Tuesday, December 31, 2013

GLITTERY CHAPEAU INTO THE AIR!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

Sixty is a big number.  It is nowhere near my age, thank you very much.  But it does make seconds into minutes and minutes into hours and then just a general snowball of the passage of time like the "Days of Our Lives" egg-timer turned upside down, flooshing sand away. But my egg timer is very big and still full of sand.

You are now reading Post #60 of the stupendously successful blog, RANDOMONIUM otherwise known as tocatchathought.blogpot.com.  This time last year I had no idea that I would actually sit down and begin this process.  The thought had crossed my mind, barely.  I was always the one who would jump in the pool (fully clothed) in September or March or November just to get the attention and as long as someone was there to pull me out.  Finally, I decided that attempting to write a blog was just like jumping in the green pool water.  Couldn't hurt and might be an adventure just waiting to happen.  And if it didn't work, I could just pull the plug.

So that is the story of this page.  Other than the daily habits required to maintain a healthy person like eating, sleeping and watching t.v., sixty has been a hard number to come up with.  Other great non-accomplishments not numbering sixty in the past year.  I know I haven't cleaned the house sixty times this year or ironed sixty garments thanks to my steamer and no-iron fabric and the cleaners.  I haven't read sixty books but I have been reading much more and know I have read for more than sixty hours.  Horrible confession: I haven't danced or exercised for more than sixty hours so obviously I could stand to lose sixty pounds. 

I have spent more than sixty hours figuring out this piece of tile, and grout colors, and paint colors and drawer pulls and towels colors and this loo and that loo and mirrors and glass and quartz samples and entertaining and supervising the myriad of workmen involved in the process.  I know I have sat at the piano for more than sixty hours and plied my needle and thread into linen like butter for over sixty hours.  Fortunately, I have been able to travel for more than sixty hours.  And I have easily eaten more than sixty ounces of fresh Maine seafood - lobster, haddock, clams, oysters, scallops and halibut.

I was nine years old the first New Year's Eve I was allowed to stay up until midnight.  The other grandchildren were snug in their beds.  My Uncle Johnny had filled my receptive mind with every detail of the ball drop in Times Square, the tradition originally beginning at midnight in 1907.  Fitted out with party hats and noise blowers, Grandmama and I waited for the festivities to begin in the Library/TV Room.

Located on the front of the house, a room with a full wall of shelves became the library.  Besides books, the shelves held valuable family heirlooms and sentimental items like the hotel bell which had become dormant in the last year as they retired after years of  providing a comfortable hotel for locals and traveling celebrities.  In their new spare time, they had renovated a seventy year old falling down house into a  home that would be loved for many, many years.

Three large window seats held every book owned by the well-read families of three generations.  Thousands of conversations hung like spider webs on the forty-four plates leaning against the plate rail at the top of the ten foot ceiling.  A new green Naugahyde sleeper sofa faced the t.v.  A large braided rug made by Grannie, using wool suits and skirts, to waste not - want not, covered the painted floor. 

We were watching Guy Lombardo bring in the New Year on the new color television set which was a very new item at the time.  Grandmama and I were counting down the seconds.  Happy New Year!  I've been known to get a little excited in most situations and being that this was my first celebration to ring in the New Year, I did give it all my gusto.  Woo Hoo!  I flung my party hat up in the air.  And then I couldn't find it because it didn't come back down.  Because I had perfectly tossed my glittery chapeau like a ring at the carney games right on top of a small Majolica monkey vase that was probably already an antique belonging to a great grandmother.  YALAW!  That made the evening more exciting, of course.  Nothing was broken but I do think the little monkey was moved up to some higher shelves along with stern grandparent warnings. 

But it was still a great celebration with my grandmother.  And that also happened to be the year she turned sixty.  I've always liked this picture of her in school, dressed as a clown because it does capture her fun loving spirit and her beautiful dimples.  She is maybe 90 pounds dry but I have the sneaky suspicion she could also be 95 pounds soaking wet after a jump in a tempting pool.  I don't have proof but it does run in the genes.  Or it could just as easily be my grandfather's genes.  What's a girl to do?

One thing is for certain, I have invested over sixty hours since I began this blog August 12.  For me, it has been a great investment in learning and stretching my talent.  It has become a habit, for good and bad.  It is like a new person in my life that I am always wanting to talk to and catch up with.  It has given me a new viewpoint and a point of jumping off from. 

For the new year, a whole new experience I didn't have last January or February.  I do try to do my very best but there is always room for improvement.  You always hear artists say "this is a gift for me."  But it is not corny.  It is true.  This has been a tremendous gift for me.  Writing can make my head hurt or make me stand up and dance.  I take whichever.

To think that someone reads this and enjoys a word or thinks about something new or triggers an old memory, is humbling from my heart.  Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

I'm getting ready to throw my glittery chapeau into the air and shout  Woo Hoo!  Here's to sixty more!


Thank you!     Wishing you the most wonderful new year of all, 2014!


        




Tuesday, December 24, 2013

MIRACLE EYES

Sarah and Ezekiel caught my eye this Christmas season.  They were in two very different places.  But the gift these little children gave me this season has stayed with me.

I met Ezekiel at the grocery store.  On a day when grocery store lines were running about ten carts deep and every available bagger and checker were in position and working hard.  Everyone had milk and bread and eggs and frozen pizza and chips and Ravioli and tunafish and Vienna sausage and marshmallows and peanut butter.  Rations for an ice storm.  Or power outage or both.

Ezekiel did not bounce off the walls or swing on the basket or run back and forth begging for another item.  He stood politely and talked to his grandmother about the frozen pizza in their basket and how much fun they were going to have making it for supper.  I started chatting with her because I always chat with anyone within hearing distance or non-hearing distance.  I do not live in a solemn world. 

Then I began talking to Ezekiel.  He was also a willing chatter.  He was five.  He told me about school and the pizza.  I asked him if he had been a good boy.  Have you ever met a child who wasn't?  Yes, he had been good.  I asked him what he wanted for Christmas.  He said he wanted Santa to bring him paints.  And some kind of toy I have no knowledge of - maybe a game.  He said he was an artist.  And he was pleased that I was pleased that he was one.  He had done six pictures of his family and he liked to just sit and draw.  Smiling, I asked him if he would go home with me.  He smiled without hesitation and asked if he could bring his games with him.  His grandmother laughed and said she could loan him out.  I leaned down and told him that would be fun.  Then looking out from under his hood somberly, his bright eyes looked up at me and he whispered in the reverence only reserved for the most special things in a child's life.  "I love candy."  A smile broke across his face.  "But not too much."  Chocolate.  We agreed that was the best.  I told him since he was an artist he could draw pictures of candy.  His eyes shot sideways in the new thought.  I told him that people have jobs drawing candy packages and cookie and pizza packages.  The wheels were spinning.  I left there with a little soft spot in my heart for a delightful young man named Ezekiel.

Sarah caught my eye at church.  She was standing at the Advent Table with her family as they lit the first candle of the season.  She and her brother were a little more than eye level with the velvet covered table holding five candles.  Her mother lit one candle.  Our pastor began to lead us in prayer.  Sarah bowed her head and then looked up.  She wasn't looking at the crowd or at her parents or her brother.  She was looking straight into the candle as the spark burned on the candle's wick.  Her face glowed, reflected in the light of the candle so close to her.  The childlike amazement was in her eyes.  She barely smiled.  I went away from church that morning with a fresh view of the amazement of Christmas.

I have probably never talked to Sarah.  I do know her parents.  She has certainly not spent time telling me what she wants for Christmas.  I don't know if she likes frozen pizza or the color pink or chocolate candy.  I do know Sarah walks.  But in the fall, with school just starting, she suffered a very rare stroke and her precious young life was almost lost.  But now, both sides of her body work like a little girl's body should and she can almost run again.

I think of Mary, barely a young woman.  Making a journey to a new land of great difficulty.  On a donkey.  Better than walking, maybe.  Young, with only a new, inexperienced husband for support.  No mother or sisters to ease her path.  I see her eyes with tears, in excitement, fear and pain.  But her husband is steady and confident and protective.

Ezekiel and his talent.  His bright eyes smiling.  A whisper in his ears - you have the miracle.
Sarah smiling, running.  A whisper in her ears - you are a miracle.
Mary, riding into a new life.  A whisper in her ears - you carry The Miracle.

May you hear the whisper.




 

Thursday, December 19, 2013

THE LOST PERFECT CORNBREAD DRESSING PICS

I know Thanksgiving was dizzying enough without the added stress of worrying about the missing cornbread dressing photos in my post, http://tocatchathought.blogspot.com/2013/11/perfect-cornbread-dressing-turkey-day.html.   Especially when you were trying to get your mixture to sizzle at the two critical steps for awesomely perfect cornbread.  I guess there were no cornbread failures because I haven't heard otherwise. 

Just the other day, from out of the wonder of my computer world, I discovered the pictures of the finished chicken and dressing which created quite a bit of excitement in my little office environment.  While not of great importance at this time of the year, except that dressing knows no season in my way of thinking, I was happy to find I had not created a big glitch. 

Perfect cornbread dressing is possible and I now have the pictures to prove it!

Dry cornbread and sautéed veggies ready to mix


Everything well crumbled and stock added but not enough


More broth added, perfect consistency - a good hand


Cooked shredded chicken has been added to raw dressing and ready to bake


Hot from the oven, baked to perfection


Plated for your eating enjoyment
OceanSpray canned cranberry used for convenience



ENJOY!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

TRUCKING JOY ACROSS EIGHT STATES

I don't know about you but my tree came with a yellow ribbon, all the way from Oregon.  Maybe on a truck or maybe on a train.  But not on a ship or a bus or a bike.  What a wonderful place to be, in a truck or on a train filled with fir trees.  The garage smells delicious. 

Probably on a truck because there is not a train station near the tree store (big box, sorry local favorite florist but your trees are out of my price point, even though you know my name.)  The truck has made the 2,241 mile journey, which according to Google Maps should take thirty-two hours.

We hope our Christmas Tree Trucker was not expected to make the trip in such a fashion but he couldn't lollygag.  His trailer was full of woods, "lovely, dark and deep."  In a different journey but like Robert Frost's traveler in "Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening," our trucker couldn't stop and relax but a moment because
                   "I have promises to keep,
                       and miles to go before I sleep,
                         and miles to go before I sleep."                                 

Wow.  Can you imagine a 53' trailer, full of tons and tons of scratchy fir trees?  Maybe they were piled in boxes and then loaded.  Thousands of needles scratching the boxes with the slightest bump in the road.  Such a long road to travel.  Would it make him merry to carry his load, anxious to be such a bearer of joy?

From capital to capital, from the Willamette Valley to a dip in geography between the Ozarks and the Delta.  From a lush pacific region boasting Strawberry Festivals, Peony Festivals, a Wine, Pear and Cheese Jubilee, a Bluebird Day, a Jefferson Mint and Frog Jump Festival, Dahlia Festivals and a Pumpkin Merriment Party, to name a few.  Eight states away to another world of fests:  Watermelon Festivals, the Wye Mountain Daffodil Festival, Jewish Food Festival, Sixth Annual Elvis Haircut Day, Toad Suck Daze, Riverfest, Purplehull Pea and World Championship Rotary Tiller Race, and Bikes, Blues and BBQ.

Portland.  Boise.  Ogden.  Laramie.  Skirting Denver.  Salina.  Wichita.  Just barely missing Tonkawa.  Heading on down to Tulsa Town.  Passing Fort Smith.  Leaving London.  Cruising through Conway.  Crossing the Arkansas River.

The 6 -7 foot Douglas Fir is still supple and fresh.  Our batch of winter weather has certainly helped keep the tree supply winterized for all of us folks who just looked up and realized Christmas was around the corner.  And the winter weather has not helped my procrastinating preparation. 

I love Christmas.  Joy to the World was written just for me.  Hark the Herald Angels Sing.  I have learned a lot about angels this year while teaching my new favorite thing, my Ladies Sunday School Class, a dozen fun girls about my mother's age.  I don't teach, I just steer and occasionally throw a wild card into the mix.

But for a lot of people, this is a hard season.  Chronic illness can make merriment difficult.  Even good stress can add to chemical depressions.  People dealing with addictions.  The death of a beloved father, whether a month ago or three years ago.  Hunger for love, for food, for a warm, peaceful day.  We all want to feel merry in our hearts, complete with wrapped presents and a table full of home cooked favorites, surrounded by people who love us.




For me, two great truths are found on this ribbon.  First of all, this tree was planted and grown in the U.S.A.  The yellow ribbon or tag was attached to the tree manually.  Can you imagine doing that job over and over and over, and again?  My tree was a perfect tiny little green polka dot in a large tree farm where acres and acres are filled with trees to be harvested in different years.   

.......This tree was grown expressly to bring the joy of Christmas into your home.

They didn't have to include those words.  Sure, it is their business but it is also their statement.  This tree was grown expressly, on purpose, to stand in my study in the front window shimmering with white lights, covered with shiny ornaments made all over the world and a few made with the hands of a little girl.  A tree for my home.

......to bring the joy of Christmas.   Christians didn't begin to consider winter evergreens as symbolic until Medieval times and even then, because of the origins in ancient Egyptian and Roman cultures it was not accepted.  The Puritans had laws against Christmas decorations.  German immigrants are credited with bringing many Christian Christmas traditions to America.  The British Victorian tree greatly popularized the American decorated tree we enjoy today.  This is the historical viewpoint. 

I don't know the religious leanings of this noble tree farm, but for me, when I see the Christmas tree I see hope.  How wonderful to look out on acres of trees and know the joy they will bring.   I know the joy that gives me strength on the cold day.  The hope that gets me through the hard times of the season.  Love that knows my name.

May this Christmas be full of  joy, hope and love for you and those you love.

"And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly hosts praising God,
and saying,
Glory to God in the highest.  And on earth, peace and goodwill to all men." 
 
Luke 2:13-14

              





 

Friday, December 13, 2013

SHIMMER OF THE SHINE

After taking off from ATL, I waited until the okay was issued for electronic devices.  I have my doubts as to why an IPOD would be detrimental to the computers flying the plane, but since my flying faith rests in the computer systems and the hands of the pilots, I would stand on my head the entire flight if such a request were made to ensure safety 37,000 feet up into the heavens.  And I do get by with a little help from my flying angels.

Adjusting my ear buds, I pulled the shade down and settled off to sleep listening to a classical piano track.  When I pulled up the shade, I found I had dozed all the way to NYC.  I am simple.  Seeing the city always excites me.  Or just seeing a highway sign pointing to the city.  I've only visited once, too long ago, but I was an impressionable seventeen and it was love at first sight. 

The autumn sun was shining on Manhattan and Central Park.  I smiled to think of all the lives being lived as I flew over, reminding me of my post, http://tocatchathought.blogspot.com/2013/09/count-leaves.html     The plane's route hugged the eastern seaboard until about Boston.  It looked as if a narrow white pencil had been used to outline where the sea touched the land.  We were still too high to distinguish more than what was already perceived as a building or small blips in the water that had to be ships. 

The plane edged out over the Atlantic, heading towards Maine but still in easy sight of the coastline.  As the plane descended, the faint white lines begin to show movement.  A few scattered islands begin to appear out from the land as if rocks had been skipped out from the beach, glancing the water eight or nine times before sinking into the water, done over and over by a meticulous hand in another time.  In descent, lighthouses began to be visible on top of the tiny islands and the white wash of waves grew broader against the gray stones.

Sun on the water revealed the rhythm of uncapped waves floating at the surface, rolling slowly towards the land like a blue lined page of paper but with broken places.  A darker, silvery blue color of water, currents, skimmed below in a second layer, in various widths like veins traveling across the first legs of the seafaring journey,  rivulets of rain following a random path down a cobalt mirror or tatted threads being pulled out to sea while the currents shuttle weave in pattern.

The gold of the sun.  The silvery blue.  The shimmer of the shine.   

My music man had already captured the moment.  The line came to mind.  From the air or from his sailboat, he had seen the magic in this water.  Now the wonder of those same Maine waters had caught my breath and my vision blurred.  For a few seconds, everything in my being rejoiced and worshipped, perfectly.

"On a high and windy island I was gazing out to sea
When a long forgotten feeling came and took control of me
It was then the clouds burst open and the sun came pouring through
When it hit those dancing waters in an instant all eternity I knew ."


Dan Fogelberg, Magic Every Moment from River of Souls  1993

****

All those years ago, the very first notes of his music captured my heart.  For something different, check out his Christmas Album on YouTube, The First Christmas Morning. 

          
 

 
This is my Dan Fogelberg homage on the bulletin board by my desk.  That is me on a long ago Christmas morning, holding my first album, his second release, Souvenirs.  I'm listening on my new Sony headphones.

Daniel Grayling Fogelberg    August 13, 1951 - December 16, 2007










Tuesday, December 10, 2013

THE CORNER IS THE DOG'S

You can't even turn your back on a nine year-old Australian Shepherd.  I did for about five minutes as I stepped back to my office to perform an awesomely important ritual in my little world - makeup application.  The barn needed painting. 

First layer of pencils
I've wracked my English Major education to come up with the origin of that quote, thinking my twin green Norton Anthology books would hold the answer.  But alas, this was before sticky notes and barely into highlighting markers.  My good Christian upbringing will hardly allow me to highlight a Bible verse let alone make a bright mark in a textbook.  Nothing but a good pencil for this girl's notes.  So who knows where the quote is hidden, maybe perhaps with Alexander Pope or Samuel
Johnson.  If anyone can give me the correct answer and end this agony I will send you a package of my favorite item to hoard, the best mechanical pencil known to me.  As you can see by the picture, I have a few to choose from.  Send me a gmail.

I had just sat down at my vanity (makeup place for vain women and when more extensive caulking is necessary) and jumped back up, running into the kitchen.  "Don't you touch that turkey," expecting to round the counter and find Oreo with half a roasted turkey breast down his throat.  This same sweet dog once availed himself of a newly replenished bowl of peppermints, gingerly procured from Aunt Eleanor's beautiful crystal candy dish on the coffee table.  The study carpet was littered with dozens of little wrappings but not a whiff of peppermint in the air by the time I returned home.

Paw marks in the right corner
 
He stood looking sheepishly at me but the turkey breast was untouched and the cookie sheet full of recently dressed nuts appeared unblemished.  I took a second look.  Oreo is not a big nut eater unless it is buttered and on bread with jelly or the tip of a cracker.  But on the corner of this well-used sheet there were scratch marks that only a curious dog paw could make.  Needless to say, this batch of nuts will not leave the house.

When I was growing up, we had a cat named Toogie.  One night my mother fixed a delicious pot roast, just one item in her arsenal of culinary taste treats.  If you cook, you know that on occasion a pot roast will exceed beyond what is expected and you could sit down and eat the whole thing, it is that good.  Such was the case with this exquisite meal.  My sister and I were in charge of the dishes and decided to lollygag in front of our new colored television.  We began to hear this very delicate sound like a drip but more like a fine licking. In the next instant, a little black cat head peered around the door facing, at countertop level.  Toogie's whiskers were completely coated in the pot roast gravy my mother had made just before supper.  We had left it sitting out on the counter for just a minute.

To my mother's credit, all she said was "Don't tell your Daddy."  Don't worry.  We didn't.  At dinner the next night, he poured the well-boiled gravy across his meat and veggie plate and declared, "This taste even better than last night."  Sister and I just about sputtered the potatoes right out of our mouths.

So if you do get some tasty nuts from the Taylors this season, don't doubt our quality control section.  Oreo is in charge of the corners.

                                           Nut dressing still in tweaking phase, ADG 12-4-13

Thursday, December 5, 2013

A GOOD SPIT IS ALL IT TAKES

Officially, as of this minute, the winter storm has begun.  "The precipitation has just exploded," according to the local weatherman.  Thank goodness, not in my corner of the world just yet.  I still need to go buy my extra gallon of milk. 

I did not grow up with snow although other parts of my wonderful state of birth regularly enjoyed the white stuff.  Occasionally, maybe an inch or two or a dusting of ice so thick we could handle it in chunks like a piece of steak (the thought of a child raised in a meat centric state.)

Now that I officially know that the precipitation has officially exploded about three hours to my north, I can relax.  After all, they will get all the inches of snow that everyone else would love to
Iced trees Christmas 2012
have.  In comparison, those of us lucky enough to live south of the interstate crossing the top of the state and dipping down and back up again into the attached eastern state, can only expect ice.  Ice is never fun even if it does remind you of a steak.

A quarter of an inch of ice coating will meld to the leftover leaves still attached and weigh down any limb.  There is hope that after last year's excessive Christmas Evening snowfall, the weak duds have been pared down by nature or the power company.  Fortunately, I have evergreens on one side and in the front of the house.  The front ones are taller than my house is deep, if you know what I mean.  Ice just loves pine needles.  It looks so pretty, all frosted and hanging low. 

My plan of action is as follows. The firewood is being delivered this afternoon so I have to go to the bank for a loan.  While I am out, I am going to run to the old-fashioned bookstore to pick up a self-help book on living with your spouse during an ice event.  Walking out the door to work, he remembered to tell me about his potluck with the Scouts, tonight.  He was very appreciative when I said I would fix Party Carrots.  I don't know if this is Party Carrots Recipe day but when it does occur, don't miss out.  It has changed lives for the better.  It is that good. 

I'm going to be productive as long as the electricity holds out.  I find myself wondering why we don't buy a generator in the summer.  We are not desperately in need though.  I do remember when a family member needed oxygen, worrying about electricity then.  I'm sure there are no gens left anywhere today, in anticipation of the exploding precipitation which is only going to spit in our part of the state.  But a good spit is all it takes.

Christmas is around the corner but I am not prepared to move in that direction. No tree, yet. Instead, I am going to cook up some goodies to give as gifts, the kind you don't have to wait until Christmas to give.  Another run to the grocery.  Burt came home with another pound of butter and another dozen eggs.  Bless his heart, I didn't have the heart to tell him I now had five pounds of butter and two dozen eggs but I still needed cereals, nuts, heavy cream, buttermilk and a chicken (for dumplings).  The one nice thing about the deep freeze of nature is that you can put your food outside or in the garage.

One of my favorite stores' catalogs came yesterday.  The best section was in the back - the winter vacation section and I don't mean the ski slopes.  All these lovely models in swimwear, sunning on nice boats and strolling sunny beaches.  A trip to somewhere sunny and beachy would be a great Christmas present.  I already have a new suit. 
http://tocatchathought.blogspot.com/2013/08/boys-of-summer.html

Of course, a person could travel to an African oasis and still not find enough warmth for swimming.  But I bet those Palm Trees never bend to even a wisp of spit!

Monday, December 2, 2013

ROLL ME IN GLITTER

Just spray me with glue and roll me in gold glitter but be sure and start the process around the end of July.  This will give the glued glitter time to set up because it has to last until almost December 31.  I will be ready to go with just a little feather dust up. 
Christmas Night 2012

I have a nice comfortable house which has been in the renovation process since April.  Today I came home bearing four new framed pieces for freshly painted walls.  Kind of like the icing on the cake, one would imagine.  More like the sprinkles.  Except the frosting is in sad shape.

Over the months, any and everything has been moved out of the old bathrooms and into the hall in preparation for sledge hammers, old fractured tiles, wall board, pulled up vinyl floors, buckets of grout, the fine dust of new plaster.  About half of the towels in our married life are residing on the dining room table along with every old bottle of hand lotion and every half-used bar of Safeguard in our family's existence.  We could open a Recycled Objects de' Room de' Nessessarie Shoppe.  Mismatch used linens (but really just mostly cotton).   Even a soft monogramed blanket from my childhood bed (my Father was in the business.) A good monogramed blanket is hard to find. 

At my core being, I am a very organized person, if I can stop long enough to finish each task.  So we live in a world of little things undone until we throw a party or serious company is coming to stay overnight.  Serious company would be anyone not listed in the will by reason of their distant relationship.  But a good party is always a good excuse to fix things up. 

Starting in the spring, one would think that everything would be finished and a distant memory.  And to some extent, most things are except for those little undone things like the towels and the ancient bed linens and the toiletries of undetermined origination date.  But nothing moves until I say so which is ridiculous I know.  But I don't want to put anything back unless it is put back in perfect order in perfectly sized baskets or whatever.  Which are already purchased and just waiting.

At first, when something is out of place, it can be mildly annoying.  But if it is just placed there and not in a tripping zone, the annoyance becomes less and less and the object begins to look like a piece of the landscape with occasional flare-ups of annoyance.  If great amounts of time pass, it can become invisible, almost, and totally lose the power it once held.

The box full of old towels just becomes commonplace to me and I begin to function nicely without needing it or even seeing it.  Just like rolling me in glitter and leaving me up against the wall.  Walking around the store throwing every color-coordinated holiday decoration into my basket so every year can be about the newest color and sparkle.  Those are holiday decorations.

My rebellious bent is on a streak.  I love others' decorations and stylized versions of holiday fare.  I do love color.  But I am just so old-fashioned when it comes to Christmas.  I don't want to listen to Bing Crosby sing White Christmas three times a day or hear O Holy Night every night on the radio.  Sometimes I feel that everything has just been sprayed with glue and rolled in glitter about three months too soon. 

Wanting my new baths to be perfect has delayed my progress.  I am stymied by the paralysis of "nothing will be acceptable but perfection."  So I am missing out on enjoying the newness because I'm so focused on the perfect process.  But no process is ever perfect.  As Rosanne Rosanna Danna would say, "It's always something."  She is right.  There are a few "somethings" I need to go work on, while listening to my favorite Christmas CDs.