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Holiday Countdown Calendar 2019 - The Lost Days 3

brand-advent-smaller.pngBecause of size restrictions, I have to remove older portraits from the main article. But here they are again:




For the 18th portrait, we talked with @Ashley Faus - she's Sr. Manager, Integrated Media.

Ashley's originally from Dallas, TX but lives now in Mountain View. 



Ashley, please tell us about your favorite childhood holiday memory!

My grandparents used to do "Christmas around the world". Every year, they'd research the holiday tradition of a new country, and we'd learn about it and participate in that tradition for the year. So we laid out our shoes for gifts for The Netherlands, learned about dreidels and menorahs for Hannukkah, and tried a variety of entrees and desserts, in addition to the traditional American Christmas menu. My grandparents printed out folklore and facts and we went around the room reading our assigned selections, a single sentence for the youngest members of the family and up to a paragraph for the adults. My family hosted exchange students from Germany and Brazil, so we followed their holiday traditions for those two years. I loved explore the surprising customs and feeling of connection to all these cultures.


What a wonderful idea of your grandparents, Christmas around the world. A great opportunity to get to know and understand other cultures and habits, I love this.


Is there a holiday song that you love?

I LOVE "Carol of the Bells"! I sang several renditions of this song in my high school and church choirs, and even made a CD (yep, old-school!) of pop arrangements. I had versions by Destiny's Child, N*Sync, and Metallica with the Transiberian Orchestra on repeat for the entire month of December one year.


As I said yesterday, I also love this carol so much. Listening to a big choir in an old church singing this one is the perfect christmas moment...


Do you decorate your house for the holidays?

We usually stick to a Christmas tree. I collect ornaments and try to buy one that represents the local culture when we travel. My mom and sister are also into ornaments, so we gift them for life milestones and fun memories. It's such a walk down memory lane when I pull out the ornaments to decorate my tree each year: the motorcycle that my husband received for our engagement, the suitcase I received when I returned home from my first solo international trip, the cheap music notes I bought to fill up the tree in my first apartment, they all come with a story.


Thank you, Ashley for telling us your stories. A Christmas tree full of memories is great. If you want, show us your tree, upload a photo to the comments! Happy holidays to you and your family and thank you for being our number 18.





It's December, the 17th - say hello to @Sarah Schuster . 

Sarah is from St. Louis, MO



She's a Program Manager for Cloud Migrations.


Sarah, did you have a New Year's resolution for 2019?

Yes, it was losing weight. I did achieve it - for a brief time ;)

And what about 2020?

Added focus on putting our customer's success and best experience first and foremost.


Do you have a favorite childhood holiday memory?

Sledding down steep, foresty hills with my friends.


Awesome, that's one of mine as well.


Sarah's favorite holiday treats are cinnamon rolls! She makes them herself fresh that morning.


Oh, holiday cinnamon rolls, that's a great idea - Sarah, please share your recipe with us here in the comments!

Is there a holiday song that you love?

"Carol of the Bells" is my absolute favorite - especially live.

That's one of my favorites too, and I know there are more fans of this masterpiece around here, just wait until tomorrow! Maybe we can beat Mariah ;-)


Do you decorate your house for the holidays? If so, what kind of decorations do you put up?

We always put up a Christmas tree. We add an ornament every year that represents a signigicant moment from the year. This year we added a koala riding on the back of a kangaroo like Santa's sleigh for our first trip to Sydney!

This is Sarah's most favorite holiday movie:



Are there any unique holiday traditions in your family?

We always open one present on Christmas Eve.

Here in Germany, we open all our presents on Christmas Eve. No one has to wait until Christmas day. 

Sarah, share a heartwarming moment from 2019

Saying 'I do' to my now husband.

Congratulations, what a great year for you and your husband!


What are you grateful for?

My wonderful husband, working for an incredible company, my family and friends.

Want to shout out to any of your favorite Atlassian coworkers or Community contacts?

Shout-out to everyone who supported migrations this year. You all learned a new, very complex and complicated new world, leaned in, and rocked it! Looking forward to a great 2020 with you!

And we are looking forward to a great 2020 with you, Sarah! Have a nice holiday, enjoy your cinnamon rolls (leave one for me!) and thank you for being our number 17 in the holiday countdown calendar!





Today's day 16, it's Molly's day.

@Molly Bronstein is on the product marketing team for Jira Service Desk.


Hello Molly, which holiday song do you love most?

I'm obsessed with Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas." The first time I hear this song is when I know the holiday season has officially started.

Seems, Mariah should give a concert in the Atlassian headquarter, so many fans out there, sorry @Jason Wong , I had to repair the record...




What is your best holiday gift ever?

I asked for a karaoke machine this year - fingers crossed!!


I hope your wish will come true - but if Mariah will not perform at the Atlassian headquarter, we want to hear Molly Bronstein performing "All I want for Christmas" instead!

What is your favorite holiday meal?

I like to make smaller versions of Thanksgiving dishes during the holidays. I never understood why we only have stuffing once a year, it's the best!

That's a great idea! 

Thank you Molly for taking part in our calendar project. Happy Holidays to you and we keep the fingers crossed for your karaoke machine!




Hi @Kesha Thill , it's your day today!

Kesha Thillainayagam is a Product Marketing Manager for cloud plans and pricing, free, standard and premium. She's from Dallas, Texas.


Do you have a resolution for 2020?

My resolution for 2020 is using as little one-use plastic as possible, less online shopping and takeout.

Yes, let's get rid of all these one-use plastic - that's a resolution we all should share, worldwide


Kesha's most favorite holiday movie is


a 2003 British romantic comedy starring lots of stars, e.g. Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Colin Firth, Emma Thompson, Keira Knigthley. Kesha's watching it every year with her brother.


Kesha wants to shout out to the Community team for bringing all the people together with so much cheer and creating the best and most Community out there!


Thank you, Kesha for being a part of our awesome Community, all the best for you, happy holidays and have fun watching your alltime favorite holiday movie!





@Janel  Blattler is living in Sydney. But she's a world traveller, originally from Vancouver, Canada and has lived in the UK. And today, on December 14th, it's her day on the holiday countdown calendar.


Janel, What's your role in the Atlassian universe?

I'm Design Manager for Jira Software Cloud.


What's your fondest holiday memory?

The year I got my extended family to build a gingerbread house together from scratch. It was the first time we’d ever done an activity like that together and we couldn’t get over gore much fun it was.


What is your best holiday gift ever?

The year my sister came to surprise me. She flew over from Vancouver when I was living in the UK.

That's what I call a surprise! Hope you enjoyed your holidays together! Maybe this year, she'll surprise you in Sydney!


Do you want to shout out to any of your favorite Atlassian coworkers or Community contacts?

@Ada Chen and Victoria Li, two of my favourite colleagues from when I worked on the Confluence Server & Data Center team. We no longer work together but we’ve become close friends.


Thank you Janel for taking part in this year's calendar and happy holidays to you and your family!






Our number 13 is  Jeremy Largman ( @Jeremy Largman ) from Berkeley, California. He's managing the strategic support teams and initiatives, like migrations, GDPR, and of course community support (his favorite).

Jeremy, what is your fondest holiday memory?

There was the time I cooked the thanksgiving turkey with the giblets still inside. You only do that once, then you know.




He loves the song "Christmas in Hollis" by Run DMC and his favorite holiday movie is "Trading Places",


a 1983 American comedy starring Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy. 


When he was a child, Jeremy loved sledding in the hills around Lake Tahoe. It's his favorite holiday memory.


Are there any unique holiday traditions in your family?

Going to chinese food and the movies with all the other Jews!


What's the best holiday gift ever?

My wife got me 3 months of free netflix after asking to “see my credit card for a minute.” I still get to bring it up all these years later as the worst gift ever that keeps on giving.


Do you decorate your house for the holidays? If so, what kind of decorations do you put up?

No, but I collect “treasures” at flea markets thrift stores wherever I go. We have yardsales every 6 months to ensure I don’t end up in an episode of Hoarders.


Jeremy, please share a heartwarming moment from 2019 with us!

My cute papillon chihuahua made a run for it from her dog walker. After postering the neighborhood with lost dog signs, a neighbor found her a few blocks over. She crossed a freeway overpass and ran almost home from 3 miles away!


What are you grateful for?

So much! Anyone who gets to work at Atlassian is among the lucky ones, that’s for sure.


Want to shout out to any of your favorite Atlassian coworkers or Community contacts?

BIG shout out to @Nic Brough -Adaptavist- for hanging in so strong for all this time. Legend!


Thank you Jeremy for participating in this calendar project, for your interesting and heartwarming stories and of course for being a part of our community, happy holidays to you and your family!



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