The holiday season is all about love, joy, community, and family. This month, we will be bringing you a little holiday series about the people who make up the family here at The Green Nursery and some of our favorite bits of the season. 

Today:  Brea

Brea holiday

Tell us a little about yourself!  What unique skills or interests do you bring to The Green Nursery?
My educational and professional background is mostly in music (I'm a classically trained flautist flutist fluter player-of-the-flute), in addition to a solid liberal arts education. I've also had a long-standing interest in women's health, which having my own kids morphed into an interest in fertility, pregnancy, and the 20-year aftermath of childbirth. (I'm told it will last much longer than 20 years, actually.)  As such, I currently work as a doula (postpartum and antepartum) and also work in a church nursery. I blog for TGN in addition to my own little adventures over at Contentedly Crunchy.

I'm one to research everything just because I'm nerdy, So, to my role as blogger here at TGN, I bring a genuine curiosity about products as well as an appreciation of differing ways of approaching parenthood and all the problems it brings with it.  I'm open to questions and comments and try to join in discussions on the Facebook page when I can.  I hope that readers/customers will feel free to email me ( if they'd like to see any particular aspect of cloth diapers, natural parenting, etc. covered on the blog!

Tell us about your favorite holiday traditions.
Probably my favorite holiday tradition is "Hanukkah Dinner."  For the first night of Hanukkah, I make a simple meal of brisket and potato latkes (pancakes).  It's not a fancy meal in the least, but I remember a similar meal from my childhood wherein my mother, sister, and I sat at our dining room table and ate from our nice dishes.  There were napkin rings and candle light from the menorah and also from candlesticks, making it a special "candlelit dinner" - meaning we didn't eat dinner in front of televisions as was our norm.

Our Christmas traditions vary widely depending on which part of the family we are spending it with (I have always celebrated both holidays).  I do love the traditional Christmas breakfast of orange rolls at my in-laws' house, or the pair of thoughtfully-chosen pajamas each child gets to open on Cristmas Eve at my sister's house (a tradition from her husband's family). 

Oh...and last year there was meat bathed for many many hours and then torched.  It's called sous-vide and it was amazing.  (Yes, part of my family is from Texas...)

Brea Traditions

This will be the first year that we spend Christmas on our own as a family of four.  I'm looking forward to starting our own traditions!

Growing up, what was your favorite or most memorable holiday gift?
I have three Christmas gifts that I can't choose between!  There were two that, looking back, are kind of a similar engineering/building theme.  They were both sets of plastic tubes that could be connected together in various ways.  One was meant to build baby care items:  connect certain tubes with wheels, add the included strip of fabric, and you had a stroller.  Connect them differently and you had a high chair.  The other was meant to roll marbles down.  There was a "whirlpool" piece, pieces with wheels that spun as the marbles went through, sections that would make a marble do "loop-de-loops."  I spent hours with that set!!

The third Christmas gift was a camera - you know, with film!  This one was so old (I think I was about 10, so it would have been the early '90s) that it had flash cartridges instead of a built in flash!

For Hanukkah each year, our last and nicest gift was always from my maternal grandparents (who were the "Jewish side" of my family) and it was always jewelry from a jewelry store owned by cousins (which, in our family, could mean 4th cousins 20 times removed - I don't remember how we were related).  I still have some of that jewelry and remember that it was from them. It's not extravagant, but it's not costume jewelry.  It always seemed very grown-up to me!

Who, in your family, gets the most into the holidays and how to they show it?
Hands down, my 4.5-year-old son (Bean).  He likes the ceremony of Hanukkah and the fact that there are "little fires" in our house for 8 nights.  And he has been asking to have our very own tree for two years now.  Since we're not travelling this year, he'll finally get his wish!  He also gets really into decorating Christmas cookies, sending letters, and helping me make gifts.  I'm hoping this year we can make some Christmas ornaments.  Lets find out what glitter does to my holiday spirit, eh?

And what about at TGN?  Who wishes tinsel grew on trees and pretends the store room is full of elves?
Unfortunately, the nature of my job at TGN is such that I don't spend a ton of time at the store, but I do try and get to know everyone.  As such, I'd have to go with Abby.  Partly because I've seen her personal Facebook page and I see a lot of holiday cheer from her already (since before Thanksgiving).

What is your favorite baby's first holiday gift, and why?
I'm going to have to go with Chewbeads and other teething necklaces.  Not only are these great, safe teethers for Baby, but they make for a mom who can start wearing jewelry again (otherwise, I am only starting to and my youngest is over 2 years old!  My four-year-old nearly strangled me with a necklace this morning...) and even give an older baby something to focus on and twiddle while they nurse.  And since the word "twiddle" makes almost every mom who has nursed awhile cringe, these really can make for a happy family!