Abridging "Hanukkah" as "Xukkah" is an interesting take. This said, if it's not too late, you might was to fix the "opportunties" in the clue to 1a
Plant that is used at Xmas to engineer awkward kissing opportunities[------]
. Also, do you always eschew the rules against unckecked squares (the central F) and two-letter entries (35d
Bout ender, for short[--]
), yet remain a fond proponent of symmetry? I'm only asking because, in the context of a meta, any departure from the norm, might be perceived as a solving hint, including a typo in a clue...