"Courage is the art of being the only one who knows you're scared to death." - Harold Wilson
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What are your favorite holiday traditions? What are your favorite non-holiday traditions?

-Rainbow connection

A:

Dear ROYGBP,

Every year my family would make a plate of treats to pass out to the neighbors, full of cookies, fudge, and other Christmas sweets. We used to pass out my mom's famous peanut brittle, but that stopped after I managed to get the boiling candy on my hand. I really want to make homemade peanut brittle a tradition again, even if the decade-old scar on my hand is trying to convince me otherwise. I always loved baking with the family and sharing our homemade treats.

A holiday tradition I started in college was watching those absolutely horrid Christmas romances on Netflix and roasting it with friends. It all started because studying for finals made me so insane that I turned one on, my roommate walked in and asked to join, I was shocked that she thought I was watching it unironically, and by the end of the movie we were ragging on about the horrible acting skills and a script that would be better served as fuel for fire. I watched A Knight Before Christmas when it came out this month and minnow joined me in shouting at the tv screen and cringing every few minutes. Oh my word it was truly awful. Exactly what I needed to fulfill my new holiday tradition.

My final favorite Christmas tradition is waffles and ice cream for breakfast on Christmas morning. The perfect way to start off (or, well, continue, seeing as we woke our parents up at 7 am to open the presents and breakfast didn't happen until 9 or so) the perfect day.

-guppy of doom

A:

Dear Rainbow, 

My family always gets Christmas pajamas that we open on Christmas Eve. Other than that, it's pretty standard procedure. We also make graham cracker gingerbread houses, but those are never particularly extravagant. EXCEPT. This year Pebble and I made one together and I am really proud of it. We cut all the pieces and architectured it perfectly with chocolate graham crackers. BEHOLD: 

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A beauty. It has a porch, it's an A-frame little house... anyway, it's great. And it was fun. 

My favorite family holiday is actually New Years. For New Years we got to build a MASSIVE blanket/couch/pillow fort (use as many items of furniture as needed) and sleep in it overnight. We used to stay up and watch movies until midnight. Also, we splurge on fancier cheeses and meats and breads, cheeseballs, crackers, drinks & mix-ins, etc., to carry on the tradition of NYE sandwiches. The best part is that there are always leftovers so I get to have yummy pastrami and swiss sandwiches for like a week afterward. 

We don't have a whole lot of non-holiday traditions, though recently I was reminded of "The Blue Plate." With the size of my family, discipline was always a struggle. One way my parents tried to implement positive reinforcement was with the Blue Plate. Everyday at dinner time, mom or dad would select a kid who had been particularly good that day, and they would get to eat off of the big, blue, melamine plate. It worked for a long time. There was a healthy competition to be the best behaved. I think it's my favorite now because I realize how funny it is that we were all trying to be good so we could eat off of a blue plate, as if that's really any sort of incentive. I like how simple and effective it was, though. 

Cheers, 

Guesthouse

A:

Dear Rainbows and Sunshine,

Most families make gingerbread houses or gingerbread trains... But my family makes candy trains (out of Snickers). I honestly couldn't tell you if we always did this when I was like 5, but it got more and more weird intense after 2007 when I was in high school. My Mom's family used to make 'normal' candy trains when she was young without damsels in distress, zoo animals, or abominable snowmen.

Damsel in Distress (+ a dead guy behind the train) (2009)
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Zoo animals escaping and wrecking havoc (2010) Whoops, a whale got a gummy bear! Bears running away and swimming away to safety. The panda is eating some 'bamboo'.
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Attack of the snowmen (2007) 
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A Mexican Fiesta (2008) Complete with Smarties sombreros, an aluminum foil pinata on the lower left, and one bear with the Mexico flag on top of the logs (tootsie roll).
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In 2011, my sisters were both married so they did trains with their husbands while I did my own.
Elf's Seven Layers of the Candy Cane Forest (2011)
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The Hawaiian Train (2011)
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Occupy Train (2011) with Starburst tents. (This one is mine)
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Winter Wonderland (2013) in my first area on my mission. My parents sent me a care package so I could still make a candy train! I made a normal one with a tootsie roll cabin. 
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Despicable Me Train (2014) Now we're back to the destroyed trains... My companion made a Hot Mess Express train. (not pictured)
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We switch doing Thanksgiving and Christmas with our in-laws, so we only make candy trains when we're together for Christmas. I know we've made candy trains together at least once since being married, but alas, I cannot find the picture (or remember what the theme was).

Most definitely going to continue this Christmas tradition with my kids!

-Goldie Rose