It’s that time of year for Holiday/Christmas parties. Everything from a big banquet to an intimate holiday party. Here are some memories from holiday parties through the years:
I have been lucky enough to work for companies that treat their employees to a Holiday Party. When I worked for an insurance company, I was treated to dinners at country clubs and hotels. When I worked for a 2-person design firm, the boss and his wife would take me and my partner out for a meal and a show. We saw magicians, Cirque Du Soleil and mystery dinner theatre. At my current job, we have big celebrations at hotels and country clubs too, plus there are drawings for prizes too like TVs, DVD players and more. I have been lucky and won both a DVD player and a digital camera too through the years.
What has changed through the years is how open I have been about being gay. Those early holiday parties I didn’t feel comfortable enough to take my partner to them, and I went by myself. I definitely regret that now. But I had some growing up to do, and had to get comfortable in my own skin.
I am thinking about going to this year’s company party dressed in my dress kilt. I am out now to all, and my partner has come with me the past several years. I know I would totally rock it.
Our friends love to throw parties too… most years we are busy every weekend in December until the holiday. Lots of great food, along with socializing with old friends and meeting new ones. Some of the parties have had gift exchanges, toy or canned food drives and Christmas carol sing-alongs. We also usually fit in going to 2 different church groups too for their parties.
On Christmas Eve, my family tradition is to gather at my parent’s house. Some of us go to the early Mass, then we come back home for dinner. We usually have ham, scalloped potatoes, salads, and of course pumpkin pie. The family members there include my parents, siblings, grandkids and great grand kids plus neighbors too.
Then after dinner, we have our time for caroling. My Mom has song sheets made up…. But at this point, I pretty much know all the songs by heart since I have been singing them for so long. We will sing everything from Frosty the Snowman to Silent Night to White Christmas. We usually end by singing 12 Days of Christmas… with each of us taking a different part by picking a card out of bowl. Everyone wants to get “Five Golden Rings”, since that is the showiest part to sing.
We will then usually go to a few neighbor’s houses to sing some carols for them. Then it is back to the house to open the gifts. I act as Santa Claus (by donning my Santa hat) and distribute the gifts to my family members.
We love to entertain. Our party is usually on the last Saturday before Christmas. The latest we have had it is December 23rd. I guess we are the only crazy ones to do that! The house will be decorated with a ton of lights and candles, plus a large Noble fir tree. We usually make a turkey or ham, plus plenty of side dishes and desserts too like sweet potato cheesecake. There will be a good mix of Christmas music and party tunes playing in the background. And Christmas videos on the TV.
This year, we have decided to not have a party — since we are planning our wedding soon. What a good reason to not have a holiday party! I look forward to resuming our holiday tradition of hosting a party as a married couple in 2014.
Whatever your traditions are, I hope you have a safe, happy and healthy holiday season. Best wishes for the New Year! And thanks for reading this blog.
KiltManinSoCal is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including Marriage Equality and Rock the Kilt lines. They make great gifts for friends, family and loved ones.