Monday, December 29, 2008


The Christmas rush is over and I find myself at a bit of a loss. Nothing to plan for and that sorta leaves me hanging. I don't know what to do. You see, I am a list maker....I make lists for everything. For example: Christmas dinner. Out comes the Excel Spread Sheet. Everything is put on that beautiful paper...who is coming, what they are bringing, when the turkey goes in the oven and when it comes out, what equipment is needed, and who is assigned to look after what. And on and on. My beautiful lists are kept upon my fridge to be followed by one and all. Maybe it's a little anal but it keeps me sane.

Till this Christmas !!

It started out right....then the powers that be said NUH AH! And the world went black...power out an hour after I put my beautiful turkey in the oven. Okay....don't panic....think....will wait for a bit and see what happens. About an hour later the power comes back on. Dinner will be a little late..not much though as I always have it out and done a little early.
All is right with the world again and the festivities continue.

OH YEAH.....DREAM ON... a few hours later.....Guess What? The power goes off again. Now I have a half cooked turkey and it is getting late to call off the dinner. My mind is racing. Okay Plan C....take turkey to daughters house up the road and cook it there. No basting but the bird will survive.
In the effort to remain positive, I reminded them that we will have hot food to eat while sitting in the dark.

The power came back about an hour before everyone arrived. This too was in doubt because of the big snow storm. We weren't sure if people were going to be able to even get here. There were several cancellations but I understand why. But those that braved the storm would be hungry and expecting a feast. Off goes the Ex to retrieve the offending (it is taking the blame for all the problems) and hopefully fully cooked bird.

Everything was set....People came and visited. A good time for all. More presents ripped open and people were laughing and enjoying themselves. Then everyone ate like there was no tomorrow and the turkey was perfect. And the food was gone in like ...20 minutes. ALL THAT FOR 20 MINUTES??? YUP!!!

We started the clean up and people started drifting out. THEN the power went out again...just as we were nearly finished cleaning up. It was so black in the hall. Some candles were found in a cupboard and we had to go rescue a three year old who was stuck on the potty. Bravo to her for not panicking.

Next year I put a contingency plan or two on my list.....

Friday, December 12, 2008


Okay…..where to start. I have to get this exercising in. Must trim off the fat and weight. Stretching….that’s a good place to begin. I slowly raise my arms, stretch stretch stretch. That wasn’t so bad now...try the right leg. Bring it up to chest…..made it half way but the roll on my belly stops me from going further. Inspired that I don’t have to go that far, I try the raising the left knee. Nope, it didn’t fare any better. Okay, I know where the work has to take place. I was full stretched out and all warmed up (it felt hot in here) I decide to attack the dreaded belly. That of course means working the abs. Except I don’t appear to have any. How stupid is that I ask!! How can you work something that you don’t even have??? Okay…I will sit down and cool off while pondering this dilemma.

While sitting, I see my desk has accumulated a few items which do not belong. I blame these errant articles for the disarray which is sprawled over the top. I wonder who put all that crap on here? I look around to find the offender but sadly I realize there is no one there and he/she isn’t likely to show up as I live alone. So I have to make a decision. Back to my work out or clean the desk.

I thought about my problem. If I leave my desk this messy, will I be able to do a proper work out while thinking about the chaos which is reigning by the computer. And if I do my cleaning up, will I ever find those lost stomach muscles which everyone tells me is somewhere in there? These questions!!! They must be answered. I figure the fat around my middle will have to forgive me for not attempting to shed it with a vigorous and diligent workout. The desk wins….

I spot a couple of envelopes. Empty. I guess I could put them in the recycle. I get up and take them to the bin. Ooops. It’s full. Another chore that no one around here wants to do. Since I was doing something to get out of something, I had better take care of it. Into a bag it goes and put it by the door so I will remember to haul it out when I go out. Back to the desk. I find a package of gum I thought I had lost, two pens, a notepad with last weeks grocery list which I forgot when I went to the store. Reading it I realize I missed half the stuff on it. Still don’t have the things on it so I must not have needed them as badly as I thought. Okay….list is in the garbage. Wait…better take it out and make a new list in case. Make new list….throw old one out.

Phone rings…answer it. Hey a girlfriend I haven’t heard from for a couple of months. What am I doing…just finished working out and was cleaning up around here. Lunch…sure…meet you in an hour….

Problems solved!!!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Christmas Now and Then

Today the kids want electronic games

Cell phone requests abound

Expensive clothes and pricey gear

The peace is never found

It seems these days we just spend

To have the perfect season

We’ll go in debt to get the things

But is that the proper reason

We need to take a look at what

Christmas really is

Family, sharing and lots of love

Friends and the birth of Jesus

What happened to the simpler times

When gifts were made with love

When a doll or truck was more than enough

Or a scarf, or a puzzle or gloves

Candles placed upon the tree

Lit with a magical glow

Childrens’ eyes shone just as bright

In the Christmases long long ago

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Jesus, Santa and Children

There comes a time in all of our lives when we stop believing in Santa, the Tooth Fairy and monsters under the bed. It seems these days children find out sooner rather than later about Santa and a piece of their short childhood is stripped a way. But I wonder… that because they are smarter and learn faster or is it because we let the proverbial cat out of the bag. Is it because it is easier for us to have them know the truth? We want to be the first to let our kids know and then we won’t have to pretend anymore? We can pump ourselves up and say we were always honest with our kids….but at what cost?

Children want to believe. I remember when a friend of mine told me there was no Santa. I was devastated. Of course I was home in a flash and asked my parents. My wise and gracious mother informed me that there really wasn’t a man dressed in a red and white suit but that Santa was a spirit of Christmas. She explained that giving was part of Christmas and remembering Jesus. That Jesus was born and gave his life for us. We celebrate his life and his death and by him doing so, he gave us the promise of ever lasting life so that we could give.

Jesus, our Lord and Savior, asks that we help our fellow man and walk in trust and love. He also asks that we receive that love. Santa asks that we be good and gives us things. When the time came and we found out that there really isn’t a Santa and we realized that our parents were giving us all the gifts, did any of us stop to say thank you to them? How many of us took the time to actually say, “Thanks Mom and Dad. You made my Christmases so memorable. I don’t know how you did it.” I know that I forgot to do that little thing.

My mom told me that by believing in Santa, we became better people. We give to others so they can learn what receiving was about. We weren’t to give so we could get a present back, but to give unselfishly. Like Santa and Jesus. They never get back nor could we afford the cost if the truth be known. Anyway, I believed in Santa for a few more years and never regretted it. I let my children decide for themselves whether the jolly old man was real or not, although I admit, I did everything I could to perpetuate that custom and I never actually said there wasn’t a real Santa. And now I get to do the whole thing over with my grand babies. Children and Christmas….what a match !!!

We get so caught up in the season and it often seems that it gets longer. The stores start so early with decorations, TV advertisements abound, the requests for donations for food banks, homeless, and other less fortunate folk, the so called obligations for gatherings and parties, the rush, the roar and the constant “Jingle Bells” playing in our ears.

BREATH….Breath long and deep. Exhale. This isn’t a race. There are no winners. This is Christmas…the most wonderful holiday in the year. We have to slow down and remember it isn’t the cost of the gift…’s the thought. And if it isn’t….it should be. We need to teach that to our children too.

So do yourself a couple of favors this year. Enjoy Christmas again. Make it really the season of peace and good will. Make things simpler. Find the beauty and reason for the season. Keep the secret of Santa from the kids. Let them share in the wonderful gift of childhood for as long as they can and share the story of Christ. I mean isn’t that what Christmas is all about…...sharing? Oh..... and if you are lucky enough to still have your parents around…..remember to thank them too.