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Winter Holiday Fireside Moments: Interview with Joyce and Jim Lavene

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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 Joyce and Jim Lavene to share the beauty of the season with us.

Favorite childhood toy?

Joyce and Jim Lavene: Both of us loved our bicycles better than anything else. It was setting us up for our love of driving many years later. Now our favorite toy would be our car.

Favorite childhood game?

Jim: Monopoly

Joyce: Candy Land

Snowball fight or making snow families?

Jim: We both love to make snow families then knock them down with snowballs.

Sleigh rides, sledding or skiing?

Jim:  Sledding

Joyce:  Sleigh rides

Favorite holiday song?

Joyce and Jim: “White Christmas” for both of us.

Favorite holiday movie?

Jim: The Santa Clause.

Joyce: Scrooge, the Musical.

Favorite holiday story to read?

Joyce: A Christmas Carol. I read it every year.

Jim: A Visit from St. Nicholas

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

Joyce and Jim: SNOW!!!

Most memorable holiday memory?

Joyce:  Realizing that the Santa who came to see us on Christmas Eve was my grandfather.

Jim:  Going to Wisconsin right before Christmas. I grew up in Chicago and the snow was so much whiter in Wisconsin.

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

Joyce and Jim: Neither one of us are fans of popcorn balls, then or now.

Real tree or artificial? Green or white?

Jim: Artificial – it was what I grew up with – green

Joyce : Real – love that smell – green

What do you do holiday eve?

Joyce and Jim: Eat, give out gifts, spend time with our family.

What are your holiday plans this year?

Joyce and Jim: We are going to visit Duck, NC, where our new book is set, right after Christmas 

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

Joyce and Jim: Lasagna.

Please share a Holiday recipe.

Hot Mint Cocoa

I cup of milk

Lots of chocolate syrup

¼ cup Crème de Menthe

¼ cup Crème de Cocoa

Heat and add candy cane

Stay in one place for a while

Holiday party tip?

Joyce and Jim: Never invite people to your house that you aren’t comfortable with. 

Favorite holiday decoration?

Joyce and Jim: Our singing moose

Please share some magical holiday memories?

Joyce and Jim: When our kids were growing up, we lived in Minnesota, close to the Canadian border. It was very cold and we had several feet of snow almost every week. We had ten acres of land with a lake. Every year, we would go out with the kids, the sled and our St. Bernard and cut down a Christmas tree. We always walked over the frozen lake to find it and the kids would tiptoe across the ice, thinking it would keep the ice from breaking. The sky would be so blue that it hurt your eyes to look at it. When we got home with the tree, we strung popcorn and cranberries to put on it and sang Christmas carols.

Wrap, gift bag or bow & go?

Joyce and Jim: All three – and sometimes the odd Target bag.

Gifts or gift cards?

Joyce and Jim: Always gifts.

Do you eat fruitcake?

Joyce:  LOVE fruitcake

Jim:  Not if my life depended on it

Do you head to the movies on the 25th?

Joyce and Jim: Sometimes but mostly we stay home and enjoy the quiet before (and after) the storm.

What’s in your stocking?  *wink*

Jim: My foot

Joyce : Dog biscuits shaped like people to keep the dog from finding them.

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

Jim: A new tablet PC

Joyce: A world cruise

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

No. We don’t even think about returning or cashing in gift cards until after the first of the year.

Thank you so much.

Happy Holidays from my house to yours!

Visit Joyce and Jim on Facebook.

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About Diane Morasco