Archive for2006-11 through 12 – Winter Season

New Years Day – But scroll to the bottom to START the 2006 saga

We’ve finished out 2006. Our next “adventures” will be some local music performances, and then, at the end of January, we’ll be heading back for Spring 2007 in Florida.
I’ll try to keep my blog advised of things of interest. Not that our life is so astounding, but keeping this “diary” is therapeutic. I enjoy putting down my thoughts, and it’s also a way I can stay in touch with family and friends. They can always check in here to see what we’re up to.

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Christmas Day

I generally feel a let-down right after Christmas. When the excitement fades and the presents are all unwrapped, I usually experience a case of the blues. It seems so long until next year, and my expectations for the holiday always fall a little short.

This year, John and I promised each other that we’d skip individual gifts and instead replace three of our kitchen appliances. We picked them up Monday and they were fully installed by Christmas Eve Day. Of course that meant that there’d be no Christmas surprises. Add to that a weather forecast for gray weather and temperatures in the mid-40’s, I was sure that my normal Christmas blues would be even worse this year. But it wasn’t that way at all. We had a wonderful day. John surprised me with a small gift and I got him something he didn’t anticipate. It was a great day! Our grand mid-day dinner was flawless (the first meal prepared on our new range).

We watched a fun movie on TV and just relaxed.

January will be busy as we prepare for our huge Snowfest concerts (January 27 and 28) in Frankenmuth, and then on the 30th we’re taking off for Florida.

I need to get down there soon. Mom’s mental state is worse than when we left her in October. Today she had forgotten how to use the phone so I couldn’t even wish her a happy holiday. But when we get down there, I’ll work with her, and see if I can’t bring back some of her responses. I miss my mom.

But except for the situation with Mom, the holiday was nearly perfect.

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These are a few of my favorite things

Do you ever think about miracles? I mean those kinds of situations that can’t be explained that change your life?

Here are two miracles that I’ve experienced:

Brain Tumor Survival: In 1981 I discovered I had a brain tumor. It was a rough time for me: divorced, two children, new job, just met a nice man. But the tumor surgery was extremely successful. It was performed in Los Angeles, CA, since no doctor around here would perform the procedure. I was offered spiritual support by Sister Mary, my new boss. Of the eight patients who had the same procedure, there were only two of us who came out ok. Sister Mary’s mass the night before my surgery had to have helped.

Finding my Brother: I was unaware of my brother Jim until March 20, 2005. It only took me until March 29th to find him and what a great guy with a wonderful family he is. You can read the whole story by clicking here: family matters.

Those just two I’ve experienced. True miracles. Life is filled with wonderful experiences. I hope you’ve had your share.

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Christmas is coming!

I just realized how long it’s been since I’ve posted to my blog. I promise that you’ll hear lots more from me in February and March (when we’re heading to and we’ll be in Florida) but until then, you’ll have to be content with occasional posts that don’t say much.

We’ve been really busy playing our line-up of Christmas gigs. The first one was November 4th. We have been “at it” a couple times a week since then and still have six more Christmas performances before the 25th.

When I say stuff like that, I don’t want anyone to ever think that I am complaining. Heck, we choose to be busy. We could say “no.” We could find other stuff to do. The only negative that I feel about “life” in general is that it’s not long enough. I want to live forever!!

Today we found out our joint Christmas gifts have arrived! We ordered three major lovely G.E. stainless kitchen appliances (a luxury range, glamorous refrigerator, and totally desirable dishwasher) and they’re in!! Great! but now we need to get them home and we only have five days before we start paying a penalty. Since we’re hosting a Subterranean Strings Hammered Dulcimer Club Christmas get-together and dinner Friday evening, we don’t really have time to do it until Monday. But Monday we’ll do it and I am personally glad that they’ll be here before Christmas. It’ll seem more like we’ve actually gotten each other something!!

I know I’m violating my feminine qualities by being content to get a range, refrigerator and dishwasher as Christmas gifts, but our current ones (from 1986) have had it and I’m really anxious to up-grade. I can’t think of anything I’d rather have. (Of course Santa better remember to put “something” personal under the tree — but I don’t take chances, and I buy lots of stuff throughout the year, so I am not being neglected. Believe me!!)

During this season, I tend to review the whole year.

One of the most notable events of 2006 was getting to know my new brother. (Please read the family story which you can get to from the link in right most column, under the heading “Links”, next to the most recent blog entry.) It has been wonderful to discover a whole new family I didn’t know existed.

But there have been disappointments too. The festivals were tarnished this year with things that were sad (illnesses, deaths, tragedies). It was hard to be up-beat. It’s surprising that we enjoyed them at all, considering all the difficulties we dealt with.

Our six-week trip in April and May across the country was a trip of a lifetime. Both John and I think about it often and wish it had lasted longer. I’m sure we’ll do another trip maybe in 2008. The people we met were super. We were astounded by this grand country. (Funny but, although we had seen all the photos, we weren’t prepared for the scope of our land.)

I’ll write more before the end of 2006. Enjoy the holidays.

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Quiet Month

It’s Thanksgiving Day. We’ve been home for nearly a month.

The two of us have enjoyed a very nice holiday. Dinner was fantastic with a 12-pound turkey, dressing,mashed potatoes & gravy, sweet potatoes with caramelized apples, cranberry salad (my specialty with strawberries, pineapple and pecans), scalloped corn, hot rolls, relishes, two different pies (apple & pumpkin praline) and wine.

This month, since returning home, we’ve been busy. We’re hosting our music club here at our house for a holiday party. In January we’ll have about a dozen house-guests for the huge Snowfest weekend. In preparation for those two events, I’ve been tackling those jobs I normally try to ignore: Window washing, china cabinet clean-out, closet rearrangement. There’s still a lot to accomplish before we open our doors to guests, but I feel like I’ve made a dent in the work that I need to accomplish. It’s tough when you’re gone as much as we’ve been gone this year.

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