Thursday, December 26, 2013

Boxing Day is an Appropriate Name.

Photo by:
If you're reading this post, you're mostly likely doing the same thing I am. I don't know about you, but I'd rather sit in my brand new pajamas in front of the computer or TV hanging out than brave sweltering crowds inside the malls. It's a great excuse to be lazy and hang out with company you rarely see.

I just don't see the sense in battling for more 'stuff', you know? I got plenty of cool things for Christmas. I think you understand, because you're here, reading this, not there.

This isn't exact history...I learned it from my mother. When I asked my mother why they called the day after Christmas 'Boxing Day' she told me this:

Boxing Day refers to the unofficial ritual we all have of putting away decorations, getting rid of cardboard, wrapping paper and bows, taking out the garbage...Plus boxing up and returning OR re-gifting the things you didn't want.

I told her I thought it was rude to return or re-gift something someone gave you. (I was five.) But I've done it too, damn it :(

Still, I can wait until the next day, or the day after that to scrounge through leftover bows and ribbons to find a few bargains--That's the best time to find discount wrapping paper. (And one year, an artificial Christmas tree with lights for $50!)

But honestly? When I think about 'Boxing day' now that I'm older, I picture something like  this...

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Thursday, December 19, 2013

Merry Christmas...or whatever. :)

Illustration by: suphakit73@FreeDigitalPhotos. net
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Holidays, Felice Navidad or however you prefer to express your year end celebrations. I don't care how you say it, but I wish you all warm hugs, happiness and the company of those you love this season.

Our Christmas will be quiet, but extended. Christmas Eve and Christmas day will mean only myself, my husband, my sister and the cats. And that's just fine.

But this Saturday, we cross the street to our friends, the Raju's. They do sweet things for us all the using their Bobcat to plow our driveway. And Tara makes the very BEST rice pudding...just for me. They have nooooo idea how much we appreciate them. And they have no idea that we bought small thank you gifts...NOT Christmas presents, right?

Uncle Arnie will show up for a Christmas drink...We don't know when, but it won't be on Tuesday or Wednesday because as much as he loves us, he hates Christmas fanfare more.

Our best friend Darci is going home for the first time in years, so our dinner and gift exchange will have to wait.

We're expecting friends travelling from British Columbia and The North West Territories, but again, we don't know when. It's a LONG drive for Colleen from the island and a LONG flight from up north for Doug.

This just in...Roxy is coming over Christmas Eve! Yaaaay!

Christmases around here have long become less about the actual day with the gifts and food and more about the time spent with those we care about.

I'm pretty excited. And I hope you are too. I'm hoping your holidays are filled with happiness and love.


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Insomniac and the City

I'm late again. Whoops. And I don't have a very good excuse. Just like I didn't have a blog prepared. You'd think with all the hours I spent tossing and turning and grumbling in the dark this week I would have had time to come up with something. So here it is.

Insomnia sucks.
How did get in my room to draw Freya and me?

No shit, right? True, it's common for writers to have sleep issues. Our characters won't stop shouting to be written and the plot bunnies run races in our heads. But this is ridiculous! I have slowly turned vampire--Apparently I only sleep when the sun comes up.

This is the reason I need to live in the city, folks. It revolves around my nocturnal needs. Run out of smokes, need a snack, something to read? 7-11 is two blocks away through a nice quiet neighborhood free of wolves and bears. Want fast food? MacDonald's and Wendy's can oblige you. Let's not forget those hearty Denny's breakfasts. For live entertainment, show up just after the bars close. Oh yeah...there's bars to hang out in. And coffee shops. (Tim Horton's anyone?) You can catch up on your laundry if you've got quarters.
I should go get one right now.

And only a few years ago, someone invented a reason to never need to go out in daylight. Twenty-four hour Walmarts! One huge store full of all the things and it's open 24-7. Bliss. Yes, I know Walmart sucks. But this is the city where competition between stores thrives. How long until we have 24 hour Targets and Costcos?

Heeeeey! You know what we need now? All-night libraries and bookstores! What do you think? Is that a good idea? Or is that just 3 hours of sleep talking?

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas 'Gifts'...

You know when you're a kid? And a cool Christmas seems to hinge on that one great gift that you've always wanted?

I begged, I PLEADED  for three years. There was nothing I wanted more than a Fisher-Price Castle. I whined and yowled. I was sick of getting homemade mittens and wind-up bath toys from 'Robinson's' for Christmas. The good stuff came from a favorite uncle, who often bought us dolls and craft kits. Knowing what I know now, I'm sure my parents couldn't afford it. Looking back, I still cringe and feel like a spoiled brat for being ungrateful for mitten and scarf sets.

When I finally got the much desired castle for Christmas, I promised myself I would never EVER let it go. Here it is...And it isn't leaving my home until someone peels it from my cold, dead digits. I got it when I was 8 years old...I'm almost 42 years old now.
I still have the people and furniture tucked away in a box

I had intended to write this blog about toys, and all the joy they bring. But sometimes 'joyful' isn't the word some people use to describe the holidays. I know people who aren't going to get much of anything this Christmas. Some are just trying to survive. No turkey, no chocolate, no toys. Sometimes no family.

Remember those less fortunate this season. There's Santa's Anonymous, Food Banks, and the Christmas Bureau. I've just learned about 'Tender Hearts' in Stony Plain, Alberta. Perhaps there are other legitimate organizations in your local area.  Please give if you are able. No one should suffer a crappy Christmas. No child should endure empty stomachs. Their parents should not feel shame. No one should be all alone.

Besides, it feels good to do it. Who knows? Maybe you will be able to help provide a decent dinner for a family. Maybe you'll reaffirm to a child that they were good and that Santa found them after all. Perhaps you'll bring happiness where there wasn't any. Believe me, it's the best Christmas rush you'll get this year.