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Winter Holiday Fireside Moments: Interview with Kate Collins

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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 Kate Collins to share the beauty of the season with us.

Favorite Holiday tradition?

Candlelight church service with my children on Christmas Eve.

Favorite childhood toy?

Skates

Favorite childhood game?

Dodge ball or Sorry! – I just can’t decide.

Snow ball fight or making snow families?

Hmm. Maybe making snow families having snowball fights.

Sleigh rides, sledding or skiing?

Sledding.

Favorite holiday song?

Silver Bells. I used to be able to play it on the piano, back in the day when I actually had free time.

Favorite holiday movie?

  It’s a Wonderful Life

Favorite holiday story to read?

The Littlest Angel. It still makes me cry.

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

A light misting of snow just for effect, but nothing more. My family has to travel to get here.

Most memorable holiday memory?

The first Christmas I was a parent. My little boy was way too young to understand what was happening, but I didn’t care. I just loved having a little one to share it with.

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

I always thought they tasted stale. But then the only ones I ever had were put in my Trick-or-Treat bag at Halloween and probably were stale!

Real tree or artificial? Green or white?

Love the real ones, but ever since a family of spider mites were born and dropped down over my Christmas presents, I’ve stuck with real-looking artificial. Something about seeing all those tiny multi-legged creatures did it for me.

What do you holiday eve?

We have a fun dinner — sloppy joes or chili — go to the Candlelight service, then home to open presents and eat cookies.

What are your holiday plans this year?

Traditional Christmas eve plans, and on Christmas day, the kids will see what’s in their stockings (yes, even though they’re young adults, Santa remembers them) and we’ll cook a big dinner together. A very relaxing day. 

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

 My mom’s pecan bars.

Please share a Holiday recipe.

The pecan bars are a family secret, so I’ll share her favorite crescent cookie recipe instead.

Rosie’s Crescent Cookies
2 sticks of butter
2 c. flour
2 c. chopped pecans
2 tsp vanilla
5 Tbs sugar
1 Tbs water
1/2 tsp salt
Cream butter and add sugar, vanilla and water. Sift flour and salt together and stir into mixture. Add pecans and mix thoroughly. Using portions about the size of a small walnut, roll into crescent shapes. Bake in slow over (325 degrees F) about 20 min. While warm, roll in powdered sugar.

Holiday party tip?

Keep the wine flowing.

Favorite holiday decoration?

My tree. It’s a nine-footer and has snow tips and twinkling LED lights. I have a big collection of Santa ornaments that I have to place just so, and other favorites from years past.

Please share some magical holiday memories?

A special memory is of my husband and I in Chicago for the festival of lights parade, when all the lights on Michigan Ave. were turned on block by block. It was not cold out that evening, but there was a light snowfall — so picturesque — and we walked along hand-in-hand, enjoying each other’s company and the magic of being in love.

Wrap, gift bag or bow & go?

Wrap.

Gifts or gift cards?

Gifts

Cyber shop or head out into the trenches?

Both

Do you eat fruitcake?
One word: Ew.

Do you head to the movies on the 25th?

No, but we often watch a classic movie at home.

What’s in your stocking?  *wink*

Dark chocolate

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

A really fine bottle of cabernet

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

Not any more.

Thank you so much.

Happy Holidays from my house to yours!

Click here for my review of To Catch a Leaf.

Kate’s Thanksgiving memories

Kate’s website

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About Diane Morasco