Old Fashioned Santas
Don and I escaped with a one of our favorite classics... with the help of an old fashioned DVD.
I always prefer the classic Christmas movies. No Hallmark Christmas movies for me. This is my favorite Santa of all. He was the Macy's Santa in Miracle on 34th Street. Macy's in NYC, will have no Santa in their store this year. First time in nearly 160 years.
Santa Behind Plexiglass
Some malls will have Santas. Kids are flexible. They can enjoy fist bumping Santa through plexiglass. They haven't had decades and decades of Santa memories to make this idea nauseating.
But, if I had young kids right now I would skip Santa this year. There are a million ways to celebrate without a Santa visit. This seems creepy to me.
NYC Macy's Santa in 1963
This is my only Santa memory at all. I look like I'm about to bust out laughing.
Mom took us to see Santa at Macy's in 1963. Dad was working late and we were killing time, before picking him up. After seeing Santa, we stepped outside and it had gotten dark. It was snowing. Best memory ever.
I hope next year kids can visit Santa, without masks and plexiglass.
Yesterday I talked football and don't even like football. Today, I'm mentioning football again!
I learned that yesterday, history was made. Sarah Fuller became the first woman to play for a Power 5 football team, with her halftime kickoff.
Well, I don't actually even know what Power 5 is. But I do know, it's pretty great that this Vanderbilt soccer goalkeeper, got a chance to use her skills, on the football field!
As awful as this pandemic has been, there have been some good moments. This opportunity for Sarah might not have happened, if so many of Vanderbilt's football players hadn't tested positive for Covid.
Yay for Pandemic Surprises!
Not a Big Fan
I really don't love football, but I know it's bringing a lot of joy and distraction to many. When I spotted Michigan on TV today, I called my dad. He's a U of M fan and this would be a good distraction for him. "Their masks are very festive!" I told him.
U of M football ended up being the topic of our phone converstaion. Dad and I reminisced about going to games in Ann Arbor, when Dad taught there in the 1970's. I was 16 and we hadn't lived in Ann Arbor long, when Dad gave me his faculty tickets one day. He told me to invite a friend. I didn't really have good friends yet, but I invited a girl from my drama class. At the stadium, we were on the way to our seats, when I spotted my parents heading towards their fancy box seats. They had gotten better tickets, because they were entertaining Arthur Miller, who had come to UM to work on a play with Dad. My new friend didn't seem that excited when I pointed over to my parents and said I would introduce her to them. We made our way over and I watched the face of my new friend when I introduced her to Mr. Miller. If I would have invited a friend from another class, it might have been less fun. But this friend recognized the playwright and her jaw dropped when she shook his hand. Dad didn't recall that story, so it was extra fun to tell.
I guess football gave me a fun distraction today, after all.
I hate the day after a holiday when the mood feels blah. But, I woke feeling so rested. This is the first time I've slept 8 hours, in 8 months at least. It was dark and balmy at 7:30 when I headed off to run.
I was gone 5 minutes when a huge clap of thunder made me jump and pause. Then another! I turned and ran back. I haven't been hunkering down, preventing covid for 8 months, just to be struck dead by lightening!
Stormy Day Thinking
I actually loved our rainy day today. The house felt cozy. It felt like Thanksgiving is supposed to feel. I was happy to think back on our day yesterday.
Zooming with the kids and other family, made the holiday feel extra special. And no. Don and I were not drunk on champagne.
8 Months of Zoom
After yesterday's Zoom, I thought back to all the virtual gatherings we've had with the kids, in past months. We've had hat-wearing Zooms and Western-themed Zooms.
We've done Tiki Zooms and Election Zooms. We've toasted to birthdays and pregnany. We've Played ukuleles on Zoom and we've played Lotteria, for Cinco de Mayo.
A week ago, I had a last minute idea for our Turkey Day Zoom. Lord knows we don't need gimmicks to have fun, but I can't help myself.
I dug in the closet for paper and found some old veggie stickers and some cloth leaves. I jotted down trivia questions and added in more thoughtful questions... to ponder. I tossed them in envelopes with turkey napkins and they somehow made it to CA and OR on time for Thanksgiving.
I look super bossy in this photo, like I'm telling everybody we need to play "the game" now! But the gang went along. We had trivia questions about the year FDR decided to have Thanksgiving a year earlier...
... and questions about the first Macy's parade. Fun.
A few questions allowed us to take turns answering. It was nice to get off on some fun tangents, like what we could all do together in the future.
I love this thoughtful bunch. It was fun to hear some honest answers and thoughts... but somehow one tangent got us back to politics. We are all on the same political page, but suddenly the conversation felt heavy. Trump's name was in invading our Thanksgiving discussion. Luckily Scott grabbed a card and said he wanted to get the conversation back to more pleasant subjects.
We ended with a little sharing about being grateful, that we've all stayed well during this pandemic. Love this family. Love knowing we'll all be together at a future Thanksgiving!
No Fire Today
I actually love sunshine, I just didn't want to state the obvious. (I don't like pandemic Thanksgivings)
But, I also prefer cool and cloudy Thanksgivings. It was in the fifties when I stepped out at 7, but the temps rose to 80 and sun poured in the windows all day. No Thanksgiving fire, this year.
Most people are having altered Thanksgivings this year. Don and I have had a few quiet ones, in our 41 years. I wasn't too worried.
There was actually something extra peaceful about the holiday. We knew our kids and the rest of our family, were also celebrating safely in their homes. The day felt simple and uncomplicated.
At 9 the sun was heating up the family room. Don put on a ball cap so he could see the parade on TV. Watching the parade made the day feel normal... sort of. It was odd to see the Rockettees wearing masks. It was strange to see no crowds. The parade was virtual, with much pre-recorded.
The best part of the parade was knowing others were watching too. I talked to my Dad at 9:00 and reminded him to turn it on. His assisted living facility is on lockdown again. His T-Day meal will be brought to his room. He needs a parade, today.
We texted with the kids 2 hours later, when they watched on the west coast. Lots of commenting on the musical acts. "Did you see Dolly Parton?" "Did you hear she donated money to one of the vaccines?"
We kept it simple, but we also had nothing but time. I could have made a dozen pies.
But, I made one pumpkin pie and one tiny apple pie. Two plates, two forks. Everything felt easy.
Don smoked a turkey breast. Not only was it incredibly good, but it kept the oven free.
In the late afternoon, we did some zooming with family.
We didn't quite get all our family together, but we represented households in CA, OR, TX, NY, CO and ID! This was my favorite part of the day. A lot of laughing and some good political discussion. But we also shared some sincere thanks. These past months have made us all feel grateful for good health and each other.
Feast in the Dining Room
Our meal wasn't over the top, but it included our favorites. We ate in the dining room. We haven't eaten in this room since the pandemic began.
We sat at the same round table that I sat at as a kid, for every holiday meal. For pretty much every dinner, actually. My memories of this table involve 6 different homes in 6 different states. Oh how I wish I knew the stories from when this table belonged to my mother's grandparents!
Don and I used a tripod and took a video. We toasted and then did something that made us laugh.
We sang Johnny Appleseed, the song that we sang with our kids, before many holiday feasts. I'm not sure when the tradition started, but it was always done with great gusto. We would belt out the old prayer song, with no plans about who would carry the melody and who would do harmony. Sometimes our harmonies clashed and left us laughing. Sometimes the harmony magically worked out and we'd hold the last notes till we were out of breath.
Don and I sounded pretty pitiful with just 2 voices. In fact we both ended up on the same note, so no harmony. But we laughed and smiled and then dug into our meal.
Happy Thanksgiving 2020!
The other day I grabbed this free paper from our yard and headed for the recycling bin. But then I took a look at the photo.
What was this about a virtual Thanksgiving service? What is the Fort Bend Interfaith Community? Usually I'd be too busy to ponder this. I've got time this year.
The Day Before Thanksgiving
I've been curious about FBIC. We live in a county that is one of the most diverse in the country. I wanted to see how all these religious groups unite.
I found the service on YouTube. I started it up on the TV, and headed for the kitchen, so I could do some multi-tasking.
Wow! So many faiths coming together for this program. "Signs of Hope". If ever we needed some hope, it's now.
Watching and Working
I was going to make a pie, while I watched and listened. But some old family silver caught my eye. What a silly chore, especially since we won't exactly be using silver tomorrow. But I used to love helping my mom polish silver before Thanksgiving.
There was something calming, about listening while I rubbed and buffed away at those dingy antiques.
It was actually pretty wonderful listening to the voices and the music of so many different spiritual leaders from our area.
These are just a few of the faces I saw on the program. All so different in dress and approach and sound. But all had the same messages of faith and hope. It was a nice treat on the day before Thanksgiving.
I'll make pie tomorrow.
We've had a lot more time to read magazines in the last 8 months. But sometimes, they don't offer much escape from the worries of 2020
"Vaccines are coming. So are the hardest months"
And so are the holidays! CDC is asking families to stay home for the holidays. However as of this morning, 4 million travelers have been screened by TSA, since Friday. Wow!
I'm glad I'm not in an airport right now.
This split screen image is trying to make a dramatic point. Daily, we see images of Trump playing golf! If ever there was a time that our president should not be on the golf course, it is now!
Trump golfs while covid number rise and millions deal with food concerns.
Food insecurity has more than doubled in Texas, since March.
This photo by William Luther was taken on my birthday. On April 9, 10,000 people showed up to claim boxes of food in San Antonio. Our president doesn't seem concerned about this, or about covid right now. Am I missing something?
If ever we needed a peaceful transition of power, it is now. Trump's refusal to concede has been slowing down efforts to fight the pandemic. The president has been keeping himself happily distracted with his golf. Well, maybe not happily.
However, late today there was breaking news! Trump has not conceded, but he is allowing GSA to move forward.
Biden Transition Approved!
Today we had coffee and watched CBS Sunday Morning. It's the Sunday morning ritual during pandemic. The news is honest, but uplifting...usually.
This reminder was not good. So many well known favorites have closed down. But it's the Mom & Pop places that I really worry over.
Pekin Noodle Parlor is Open!
Don and I have spent the last 10 years seeking out the curious, family owned cafes and diners that are less well known. We about fell off the couch when one of our all time favorites was featured!
What a relief to know that this family-owned gem in Butte, Montana is still open!
Don and I spotted the neon sign about 5 years ago. We climbed the stairs and ended up with one of the most memorable dining adventures ever!
The funny little dining rooms are perfect for isolated dining now. They've removed the curtains and the staff wears masks. Oh, I hope to return someday and eat some of their chop suey, again!
It will be a while before Don and I are comfortable dining in a restaurant. But for now, we'll keep supporting with carryout orders.
Today for lunch, we picked up sushi from Mori Ichi and dined on our patio. When I called in to place the order, I recognized Coco's voice. She laughed to hear mine. "All salmon right? I recognize your voice!"
I miss dining in, but it was fun to greet the staff, when I picked up!
I used to hate it when people put up Christmas decorations, before Thanksgiving.
No complaints, this year. Thanksgiving is next week and most of the neighborhood entrances are already decorated.
This morning when I spotted the colorful angels, I had to run home and get my cell phone and snap some pics.
I sent photos to my friend and once neighbor. Lorrie made these angels about 20 years ago. Her decorations bring back memories from when all our kids were young.
Years of Caroling
For 10 years, families from our neighborhood gathered for caroling. We always met up by the angels. We ended at our house, with hot chocolate and cookies... even if weather was warm enough for shorts.
Holidays will be different this year. No gathering for caroling. But I think there will be an extra amount of reminiscing, going on. I also predict more house decorating. At least I hope so.
I started this complaining list/blog, in May 2016. I posted 200 gripes about my breast CANCER and then I was done.
On March 13, 2020, I started venting all over again, when another disease (starting with a C) interfered with my life. This time it was the invasion of COVID and it affected every person. I ranted for a year, until I got my COVID vaccine in March 2021.
CORONARY Artery Disease was the reason I restarted this blog on September 26, 2021. This time it was my hubby Don, who was dealing with a worry that started with the letter "C".
Coronavirus and Cancer, Coronary Artery Disease! All are evil, but none can totally get me down... if I vent! I usually end up feeling a little more positive at the end of each post!
Navigating This Mess!
The most recent post is at the top, from coronary posts in 2022, back to cancer posts in 2016.
To find past posts, look below the "Archives" section, to find "Categories".