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I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus

Yesterday afternoon the London arm of our family arrived safe and sound, warm and dry. I was overjoyed at seeing them both, however, you know how it is at the airport--the hugs are short and sweet as there are other cars lined up ready to swoop in the moment you leave your spot. Mostly Matt was starving, and as it was nearly 6PM by then, I mentioned a new place that has opened on Orange Avenue nearby. Wouldn't you know it? Matt, while working for Georgia Tech, had eaten at the Atlanta locations of Taqueria del Sol multiple times. Because it is a new favorite of ours I was happy to learn it passed the vegan test, so it wasn't long before we were devouring their tasty food. Orlando friends--check it out because it is yummy!

Afterwards I wondered if perhaps they would like to visit the Florida Santa before we went home; they both were excited to see it in person. Lo and behold, as they sat in the car, I popped out with my camera and the folks who own it were outside! My curiosity about what was under the tarp has been satisfied--it's a small boat full of gifts. Then too, the man asked if I'd like to have my photo taken with Santa, and because I knew my blog readers would love to see something so silly, I hopped up on the porch and struck a pose.
Meanwhile, Matt mentioned to Tom that he'd seen Mommy kissing Santa Claus....oh the things one thinks of! The folks were really pleasant, explaining that the shack comes apart, storing easily, however, they would not reveal where they got the Santa! Good times.

Generally I've found if you ask nicely most people are happy to share their stories, and in some cases, their property. As I left the house yesterday morning, looking down the street, what should I see but my friend Sue on her new bike! We took off together down Appleton towards the eagle spot on Ferncreek. She'd only seen it in the photographs and was happy to see it in person. But, once we got there the tree was empty....

I told her some folks mentioned it oftentimes likes to hang in a back yard down the street on Lake Conway so off we went. Slowly we made our way down Waterwitch because I couldn't exactly remember which house it was. Sue spotted it first, way up high. Because my zoom won't go so far, I decided to knock on the door and see if we could go into their backyard for a closer look. Ann was only too happy to let us do so and how delightful was she? Very delightful! We chatted about the neighborhood and the habits of the eagle. Pointing the camera towards the eagle most of the time, I was thrilled that I got a few shots off takeoff and flight.
Amazing right? Not so much the picture, but the very thought of flight...hard to get one's head around.

I did my best to get all of my wrapping done,
trying to incorporate one of Bruce's techniques while mostly failing miserably.
I would pull off all these little tabs of tape, promptly use them, and then forget to redo it, only noticing when I got to the end of a package. Oh well, makes a fun picture nonetheless.

Beth, Roger's daughter-in-law, has been working for him most of the year and at the moment, because Roger's mom is in the hospital, she's on her own. Late in the afternoon she sent me a message that the gigantic canvas, ordered by a young lady from the market was ready. I scooted right over there to pick it up. For the last several years Trish and Roger have not had a Christmas tree or any decorations for that matter. This year they are making up for lost time. I LOVE what she did with her front porch:
As you can plainly tell, the fog has lifted, as have the clouds, and it was bright and sunny--perfect weather for a visit from our London boys. They did manage to stay up, in spite of the fact that it was about 2 in the morning when they finally gave in to their weariness. Today is going to be a good day. After I deliver the canvas, we're going to do something--just what I don't know yet, but it will be nice whatever it is.

Lastly, on Saturday, I might have mentioned how Winter Garden set up a big stage at the market for performances by various children's classes, dancers, and so on. The rendition I heard of a boy playing the recorder and a girl doing a solo on "Kumbaya," was sweet. What was really, really super was the local Baptist church doing the "Hallelujah" chorus under the direction of their charismatic leader! He invited the audience to sing along, and sing along we did!
Good times indeed. If hearing that song doesn't put one in the Christmas spirit, nothing will.

Daylight has come to our part of the world which means I'm outta here...let the good times roll.
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