Monday, December 22, 2008

HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL!! I just wanted to say that to everyone who stops here. The Holidays are just as exciting this year as when I was 5. My dad woke us up to "When the red red robin comes bob bob bobbin along" being played on our 1st ever record player. I got a baby doll and a flannel nightgown. This was the first Christmas I recall. Our tree was silver (a fake one) with a turning light on the floor near it that changed the colors on it. Green, red, gold, and blue. My dad was a big fan of Christmas and getting up early. My Mom wanted nothing more than to sleep in late. The record player was red. Not plastic, a wooden case with red fabric on it. I remember him pointing out how cool the record player was. Monotone, no stereo available yet. We had a black and white giant (19") console tv. We watched it every night. There were no programs on during the day in the 50's. The soap powder we used had towels in it and was called DUZ. The washing machine had a wringer on the top and drained with a hose into the sink. The wet clothes had to be hung up to dry as dryers had not been invented yet. My Grandmother's stove was a wood-burning stove and she kept a match safe by it on the wall. I am blessed extremely to not have to hang out clothes to dry today. There were no microwave ovens and toast was made in the broiler pan of the oven, gas oven. No electric oven for us. Quilts did not come from the store, and your mother made most of your clothes. I wore a dress every day to school because it was mandatory for girls. On cold days we wore pants under the dresses. Christmas still means just as much to me today as when I was a little girl. The years have changed the record player to an I Pod, and the night gown into a fleece robe with Spongebob on it. I still feel the same excitement when I look into the faces of my grandchildren on present day, whatever day we celebrate it. And I have gained understanding of the day and now appreciate the greatest gift of all, The Savior of the world.
Today is the day before the day before the day before. We always do Christmas presents on the night of the 24th. This began when the kids were visiting their dad on Christmas morning, court-ordered, so several decades now. You would think my son could remember that for the last 25 or 30 years we have all gathered at my house for a feast & presents on the 24th. This gives my kids a guilt-free "out" on Christmas day with their kids. Mom is done, no gifts at the Mammallamma's, stay home, veg all day, lounge, eat until you nap. You see the wisdom in this tradition I hope.
We started making gingerbread houses and cookies since the grandkids got big enough to participate too. You would think 3 pounds of sprinkles on 2 graham cracker sized cookies would stand out in a person's mind. You would think the 3 trips to the car to haul the booty out, a turkey coma, and 2 of the weirdest looking gingerbread houses ever created would create a little nudge of a memory.
No, he has actually called me to explain that "her" family all want to do Christmas on Christmas Eve. Dakota will be dropped off with my wonder doggies tomorrow morning. Dalton can not come at all. He and Deborah will be by some time on the 24th evening.
Of course being the dutiful grandmother I am, I will do all the party stuff and feast on the 23rd instead. Truth be told I don't care what day we open the presents but I had arranged for Xandra and the boys to be there on the 24th. Now we are scrambling to un-schedule everything. Why can't my son get it?
Other than that we are having a great Holiday and hope you are also!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The countdown

On the 1st day of Christmas my crap luck gave to me
Brittany locked in the parking lot of UPS with Kale
On the 2nd day of Christmas my crap luck gave to me
Two bounced $800 checks and a trip to save Brittany
On the 3rd day of Christmas my crap luck gave to me
Steering column problems, Ripoff from the landlady, and Kale screaming in the car loudly.
On the 4th day of Christmas my crap luck gave to me
Four bank overdraft fees, Steering column problems, Landlord really sux, and the backseat ripped out to save Brittany.
On the 5th day of Christmas my crap luck gave to me
No food for you, $800 dollar debt, the transmission may be shot, Both checks cashed, and Kale smacked the door into another car hard enough to dent it.
On the 6th day of Christmas my crap luck gave to me
Another bouncing check, Still no food for you, $900 dollar debt, the whole frame quakes when we drive, Landlord won't give back the cash, and Kale peed in the front seat.
This was my week last week. I can not go on with the Christmas Cantata because I am weeping too badly
Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Shopping

Did you have a merry pre- Christmas sale? On Black Friday we traditionally decorate the trees and the house. So, every year I watch in shock and awe as people scramble to get the best deals ever on everything. You just have to be there at 4 am and then make it to 7 other stores by 6am for these once in a lifetime deals.
Why don't they do this on Christmas Eve when I am inevitably confronted with the random Christmas present problem?
You know how it goes; Some random person gives you a really thoughtful gift and you got them NADA. Now it is 4 am Christmas Eve and you have to be at work by 7am. You need a gift and you need it NOW. Of course there are no great sales on this day. The good stuff was snatched up just after Thanksgiving. What about us schmoes who forgot someone? What about all the men on the planet who wait till 30 minutes before Christmas to shop? This would be why Chia Pets were invented, so there would be something left to buy on Christmas Eve.
This year I resolved to do it correctly long before the day of dread. However, mistakes were made already. I forgot there is a guy at work who always buys all of us office people a gift. Every year. Last year he bought me Starbucks Cocoa. I love Starbucks Cocoa. He pays attention. Last year I bought him a sack full of fruit and bought the boss a bag of candy. Then I had them delivered by the bosses son. He got it backwards so I looked dumb. This year I did not buy him anything yet. He likes beer and skiing. I hate both, don't know anything about either, and can't ask or I'll look stupid. What to do?? I am afraid it is fruit again. He is always eating fruit, not much else. Plus he is the VP, so I feel sort of obligated to reciprocate the gift. What kind of human male doesn't eat candy?
Anyway back to the Christmas Sales. Who in their right mind waits for the month of December to buy stuff? I buy all year long for Christmas however there is one sale I always go to. The Schoolastic Warehouse sale. It is the Mecca. Like IKEA they basically have everything and all of it is 1/2 price or lower. I nearly cry every year when I go through the door. The book shelfs go up to the ceiling. It is like paper heaven. I got nearly every one of my 10 grandkids something this year. Even the older ones. (Can you say teen idol books?) Now for the problem, I let BD go alone. So now we have 1,000 books noone will ever read.
You just can NOT have every book in the place. Only take what you need.
And / Or can read in a life time.