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This Day in My History


2000: The Dreaded Christmas Letter
 The Free Ride's Over
2002:  Typhoid Mary
2003:  Caroling, Caroling, Caroling


Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott

My Amazon
Wish List

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Website of the Day

Who designed this ride?



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These trees are to pee on, right?

Sheila Videos
"See Sheila Run", "Meet Barkley"
"The Green Monster", "Sheila's Tongue"

Today's Search Engine queries:
(how people find this journal)...

  • quote sleepless in seattle
  • placid personality wife
  • graphics of tables filled with food
  • musical called "Something's Afoot"
  • "no man is an island" song
  • short, tight ringlets
  • Duck milking
  • Shakespearean bedspreads
  • Macbeth blood steeped
  • "santa barbara" "arnold nordsieck"


CHRISTMAS LETTER.  Once again, I've posted our Christmas letter on the Internet.  It may not be as personal as holding it in your hand--but it's a lot prettier on the net! 


17 December 2004

"I need you to sit in your chair for a minute." Walt said.

"Which chair?" I asked, wondering if he meant my office chair, my chair at the kitchen table, or the recliner (I was in the kitchen at the time).

"The recliner," he said.

So I sat in the recliner and he stood in front of me, looking very uncomfortable.

"Now I have something to tell you," he started hesitantly.  He began hemming and hawing and rubbing his hands nervously and looking very uncomfortable.  I wondered what was up.

Had he just been diagnosed with some terrible disease?

Did someone die (the last time he had me sit in a chair like that it was to tell me that my estranged friend, Phil had died suddenly.)

Had he decided that he couldn't take the clutter any more and decided to move out?

Did we need to discuss finances (always a dangerous thing to do in December)?

He's off work this week--had he finally retired and was trying to figure out how to tell me?

He cleared his throat and said...

"I think I should give you your Christmas present now, instead of on Christmas.  I just need to know if you want me to or not."

Well, with an opening like that, what was I going to say--no?

It has been a bad week for "stuff."

First of all, the DVD player has been acting funny.  It started with one or two Netflix DVDs that it wouldn't play.  When the third one came that I had to send back, I decided to try it on the computer DVD player and discovered that it would work there.  So then when I had the occasional movie that wouldn't play on the DVD player, I would watch it on my computer screen (which means, of course, that we couldn't actually watch any movies together).    But I tried to watch one of three Netflix flicks last night and none of them would play.  I recalled Ned telling me that DVD players go out so often he gets the cheapest ones he can find, assuming they will have to be replaced soon.  I was trying to decide if I felt like sitting in an office chair just watching a movie for 2 hours.

I've also been trying to record things on the VCR downstairs, mostly unsuccessfully.  It's so old I can't tell when it's on or not because the light on the numbers is so faint--and I can't figure out the whole programming thing.

Then, last night I made eggplant lasagna for dinner and that required grating a brick of mozzarella.  A several weeks ago a piece of the lid of the cuisinart cracked and broke off.  I found a place on the internet to order a replacement (amazed at how expensive it wa sto replace this piece) and ordered it.  However, the charge hasn't come through, nor has the replacement part.  I hadn't actually thought about it much.  I was holding the thing together and it was doing OK, but mozzarella was the straw that broke the camel's back.  The machine jammed and then the lid that I was trying to hold on it, got caught in the mechanism and I had to practically pry it off of the machine--which can't be good for any part of the machine.

So I was grumbling about the cuisinart and saying a lot of words that looked a lot like $%#@.

The car is also acting up.   There is some persistent electrical problem somewhere and Walt says we need to be "judicious" in using it.  No unnecessary trips.  This is a problem they've been trying to track down for a couple of months now and every time they think they have it fixed, it pops up again.  Was there a BMW with a big bow in the driveway?

"Yes," I said.   "I want my Christmas present now."

He was back in a minute with a big bag from Target, with a ribbon on it.  ("I didn't buy it at Target," he said, "but it was the only large bag we had.")

When I opened it, inside was a new machine.  Not a DVD player, not a VCR, but a DVD/VCR machine that will not only play DVDs, but will also play mp3 discs and show .jpg files.  It won't grate cheese, but I forgive it for that.

Walt has spent the afternoon getting it set up.  We watched TV, we put in one of the "defective" DVDs and it played just fine.  And then I brought out a CD that had some .jpg files on it and up popped the pictures of Ned and Marta moving from their Davis condo into their Sacramento home.

I'm back in business again.   Once again I can watch DVDs, I can watch VCRs, I can record VCRs, I can even give slide shows of digital photographs  and bore my family to death.

I r a happy camper.  I'll worry about the Cuisinart later!

Thanks, Dear!

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Christmas puppies
Marta's step-mother's Chow just gave birth to a litter.
Are these not the cutest things you've ever seen?


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