Sunday, January 02, 2011

Week in Review

My apologies for light posting this week. There was a lot going on, some good, some bad. For those interested in my non-blogging life, I offer a few remarks on the week.

Mr. J. is from a large family and one of his brothers-in-law died this week. He had advanced lung cancer so it was not unexpected, but his latest medical reports had been promising for at least a little more time with this family. He was 59. We liked him a lot. Unfortunately the backlog of delayed and canceled flights at the airport made it impossible for Mr. J. (let alone everyone in our household) to go the funeral. On a personal note, this is 5th person among my friends and family to have died from a smoking related illness before the age of 60. Yes, yes, personal responsibility is a factor but suffice it to say I have absolutely no use for the tobacco industry. None at all. I spit in their general direction.

For about 10 of the past 14 years I have been the luminaria queen of my street. A local business supplies the candles, bags, etc. and someone on each street or block in the general area sets them up. It's a lot of work and everyone in the house pitches in. Gentle reminder -- don't wear knit gloves to light the candles -- they catch fire too easily.

For the second year in a row the kids in an organization one of the Little Janes belongs to decided not to exchange gifts but to put together care packages for the troops overseas. I coordinated it, reviewing the current wish lists on, putting together a list of things people could bring, and mailing the boxes once we were done. You can really see the shift in troop strength from Iraq to Afghanistan, and it's getting cold there now, people. A lot of the troops were asking for blankets.

I've been informally teaching a small group of kids to sew and they were over one afternoon for a couple of hours. We slowly make progress.

And, of course, as every parent knows, it wouldn't be a holiday without a medical concern of one kind or another. Fortunately ours appears to have been mild.

I went out to one political event, held at a bar, which always scandalizes my children, who think their mother should be hanging out in the kitchen baking cookies not hanging out in bars. It was a nice event, though, nice people.

Oh, and everyone had a cold at some point.

All in all, other than losing a loved one, it was a wonderful holiday.

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