new experience #31: compose a 100 item xmas list

happy thanksgiving monday (or happy plain ol’ monday, as the case may be)!

yesterday, we gathered at mom and dad’s for our annual family thanksgiving celebration extravaganza. you can read about last year’s party here!

mom's fall touches for our table centrepiece!

we follow the same formula tradition for each thanksgiving: visiting, christmas lists, pizza ‘n’ wings party!

this year, cousin joel and andrea are in australia – we skyped!

it was 7 a.m. australia-time; andrea was just flying out the door...

...and joel just got up!

<3! miss you both! happy you will be home by christmas!

mid-pizza party!

my favourite part of the whole family get-together – heck, a highlight of the year – is when we exchange our christmas lists.

we all come prepared with computer print-outs!

this is the premise: you brainstorm a bunch of ideas of gifts that you would like to receive at christmas. just because you include an item on your list does not mean you will get it! the xmas list is simply a guide for family members to consult when they do their shopping [with our relatively – punny! – small family, we all give presents to each other – there’s no name exchange or anything].

i never have a hard time pulling together a list. there’s a set of staples that i pretty much include annually: gift cards (although the brother is vehemently opposed, i still provide this option as i truly enjoy receiving gc’s!); workout wear; a selection of fiction, quirky tshirts. my list is typically 10-20 suggestions long.

back in the spring, i knew i wanted to write a 100 item christmas list as a funny new experience. so, on labour day weekend, i started my list. i had 50 items on it by the end of that first brainstorming session. over the next five weeks, i’d add ideas as they popped into my head. the list came together a lot quicker and more easily than i anticipated, actually! i thought i’d have to fall back on more book titles and gift card stores…i’ve got a few, but not a ton.

here, then, for documentation purposes, is my 100 item christmas list (and it can be joel and andrea’s copy!). items appear in the order in which they flashed into my brain [more or less – i actually came up with MORE than 100 ideas, and had to make some cuts and substitutions]. and there is nothing on the list that i genuinely would not appreciate receiving.


  1. the people puzzler: box set (xword puzzle books from people magazine)
  2. quirky tshirts with a 1960-1970’s vibe
  3. stinky tofu tshirt
  4. milk and cookies tshirt that is in the window of delirium (king street, waterloo)
  5. two owls + skunk tshirt from atomic toybot on queen street east
  6. silver hoop earrings
  7. “for men maca root shave cream” from the body shop
  8. lancome: bi-facil double action eye make-up remover
  9. lancome: crème mousse confort
  10. lancome: tonique clarte toner
  11. lancome: star bronzer natural glow(face powder) in shade 02 “solaire”
  12. reebok zigtech shoes, size 7
  13. a “wallflower” from bath & body works, in pewter; wallflower refills in “salty caramel,” “cinnamon stick,” “mint chocolate” etc (ie non-floral scents, baked goods are a good bet!)
  14. incense sticks
  15. nail polish in bright colours, no pastels
  16. crackle nail polish
  17. “then came you” by jennifer weiner (**for all books, “used” condition is fine!)
  18. “prep” by curtis sittenfeld
  19. “when you were mine” by elizabeth noble
  20. “the romantics” by galt niederhoffer
  21. “i’m so happy for you” by lucinda rosenfeld
  22. “something borrowed” or “something blue,” both by emily giffin
  23. gift certificate: conestoga mall
  24. gift certificate: lululemon
  25. gift certificate: loblaws (so I can get joe fresh clothes! not groceries!)
  26. gift certificate: shoppers drug mart (so I can get cosmetics! not toilet paper!)
  27. gift certificate: iTunes
  28. gift certificate: running room!
  29. brightly coloured knitting needles, metal, sizes 3.00 mm – > 6 .00 mm
  30. set of sharpie magic markers
  31. set of white board markers, lotsa colours
  32. brightly coloured stickie notes
  33. flipflops, size 7
  34. puffins cereal: cinnamon, original, or peanut butter
  35. maranatha peanut butter, crunchy
  36. expensive carbonated water – like from Europe
  37. expensive dark chocolate chips
  38. journal notebook: 8×10”, lined paper, coil bound, cute/bright cover
  39. flannel bed sheets – for queen size bed; cute
  40. yoga blocks (2)
  41. oprah magazine
  42. charm bracelet (can be cheap)
  43. wooden hoop earrings from earthwinds, uptown waterloo (have a straight stick that goes thru your ear, and thru the hoop earring)
  44. tea towels and/or dish cloths from bon mot (uptown waterloo)
  45. 500 piece jigsaw puzzle, bright colours
  46. gift certificate: tora tattoo (I’m ready for tat #3)
  47. brightly coloured 8×10” – NOT legal size – file folders (available at write impressions, for example)
  48. converse “chucks” sneakers, size 7, hi or low cut, any colour
  49. nike free shoes, size 7 (the lime with hot pink laces ones at running room)
  50. moccasins: low style, with fringe and with beads, size 7
  51. MAC eye shadow, pink tones
  52. thong underwear, bright colours, no itchy lace, size sm/med
  53. fleece pullover: ½ zip or full zip – any colour
  54. cute/kitschy/unique/retro bobby pins or hair barrettes
  55. sun warrior protein powder, vanilla – available at eating well organically, individual pacs
  56. set of queen bed sheets: high thread count, no florals
  57. black eyeliner pencil
  58. spools of sewing thread in all different colours/shades (box set??)
  59. recyclable tote bag from “ruby eats” (queen street east, Toronto) – the burlap sack/brown one
  60. retro/kitschy dishes from the 70s – NO SETS, ONE ITEM OF A DESIGN only
  61. lunchbox – retro design ie cartoon characters, tv shows from a bygone era
  62. blog makeover: by you or hire someone to do it for me
  63. armwarmers for running in a crazy, bright pattern/design
  64. fluffy, warm socks, crazy bright colours
  65. ballet flats (slippers/shoes) – size 7
  66. year membership to CAA (Canadian automobile association)
  67. Saucony kinvara running shoes, size 7, ONLY the special edition Canadian version (running room)
  68. “last night at chateau marmont” – by lauren weisberger
  69. moo cow key chain (write impressions)
  70. smartwool socks, size small, funky colours/design
  71. madonna tshirt –preferably the singer, but interpret as you wish
  72. teeth whitening strips
  73. laughing Buddha statue
  74. ipod shuffle, not silver
  75. crabtree & evelyn goats milk soap/body wash (available at the bay)
  76. a crew neck, college sweatshirt, size medium
  77. clogs, size 7 – I’m open-minded as to style
  78. pinking shears
  79. set of bath brian gluckstein bath towels (available at the bay): two bath sheets; one bath towel; one bath mat (not with rubber on the back); one hand towel; one face cloth; any colour
  80. tube of traumeel cream (available at shoppers)
  81. wrapping paper: any colours, any themes, sheets not rolls
  82. adidas “reaction pullover,” size medium, $64.99 at running room; style #V10931
  83. variegated yarn: bright colours (sock yarn weight is good), enough to make a baby blanket
  84. a lava lamp
  85. “emily the Strange” long sleeve tshirt, size medium or large
  86. peach Berserk long sleeve tshirt, size medium or large
  87. hoodie from the futon shop on king street in waterloo, size large
  88. u of w sweatpants, size medium, any colour
  89. long sleeve running top, plain crew neck, size medium
  90. silver lame shorts from American apparel, size medium (that would be lam-eh, not LAME!)
  91. membership card to the princess cinema
  92. drakkar noir – cologne or aftershave
  93. canada/olympic mittens, size small/medium (the line available at the bay)
  94. lifa brand long sleeve top, size small, crew neck
  95. vibrams, size 38, any model (available at adventure guide)
  96. toronto maple leafs baseball cap
  97. plaid work jacket from mark’s work wearhouse, size men’s small
  98. “relentless forward progress” by bryon powell
  99. a ladle
  100. ugg boots, size 7, must look like this:

our lists are fantastic this year! they’ll go into my knapsack for easy reference whenever i’m out and about – never know when you’ll see the perfect gift. i intend to start shopping asap!

how does the christmas gift exchange work for your family? do you make a wish list at all? the christmas list tradition started in my family even before i was born! i love the idea: you know you will like what you receive, and it’s easy to know what to buy others!

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  • K  On September 9, 2012 at 10:27 am

    Wow. Materialistic much?

    You start this post off by talking about your family and its traditions, and then immediately launch into a list of 100 things you need (including language like “it MUST look like this.”)

    You could probably benefit from a good dose of a reality check and a re-evluation of your priorities.

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 7, 2012 at 7:45 pm

      you have completely missed the point of our beloved family tradition with christmas list exchanges.

  • Anonymous  On October 10, 2011 at 10:28 pm

    J’adore ta liste! It’s awesome. I, especially, love that the first item is the People puzzler! I’m going to use some of your ideas and make my own 100 item list for Darren. – I used to have an Emily t-shirt- it said “misery loves company”.

  • Stephanie  On October 10, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    I love that you added a puzzle to your list. Now let’s see if you finish the first one. Ha! (And also, you should probably have asked for new jeggings.)

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 10, 2011 at 7:18 pm

      a ha! is that a challenge, i sense?! off to puzzle go i!…and you will note that the xmas list puzzle is 500 pieces – i have learned my lesson! new leggingjeggings – yes, they would be most welcome. as long as the giftgiver spends more than $10 on ’em!! hope you had a great thanksgiving, stephanie!

  • Zo  On October 10, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    Your list is awesome. I always give an…ummm…let me think about it response when it comes to these things, even though there are plenty of things I want. My mind just goes blank!
    We don’t do extended family gifts, but basically we just do immediate family exchanging and we don’t really do rules…

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 10, 2011 at 6:45 pm

      thanks, zo! here’s all you need to remember: a list of gift card options, a list of book titles (i know you like to read), and can’t miss ideas (slippers! ball point pen! x kitchen utensil! etc). hopefully you won’t get any tacky kittie-themed stuff! 🙂 i love this -> “we don’t do rules” – yup, we DO have our rules…although they vary from person to person (ie gift cards – allowed or not).

  • Andrea Budding  On October 10, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    WOW! Your list puts our lists to serious shame! So happy we could chat yesterday, even if it was only for a few minutes. Looks like everyone had a wonderful time. See you soon!! 🙂

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 10, 2011 at 5:03 pm

      well, this is a once-in-a-lifetime list, andrea! next year will be back to normal! it was wonderful to skype but it will be MORE wonderful to visit at xmas!

  • Lisa  On October 10, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    Great list! That’s a really good idea—then no one wastes money on gifts that are not loved/used!
    We don’t exchange gifts in my family at all…My mom usually gives me money and something small, but Joe and I decided not to do presents, and I usually just buy something for Matthew. It’s very boring of us, but for some reason it just works!

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 10, 2011 at 4:48 pm

      buying for kids is the most fun, anyway! i’m glad your family has gone with what feels/works best for you. and money is nice because you can do what you want!

  • Gina Unger  On October 10, 2011 at 10:26 am

    H.T. again to you! What a good time your family has together… fun! Love the pizza ‘n’ wings tradition as I am not really a “traditional thanksgiving/xmas meat and potatoes meal” lover. Had a really good chuckle over a few of your xmas list items (i.e. #3 – stinky tofu is what we smelled all the time from the street vendors in Taiwan! so now you’ve got me wondering why you want that t-shirt?! and #92?!?!?) you funny girl! love ya. 🙂

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 10, 2011 at 10:32 am

      yes, one turkey dinner per year at xmas is enough for our family! stinky tofu tshirt -> sil ana has one that i have coveted for many a year…i’ve asked for one for at least 3 years now! i think YOU need one, too! #92 – what can i say…it’s my fave scent EVER, mens or womens! i want to spritz it around! 🙂

  • Johanna B  On October 10, 2011 at 8:58 am

    I have those Uggs. I won them last year. Imagine.

    We don’t do a gift exchange among extended family. I give something to my daughter and I will to my grandson. That’s about it. Christmas is quiet for me.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you.

    • 1970kikiproject  On October 10, 2011 at 10:25 am

      thanks, johanna! i hope you had a good weekend. you won uggs? wow! do you wear them? i bet you could sell them on ebay, if not!

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