Monthly Archives: December 2019

All Done!

The year 2019 is rushing to an end.

Has it gone past in a flash for you?

Or did it drag on forever — with one problem barely solved before the next arrived?

Like most years — I’ll have to give 2019 mixed reviews. Some fun times were contained within it’s boundaries. And also some problems — some I caused for myself, others got an assist from either Mother Nature or others.

But they’re done!  As soon as the clock sweeps past midnight! Welcome 2020. May you stay shiny and bright and full of promise — for more than one minute.

Final 2019 vacation photo.

I hope my luggage gets to the right place.

Just like the Song

Dashing….. in a one horse….

Gather your friends. This one horse open sleigh has plenty of room for two couples. Drive on over to the relatives and make it a party. Hot chocolate for all!

This year this vehicle is on display for photo ops. Can you picture yourself driving? Bundle up in your winter coat. Remember hat, scarf, and gloves.

 

O Holy Night

Shepherds watched.

Angels sang.

The babe was born in a stable.

Keeping Christ in Christmas.

Built for Winter Use

The museum had dozens. I’d estimate a quarter of the large, two-level, U-shaped barn was filled with them.

These were not built for show. They were designed and used for transportation in New England. I imagine some of them are rather delicate due to age — but can you imagine — hitching your horse to his Country Sleigh and driving off to Christmas Services?

Cuddle up to your Sweetie. Set the baby on your lap.

Top it all off with a warm blanket.

We’re going for a sleigh ride!!!

Have you Heard From…

It’s a common question between people in my circles at this time of year.

Unlike my relatives of previous generations, my correspondence is sparse. As recently as my mother, she stayed in touch with her out-of-town friends and relatives with letters.

Yes, snail mail. A handwritten letter, in an envelope, with a stamp. She sent it on a one, two, or three day journey (occasionally longer). Family news, a note on the weather, travel plans all found their way onto the page.

Often, we actually received a snail mail reply. It kept us up-to-date on births, deaths, moves, and employment changes.

Phone calls were considered expensive and saved more important times. There’s something special about a letter — especially a hand written one. My mother and I exchanged letters until her final illness. And I treasure a few saved over the years — a handwriting sample of a favorite aunt or cousin. I offer thanks to my mother’s cousin who saved a letter from my grandmother written at New Years 1922.

All set to send my holiday cards and letters.

(Yes, I cheat with a computer letter. I’m one of THOSE people.)

Do you send holiday cards and letters?

Observers

“Waiting for the bus.”

It’s a rather apt description for the demeanor of these zoo animals. They often stand in one position, move only their head, as if watching the world go by.

Are they taking mental notes? Making up silly stories about the people that come to visit? Saying prayers for someone to toss a fish their direction?

Extra lights and figures come out of the boxes at holiday time. This charming fellow (in blue) is definitely inspired by the real life gentleman (or lady) in black.

Am I being watched?

Holiday Hike?

Walking, and hiking, are good for the body. Depending on the place and route, they can be good for the spirit also.

Fresh air. Sunshine. Pleasing visuals — trees, hills, and perhaps an animal or two.

Tramp, tramp, tramp — you leave a trail across the snow.

Old-fashioned snow shoes form the base for this wall/door decoration.

A hike among the trees gives the heroine of Starr Tree Farm more excitement than she imagined.

Starr Tree Farm

Shiny Holiday Coat

Deer hunting season ended in this state recently. For some, this is the most important time of the year — often finishing within a few days of Thanksgiving.

Yum, yum — venison roast. (No, like beef, venison is best aged. Consider it for Christmas dinner — not Thanksgiving.)

Not all deer were in danger. Take this oversized fellow, for example.

Deer hunting season for this shiny fellow is spent indoors — my guess would be in warehouse storage. He’s a holiday special. Gets a person to slow down and take a look as they drive past on the street. Hey — look here! This motel and restaurant is in the holiday spirit.

I’ll give him the highest marks possible for gaining attention.

Finding Holiday Spirit

The music is playing in public spaces.  Decorations of green and red with more twinkling lights than a person can count adorn trees and doors, and walls, lawns. Every retail outlet, large and small, urges you to buy, buy, buy.

Are you feeling overwhelmed?

I bring you bad news.  It is twenty-two days to Christmas.

If you are hunting for a quiet, yet pretty space, to decompress from all the noise and advertising I may have found one.

This is from the Missouri Botanical Garden in 2017. The displays complimenting the trains change each year. Do a little research and find a public display you can enjoy at leisure.