Monday, December 27, 2010

Buh-bye 2010

As I began this year, I looked beyond the dreaded foot surgery to... visitors from afar, road trips around the southeast and generally moving on with life. Of course, life moves on whether you're ready or not. 

There were good times and there were also losses. Life can turn on a dime, make no mistake about it.

So, I have no grand expectations for 2011. I don't know where life will take me or what hurdles will be placed in my path. I can only hope there is more laughter than sadness.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Not Enough Photos

I have been unable to find any Christmas morning photos from when I was little. I have asked my mother and we've both looked through all of our photo albums. I found one, taken at the post-Christmas dinner table at my Grandmother's house and my Grandmother has just opened a gift. My older sister is in the picture and she passed away not too long afterward.

There are tons of photos taken at other times of the year, but none from Christmas morning. I found one taken on Easter Sunday, outside my Grandparents' house, of two of my cousins and myself. It seems we always got new "outfits" for Easter and we were showing off our new coats. There is quite a lot of snow on the ground too. But it's not Christmas.

Maybe my dad, who was the photographer in the family, wasn't a morning person. Maybe he wasn't a fan of Christmas... which would explain a lot about my lack of enthusiasm for the holiday. No, that's not true. When my son was little (above), Christmas was fun because his expectations were sky-high and we tried not to disappoint him.

I don't know... I guess as a photographer, I want there to be more pictures.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Get up, dammit!

For years, we've had two lighted deer out on the lawn at Christmas time. The rest of the year, they are stored in the basement. I thought I would drag them out this year because I really do think that they look pretty at night and it seemed a simple enough task. 

Now, I must tell you that my lawn slopes downhill - all of it. So getting anything that is meant to stand on level ground... doesn't work well. My husband used to come up with all sorts of methods to get these creatures to remain upright. Wood, rope and 'whatever' was used. I never examined the how's and why's - the deer were standing, they remained standing throughout the season and I was happy.

So much the metaphor for my life now that I am the one who must figure out how to keep things upright (including myself). But I try. I take each hurdle as it comes and deal with it as best I can. But there are moments that I look to the sky and say "Really? This is going to be my test today? A damn deer?"

"Now you listen to me, young lady! Even if we're *horribly mangled*, there'll be no sad faces on Christmas!" The Grinch, to Cindy Lou Who.

Monday, December 06, 2010


I am reading Pat Conroy's "My Reading Life". He's been a favorite author of mine for a long time and I find it  interesting to read about the books and the people who gave him inspiration. I feel that way about any artist - to learn what brings them to the page or the canvas or the lens is fascinating to me.

Mr. Conroy writes about keeping journals - of words; words that he would hear or read somewhere and feel a connection. They would eventually, when he would return to them,  help him weave wonderful stories.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

I remember...

a big, plastic, lighted Santa Claus.

once, coming downstairs before Santa had been there. we went to my sleeping parents' bedroom, understandably upset. "Go back to bed for a little while.", mom said. we went back upstairs, heard the rustling of paper et voila!. Santa had arrived.

Christmas dinner at my Grandmother's house... with all of the aunts, uncles and cousins.

an aluminum Christmas tree... seriously - it looked like tinfoil. I think this was when we lived in Florida... it sounds like Florida.

bubble lights... I still love 'em and have lots of them, stored in the basement.

my mother always made sure my little sister and I had the same number of gifts... usually the same thing, but in different colors. in her defense, my sister and I would fight over anything and everything.

my maternal grandparents had thirteen children and we went to their house on Christmas Eve. my Grandmother would start shopping in September and every grandchild got a gift. they had very little money, so this was no easy feat.

the best times.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

To tree or not to tree...

I don't think I've ever not had a decorated tree in my home at Christmas time, but this year may be the first. It's not just that there's no-one to put it up and take it down for me becuse I could easily get a small tree. But I don't think the presence or absence of decorations will make me any less sad.

It's not a grinch thing... I sincerely hope all the Who's down in Whoville have a wonderful Christmas.