Christmas & New Years Plans, Do tell!

Old Dec 4th, 2003, 05:14 PM
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Flying out of Houston on Christmas day to Venice, then getting on a cruise ship on the 28th. The cruise goes to Cairo and back. Then we'll rent a car for 5 days and drive from Venice to Lake Garda, Bolzano, Cortina and back to the airport - 17 days in all. Been looking forward to this since we won a bid on Skyauction.com for the cruise - couldn't pass it up. Will post a complete report of Italian winter conditions when we return.
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Old Dec 4th, 2003, 08:14 PM
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Although I don't live there, I read a newspaper blurb about Santa's arrival on the Petaluma River in a riverboat. The lighted boat parade is Dec. 13 this year.
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Old Dec 4th, 2003, 08:17 PM
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10 days until we also head for Australia. Visit with my wife's family for the holidays and will surely do more exploration on our own, as usual. Summer weather, here we come.
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Old Dec 4th, 2003, 08:28 PM
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Let me begin by thanking everyone for their educational and entertaining posts throughout the year. This will be my family's third holiday season in Europe. Every year I get more adventurous as the children (11 and 13)grow older. So we fly on 12/19 from L.A. to Florence with four days in Florence and then to Rome for ten days.

Yes , I've made all the major reservations for hotels, museums, Scala Reale, etc. but with work being busy I have no time for last minute fine tuning. Oh well... it always works out.

==Mike



The
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Old Dec 4th, 2003, 09:03 PM
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At the moment, I'm just hoping to survive

We are at home for Christmas then will spend New Year with 14 friends at Lochindorb House on Speyside.
http://www.lhhscotland.com/House123.asp

I can't wait!
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 03:29 AM
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I will be having a late lunch with my fella and his mum on Christmas eve. Hopefully somewhere nice as everything seems to be booked out already I am worried we won't get a place!

Then in the evening we will meet our friends and head up to the bar in Clontarf Castle hotel.

Christmas is quiet in Dublin so we will spend with his family and invite friends over in the evening.

St Stephens day is also quiet but we go to the Wrens fest in Sandymount. Now I can't even explain this event but its every Stephens day. Its based on the Wren boys who dressed up in straw hats to disguise their faces and went house to house. Every county has a different version from what I have heard but my mother said they would show up at the wedding reception and its was good luck. Others say if they visit on new years it will be a good year. I think you offer them something if they come into the house. Probably a drink or food. Its linked to pagan customs. What we go to see is in the village square and there is music and poems about the wren, dancing etc. Its really hard to explain. Its something nice to do as most things are closed.

Most places are closed all day so we go for a drive to one of the beaches around Dublin. In the evening this is the big night out as the pubs re-open and we all go to meet friends home for Christmas.

Pubs are closed Christmas day which is great because it makes the whole city quiet. Its a family day over here. As well its the only 1 of 2 days a year they close (2nd is good Friday).

One year I am hoping to go away for Christmas and try something new!
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 06:05 AM
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I'm off to Prague with the girlfriend for 3 nights over New Years. This is the first time I've gone away at Christmas time. I usually felt obliged to stay with the family. It's also the first year I've been looking forward to Christmas since I was a kid. Bit of a "Baah Humbug" usually. It also saved on having to for that elusive "special" gift for each other, as we agreed that this would be more enjoyable than another gold chain, watch etc...
Now all we need is for it to snow in Prague.
Happy Christmas all.
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 06:59 AM
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It is so much fun reading about everyone's holiday plans. Thanks, Scarlett, for starting this thread!

I'll be going up to northern Michigan to spend the holiday with my daughter, son-in-law and four grandkids; then we'll all go to Florida the middle of January to spend a week with my son and his fiance, treating the little ones to Disneyworld. It will be so nice to have my whole family together for the first time in almost six years. Then it will be time to finalize my itinerary for five days in Paris at the end of March. Life doesn't get much better!

My best wishes to all Fodorites for a wonderful holiday and peaceful and prosperous new year!
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 07:29 AM
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My mom and her hubby are coming to spend the holidays with us in the Dutch West Indies. We will have a quiet Christmas at home, before joining many dear friends for cocktails and dinner under the warm, starlit night.

I don't envy you with packing and moving during this time, Ms. Scarlett. However, I'm sure you will have a most enjoyable new year in the sunny south!

Boudreaux and Bailey wave their paws to Tate!
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 10:51 AM
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We (family of four) will fly out of Atlanta to Paris Christmas Eve then after 3 days on to London thru New Years Day. Thanks to Scarlett and all of the fellow fodorites for all the great information and advice I have gleaned from this site. Some anxiety accompanies our first trip to Europe but hope everything is in place. Only one major problem left to solve- Having only taken domestic vacations I am used to packing everything but the kitchen sink. Wish everyone a very happy holiday season.
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 11:16 AM
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Thanks to a timely e-mail from Travelocity, we are all flying to Bangor, Maine for the holidays! I can't tell you how thrilled we are to see my sister and her family, and that we don't have to drive 25 hours across country to do it. However! The big catch to the cheap flights I found is that the departing flight to Bangor leaves at 7:00 am, the flight home, 5:20 am (on New Years Day, no less). We haven't decided whether we should all go to bed at 6:00 pm, or pull all-nighters. In any event, this falls into the category of what you do because you love your sister!
 
Old Dec 5th, 2003, 11:53 AM
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Annual tradition for me and my sweety: at home in Miami with a pot of fondue and a bottle of Moet (or 2!).
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 12:10 PM
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We are flying out to sunny San Diego with our daughter (from NYC) to spend some time with our son who is stationed at Camp Pendleton. We've been fortunate to have him home for a nice long visit since his return from Iraq, but we're all looking forward to having some fun together on the left coast. We'll be in San Diego for 4 nights and LA (actually Beverly Hills) for 3 nights. Then the "kids" are meeting up with some friends to celebrate daughter's birthday on New Years Eve. Mr & Mrs uhoh are jetting back on the 30th to see the New Year in with friends our own age. We like to do a traveling Christmas every other year now that our children are grown up.
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 02:46 PM
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Moet and fondue for two, is this like a Florida tradition? I can get to like that
uh oh busted , I am so happy for you and your family to be spending this holiday together. Give that soldier a Big Kiss from Scarlett
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 04:56 PM
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Having moved twice in one year, a few years ago, I wish you and the pups the best.

We will be traveling to Fresno for Christmas. My daughter and 3 year old grand- daughter have embarrass us all by living there. Or is it us'all.
Actually it's Clovis, but Fresno gets more sympathy votes.

dln -- Pull the all-nighter.
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 05:57 PM
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Hello Scarlett and everyone,

I am leaving for France next week, & will be spending the holidays there with relatives. I will also be making a stop in Vienna to visit a friend.

Good luck with your move!
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 06:19 PM
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In high school, a friend, Bryan, and I started going to D.C. to see the National Christmas Tree the Saturday before Christmas. No big deal in those days as we lived in Mt. Vernon and it was just a matter of driving down the Washington Parkway through Old Town Alexandria and across a bridge. We'd stroll the boarded walkway looking at the small trees representing each of the states and occupied territories and comment on the decorations chosen for each. We'd go stand by the 'Ol Yule Log and get ourselves warmed up half way through, then continue on with the second half of the trees. In those days there was a corral with reindeer on display and a stage (which is still there) where entertainment was performed for several hours. We'd finish with a long gaze at The Tree as well as the trains set up and running around it. Over the years we've added going out to dinner before-hand to the occasion and the ever-changing size of the group (significant others for each of us as well as close friends invited) has kept it a lively get together. This year will be the 23rd year for my friend Bryan and I. My husband, son and I will drive the 3+ hours to No. Virginia to Bryan & Karen's lovely home where we will meet up with 6 of our closest friends, have dinner and go in town. It's not seeing the trees that really brings us up north anymore - it's the beautiful company we do it with.

As for NYE - Charlottesville puts on a wonderful First Night and then we'll probably pop into a movie before heading home.

Thanks Scarlet for sharing your holiday 'plans'. And I hope everyone has a safe and most memorable holiday this year.
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Old Dec 5th, 2003, 07:38 PM
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mmr41:

Look at it this way you could be coming to Fresno in August.

Cheers,

==Mike
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Old Dec 6th, 2003, 08:27 PM
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We'll be spending Xmas at home with our relatives. On Boxing Day we'll be accompanying our son to Vegas for his chess tournament but will return home on the 30th-no New Years party in Vegas for us.

Have a pleasant move in addition to a happy Xmas & New Years, Scarlett!
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Old Dec 6th, 2003, 10:14 PM
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Christmas will be spent at home, frantically trying to pack for Australia (there are a few fodorites heading to Sydney for the holidays this year). I leave on Christmas night for Australia.

At the stroke of midnight, January 1, 2004, I will mostly likely be giving a big kiss to an Australian man who I met during my four month stint in Europe this year.

Yes it will be a happy holiday, I think. I wish everyone a most joyous holiday season!
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