But I’m not here to sing praises of “A Christmas Story,” as dear to my heart as it is. My colleagues have already done that. I’m here to declare that “Home Alone” and its excellent sequel “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York” (do not speak to me about any subsequent films in the franchise) are the best Christmas movies.
My favorite Thanksgiving food is pumpkin streusel bars. I started making the recipe a few years ago in hopes of combining a bunch of things everyone in my family enjoys into one dessert. The crust of the bars is gingersnap cookies; the filling is cream cheese, Greek yogurt and pumpkin; and the topping is a streusel made from oats, cinnamon and brown sugar. We eat this instead of pumpkin pie now, and no one has complained.
My favorite Halloween costume is the costume that wasn’t. When I was a toddler, my mom spent a ton of time making me an elf costume for Halloween. (She is not a sewer, so this was a huge deal.) But when the big day rolled around, I absolutely refused to put it on. I ended up going trick-or-treating in my parka and still telling everyone who asked what I was dressed up as that I was an elf. I am a far more accommodating person now, but 2-year-old Alison had a lot of spunk. (Sorry, Mom!)
I love the parks and trails in Stark County. There’s one in every community, and each one seems to have its own personality. I used to visit them to run and relax. But now that I’m a mom to a 1-year-old, I’m there for the swings and slides.
My high school held a three-day, off-site leadership retreat each year that was a really big deal. And when you were a rising senior, you could apply and interview for a spot on the highly coveted nine-member planning committee, which met as a class for the first semester of the school year.
One enduring image of almost every wedding I’ve ever attended is of the loving bride and groom shoving cake against the face and up the nostrils of the person with whom each frosting-encrusted member of the devoted couple now is expected to go ahead and spend the rest of life.
One of my favorite summer activities is to go for a run in North Park in Jackson Township. I love how sunny and open the trail is, and the park always is full of people and activities. It sounds like a small, simple thing, but I look forward to it all winter when it’s cold and I’m stuck in the gym on a treadmill.
I love breakfast food, and Twisted Citrus is my favorite local place for breakfast or brunch. First and most importantly: The coffee is excellent. The menu is big enough—and good enough—that I’ve never ordered the same thing twice, and everything I’ve eaten there is delicious. Plus, there’s a solid mix of savory and sweet options, so it keeps everyone happy.
A woman I look up to is my lifelong friend, Kelsey. (She’s 12 days older than I am, so it’s officially OK for me to say I look up to her.) Kelsey is incredibly brave, and that’s what I admire most about her. In the span of eight months, she got engaged, got married and moved to England with her British husband.
I’m not much of a cook, or a baker, for that matter. It’s not that I’m bad at it; I’m just lazy. But at the beginning of the year, I decided it was time to man up and learn how to make some new dishes. I bought “The Complete Cooking for Two Cookbook: 650 Recipes for Everything You’ll Ever Want to Make” by America’s Test Kitchen. My first recipe? Fudgy Brownies.
The Repository Select Rite Aid Stores Spee-D Foods Buehler's Fresh Foods Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations Aultman Hospital Gift Shop Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations News Depot Avenue Arts Marketplace Yum Yum Tree Alliance Grapes in a Glass