It's officially January...and boy, does it ever feel like it.
Isn't January the worst? The holidays are over, the cold weather is setting in. A couple of days ago we had freezing rain that coated absolutely everything in a thin layer of ice, which is the bad weather trifecta: treacherous, ugly, but not really bad enough to justify staying at home with a good book. The shine has started to come off my New Year's resolutions. It turns out that giving up alcohol for three weeks has not magically resulted in losing ten pounds, having a bunch of extra money, and sleeping eight hours every night. And my TV choices have been similarly sobering. I just finished both seasons of HBO's Love Life, and I have thoughts.
Here's something I don't talk about much: I couldn't write for most of 2020.
For most of my life, I've been saying "oh, I could write more if I had the time!" Then in 2020, I suddenly had more time than I knew what to do with. Unfortunately, that time was also filled with anxiety, trauma, and an endless stream of problems that I was powerless to solve. I finally had the mythical time I've always needed, and I spent it doom-scrolling, comfort-reading, and stress-cleaning. Then my husband suggested that I try something different. Why not write by hand? Sure, it's slower than typing, but it's faster than absolutely no progress whatsoever, so why not give it a try?
And here's where I'm at 12 months later:
Every now and then, when I'm scrolling through the JustWatch app thinking about what I want to watch that night, I like to reflect on how far television has come. When I was a kid, there were four channels--2, 4, 7, and 9--and I still remember how exciting it was when Fox started airing on channel 13. Sure, we could have gotten cable, but a) my father was way too cheap and b) there were only, like, four more channels on cable anyway. Watching TV was basically choosing the best of your four options, then flipping to the second-best option during commercial breaks.
Now, the choices are endless. I can spend as much time deciding what to watch as I do watching. In order to combat this indecision, my husband I made a list of all the movies we wanted to watch. Here it is, in all its glory:
We opened our presents, went ham on our ham, and settled in for … EVEN MORE CHRISTMAS MOVIES!
When my family asks me what I want for Christmas, I'm always stumped. I don't need clothes--why would I, when I can just keep wearing this same 10-year old sweatshirt that is stretched out just the way I like it? I don't need toys or collectibles--frankly, it would be a gift to me if someone could get my husband to stop buying them. I don't need books or CDs--my phone holds more entertainment than I could consume in ten lifetimes. I guess you could, like, pay for six months of Spotify for me?
On my side of the family, we've basically phased out presents except for white elephants, and the obligatory pile of gifts for my nephew. However, my husband's family does a big gift exchange. When they asked him what I wanted, he cast about for a moment and then said, "well, she likes tea." How do I know?
BEHOLD MY CHRISTMAS TEA HAUL!
My tree is up, my fireplace is glowing, and there’s a cat in my lap, which means … it’s time for Christmas movies!
I would normally have watched a bunch of Christmas movies by now, but life happens, and it's been happening pretty hard this month. It's a combo of changing work schedules, a total rearrangement of all our furniture, and the good problem of having too many people who want to hang out with us. Hard to complain that I haven't watched A Christmas Story yet when I'm busy hanging out with friends and family.
But I knew that there was a Christmas movie trilogy I absolutely had to watch. It was time for me to put my Christmas movie moxie up against the three-headed hydra that is ...
Vanessa Hudgens in The Princess Switch Saga.
For the past couple of years, Netflix has been crushing the Cheesy Christmas Movie genre. It's almost as if there were a huge, underserved audience of romance fans who wanted to see the stories they love on screen ... huh.
Last night, Hubs had to work, so I took the opportunity to binge three new Netflix Christmas movies. There's a huge crop this year, and I'm here to let you know what's worth watching!
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