An uM guide to holiday events for family: What are your favorites?
I woke up Friday morning with something of a mama hangover. I'd let the boys stay up too late with our impulsive Thanksgiving meal, and the winter really slows me down in the morning department. I got up, though, bound and determined to get the previous night's dishes washed before my all-important paper organizing date with a family friend.
I checked in on Instagram and Twitter and saw a bunch of friends posting about how they were getting good seats or hot chocolate with their kids to warm up before the Macy's Holiday Parade, held the day after Thanksgiving in downtown Portland every year since the landmark Meier & Frank was converted to Macy's. I kicked myself for not having remembered, and made time in my weekend for the event, one of the new Portland holiday traditions for many families. The annual Pioneer Square tree lighting ceremony that evening is another I've loved in the past but failed to make time for this year.
So this post that I'd been meaning to write became ever more pressing. There are a few events that I try to partake in every year, including the Oregon Zoolights, one or several crafty holiday bazaars, and a stroll or bike ride down Peacock Lane. There are some that I've always meant to, but never did, like the Santaland at Macy's or one of several amazing-sounding winter solstice events. There are some that I've attended and didn't particularly inspire my holiday fervor -- like the Christmas boats that parade down the Willamette (once was enough -- or even, for that matter, seeing someone else's photos of it is enough).
I'd like to make a list of the best things to do in the holiday season so I can organize my holiday around it -- and so our readers, new and loyal, can have a great place to turn to find the hidden jewels and don't-miss big events of the holiday season. What are your favorites -- and what do you think is over-hyped? Is there anything you must do for it to seem like the season to you? Is there anything you'll never do again? I really hope, too, that someone will post great solstice events, as a reader on a previous post had requested that specially.
I'll sort through your comments and post a list later this week.