the lack of Christmas tree fragrance this year? Consider that mystery solved! I was walking by a Christmas tree lot (stand? pop-up?) on the corner of Leroy and Hudson the other day. As always, I stopped to sniff the trees. I was again disappointed by the lack of pine fragrance. So I asked the guys in charge what was up. Dude! They totally knew! A combination of warmer temps and lack of rain has resulted in pine needles being less brittle. When it’s colder, brittle pine needles snap off, allowing more sap scent to escape. Hydration also causes the scent to be emitted. I’m so relieved to know this is meteorologically related and not, say, the end of the world. Shout-out to Scott of SoHo Trees for explaining everything! They even gave me a piece of tree trunk for my radiator. Which smells almost as good as my new old-school snack addiction, Jiffy Pop.

Jiffy Pop is delicious

If you live here in New York and are looking for a tree, please know that SoHo Trees delivers and decorates for you. Here’s Kelly Ripa raving over how awesome they are.

Speaking of Christmas trees, I’m going to see the tree at Rockefeller Center tomorrow. You would think that I’d already seen the tree since I live like five subway stops from 30 Rock. But no. It’s just one of those touristy things I never do unless a friend is visiting (along with battling the crowds in Times Square, going to the top of the Empire State Building, and…I was going to say visiting the Statue of Liberty, but I’ve actually never visited. But I can see the Statue of Liberty from Hudson River Park and it’s always comforting). My good friend from high school, Paula, is visiting tomorrow. We’re seeing the tree and doing other festive Christmasy things that I wouldn’t normally do on my own. So yay for friends that bring the holiday cheer!

I probably shouldn’t mention this in the midst of all the cheer. But I feel compelled to tell you that I’m not sending out holiday cards this year. Not to be a Grinch about it, but it seems like hardly anyone sends them anymore. Or appreciates them. It’s one of those beloved traditions that’s fading. I realize I’m not helping. I just…I don’t know. This time of year is always hard for me. The post office threatening to cut Saturday delivery and eliminating tons of locations makes me sad, both as a vintage mail enthusiast and a philatelist. Clearly, I am in need of a mood enhancer. Good thing I’ll be seeing the big tree tomorrow. And the holiday windows in midtown. Maybe we’ll even go to Serendipity for frozen hot chocolates. That place is seriously decorated. And seriously delicious. Bring on the chocolate…and the cheer!