Where did the merry go?

It’s over.

As quickly as we finished the last of Thanksgiving leftovers and flipped the calendar page to the month of December, the holidays breezed past like a runaway train.

For me, and maybe not for all, the saddest part of the Christmas season is taking down all the beautiful decorations, inside and outside our home.   Right now, a still graceful Concolor Fir stands in our living room, emptied of its many lights, ornaments, garland and vintage tree top star.  Still fresh and barely losing its needles, it looks now as it did the Sunday our family went to a tree farm, spending hours walking through acres of trees on our very own “Griswold Family Christmas Tree” expedition.  Three vehicles full of people and Christmas sweater-wearing dogs on a cold rainy day spent trudging up and down muddy hills with cups of hot apple cider and saws in hand.  Great fun and a wonderful memory for our grandchildren.

Christmas Tree Farm-2018

And so the holiday madness began.  Shopping, wrapping, cooking, combined with rushing through each day like a madwoman.  Christmas Eve, after our traditional Feast of the Seven Fishes dinner, I finally found myself sitting and enjoying our festive surroundings.  And reality slowly crept in.  Within hours, everything merry would once again come to an end.  Soon, paper, ribbons and gift tags would be strewn everywhere and the last of Christmas music would slowly disappear from the airwaves. 

Christmas Eve-2018

Today, as I wrapped fragile ornaments and packed away hundreds of lights, I wondered if it was just my getting older, with more focus on how quickly time keeps passing, or have the holidays become so consuming in our lives that we don’t make the time to simply stop…and enjoy the merry…while we can.



workshop-button-1From Mama Kat’s Workshop…Write a blog post inspired by the word: merry


Just five things…


5 things

My choice of Writing Prompts from Mama Kat’s Workshop this week.  Five Things. List 5 things we don’t know about you, 5 things you’re knowledgeable about, 5 things you know nothing about, and 5 things you believe.


What you don’t know about me (and probably don’t honestly give a hoot about!)

  1.  I attended General Motors Training School years ago.  Received certification in Engine Rebuilding, Carburetion, Ignition Systems and Air Conditioning.  (Can I work on any present-day automobile with said credentials?  Sadly, no.)
  2. I did a fair amount of drag racing back in the day.  (Loved it and wish I had the opportunity to do it again.)
  3. Thanks to a huge collection of cookbooks I’ve amassed over the years, I am a self-taught cook.  Not a chef, mind you, but I can hold my own in the culinary field. (From Julia Child’s Kitchen was my first)
  4. Type A Personality?  Yup, that would be me.  (I aggravate myself on a daily basis)
  5. First impressions mean very little to me.  I have a tendency to see beyond who and what I come face-to-face with.  (Judgmental, moi?  Not at all, I gravitate towards honest people and have little time for anyone overly full of themselves.)

5 things I’m knowledgeable about (you won’t give a hoot about this either, trust me!)

  1. Writing.  (Simple enough.  I am here, on my own website and still attempting to finish my first book.  I think that qualifies me.)
  2. Scleroderma.  Nothing humorous here.  Both my father and mother-in-law suffered with and passed-away from complications of this  chronic connective tissue disease which is generally classified as one of the autoimmune rheumatic diseases.  Research indicates that there is a susceptibility gene, which raises the likelihood of getting scleroderma, but by itself does not cause the disease. (Research being what it is, this is a disease not listed with high priority on the list of any big fund-raising conglomerate.  It affects so many individuals and is often mis-diagnosed for Lupus or Fibromyalgia.)
  3. Intuitive feelings.  (This probably goes along with the whole “first impressions” deal but I firmly believe in going with any thought that pushes me toward…or away…from either a person or situation.)
  4. Tom Petty.  His words, his music. 
  5. Finding everything my husband misplaces.  E v e r y single day.  (Trust me, when he doesn’t misplace something, I worry)

5 things I know nothing about (only 5? )

  1. Nuclear Physics
  2. The Trans-Alaska Pipeline System
  3. Where Jimmy Hoffa is. (Maybe someone should check #2)
  4. Hunting
  5. Pokemon

5 things I believe (As is often said, one has to believe in something.)

  1. God.  I was educated in a parochial school system and live with the fear instilled in me about not believing.  So I do.
  2. Human Nature.  People will behave at their worst sometimes more often than their best.  This is pretty evident on a daily basis where politics are concerned.  None of us will change the world based on our opinions but to turn on each other over the right to express same is asinine.  Underneath it all, I need to feel that most of us are decent and caring.  (Regardless of any chosen political affiliation.)
  3. The world is round.  Definitely believe that. (Can you believe there is a “Flat Earth Community” who believe that that the Earth is not a globe, as most of us think, but some kind of plane, with edges?  Reminds me of lyrics from Hal Ketchum’s “Small Town Saturday Night”.)
  4. Miracles.  They do happen.  In small ways that we don’t even realize and in much larger fashion.  Give them a chance.
  5. Santa Claus.  Of course I believe, don’t you?  (I’m no dummy, less than one month before Christmas.  Call it my need to hold onto the magic of the season!)


So, there you have it.  Gave this prompt my best shot given that writing about oneself can be taken in various ways.   I mean, who really cares?  Mostly, it’s more information that anyone needs but, on the day after Thanksgiving where most of us are in clean-up and recovery mode, hey, it’s light reading and probably far more interesting than all the malarkey shared by the hapless mainstream media.


Pass the gravy…



A few simple words.  Reminders of how to be better human beings. 

At least one might think so, but not in present times where heated opinions wrap themselves in animosity and people elect to hide behind their walls of indifference. 

Sad, really.

On this day where the majority of the world gathers to give thanks, how wonderful it would be if everyone could just drop their collective, combative, rhetorical outbursts and give pause to all things positive in life. 

Just one day.  A few hours even.  Look around and rejoice in what life has put on your table.  Focus less on what’s missing and spend time just giving thanks for family, friends and the gift of one more sunrise.

Just one day.  Set aside the endless debates orchestrated by social media connections.  Take a good look around at how fleeting this life is and how a brief moment of time can impact all that surrounds us.

Just one day.  Today is a good place to start.  For the love of God, leave all the damn negative discussions at the door and… pass the gravy.

Be thankful.