I started back in September posting on Twitter with a hashtag to make the wait, and experience of planning my trip to Montana something that I would look forward to, and entertain my few followers for a couple of months. I even went as far as to make a list.
As life would have it, my life got busy and I fell behind on my list of things to post, which was good because I didn't have enough things to post at the time. I had 60+ days if I was to post every day, and only 45 items on my list. But life intervened beautifully, and now I have a reason to get a post up in November.
So, here we are. Two weeks from my departure/arrival date from New York/Great Falls, and I have listed below, all the potential things to do while spending one of my favorite holidays with my amazing family.
Bake as many cookies as I can...
and not let my brothers have any. JK, they can have as many as they want after I take my share of the best ones and hoard them.
Trim the Tree!
Cause someone with a sense of style and elegance should hang all the handmade/homemade keepsake ornaments on the +8 ft tall tree.
Stay in my PJs all day.
It's not a vacation if you don't do this. Literally. I've done research. Survey says it's true.
Catch up on my recreational reading in my Dad's library, while still wearing my PJs.
Kidnap my "fur nephew" Maddux, the sexy Yellow Lab for Pure Puppy Antics
Keep him the entire trip, and possibly smuggle him back to NYC with me. This may not go over well with my brother, but I must give it a shot!
Crash one night at each of my brother's apartments.
They all crashed with me for a week when they visited NYC, turnaround is fair play.
Trick my brothers into sticking their tongues to frozen flag poles.
I just need to figure out how to pull this off with my brothers actually being smarty pants.
Wrap all the gifts.
And do it so expertly, that the entirety of my family has to pull out their pocket knives to get into them.
Make some killer gingerbread houses with my brothers.
And anyone else who wants to join. Kids are welcome; adults are encouraged to join without children.
Watch TV with my Dad.
Anything really. Sports, movies, episodes of NCIS. Anything. It's a really cool zen calm watching TV with him. I love it.
Give Grams the biggest hug ever!
Mostly because she's my Grams and I haven't seen her in ages. Also because she's all of 5 foot nothing on a good day, and it's fun.
See Bow Tie Friday In Action
Witness the full effect, in person, that "Bow Tie Friday" has wrecked upon Great Falls by my stylish brothers and their ingenious plan.
Because Montana should be witness to my mad skills on a good Karaoke Night.
Build a Snowman
Since there will be snow. (THERE HAD BETTER BE!!!) Help is encouraged, but not required.
Gossip Late Into the Night
Stay up late with Grams and Mom talking about EVERYTHING and finally getting to bed at 2AM because we don't know how to shut up.
This is contingent on my brothers having been successful this hunting season. Needless to say, I will be disappointed if they are not.
Singing and Playing Christmas Music
I play the piano. Well I use to play the piano. I now only play the piano when I'm home for the holidays. I pretend that I am a much less talented Nora Jones as I rock out to a concert for one.
Stealing all the Good Gifts from the Advent Calendar
My mom has this really cool advent calendar that has a cubby for each day of December up until Christmas. As kids we would try to sneak and figure out who was getting which one and trade. My brothers aren't living at home anymore. Guess who's gonna get the good stuff!
It's not officially Christmas without certain items that come out of my mother's kitchen. Ginger Molasses Cookies, Breakfast Casserole, Turkey, and the infamous Crescent Rolls.
Sledding, Snow Angels, and Hot Cocoa
I may need to borrow my adopted nieces and nephews for this one, or just recruit those friends of mine that are young at heart. Still, it'll be the best time ever!
Sibling Rivalry Snowball Fight
Or the best way to get away with torturing your fellow siblings without getting yelled at by the parentals. Then again, something tells me that this might not be a fair fight anymore, and I may need to re-evaluate my position.
Friends, Family, Friends that are now Family!
Something that I always loved about the holidays is the coming together of everyone that has drifted away during the year. This year I plan on seeing the following family members, families of friends, and friends while home (in no particular order): Uncle Don, Aunt Roni & Nik, Uncle Bill & Aunt Karen, Uncle Mike, The Liston Family , The Mattingly Family , The Briggs Family, The McCracken Family, The Folds Family, The Grooms Family, Allison, Jayln, and so many others!
Girls Day or Mother/Daughter Day
This will include pampering. Getting our hair done. Getting our nails done. Just being girls! And possibly doing it with another mother/daughter pair.
Good Ol' Fashioned Run Around Without the Adults
Granted, my brothers, cousins, and adopted siblings are all adults, but we totally love the freedom of going out and doing things together without the "grown-ups". Like drinking. This will be the 2nd Griffith Gang Bar Crawl. It will be epic. You have been warned.
Sip N Dip
This infamous bar in Great Falls is so wacky that I have to go visit, anytime that I'm in town. Mermaids swim in the pool behind the back of the bar and flirt with the customers. There are giant fishbowls. It's an event. You should check it out.
The Entire Ritual of Christmas Eve.
This is actually what I'm looking forward to the most. On Christmas Eve, our family gets together, takes a family photo while all dressed up, runs around to all of the holiday parties we were invited to, goes to Christmas Eve Mass, hit any remaining parties we missed, and return home - the long way - while driving around looking at all of the Christmas lights. After we get home, we get into the "Christmas PJs" and watch The Santa Clause. After which we go to bed, and get up in the morning ready for presents under the tree. If that doesn't sound magical to you, well it doesn't have to. It's magic to me.
London Griffith is an Alaskan born, Montana raised, Southern influenced, New York Actress. She occasionally writes about her life and experiences of being on the verge ...