Friday, November 30, 2007

Christmas Letter II

Hi Ho Fellow Earthbound Travelers! I cannot believe it is time again to deck the halls, trim the tannenbaum, and fa la la la la. I am making merry and have bedecked my stunningly realistic artificial tree, trimmed the outdoor shrubbery with sparkling white lights, and am about to embrace the commercialism that abounds for the holidays. I can hear the Visa Corporation humming merrily in the background as I type.

The year has gone swimmingly, and I have only joy and cheer to share with you in this much coveted holiday missive. The princess in my life is finishing her university experience and will grace the commencement stage in May 2008. Her artistic and personal accomplishments awe all who know her. She has successfully written a grant, had a print accepted at a gallery showing, her talent is continually acknowledged by professors who bestow art department responsibilities upon her, and she been promoted in her responsibilities as TGI-Fridays head concierge. The little girl who drew mermaids in kindergarten has blossomed into an artist of great potential plus is making her mark in the food industry.

My baby completed his enviable high school career by accepting his diploma in June 2007 and joining the select ranks of the UW-Milwaukee student body. Alas, he girls remaining at the high school are still crying over his departure, and the soccer program has bottomed out since he left. Because of his many and varied talents he has yet to narrow the myriad of career choices available to him. He has been awarded the university’s Cleanest Residence Living Quarter award and the additional medal for the Most Sanitary Dormitory Restroom. He has been drafted to compete in the “Who Can Do the Most Laundry in a Week” dormitory contest. The child’s aptitudes never cease to amaze, and I blush with pride just thinking about him.

Watson has received special recognition from the American Kennel Club. He has been officially designated a Canadian Beagle – the first and only of his kind. Since he is a very humble creature of God, he is downplaying this award’s significance to all dogkind, but we have placed the giant 18 karat gold bone shaped trophy on the mantel for all to see. He is also receiving a year’s supply of Scooby treats and a new wardrobe. As much as I dislike talking about myself I have to admit I have been pretty incredible this year. I perfected my tan and sun streaked hair for the summer and was rewarded with the Best Looking Pre-Menopausal Mother Over 50 Award in August. Flattered doesn’t begin to describe my joy in being presented with this award. Along with the plaque I am using the wrinkle/sunspot dermatology appointments received with the award. In November the Fox Cities honored me as Shopper of the Year as a way of thanking me for my economic impact in northeastern Wisconsin. The platinum credit card plaque is hanging proudly in the entryway. What can I say – while I know I am loved it still gives me a warm, fuzzy feeling to be honored!

Travel kept us busy also. While friends wasted jet fuel flying to exotic places, our good friends Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio offered us advice on closer venues to explore. Bless their green hearts; we had fun doing just that. Ann and I explored the splendor and diversity of the Twin Cities and traveled the gently rolling hills of rural River Falls. Patrick and I have ventured to the hustle and bustle of Milwaukee and found that city people offer new excitements. Dan and I decided to take on the wilderness and discovered the harsh beauty of Lake Superior. While the cultural differences of eastern Minnesota were at times disconcerting, it was a learning experience and we found that Minnesotans are much the same as Wisconsinites. Dan still doesn’t easily admit that, but I’m sure one day he will come around.

So, as you can see, we have had an exhilarating, action packed year. For those of you dear dear acquaintances who have not been as fortunate, please take pleasure in living the good life vicariously through me and mine. It is our Christmas gift to you.

Wishing you a gift-filled, gluttonous holiday!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Christmas Letter

I’m only writing this damn Christmas letter because I figure I will be too busy fulfilling my community service obligation once the New Year begins. Nah, I didn’t kill anyone or anything exciting like that. Just got fed up with the nosy neighbor and practiced shooting her world’s ugliest donkey lawn decoration with my new bb gun. I accidentally hit her dumbass husband, and she actually got upset and called the police. But there is a silver lining behind every black cloud and after writing to Naomi Campbell for advice on how to handle community service, she became my new BFF and has given me a free membership to her women’s fight club.

The kids are doing fine. Ann has managed not to get pregnant and has stayed off crack. TGI-Fridays awarded her their elite Door Greeter of the Year award which reinforced her decision to make door greeting her career. For those of you who don’t believe she is using her artistic talents, let me tell you that she does face painting at Fridays on Mondays and is a big hit with the 3 – 5 year old set.

Patrick managed to make it across the stage to receive his high school diploma and is going to school in Milwaukee. He does excel at Beer Pong and may make the 2008 Olympic Beer Pong team. Because of his beer pong/ping pong abilities, he has received the Forrest Gump Golden Paddle Award and may major in paddle sports with a minor in brewing.

Besides the minor mishap mentioned above, life is going well. With the recent increase in national debt, foreclosures, and unemployment I am fitting in with the US norm perfectly. Yes, I am up to my ears in debt but the President thinks debt is good for the country! Those of us whose homes are in foreclosure have formed a new social group and happily watch soap operas all day to forget our troubles. I beat the unemployment problem by working from home stuffing envelopes. Since I filed for workman’s comp due to a severe paper cut, I won’t have to worry about having a good holiday.

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a Happy Holiday. If your children are perfect, your jobs rewarding, and your home secure, save your postage and don’t send me a letter. I know most of you are damn liars anyway!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Bad NL Karma

I made the mistake of talking to someone at the coffee shop. I try to avoid the downtown area except when absolutely necessary. I meet a friend for coffee each Tuesday afternoon andI am safe if I leave after meeting her for coffee. I can get out of the coffee place without having to meet up with someone I don't want to talk to. I have driven to the next town to do grocery shopping when I am in an anti-social mood (okay, more anti-social than usual). I don't want to run into people I know in the grocery store. I don't want to waste time hiding down an aisle to avoid people. Once in awhile I will meet up with someone I am happy to see but that is rare.

Being in a good mood today, happy it is the holidays, holding the Christmas spirit close to my heart I made the mistake of going out of my way to say hello to an acquaintance at the coffee shop. The last 25 times I have spoken with her the conversation has gone well. Today was short, brief and not warm and fuzzy. I left feeling puzzled and hurt. I realize this is probably not about me but something going on in her life so tried not to let it get to me.

Then I met up with a former close friend. We are still friendly but not close any longer. Having not learned from the first incident, I again went out of my way to say hello. We were friendly but there was no depth to the conversation and I felt it was forced. We parted. I felt icky.

On to the grocery store. I wanted fish tonight so went for tilapia which I have purchased at this store many times. Today, no tilapia. I picked out a salmon fillet which smells fishy in my refrigerator. Is it supposed to smell fishy? Tilapia doesn't smell fishy. That should have been my clue that my karma for NL was not good today. In the check out line I got to feel icky again. Behind me in line was a person I genuinely like but chatting today was not going well. I felt like I should keep up the conversation when it was clear he was not in a conversant mood. Being me, I am sure he wasn't as happy to see me as I was him.

I am now home with my faithful dog. I don't need to breath downtown NL air for awhile. I may need to bring out the baseball cap the next time I go downtown.