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Winter Holiday Fireside Moments: Interview with Author Janet Bolin

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 It’s that time of year when the chill in the frosty air brings us indoors to hunker down with thick comforters and mugs of steaming hot chocolate overflowing with fluffy marshmallows.  When holiday music and movies become the soundtrack to our everyday home lives. When we gather ‘round the fire for company, drink, food and love.  When we are celebrating and remembering those we treasure and hold near and dear.  When the real meaning of the season is family – by our DNA or by our heart.  When we reflect and give thanks for all we have. In a nutshell, unconditional love.

I’d like to welcome Janet Bolin to share the beauty of the season with us.

Favorite Holiday tradition?

Getting together with friends and family.

Favorite childhood toy?

I always wanted a doll and lots of clothes for the doll. One year, my mother gave me fabric to make doll clothes. I didn’t want to use it all up. That was the beginning of a lifetime of fabric hoarding . . .

Favorite childhood game?

Skipping rope used up a few years . .

Snow ball fight or making snow families?

The snow forts were never finished to my satisfaction, so we hardly ever got to the snowball fight. One thing we did discover — don’t walk on the ammunition stockpiled inside your fort. The floor rises, making the fort’s walls shorter, and you can’t duck incoming snowballs. Oops.

Sleigh rides, sledding or skiing?

Sledding when I was a kid. We lived on a hill. Cross-country skiing as an adult.

Favorite holiday song?

None. I’m still tired of them from Christmases past. If you want me to shop in your store, don’t play Christmas music!

Favorite holiday movie?

A Christmas Story. Some of my favorite lines are: “Daddy’s gonna kill Ralphie!” “How do the little piggies eat?” and “I tried to get away.

Favorite holiday story to read?

MIRACLE AND OTHER CHRISTMAS STORIES by Connie Willis

Snow on holiday eve, day or just a chill in the air?

Snow, snow, snow, and lots of it!

Most memorable holiday memory?

As a kid, trying to actually sleep on Christmas eve.

Did you eat popcorn balls as a kid? If you did, do you still?

I had them at Halloween, and don’t remember having any at Christmas. I wouldn’t try making them — I’d eat all the popcorn. Yum!

Real tree or artificial? Green or white?

Last year a friend made us a wild and wonderful wooden tree. That may be our tree from now on.

What do you do holiday eve?

Finish making presents. Finish wrapping presents. Arrange presents under tree. Collapse with a glass of sherry. 

What are your holiday plans this year?

The usual — try to accomplish much more than is possible, eat too much. Enjoy being with family and friends. 

What’s the one holiday dish your family can’t go without?

We don’t care, as long as we eat.

Please share a Holiday recipe.

Uh-oh. There was the plum pudding recipe passed down through generations, but it’s supposed to stay in the family. Sorry, can’t share it (I’m not sure where it is, either . . .) I remember some of the ingredients: an orange, a square of Baker’s chocolate, raisins, molasses, suet. No plums. I’ve made it a few times, but it takes forever (it’s one of those steamed puddings that comes out more like cake), and it never tastes quite as good as my aunts’ version did.

Holiday party tip?

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party! 

Favorite holiday decoration?

A pale blue paper angel with huge teeth always tops the tree.

Please share some magical holiday memories?

It began snowing when we got up one Christmas morning and didn’t stop until late at night, and we were snowbound. But what perfect timing!  No plans, and several days’ worth of food on hand.

Wrap, gift bag or bow & go?

Wrap, but those gift bags can be real time-savers!

Gifts or gift cards?

Gifts, usually.

Cyber shop or head out into the trenches?

Craft shows are my favorite place to buy gifts. If I had time, I’d make gifts — sewing, embroidering, knitting, crocheting, quilting, all the sorts of things that go on in (how surprising) Threadville. And I must point out that people love receiving books — any time of year!

Do you eat fruitcake?

I love fruitcake!

Do you head to the movies on the 25th?

No. And now that we’ve memorized it and everyone yells the lines along with the actors, we seldom watch A Christmas Story any more. Too noisy.

What’s in your stocking?  *wink*

Candy.

What do you want in your stocking? *saucy wink aka swink*

Candy is dandy, but liquor is quicker. So throw in some of those little bottles, too. Liqueurs in chocolate are rather nice.

Do you head out on the 26th into the madness to exchange or shop for anything?

Are you kidding? If I don’t write my Christmas cards that day, I’ll never do them, which is sort of what ends up happening every year. Oops.

So thank you for giving me the opportunity to wish you and your readers Happy Holidays! 

Thank you so much.

Happy Holidays from my house to yours!

Janet’s Halloween Fright Bites.

Janet’s Thanksgiving memories.

Visit Janet’s website.

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About Diane Morasco