A Holiday Tradition Preserved

I was very disappointed when I read that the Cape Codder’s “Enchanted Christmas” ended last weekend.
The kids and I have enjoyed this low-key event for the past couple of years, but we were all so over-scheduled before Christmas that it was impossible to coordinate.
Yesterday I was in Hyannis running several errands and on impulse, stopped at the hotel to see if their courtyard was still decorated for Christmas.
Indeed it was, and there was a notice of a bonfire that evening.
So, the kids and I got to see the lights and roast marshmallows.
Some time this winter, budget permitting, I may plan an overnight so they can enjoy the wave pool as well.
On the way home, we made a stop at a private home in Sandwich that invites the public to stroll through a large holiday display that they set up in their back yard.
We discovered this last year and were prepared with a donation this time to thank the owners for their generosity.
These are small things and maybe aren’t as significant to the kids as they are to me, but I enjoy them and if nothing else, appreciate that the kids humor me.

Some Nerve

Bonnie’s folks, intrepid ones, host an overnight at a local hotel for five of their grandkids every winter.
The kids enjoy it, there’s a pool and a game room, and it gives them a chance to visit with their cousins.
In past years, the hotel has had special activities for school vacation week, and it’s been packed.
This year, the hotel is almost empty because it changed hands and is undergoing renovation. There is so much scaffolding in the front that you had to use your imagination to figure out which door to use.

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Bye Bye, Christmas

The buildup was long but the actual day went by so fast, it hardly seems possible that Christmas is over.
This has been a stressful month, starting with an intense 2 1/2 day testing/evaluation session around work, a week-long out-of-town business trip, snow storms, and several holiday parties.
This is not to mention fitting in shopping, card writing, getting the truck serviced and the usual running around.

Continue reading Bye Bye, Christmas

Now We Are Sleet

Got back from a biz trip to Atlanta around 10:00 on Friday night.
There was about four inches of snow and hard-packed plow drifts from the prior day.
Another storm was predicted for last night/this morning. It was supposed to rain, so I never finished shoveling the driveway, figuring a good part of the stuff would wash away.
Woke up this morning to another 4-5 inches of – snow.
Now, it is sleeting, and I’m immeasurably grateful that I
a) am not a newspaper delivery person or the holder of tickets to this afternoon’s Patriots/Jets game;
b) completed the weekend’s chores and holiday shopping yesterday;
c) returned from Atlanta in between storms;
d) have electricity, heat and hot water;
e) postponed writing holiday cards until today in lieu of spending some quality time yesterday afternoon with Emme and James;
f) don’t have to drive on ice-encrusted roads to an obligatory family party as do some of my nearest and dearest; and
g) bought a couple of good books yesterday at Border’s.

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Christmas Card List: Good News, Bad News

Figuring to get some really nice holiday cards this year, not the usual CVS or Job Lot cheapies, I tallied up the mailing list, a depressing exercise in keeping with the hideousness of this time of year.
As if it weren’t enough to suffer the indignities of unappreciated gifts, ugly Christmas* decorations, sanctimonious politicians braying about creches and menorahs, and the horror of ersatz family gatherings.

Continue reading Christmas Card List: Good News, Bad News

First Real Snow

It snowed last night following a very cold day, and even within the Mashpee town limits, there was an appreciable difference between the brief accumulation, heavier around Edgewater, where I’d just changed the flower boxes to winter decor, and almost non-existent around Dixon.

Advice from Your Amygdala

A University of Sydney study published last year suggests that as people age, they become more emotionally stable and better able to control fear.
This is because the medial prefrontal cortext, which controls planning and judgment, gets more active while the amygdala, which processes raw feelings, especially fear, becomes less so.
I guess that means that as we get older, if the amygdala kicks in, there’s probably a very good reason for it.