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Keeping it Simple

Remember that gigantic stop sign they were installing at the corner of Pershing and Ferncreek? You don't? Well, this blog is not a test, so let's recap..

What seemed like a perfectly good stop sign on the corner of the aforementioned streets was replaced by the city because they hoped it would get people to stop. Apparently it did not work yesterday morning because as I crossed Pershing to head East, I saw this in the distance.
Mmm....wonder what's happening....hope everyone is okay. YIKES!! Look at this:
According to a woman standing at the corner, the cyclist has some injuries and was taken to the hospital. Injuries, how could they avoid injuries when their bicycle is UNDER a truck?? She assured me that he would be fine--as if she knew! Clearly, one of the parties involved in this accident was not paying attention no matter how GIGANTIC the stop sign.  On my return trip I noted dents along the side of the truck, so if I had to guess, it was not the first time the truck driver was not paying attention.

Oftentimes I ride by my friend Sue's house in the morning, usually never stopping because it is early. Because the door was open, I hollered out....well maybe not hollered, but called out to her. "Gail?" Yes it's me. Coming to the door laughing she said she was in the middle of reading my blog post. How about that for timing? We visited and I gave her a few tips with her camera, however, I could have used some myself as I took this accidental photo of her Christmas tree.
I am like--wonder why this is black and white? After further investigation, I discovered the camera was set on "high-key" which may be something I want to play around with now that I've had this happy accident!

Well, there was no putting off getting my own tree done, so home I went. For a girl who does not particularly enjoy decorating the Christmas tree--I know I should not admit that, but there it is--I was not thrilled when I was nearly finished with the lights only to discover a very, very long strand was not lighting up. Boo hiss! Unwinding the blasted thing, I took it into the kitchen to check,
I made sure the next two strands worked before attempting to use them!
Listening to some of my favorite Christmas albums, I eventually got it done. Jonathan and Alissa gave me the "Glee" Christmas album last year, which remained unplayed until this year. Very fun! I'm strictly a before-Christmas listener.

This year I'm keeping things even simpler than I normally do. No red bead garland on the tree,  as well as a very scaled back Nativity scene.
There is quite the cast of characters that go with this set, however, this year the Holy Family is taking center stage. One thing is bothering me about Joseph--why does he have a shepherd's staff? I can only assume he used it for a walking stick because, as far as I can tell, there is absolutely no mention in the Gospels of Joseph hanging with the sheep. I wonder what they really looked like, don't you? I have a pretty strong suspicion that their clothes were neither this clean, nor their skin this white.

The very first Christmasy thing I did was hang the beautiful mobile Tom gave us when last he visited Florida for Christmas. Fortunately Angela, our 6 feet tall neighbor,  came over just as were hanging it which helped us determine the height!
The purpose of her visit was two-fold--to deliver some Tom Smith crackers she purchased for us, and to pick up her laundry.
Snow globe Frosty is checking them out. Apparently, "Tom Smith" is the first name in Christmas crackers, which we shall soon discover for ourselves, won't we? There should be no hosting a British man for Christmas without crackers, or so she claims. Actually, we had loads of fun with them two years ago, and I have a notion we'll do the same this year.

There is only one part about decorating the tree each year that I love. Unlike some folks, I do not have a styled tree--mine is more eclectic, somewhat like we are. Ornaments from our first Christmas together mingle with new ones, mostly given to us by our children. Through the years I've accumulated a lot of ornaments which I do love, usually the simple ones like this given to us by an anonymous donor. Only kidding! I just can't remember who it was....
At first I thought it was from Maureen's former in-laws, but now I'm not so sure. Anyway, the tree is done for 2012, and I know it will bring pleasure until my birthday.
Except, where the heck is one of the stockings? For the life of us, we can only find three! I'm thinking maybe David took his home last year? I'll call Michelle later today to check on it's whereabouts. Then too, all of the packages you see wrapped need the "Bruce treatment", which if you've ever received a gift from us, you will surely understand. It's no exaggeration to say that his use of ribbon is legendary.

One other thing Angela is hounding us about--pesky neighbor that she is--outdoor lights. Nearly every day she wants to know where is the Peck contribution to a lovely well-lit neighborhood? Don't hold your breath my friend.

It looks as if there is yet another gloomy day on the horizon, or so it seems looking out my window at the start of daylight. The Christmas tree, on the other hand, is sparkling away in the living room as I type. I think I'll go bask in it's brightness.
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