Crazy for Christmas

Ready or not, here Christmas comes!
Thanksgiving is over, and that means we can officially go crazy for Christmas.  And you know San Francisco does not shy away from crazy.

Last Saturday was rainy and gloomy, but I braved the weather and went down to Union Square in order to get a glimpse of Yoda. Union Square is the shopping center of SF, so you can imagine that this is the first neighborhood to gear up for the holidays. Even though it was still November, the giant tree had been erected in the middle of the square, the ice rink was poured and frozen, Macy’s was decorated, and the sound system played Here Comes Santa Claus for all the hear. I felt like I’d stepped off the subway and found myself at the North Pole. “Hello Christmas!”, I said.

I did the Yoda thing first, since that was my whole objective for going. Then I wandered over to the rink and watched the people fall on their asses skate majestically around on the ice. If you want to skate, you can sign up for a 90-minute slot starting on every even hour. It costs $10 for adults and $5 the rent skates (unionsquareicerink.com). I know I promised that I would skate and then write about it but honestly… I’d rather not.

I wandered down to the Ghiradelli store because it seemed like a Christmas-y thing to do. I walked in the door and a young employee shoved a piece of peppermint bark into my face. Yum! Peppermint bark: the perfect mouthful of the holidays. And then I bought a pound of the stuff.

Macys’ store window is very similar to last year’s with adoptable dogs and cats on display. I was especially fond of the little terrier mix who was destroying playing with a giant stuffed Santa Claus. I know that Macy’s puts a lot of effort into their holiday display and it shows. But I also appreciate that they use their window to benefit a good cause like the animal shelter.

After all this winter excitement, I felt the only way to finish the afternoon was with a peppermint mocha from Starbucks (yes, I am a Starbucks whore). I sat on the bench overlooking the square and sipped my drink. As if on cue, a group of kids showed up in matching hats and began to sing holiday-themed rap music and dance along with the beat. The music was pretty terrible, but I was feeling festive so I smiled and clapped along. I was expecting to just swing through and take pictures of Yoda, but I ended up wasting a few hours in Christmas Land! Happy beginning of the holidays, everyone!

For a Good Cause, It Is

Making a list, he is. Checking it twice, he must.
Find out who’s naughty and nice, he will.

Okay okay, what am I doing? I am talking like Yoda in honor of the giant statue that was built in Union Square this weekend. Made out of LEGOs, it was.

The statue was a 12-foot tall Yoda dressed as Santa, made entirely out of LEGOs. I was there on Saturday and it was only halfway finished. It took three days to build thanks to the help of thousands of us SF-ians. They had brick-building stations set up where I got to put together the pieces that made up this giant holiday figure. Fun and interactive, it was.

The event was designed to be the kickoff for LucasFilms + LEGO’s new website, www.legosantayoda.com. This is a really nerdy way to help you get excited about the holidays, LEGO Star Wars style! There are contests, and games, and several cute videos, like the one of Santa Yoda handing out toys to all the good little Jedis. But the main point of the website is to get you to send out e-cards. For every e-card sent, they will donate one toy to Toys for Tots.  Create an e-card, you should. Spread holiday cheer, you will.

Here’s the card I made:

 

Coming to town, Santa Yoda is!
Tired of the Yoda phrases, you are, mmm?? Talk like normal, you want? No. Not until you go to www.legosantayoda.com and make an e-card.

Do or do not. There is no try.

Here is a great article from CNET.com about the event.
Yes Leia, there is a Yoda Santa made out of LEGOs.

10 Pics for One Year

I started this blog one year ago (give or take a month…). I decided to commemorate the occasion with ten of my favorite pictures from the last year. My husband says this is the blog equivalent of a clip show. You remember those? When sitcoms would give all the actors a week off and just show highlights from past episodes? Yeah, this is just like that.

10. The Christmas Tree Lighting at Macy’s
I like this picture because this scene was hard to photograph but I got it! Also, this was a magical evening.

9.  The Palace of Fine Arts
The pond around the PoFA is really serene, and the weather was perfect the day I was there. I was so impressed by the size of this structure that it deserves a spot on this list.

8. The Chinese Flower Fair
This was my first adventure into Chinatown: the day I learned that Chinatown is not so scary after all.

7. Grace Cathedral
Do I really have to explain why I love this picture? Please.

6. The Golden Gate Bridge captured from Fort Point
I lived in SF for a long long time before I learned about this photography hot-spot. New residents should be required to visit within the first few weeks (sooner than you obtain a new driver’s license).

5. Sutro Baths
Most beautiful ocean view ever!

4. The kid in the lion costume at the Chinese New Year Parade
This kid was so adorable! On that cold rainy night, this was just the thing to warm my heart.

3. The Bay Bridge at sunset
You’re probably sick of listening to me gush about this bridge. I’m so sorry I can’t help it. I LOVE THIS BRIDGE!

2. The Bay Bridge at twilight
Wait, I forgot. Which is my favorite bridge?

1. The San Francisco skyline at night. Click photo to enlarge.
This photo needs no introduction. San Francisco is a beautiful city!!

that's the bay bridge

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