Thursday, December 31, 2009

What We Did On Our Christmas Vacation


Yes, I know it's been a long time, (if anyone noticed) but like so many of you, I was off doing the Christmas holidays with family. I hope your Christmas or holiday was wonderful.

This year, for the first time EVER, we were not at home for Christmas. No waking up to our little tree packed with presents. No, this time we hit the road to meet our daughter, grandson (for his first Christmas!) and son-in-law and at his family's digs in New Mexico!

We drove (very unlike us!) and managed to get our other grown son, (Brian) to come along. It was a blast! So I thought (for part one of this post)  I'd give you a taste of what we saw along our way. These amazing windmills cover several hillsides of Southern California. Like for miles. They're 100 feet tall and generate a lot of power for us, apparently.

(Please inform So.Cal Edison. Thank you.)

The desert is so beautiful. So stark. So serene. We passed these giant boulders poised atop one another as if someone was playing Lincoln logs with them and lost interest. (Please ignore the reflection in the window. No, that's not actually a GPS holder in the sky.)

For those who've ever been to Disneyland, (or Disney World), don't they remind you of Thunder Mountain? Maybe the designers drove through  these parts and thought, 'Hmmm. Wouldn't they make a terrific rollar coaster ride?'

We stopped for the night at my sister, Anne's house on the way out. She lives in beautiful Arizona and has all kinds of fun stuff to entertain us. Thank you, Anne! We had so much fun.

There were mule-drawn wagon-rides to see the Christmas lights!

How fun was that?

These two stood patiently as we all oogled them.

"Try to ignore them, Wilber. They're tourists...."

And beautiful light displays.

Then, there were Anne's horses, who were much more friendly....

Here's me and Smokey getting reaquainted.

He was kind enough to let  us city slickers ride him.

That's me, giving Smokey's mom, Hershey, mixed signals with my knees: Run! What? NO!

Hershey: "Make up your mind, will ya?!"

Here's my honey, David,  and Anne.

Please take note of the posture difference. The wild flailing arms  glee on one side, the relaxed 'this is fun' posture on the other. Yes, those horses were patient with us. Paticularly Smokey, the calm one. We all got to ride and it was wonderful.
Then, my son got to do this:

That's right, baby. He drove Ann's hubby's vintage tractor! He was set for the trip after that. He couldn't stop grinning.

And because I know you have trees to dismantle, parades to watch and hours to kill doing more important things, that's all for now.

Part duex of our BIG CHRISTMAS ADVENTURE to come next!

Happy New Year! To all of you.
I hope (and I  sincerely mean this) that 2010 is a MUCH better year for all of us! See you in the new year!
Love & Hugs

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Merry Christmas, my friends

 Merry Christmas to all of my wonderful blogging friends!  

You all have been one of my best and most surprising gifts this year.  Wouldn't it be fun if we could all get together and  have a Christmas cookie or two?

But in lieu of that, let me just say that you are, each of you, so special to me.  And I thank you for sharing a little piece of your precious time with me.

                  Have  a safe, wonderful, joyous  holiday!

                                      Love, Barbara

PS. - Be back soon!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

For Renee


This Christmas Angel is for you, sweet Renee.

Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

If you want to visit Renee and add to the hundreds of wishes rising up

please follow her link and leave a message. She can use all of

our prayers. And if we all shout, maybe someone

will listen to reason.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Be Kind To Yourself

Do you make resolutions? New Years or otherwise? How do you feel about them? Do you find yourself let down at the end of the year when you don't achieve your goals? Or does your list make you work harder to accomplish things? Do goals set your direction for the next year or do you drift along waiting for fate to find you?

I'm a believer in goals. But I've never been a writer of  lists-- mostly because I inevitably lose them, and then I feel like an idiot for doing it. I keep my lists in my head. (Although, I confess, that is a less and less efficient system considering C.R.S has set in. (Can't Remember, uh, Stuff.) Or maybe it's system overload. "The hard drive is temporarily inaccessible." Whatever the reason, lists are starting to be more appealing. And according to Oprah and the other 'experts' out there,  the very act of writing a goal down imprints it into your psyche or shoots the request out into the Universe to be fulfilled by the Wish Gremlins and... yeah, never mind...

Maybe it's too early to begin thinking about  goals for next year, but today, it occurred to me that (thankfully!) 2009 is wrapping up.  And just as I began to feel depressed about the time wasted this year, the things left undone,  I began looking back over the year I realized that I actually accomplished a lot this year.  I:
  •  graduated from Grad School
  • rewrote my screenplay 4,391 times. (okay I may be exaggerating that a bit. It just feels like that.)
  • published another book
  • welcomed a grandson into the world (while that was a deam of mine, my darling daughter did all the work on that one...)
  • learned to Skype.
  • survived the horrid economy (Yeah,...that would be me on the right.  Should've seen that one coming...)
  • got a full time (office) job for the first time in 30 years.
  • and have managed to survive 3 months of crazy law office stress.
  • realized that everything (including this job) comes for a reason and I'm learning a lot.
       I guess we all tend to be hard on ourselves this time of year when things haven't gone as planned. But making this list of accomplishments made me feel better than looking at the things I'd left undone. And it gave me a starting point for my next year's list.

Oh, there will be things on that one, too, that will go undone. But next year, I'm gonna write another list of the great things that happened and not beat myself up too much for the other stuff. 

Hope you all have a wonderful, blessed Holiday, however you celebrate it,  and I wish you all bright 2010 with lists of dreams realized.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Wrecking Ball Dreams

Tap, tap, tap...


Knock, knock, knock...


Higher Self: Hello?? Is anyone in there?

Lower Self (er, me): Oh. You talkin' to me?

Higher Self: Uh, actually, yes. I've been trying to get your attention.

Me: Wow. How long have you been standing there knocking?

Higher Self: A while.

Me: Sorry. I've been a little busy.

Higher Self: Yeah, apparently you didn't get my message the other night either.

Me: Message? Uh, no, I--

Higher Self: In the dream, the dream! You know the one where you were in the roomful of babies?

Me: Babies? Well, maybe there were babies. Hey, you're not suggesting--

Higher Self: No, no, nothing like that. You're being literal.

Me: Oh.

Higher Self: So you remember, in the dream, how your boss kissed your forehead, smiled benevolently and said, "You should do that." (indicating the babies)

Me: (Eyeing Self-Righteous Higher Self suspiciously) I should become a nanny?

Higher Self: Try to focus.

Me: Okay. I'm focused. Like a laser beam. Just spit it out, will you?

Higher Self: The babies. They're not...babies. They're ideas. The birth of something creative. You remember creative...right?

Me: Creative.... Uh, huh.... Those 'babies' don't come cheap, you know? And like I said, I'm a little busy right now.

Higher Self: Hey, I'm not concerned with minutae that blocks your path.

Me: Path, schmath... I'm getting a regular paycheck. I don't have time for "babies." (grandson excluded)

Higher Self: (Smiling pitiably at it's lower common denominator.) If the knocking's not loud enough, I can arrange for a wrecking ball...

Me: Is this all about that finished novel manuscript I'm not submitting? Because I'm not scared if that's what you think. I'm not. Of rejection.And ego battering "this was really close for me" letters, or reminders about how hard the publishing biz is these days. And when I say'finished' that's merely a figurative statement. It needs a 5,365th rewrite.

Higher Self: Two words: Minutae, excuses. That's all I have to say.

Me: Well, thank God you're done. I'm sure all the people out there reading this are glad, too.

Higher Self: I'm gonna keep sending the baby dreams.

Me: I know.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

On Blooming

This was my day yesterday.
This will probably be my day today.
But, hey. Someday, that damn flower has to bloom to give me somewhere to sit.


Peace, Barbara

Thank You!

To all of you who have sweetly stopped by my DH's blog (see below) and/or became a follower, thank you so much! I love you guys! You really made his week.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I just have to go wrestle the computer away from him. :p)