Let me be blunt: Christmas in America is an orgy of consumption within a society that takes convenience through consumption to new levels. There is nothing that you cannot buy here and no shortage of options and prices. A few general examples: bread in a can - yes you can buy canned dough - simply cut it into the required shapes and voila "bread rolls!" An old favourite of mine: stuffing that never sees the inside of a bird - just pour into an oven tray and there it is - "likestuffing". And there is even a discernible impulse towards convenience organic foods as health concerns and a rising desire for "fresh" drives people away from traditional convenience foods with their almost supernatural shelf life (everything lasts longer in the US: large megastores with long supply chains demand longer lasting foods to survive transport and shelf life).
It was cool to drive round town and have Kristen point out the places she had lived, worked and played. Biggest revelation: the worst thing Kristen ever did in Jackson was skip a Spanish class. But as she went to Taco Bell, it was at least justifiable as a cross cultural field trip!