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: Vivian (who teaches TGN's cloth diapering classes)

vivian hopkins

Tell us a little about yourself!  What unique skills or interests do you bring to The Green Nursery?
I have a background in creative writing and English literature, specifically poetry writing. I always thought at this point in my life, I would be trying to be published, but many of those dreams have morphed into other interests that I would have never seen as a younger woman. At this point, I am a homeschooling mama of three rambunctious and sweet children, Brandon, 9, Miles, 6 and Sophia, 3.

After Brandon was about six weeks old, he had been having rashes and I was tired of all the trash we were making and I saw a woman at BABS with Fuzzi Bunz and instantly fell in love. I researched them for a few weeks and convinced my husband we should try them out. We were young and living in an apartment without a washer and dryer, but we made it work. Given that I loved to read and research everything I was interested in, cloth diapering became a passion I could have while caring for an infant. After cloth diapering and potty training three children, and trying a large variety of styles and types of diapers, I am happy to share my passion with other families who are interested in giving cloth diapering a chance.

Tell us about your favorite holiday traditions.
My favorite holiday traditions mainly involve food and music. Growing up, I spent a lot of time before Christmas helping my mom with food. She taught me how to make fudge, divinity, chocolate-covered peanut butter balls and many types of sugar cookies. My Grandma's neighbors were Amish and they shared a delicious sugar cookie recipe with us. I usually spent two days during the week of Christmas making about 13 dozen of these cookies. Everybody ate them while I baked.

In our own home, putting up the Christmas tree is a tradition all of us enjoy. We usually go the first weekend in December and pick out a tree together. We buy a lot of chocolate and put up our tree, while listening to Crooner's Christmas classics. We spend a lot of time baking and decorating cookies, crafting, and listening to music all month long. We have dance parties in the kitchen and act silly.

Growing up, what was your favorite or most memorable holiday gift?
My most memorable gift was when my sister and I both received Cornsilk Cabbage Patch dolls. Her doll was brunette like her and mine was blonde. I think we played with them every single day for at least a year.

Who, in your family, gets the most into the holidays and how to they show it?
My husband gets the most into the holidays. He often starts singing Christmas songs in early November! I tend to tease him, because while I love the holiday season, I don't want to hear music or decorate until after Thanksgiving. My kids love how silly he is though. He also loves to take the kids in our neighborhood to look at lights.

And what about at TGN?  Who wishes tinsel grew on trees and pretends the store room is full of elves?
Unfortunately, I am not in the shop a whole lot, but my vote absolutely goes to Abby. She is fabulous with detail, and I see her Instagram and Facebook pictures and she loves decorating for the holidays. Last year, at the TGN holiday staff party, I was very impressed with Abby and Scott's tree, as I had never seen one more perfectly shaped. It was beautiful! I wouldn't be surprised if we see an elf make his debut this year at The Green Nursery!

What is your favorite baby's first holiday gift, and why?
For my son, Brandon's first Christmas, Ben and I started a library for him with books like "Goodnight Moon" by Margaret Wise Brown and "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle. Reading and Literature are very important to my husband and I and it was very special for both of us to pass on our love of reading to our children. It is a traditional present we give every year. It might be why our house is overflowing with books.

deck the halls