I’m Dreaming of a Slim Christmas

‘Tis the season….and I bounce between pounds gained and lost as the holiday partying ebbs and flows.  As many of my fellow revelers are the fit ladies from exercise groups who also excel in gourmet cooking and baking, I recalled an article I wrote that described our dilemma.  Having sent copies to a few friends in place of a holiday card, I thought…why not blog a non-caloric ode to the season as a holiday greeting?   And to all, a happy new year!

“’Tis the season to be jolly” comes from the peculiar notion that fat people are happy people. Anyone gaining less than ten pounds during December is seen as an anorexic Scrooge.

However, one Christmas past, I determined to play Tiny Trim, having jogged 1,000 miserable miles to shed three years of annual compounded holiday avoirdupois.  Those same people who regularly veg out with soybean soufflés and tofu burgers, pig out for the holidays.  Their goodwill extends to sharing forbidden—also candied and sugared—fruits, Danish and ice cream egg nog in a gastronomical and ecumenical orgy.

The holiday spirit, along with more potent spirits, started creeping into offices right after Thanksgiving. There were client parties (hot hors d’oeuvres), and staff parties (cold canapés). To avoid the festivities, I offered to man the phones—until I answered one artfully crafted from a cheese ball.

“You can’t stay home for the holidays,” said my friend, Serena, “unless you live out of town. So you’ll hit a few parties, gain a few pounds. For New Year’s you can resolve to start smoking again.”

“In Silicon Valley, Serena? The only thing smoked in the Bay Area is salmon.”

“Yummm. And ham and oysters,” she said, licking her lips.

The Rotary, church groups and charity organizations turned meetings into feedings. My polite, “No thanks, strict diet, you know,” equaled a worldwide hunger crisis to those good folks whose good works came molded, meringued and moussed. It was eat or resign.

Even my house came under siege. Neighbors I hadn’t seen all year mounted surprise sorties with “Ho, ho ho’s” and homemade horrors for weight watching—spritzes, stollens and bonbons. If a praline elf or a marzipan angel breached the front door, I shoved it out the back.  The garbage men must have keeled over from a series of rum-soaked fruit cakes I put out to re-cycle.

The week before Christmas, I was in an acute state of depression, licking the pages of the Harry and David’s gourmet gift catalog. When I started tasting the package ribbons praying they were candy, I decided to test my will power at an open house.

Victory! I mingled, caroled and merely nibbled. Defeat! The entire buffet was an incredible edible—quiche-crust plates, spun sugar glasses, cappuccino coffee, glazed carrot sticks and spiked water. Even the toothpicks dissolved in my mouth  Serena found me crouched behind the Christmas tree.

“You did it!” she cheered. “Hid out and stuck to your diet! Congratulations.”

“Not quite,” I said sheepishly with a small burp. “I forgot about all those caloric ornaments of gingerbread men, popcorn strings, chocolate Santas and candy canes. Does it look too bare with just the lights left?”

I’m back on the wagon this year. My weight’s down, my kitchen’s clean and my calendar’s empty. But all I really want for Christmas? Two turtle doves under glass and a stuffed partridge in a glazed pear tree!

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15 Responses to I’m Dreaming of a Slim Christmas

  1. Anne Knight says:

    you’re so slim–so ENJOY!


  2. Cindy Frobish says:

    Oh I so enjoyed that. Actually I’m on a weight loss journey that I started last July and have lost 46 pounds so far. My goal is 100 pounds. I’m feeling really good with only minor sojourns into the forbidden. Big hugs, Cindy

  3. Anne says:

    I enjoyed your humorous essay very much! We’ll just keep dancing and stepping, and we’ll be fine!!
    Anne D.

  4. the babe says:

    I lo0ved this wonderful free verse ode to the goodies of life. We of a certain age (over 80) figure all caskets look alike and a few extra pounds here and there will only make the bearers of my body a little stronger. There is so much more in life than worrying about calories. I worry that the over 80 crowd, who always come thirty minutes early, will have eaten all the marshmallows and chocolate before we arrive. I also worry that my favorite drinking friend is too consumed about ounces and pounds, and not enjoying the sugar laden things in life. Here’s to you kid. love you and need you. The Ritz has a great happy hour!

  5. Maggie State says:

    If I could just put on one pound,it would make my Holiday.Maybe this year. Happy Holidays

  6. Pam Sanderson says:

    Tee hee! I can just see you on that cheese phone! I just bought an entire Panettone from Le Boulanger,
    and I am the ONLY one in my family who likes it! Oh, well, I’ll have a piece or 3 and think of you!

  7. gen gusman says:

    You have a way with words!!! And now that you’ve written that, which should have inspired me to follow in your path (not that I ever could), how about the kugel recipe?

    Love, gen

  8. Hi Evie,
    i loved it! Dare I invite you to have breakfast sometime in January?

  9. Laura Smoliar says:

    Happy Holidays, Evie! I enjoyed this! I’m now at my in-laws, surrounded by cheese, ice cream, and oh yeah, some fruit… My hubby found a nearby gym that I can use as a guest while we are down here in Houston…
    Take care,

  10. Jackie Wheeler says:

    Wonderful -your wit and great writing have not changed over the years. And, I don’t remember you ever needing a diet. Guess I should not bring some fudge over 🙂 Thanks for the greeting and smiles and Happy Holidays to you.

  11. Sylvia Porter says:

    You’ve done it again. It reminds of how much I miss you. Dare I suggest getting together for lunch in January?

  12. Sharon says:

    Thanks for sharing! Enjoy the holidays and I’ll see you back in exercise in January. You don’t mention my extra pounds and I promise not to notice yours.

  13. M. J. Capper says:

    What a fun read … love your wit. I must say, though, that I don’t think that I have ever seen you with “extra pounds” on you! Have a great time over the Holidays and enjoy the New Year. See you in early 2011.

  14. Pat Eaton says:

    I had to wait (weight) until after Christmas to read this for fear of major guilt. And so I ate with abandon. Now comes all the stuff around New Year’s Eve…….this year a party featuring all desserts and a chocolate fountain. Oh well, there is always next year.
    Have a wonderful 2011, filled with good things not necessarily gourmet!
    Love, Pat

  15. Elaine says:

    HI Evie,
    I just saw this, what a wonderful write up and very entertaining. Elaine

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