Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Hard Candy Christmas

Christmas eve I get up in a panick because I remembered that I did not set the phones on the Holiday Greeting. In my mind this was a big deal, because I work for a fire district and it is kind of important if people are trying to records n'stuff if we are not open.
Okay, so maybe not SO important, but in my mind I was totally worked up.
I look at my kids and Lance and tell them I have to go...I throw on some sweats, slippers and grab some coffee and head out the door.

I get in the car, still beside my self, half in thought then as a habit I turn on the raido and it begins playing Dolly Parton's 'Hard Candy Christmas'.

I stop mid-thought and I am taken back twenty years or so. I have a huge urge to phone my sister - as a rule whenever we hear this song we call each other. I realize it is 7 am and she prob won't be pleased, but at that moment I want to bottle the song up, put a ribbon on it and send it across the way to her home.
Growing up we would stay at my aunts house and she would play this song over and over again. Back then you could tell there was sadness in her voice and this song somehow resignated with her life. But being 10 or so, in my little world it created memories for me and my sister - my aunt would place the record on the record player and walk around the house singing this song, she knew every word and had the emotion down pat. I still remembering thinking how beautiful she was and how much I luv'd to hear her sing that song. I am not sure what it signified for her, but for me and my sister it carries happier times in our childhood. Being at my aunts house with our cousin, having a sleep over and listening to hard candy christmas.

To this date it is still one of our favorite songs...........words like 'I'm barely gettn' thru tomorrow but still I won't let sorrow bring me way down. Oh, I 'll be fine 'n' dandy, lord its like a Hard Candy Christmas.' Me and my sister sing it at the top of our lungs. We search for it on the radio. Once we were passing each other in seperate vehicles, realized it was on the radio - I turned around ; we both pulled over onthe shoulder - I got in her car and we sang.
Basically we drop just about everything, and try to find each other the moment we hear it......strange I know.

As we find ourselves struggling thru 2009 and into 2010 it seem pretty appropriate.
This song makes us smile, helps connect us in so many ways - sort of like Janice Joplin's 'Bobby McGee'. Anywhere, anytime we hear those songs we are immed taken back to each other and find the urge the reach out and phone one another.

Christmas was good and hard this year in so many ways. So many things are changing, yet so many things stayed the same. All 3 of us were home for the holidays with our kids. Our spouses, well that is a different story. One prob not to be shared just yet, but let's just say I am glad the 3 of us got together at my mom's again. I am glad that my mother and father were around one more year, and semi social. I am glad that everyone had on their 'happy face' and those that could not play nice, just decided not to swing by.

Ohh and by the way after my little memory flash back while driving, I made it to work - switched the phones (no problem). Then as I was getting ready to leave I set the darn alarm off. I had the PD and Fire show up, while I was in my sweats and slippers - yeah, good stuff!!
So to my aunt who prob doesn't realize the wonderful memories she has created for us, I say thank you. Deep down I hope she still has her record player and her 45 of Hard Candy Christmas......

Thursday, December 10, 2009


Okay folks so we are in the home stretch and the HOLIDAYs are fast upon us. Normally I am a big bah-hum-bug kinda' girl. Nothing has been normal about this year, including my feelings towards x-mas. I got my tree up a week ago, Lance strung lights on my house and I am feeling pretty grounded. It could either be my little blue pill, or the fact that we actually have a handle on x-mas this year.
With Lance still not work I have sent him x-mas shopping. I made a list of names and he has spent the last two days tracking around the stores and mall. And for that I am thank-ful - I HATE to shop, I esp. hate to shop around the holidays when all of the crack heads are out, the lines are long and the prices are jacked. Lance on the other hand does not seem to mind it, although he did state last night that he really needed a drink - ha!!
I was a bit hesitant sending Lance out with little to no guidelines, I was afraid everyone would end up with Busch beer and beef-jerky. To my surprise he has done a great job. I took care of all of the girl stuff for my many nieces and he took care of the boys on the list and as much as it hurts me to admit it, he did a great job.

Today in an effort to keep up with his new Martha Stewart mentality he is going to spend the day wrapping the gifts. Swoon!!
Aside from shopping I despise wrapping. Lance complains every year what a crappy job I do - the corners are not straight, the tap is not centered etc.... Every year I want to punch him in the face and tape his mouth shut. But this year, I am really pleased. Perhaps because I have slacked or perhaps because I don't have to do it. Lance seems pleased to have something to do during the day, and I am beyond pleased that I don't have to do much.
To keep up with my holiday cheer this year, I even signed up for a cookie swap / ginger bread house party. Little did I know that a party like this meant that I would actually have to cook cookies, like 8 dozen cookies. As I was cooking my asrse off two Saturdays ago, Lance was in the kitchen telling me how lame I was to be making choc' chip cookies for the swap. He let me know that I needed to do something more interesting, I responded with a glare.
It is either choc' chip or a box of oreo's from Schnucks. Something more interesting my arse! So sent him to the store to get eggs and he came back with eggs and a magazine that had 50 holiday cookie recipes. I decided to burn the magazine in the oven and still made choc' chip cookies.
My children had a blast making ginger bread houses, my husband came with us and was the only man around, carrying his beer, swapping cooking stories and helping Rylan make his house just perfect. He was in his element hanging with the gals and drinking.
I have so much to be thankful for and seem to have lost sight of it all during the last few months. One day and one step at a time, because the list is too overwhelming. However it is easier to manage now that Lance is actually doing most of it........I figure if he doesn't get work soon, I will lend his services out to other ladies in the community. He cooks, cleans, does laundry and apparently shops for gifts. If you allow him around you will have to put up with his mouth, which does not have much of a filter - but hey, you cannot win them all.
Happy Holidays! Stay safe, warm and healthy. I am ready for some family time, good food and drinks! Yes, bring on the drinks!


Nieces & Nephews and Kids...