Saturday, December 8, 2007

A bright spot in a gray day

It has been gray and dreary and cold (for Southern California) here for the past couple of days.
It was breezy when I left home at around noon and the roads were packed with cars.
I guess it is people out doing holiday stuff, but the traffic on the surface streets was awful.
It took me 25 minutes to go 6 miles to the freeway.
From there it only took 25 minutes to go the other 30 miles to work.
Drivers were just being so rude and stupid.
I really was glad to get to work just to be off the roads.
Of course, I would rather have been home with a fire in the fireplace and some soup bubbling on the stove.
Oh well. Maybe tomorrow after stamping.
Anyway, a few hours into work someone came over and said there was a great rainbow. We could see it from the window.

But I wanted a better view.
So I grabbed my camera and went to the top of the parking structure.
It was HUGE. It was a full arc over the whole sky. It was too big to all fit in the shot.
And you could see the full double-rainbow effect.
It was just beautiful.
I thought I got five or six shots off, but when I downloaded them there was only one.
But while I was outside one of the staff photographers came out and tried to get a shot, but the clouds had shifted and the rainbow was gone.
So my one shot ended up as a small photo on our local section cover and as the lead photo on our Web site.
At least until some other news breaks to replace it.
Well, I must be off now.
Stay warm, stay dry and stay safe.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

I give you pots

I tried to do this yesterday, but I was having trouble getting photos to post.
I have been a slacker about posting more of the Descanso photos.
Mostly I have been a slacker in general. I have a ton of stuff to get done at home and, of course, I blew it all off over my weekend.
OK. So I got a couple small things done. But not the amount that would make the weekend seem productive.
And it's not like I was out doing all these fabulous, fun things. I was just frittering my time away at home.
Whatever. There is always this weekend to be productive.
I decided that for my Christmas present to myself, I will hire a couple people to come in and clean the house from top to bottom.
I did that at my birthday a couple years ago and it was great.
I think I will give myself this gift a little early so that I can really enjoy it while I am off work over Christmas week.
In fact, I think I will call right after I get done here.
So let's get on with it.
From Descanso: I give you pots.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

The right pajamas can really get me in the mood

Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone and it is December (wow, already??), I can finally accept that Christmas is just around the corner.
Forget the holiday decorations that go up the day after Halloween.
Forget all the ways retailers try to lure us into stores to overspend and prop up their fourth-quarter earnings.
Forget the $50 Christmas trees being hawked from the Home Depot parking lot, at the supermarket and from any vacant lot in town.
I called the Volunteer Center last week for adopt-a-family. For me, Christmas fun now starts.
The Volunteer Center works by taking your information and matching you with another group to find a family.
I asked that it be a single parent (mother or father is fine with me) with one child.
They hooked me up with a local office of the Exceptional Children's Foundation.
My family is a single mother with a 2-year-old son.
I was told that he likes Blue's Clues, Thomas the Train and Legos. They also gave me his sizes.
For the mom, they told me sizes and that she can use clothes and that she likes perfume.
OK. It was not the detailed wish list I got last year.
But I can work with that. I already have some ideas.
And yesterday while I was at Costco, I saw some cute fleece pajamas with a dinosaur theme. Kids cannot have too many sets of PJs, so I grabbed a pair of those.

I was not really in the Christmas mood, but that gave me a little boost.
I also will buy for my nephew. He was just a few months old last Christmas. I think he will be overwhelmed by it all at first, but then jump right into the pile under the tree.
What better way to get in the mood for Christmas than by shopping for two little boys?
And knowing that I can help make the day extra special for at least one little family is the best gift I give myself every year.

Not to sound preachy, but if there is even the smallest thing that can be done for someone else this time of year, I encourage people to do something.
It doesn't have to be much.
Buy a toy for Toys for Tots. Donate to a food drive at a local church or food bank. Find a group that sponsors Santa for a Senior programs.
Even the smallest thing can make the holiday so much happier for someone.

OK. I'm coming down off my high-horse now.