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Sunday, December 22, 2013

My Holiday Treats


On a recent shopping trip to Trader Joe’s I discovered they had some lovely chocolate cookies on sale. I savored each one a day at a time until they were gone. Happy Christmas season for me!

It is officially winter of 2013. Christmas is so close we can already taste it I am betting. In our house is a real tree with no edible ornaments but I know those are popular.

One year I made cinnamon applesauce ornaments. That was fun. That year or in another one we strung popcorn and dried fruit. I grew up with none of these traditions.

My parents had a fake tree that lived in its box fifty or so weeks a year. There were boxes of ornaments and lights but never any personalized ones. I do not remember trimming the tree much or ever buying any.

Christmas was small with my tiny nueclear family so far from the grandparents and other kin in Oklahoma or on the east coast. We would eat a nice festive dinner and have some holiday dessert but that was about it.

The fun of the season came in every day simple things.
 
I spent one night this week helping a minor cousin bake cupcakes for her holiday party. 
She topped them with crushed candy canes so they were festive to look upon but of course I did not try them. I prefer my mint in candy isolated from other flavors and sensations.
Another favorite delight of ours for this season are giant candy sticks.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Shopping on Thanksgiving



Have no fear my dear reader. I plan to mostly shop small this season. I further did not shop during Turkey day.

My usual plan is to delay gratification and clean up on the day after Christmas.

That being said I am just not upset about stores opening on Thanksgiving. I think the world is changing and expanding. The nation is more diverse if that is even possible. There are families with their own traditions and others with odd work days and schedules.

Completely shutting down for one day just seems too ancient a practice.

I do feel sorry for those who are pulled away from family and friends to work. I know however that is the work life fate of some. There are businesses and industries that are always open on holidays. 

I have worked through holiday season, in the restaurant business. It is not retail I grant you but it is not being at home with family either. You depend on your team and need to love your work.

My wish right now might be that those who would like to work get the option and others who would like the time off would also be given the choice. Maybe that is coming as this new shopping day opportunity gets off the ground.

Not everyone has a lovely large family gathering to look forward to and or be pulled away from on Thanksgiving. I think the naysayers cannot see past their own bias to this reality. 

Maybe this year, retailers will make up for the six less shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, by opening early to dish out deals.

The holiday came so late in the month that the usual week of November that we get after is missing.

I am sorry to those who just see shopping on turkey day as one more way the season is being commercialized. I can understand that but the answer for that is to be part of the solution and not shop rather than complaining.

Thanksgiving is the biggest travel holiday in the year. Some people only have that day off and are back to the grind today. Somewhere between eating, napping and eating some more people have time to get out and power shop if they want or need to. 

I know some people hate to shop or like to go out leisurely and take all day. That is not what holiday deal specials are all about. 

Hopefully those who are opposed to this idea can embrace it as the years go by. I am already seeing and hearing about deals people on my social networks have scored.

My only constant caution for the holiday shopping season is

Shop Responsibly Folks

Other than that I don’t care when or how you do it. 
 
To those who camp out and those who are hovered over their internet connections determined to get great deals while avoiding the crowds I say

 “Rock on”!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Movember

We’ve come through another year and here we are again.

Have you noticed or participated? 

It is Mustache November or No Shave November in honor of mens' health. 

Beards Scruff Goatees and Mustaches galore are afoot.

I don’t have much more to say. I am not dating anyone and none of the men close to me seem to be participating that I know of.


None of my male friends has been ill thank goodness. 

Still it is entertaining to get a glimpse of what the world might look like if our modern sensibilities about male grooming had swung in another direction.

I would rather talk about Manscaping but we will leave that alone.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thankful 2013


If you are on Facebook maybe you have seen thankfulness trending all month. Every day people post something they are thankful for as the month wears on and our national day of celebration looms large.

My month started with us being evicted thus it was a little hard to manifest joy amidst boxes and trying to find new accommodations. I have it though. Perspective is a powerful thing.

A little treat I gave myself this month was a trip to the movies. Usually I reserve my film fun for the discount second run theater or the drive-ins two for one deal. 

This time I splurged and saw 
12 Years a Slave.  
OUCH Raw Intense Powerful

There are things this nation has been through since then, in my life time and in the founding of the nation like those first settlers who braved “the pond” for a chance at freedom in a new world.


  • Modern day freedom
  • Technology
  • Medical breakthroughs
  • American opulence
  • Wonderful Family
  • Amazing Friends
  • The kindness of strangers 
  • Health and Sanity 
  • Roller Derby
  • Emotional Intelligence 
  • Yummy Treats 
  •  Unexpected Gifts
  • Clothing Swaps
  • MeetUps
  • TweetUps
  • Random Connections
  • New Friends
  • Old Friends
  • Faith
  • Hope
  • Routine and Chance
  • Weather
  • Travel
  • Resilience and Tenacity
  • Beauty
  • Talent
  • Hobbies
  • Opportunity
  • Weight Loss Maintenance
  • Entertainment
  • Laughter
  • Joy
  • Future plans
  • Social media
  • My daughter
  • My cats
  • Fashion
  • Another year 38 and counting
My list might seem simple but the best things in life just are. 

In many ways these few dozen things are things I rest upon each and every day. Where might I be without them?

Those are my blessings my gifts from the world and my gifts back to the world in some ways.

I saw one of those posts trending in social media asking: What if you wake up tomorrow missing all the things you were not thankful for today.

It is amazing when you really stop to think about all you love and appreciate. It reminds me to smile. Sometimes when there is stress or difficulty and I feel like a smile is inappropriate I will follow that with a growl. 

This can often make me giggle and then the whole thing repeats. It keeps me light and jovial. I hope you have had the joy of reflecting as we approach holiday season 2013. 

Link me up or comment and let me know about it.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Causalities of Moving


Does anyone like to move? Wait, I know, there are people who get paid to box, pack and ship. 

I guess it could be just a job. I remember one year contemplating working for one of those delivery companies moving boxes.
Somehow that seemed a little more glamorous, maybe because I would be going to a work place and not into people’s homes.

The best scenario in moving includes having help, all the needed supplies at the onset and everything being ready.

None of this was in my corner. The night before the move I ran to three storage rental places. 

My plan was to rent a small moving van and have my daughter and her boyfriend around for move day help.

I wanted perhaps an 8x8 storage unit. I needed perhaps a 6x6. The cheapest deal was a 5x5.

The hope of this space was in the 10 foot high ceiling. Once I had to rent a 5x5x15 with more to store. I had expert packers. 

It was two guys who worked as a team and had experience. They utilized the height to the fullest. They were working with all the contents at the same time.

Sadly there were no small moving vans available for the day of my move. Storage units were as much as $75 a month. I decided to go with the smallest storage and forgo using a truck at all.

This time around I was working mostly alone and lucky if I could get a car load a day packed up and ready for storage. Clothes went early because that was easy but they needed to be on top of a solid high base.

I was stuck at about 8ft up and I could not get the vacuum in. After a couple of tries I gave up. This led to the joy of relocating everything to a larger unit. 

A picture or two fell and got broken. I had to cut corners with no excess packing supplies. I had some old boxes, tape and garbage bags.

I bought 6 plastic tote boxes at the Goodwill where I have been dropping off excess items each day. Two small, three medium and one extra-large.

It helped a little to have the extra structures around items that were out or in bags.
A long time ago I gave up on traditional laundry baskets. I still have one it is in the car wrangling things there. In my laundry area what I had been keeping in the last few years was a rolling laundry basket with a lid and a handle.

Because it was tall and water proof I had some cleaning supplies in it. I had it stacked close to the door of the smaller unit. First the side got cracked. Then it dropped and a wheel section broke off.

I hope I don’t have to lose my kitty. She really hates the car for some reason. This is bad since my plan involves her staying in there until I can get resettled somewhere.
With all that we were losing there was a great find last Tuesday.

Someone was getting rid of a large pet carrier. I have a small one but Ms. Fourteen Pound kitty would not even be able to turn around in that one. 

The new one is big enough for more leisure. I think my idea was for a pet bed and a litter pan. I have not tested it out yet.

Three years of stability down the drain. 

Thank you to my supporters. Two lovely donations came in to help. 

I appreciate those who are reading, sharing and contributing. 

You can add to our aid or check on our progress on the GoFundMe page.