Monday, December 31, 2007

Another Year In the Books

A Brief year in review:

Figured it would be fitting to look back at 2007 on this Eve of 2008...

Came down with pneumonia in Jan. and spent a few days in hospital. Great way to start out the year.

Finished around 10 poodles for clients..maybe a few more. I'd have to really sit down to count them up.

Drove approx. 5ooo miles. Flew to Maryland and back.

Made more money than previous years.

Still no new show vehicle.

Able to afford staying in motels, even nicer ones than the ratty ones.

Met some very cool people along the way.

All in all...a good year. I look forward to being a bit more organized in 2008, with better tools for making life easier. (like my new Garmin Nuvi 350) I hope to find my motor home this year.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Lee's Christmas Party

Last night was Lee's big Christmas Party! The food was Excellent, as always. Tenderloin, twice-baked potatos, cucumber sandwiches, cheese tray, condiment tray, rolls, bernaise sauce, chocolate cream pies, brownies, various red wines, mead, and a champagne punch.

I think everyone had a great time..and it finally was over about 2 a.m.! Now, I start the clean-up! lol

Friday, December 21, 2007

Christmas Past Stories

We start shopping for Christmas way before we used fact, I remember hearing from Mamoo about the Christmas Eve's spent shopping for the family gifts. They put their tree up on Christmas Eve, also. The neighborhood would get together and walk around caroling after trees were decorated, and then they went shopping downtown! Quite a difference from today's customs.

And then there was my "Chicken Pox Christmas"...I was about 10 yrs. old, and fell to the fever a week before Dec. 25. Not a stellar holiday in my memory. I spent Christmas Day covered in pink calamine lotion.

One of my own personal fav memories was a collection of years when the girls and I always went to Christmas Mass at the local Episcopal church at midnight...on the way back I'd point out Rudolph's red nose in the sky, telling them we'd better hurry and get home so they could get to bed for Santa to come! lol The "red nose" was a light at the top of a radio/tv tower off in the distance. Served it's purpose all year long keeping low-lying planes from hitting it, and then the all-important 'job" of being Rudolph on Christmas Eve...

EVERY Christmas, I'd ask Santa for a horse! EVERY year I didn't get one!!! By the time I was 8 or 9 yrs. old, I'd decided Santa just wasn't listening! One year, he brought a ping pong table..and I was not impressed at all. Staring at it on Christmas morning, thinking it should have been a horse, I overheard my Uncle Gordon telling my Dad that the table sure was hard to get through the door the night before....well, I knew then and there WHY I never got a horse for Christmas!!!! I also quit asking in following years, knowing my parents were dead set against my having a horse...I remember the year that Martha, a friend of mine, was given a Shetland pony for Christmas. A few days after Christmas I visited her to see her new pony and HATED her! Actually, it was a mean devil, and they got rid of it a few months later.

The BEST Christmas present I ever received was from my grandmother (mamoo)...a beautiful diamond and sapphire ring. I wore it until it was lost sometime in my 30's...loved that ring.

From about age 5 until I was around 9, I was the an "angel" in the First Methodist Church's annual Christmas pageant, produced and directed by my grandmother (mamoo, again)...I really wanted to be the head angel, but that honor went to my Aunt Beverly. It was fun from year to year anyway, and one year I was dressed in this beautiful red dress with a tulle skirt and red velvet sash, with a red velvet bodice dotted with little rhinestones..very sparkly...and sang "Deck The Halls" as a solo. I was about 8 yrs. I still have photos of some of those productions.

Our annual Christmas Eve dinner and tree at Mamoo's every year was a highlight of the season..a formal sit-down dinner at her huge dining table, with great turkey and dressing, cooked by the old Southern black, Gussie. Oh, how she could cook! The entire family would dress up for the occasion, and arrive at her house around 5:30 p.m. Dinner would be served by 6....and her living room was closed off until after dinner, because she kept the tree and the tons of presents under it under wraps. It was SO hard to stay out of that room until after dinner! Then, after dessert, she would announce, "now, let's all go into the living room for carols and the tree"! Finally, we could go in there, with the fireplace burning, and somehow this huge room was magical on that night. We have to suffer through endless carols, while she played the grand piano for us, and a few years I was MADE to sing Silent Night from the balcony overlooking the living room. I hated doing that. At last, she'd say, "son, will you be our Santa?"...and the next hour was spent ripping through wrapping and boxes. At the end, we'd all have out little pile of gifts from her to carry out to our cars to get home "before the real Santa came". It was sad when she stopped her annual dinner, as she was just too old to do it anymore. A great tradition was ended.

I have wonderful memories of Christmas past....when I was a girl....

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Kansas Snow Storm

A HUGE snow storm walloped out area on Friday!!! I'd estimate we got around 10" at my house with Much deeper drifts (in the 2-3 foot range). Of course I don't have any real snowboots, so walking in the stuff is an exercise in futility. I went out yesterday to sweep the snow off of my van and sunk way down into a drift getting to it! BRRRR Snow all up my pant legs and into my shoes. It will take most of the week to melt off. Yuck.

When I was a girl, I used to beg the weatherman for snow down in Texas where I lived, especially around Christmas. A *white* Christmas was my hope every year. (never happened) Now, I wish for the opposite..NO snow! lol

If I had a 4-wheel drive vehicle, I might not mind it as much. But, I don't, and get stuck up here on my hill every time it snows. If I had one of those nifty snowblowers, I wouldn't mind it as much.

This is the ONLY time of year I'd rather be back in Texas.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Football Tragedy

I'm a huge football fan. I watch as many games as I have time for, both college and pro games. You'd have to be a slug living under a rock not to be aware of the death of the Redskins Sean Taylor last week, after a home invasion during the night at his home in Miami. Four young men have been arrested and charged with his murder. Two of the young men knew Sean and figured his house would be an easy target, since he'd be up in Maryland playing a game that day. They figured wrong, since he was home with an injury. I don't now why one of them kicked in his bedroom door and fired two shots into the room before fleeing, but one of the shots hit Sean in the upper leg, hitting his femoral artery. He lost massive amounts of blood and died the next day after 7 hours of surgery to try and save his life. His girlfriend and 18 mos. old daughter were also in the bedroom, sleeping when all this occured, and were unhurt.

Yesterday, the Redskins played at their home field and the entire day was an emotional drain on everyone involved, with moving tributes to Sean throughout the day. Afterwards, the entire Redskin organization flew to Miami for his funeral to be held tomorrow. 24

Sean Taylor was a 24 yr. old football player who had his entire life ahead of him. He never guessed that some of the people he knew would target his home for a robbery and end up killing him. It is a a sad fact of life that sometimes one has to be careful of those around us, as it is those very people that can make us a target. I'm sure every sports figure is being extra cautious now as a result of Sean's death.

It makes me sad. When my own home was broken into a few years ago, it was two of my young neighbors that did it.