It's Friday, and although I am in the middle of posting my silly version of the Twelve Days of Christmas, I am posting my Fave Fives because I think it is important to remember to be grateful every day, every week. The link to Susanne's Friday Fave Five is here.
Ah, Christmas! A time for family, festivities and my faith.
1. As a Christian, I love Christmas. Advent may be my favorite season. This year I have been reading through the Cetlic Night Prayers each evening and have found great joy and hope in them.
2. We are a bookish family, all of us from the littlest to the oldest. These photos are an excellent example of of our joy and love of receiving books for Christmas--our favorite present!
3. We like to be silly too.
4. And we love our super heroes.
5. We don't own large homes so when our family gathers together in one spot, we really can't have all of us sleeping on sofas, under tables or in the bathtubs. So I am deeply grateful for two family friends who offered the loan of their homes to us during our stay in San Diego. It's a win-win situation: we have a place to stay and they have house guests who look after their cat while they are gone visiting their families in other places.
I hope you had a lovely Christmas! And Happy New Year to you! See you next year.
Tonight I am writing my Fave Fives from my daughter's home near the Mexican border. The Christmas tree is decorated with white lights, gold ribbons and red and white striped candy canes. Little ones are asleep, dreaming of tomorrow when The Boy and His Mama arrive to play with them. I am still awake and remembering my week with thankfulness and gratitude. Susanne's FFF link is here.
1. Christmas Break really and truly arrived at Willow's Cottage on Wednesday afternoon when The Professor posted grades, closed his office door, and heaved a sigh of relief. It was a long semester with a heavy schedule.
2. Although our drive south to my daughter's was longer than usual, we had delightful company in the back seat. Number Two Son is here and his best friend accompanied us because they decided to spend the night with their old roomies who now live in this area. I loved listening to their discussions about mitochondria, DNA, genomes, and finances. In addition they were passing the laptop back and forth playing a games against each other while they were discussing their battle strategies and plans. Highly amusing.
3. Another thing that amuses me is watching for out of state license plates. We live near the Camino Real (commonly known as Hwy 101) connects us to The 405 and The 5 Freeways. These freeways carry cars from all over the country. On the trip from my home to my daughter's, I saw many states represented including, but not limited to, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Mississippi, New York, Montana, Texas, Baja California and Nevada. I have always noticed state plates and enjoy wondering WHY those people in the car are driving HERE when they are from THERE.
4. On the 5 South Freeway, after you pass San Juan Capistrano, you swing south and crest a hill where the Pacific Ocean bursts into view. After that turn, you follow the Pacific Ocean coastline all the way to San Diego. Part of the way all that separates you from the beach is a bluff covered with bushes and grasses. We decided that the sunset view of San Clemente Island silhouetted against the yellow and orange sky and deep dark ocean is certainly one of the fifty most beautiful spots in the world, if not in the top twenty.
5. Happy cries of "It's Meema and Bapa!" greeted us. That's almost as wonderful as "Hi, Mom! Hi, Dad!"
And so I wish you ALL a Very Merry Christmas! Hug your family and keep them close.
Good Morning! It's Friday! This morning I slouched and slumped around in my jammies because I had nowhere to go. It's an at home kind of day. This kind of day makes me happy. Since I'm thinking of happy things, it will be easy to post Friday Fave Fives which is hosted every week by Susanne.
1. It rained this week. Two Days. Here in Southern California, rain is an EVENT because we don't get much of it. Fortunately, this week's precipitation was not the typical torrential blast from the heavens. It was more like garden hose misting rain. I won't bore you with a photo of the rain. We've all seen rain, right?
2. Christmas break has begun for me. Three weeks. Let the celebrations begin!
3. The last week of class before Christmas is always fun. Returning students always know that I am going to assign one short paragraph for the three week break. They are required to write a thank you note to someone for a gift they receive for Christmas or Hanukkah. I've told you before how much fun my students are. Collectively, we wrote a sample thank you note which always makes me laugh--really? a pink and blue polka dotted scarf? a bow and arrow to play Hunger Games?
4. My students are generous. Goodies such as Reindeer Mix, See's Chocolates, homemade granola, vegan cookies and Starbucks gift cards were presented. They know me! They also know that if I assign them a thank you note to write, I must do what I say. They know I will be writing them a thank you note and using the EXACT same format and style I assign to them. Actually, I enjoy it and have fun with it.
5. HOWEVER. All those sweet yummies sit in my kitchen, calling to me day and night, morning and afternoon. Eat Me. Eat Me. To counter the calorie overload, I decided to join friends on facebook in making healthy choices at Christmas. No, I'm not giving away the cookies and candy. I'm adding more exercise into my day. So--for every cookie, candy, goodie I consume, I am doing twenty jumping jacks. No, I'm not going to tell how many jumping jacks I've already logged this week.
The photos are of the Christmas stockings I have knitted for every adult member of the family. They each chose colors and motifs to make their stocking personal. The grandkids's stockings are next and will hopefully be finished by Christmas morning in time to be stuffed with little pressies.
A bonus: evidently, you can't have too many pictures of cute quail.
And now we are Counting Down the Days until Christmas! One more Fave Five, ten more days!
It's much too late this weekend to post Friday Fave Fives, but still I want to write about Five Favorites. It's good discipline to focus on Gratitude all the time, not just at Thanksgiving and not just on Friday.
1. My Christmas celebrations began last week when my Army Reserve Chaplain son changed back into his civvies. He's home.
2. Then the festivities continued. Number Two Son flew safely halfway around the world and is currently very soundly asleep in the guest room bed. Plane was on time, parking at LAX was a breeze, and #2 Son will be here for Christmas.
3. A class project resulted in this cinquain (with a slight change by me):
Grumpy as Scrooge
Stole, hid lights and presents
Sad and mad at Christmas and Whos
4. Several lines on my To Do List were crossed off, the majority of them knitting projects. Some of the hats in this photo are packaged and ready to be mailed off to Chicago to warm the heads of children there. Others were sold and the proceeds are designated for Generate Hope.
5. I received a discount on books I purchased this week because I am a teacher. I had forgotten about it and so it was a happy and unexpected surprise.
I finally caved to google and paid the monthly storage fee for photos. Thanks to two bloggers I contacted who gave me the same advice: just pay it. My other options were to stop blogging altogether, spend the time deleting old photos from previous posts, or move to another blog. While I am a frugal person by nature, I chose to pay the charge because, frankly, I enjoy blogging and posting photos, and it is worth the small amount of money I have to invest each month.
Without further ado, here are photos from my recent trip to Arizona. Just because I can.
Mogollon Rim viewed from the south at 6,400 feet elevation