Christmas Eve

…and not a creature was stirring… because they were too overloaded with food!

Last night we chowed down while we watched A Christmas Story – my favourite Christmas movie. (As a kid it was always Heidi)

Oh Ralphie, you are so relatable.

The cheese ball turned out to be more of a cheese glop and the swaddled baby Jesus pizza buns looked more like tardigrades or chilly manatees but that did not deter.

Besides, I wouldn’t want to offend the Gods by being perfect. I was going for vintage but now when I look at the pictures I think my set-up has more of a little old lady feel. I’m okay with that.

We wound down with the Simpsons before we settled down for our long winter’s nap. Missing family and friends but thanks to the internet no one is really very far away these days. Now what should we watch on Christmas night? I’m thinking The Two Popes. What’s your Christmas go-to flick?

© Judy Parsons 2019

What Am I at Now.. might ask. Oh you know, the usual stuff; making things, baking things, and hanging elves.

The Christmas baking went well. I made knock-off Harry and David almond blackberry galettes that are so good that they make me swear when I eat them. To what do I swear? To diet. In January. After the cookies run out. After all, my Wii is already telling me that I am obese.


I suppose I shouldn’t take it too seriously. It also tells me that my fitness age is 33 and that my ideal weight is 119 pounds. I haven’t weighed 119 pounds since grade ten. Before Christmas in grade ten.

Please, take one.

I also made a new recipe of white chocolate, macadamia nut and cranberry cookies. They are also good but they don’t make me swear. I do fear eating too many of them though, so I have been giving them out to anyone who comes to the door: postal workers, package delivery guys. I forced the last fellow who came to take extra. Better on his friggin’ hips. Hmmm, perhaps they are swear-worthy.

Lemon-ginger marmalade

Yesterday I made lemon-ginger marmalade. It is more gingery than lemony and oh so tasty. It will be competing for space on my hips. That is because it has waaa-aay more sugar than it does marma or lade in it. I might have to start forcing marmalade onto people at the door as well.

What about the elves? NO!!!! Not lynching! Hanging elf decorations. And they really aren’t elves. I think they are more along the line of travelling minstrels.

I was intrigued when I saw them in the Christmas room at the thrift store. They are quite large, about eight inches high and heavy. Can’t figure where they are from or what is their purpose; they’d haul the branch down to the carpet if you tried to hang them on the tree. So I hung them from a ceiling hook. They got me to thinking: maybe they are not really Christmas ornaments. Perhaps they are Shakespeare’s birthday ornaments or summer solstice ornaments. Which got me wondering what really makes any ornament a Christmas ornament. But more on that next post. I’m going to go have a cup of tea and hang out with my new minstrel friends. Give me a leg up to that hook will you, please and thanks.

Just hangin’ out, playin’ a few tunes.

© Judy Parsons 2019

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Waste Not, Want Not

…or Santy Says have a Thrifty Christmas.

I’ve got tons of cheap little wooden ornaments and some pretty funky Santa Clauses from the thrift store. What to do with them all? Santy said “Make yerself a wreath.” So I did, but it did require some investment. I needed spray paint for the knobs I salvaged from my kitchen cupboards and a wreath frame.

The bare bones……

Sadly I also had to buy the pine-cones. The smallest one I could find in my yard is about eight inches high. I found wire in a drawer and the kitschy little wooden fellow and bears in my thrifty Christmas collection.

I had to bushwhack in the lot across the road for my greenery. I think it is local cedar. This area of Florida used to have so much cedar that they built a pencil factory here. Long gone now, and I had to brave the wilds to find the one tree which I could gently prune.

Happy Santy.

And there you have it. All for under ten dollars. Thankfully I am not too picky about symmetry.

And next year I’ll only need to supply the greenery.

© Judy Parsons 2019

Tracking 2

…or Don’t Touch That, You Don’t Know Where It’s Been

Well my package of photos finally arrived one day after their estimated arrival date. A few years ago I would have thought that was just normal time spent processing and travelling. Now, thanks to the wonders of tracking I can see that the processing happened the same day I ordered the stuff (Nov 25). The rest was travel. And what a roundabout route it took.

The scenic route

So I sat my little package down and asked for an explanation. Here’s what it told me.

I’ve been everywhere, man.

“Well it was kind of exciting to be on the road; I’d never been outside of Texas – spent four empty years sitting on a shelf in a warehouse. Now here I was about to see some of the country. I ate peaches and boiled peanuts in Georgia. What’s with boiled peanuts anyway? Slimier’n okra. And then once I saw I was in Florida, well. What could I do? I’ve never been to Disney. That’s where I got this danged crease …..

Do not bend!!

…sneaking in under the fence. Well after that I thought I’d make my way over to Daytona to see the race-cars but on the way I got in with a bunch of rogue mail in Jacksonville and we all took off for Tampa. There wasn’t too much going on there so when they suggested we head over to Miami for the vice I was in.

I thought they meant the TV show but this was a bad crowd of rogue envelopes and I wasn’t surprised when we got detained by the Miami-Dade polive. When they saw I was a package of photos and that I was was bent I was taken downtown, charged and photographed and sent of to clink.

I ended up in jail in Opa Locka. Y’all probably never knew this but is where all wayward packages end up. Seriously. Google it. Some kind old package that’s been there for fourteen years, a Christmas cake from Noerthern Maine, bailed me out and I hitched a ride on a Fed-ex truck to Jacksonville then Caught an Uber to Gainesville and here I am. I’m pretty battered and bruised but if you’re up for it I’d sure like to get out and see those manatees. But can you unload me first? I’ve carried this burden long enough”

I can only believe what I’m told. After all every little thing has its story.

© Judy Parsons 2019


…or When Life Mimics a Tom Robbins Novel

Isn’t package tracking a marvelous thing. Years ago you sent off your money in a money order (because you heeded your mother’s stern advice “do not send cash in mail”) and waited patiently until the little white card appeared in your mailbox telling you that there was a package at the Post Office. You would never know what transpired between those two events; you just had to have faith that the precious item you were awaiting would arrive as ordered and unscathed. (I once ordered a purse from Simpsons and got a three-legged milking stool. My Grandmother laughed about that for years.)

I just ordered the prints for my Christmas cards from Costco. So easy online; postage is inexpensive and they come right to your door. Eventually. EDT was Dec 3 to 6th. Last year I got them in three days so I plugged in the tracking number to see how long it would be before I could start card assembly. They started out on their journey on Nov. 25 in Texas:

I don’t know how good you are with Geography, but that is a bit of an odd route to take. Allow me to illustrate:

I suspect my photos are their way to the Florida Keys trying to find a little warm weather (it is forecast to be only 12 degrees here today). When things go astray like this I am always reminded of the Tom Robbins novel, Skinny Legs and All, in which a bunch of inanimate objects like a spoon, a dirty sock, and a can of beans go off on a wild adventure. So now when I think an item is lost, I know that it really isn’t; it just has a journey to fulfill. Like when you find a loonie on the ground and put it in your pocket only to find later that you lost it again. You probably just interrupted it on its way somewhere. I can only hope that the end destination for my package is my own mailbox and that in a couple of days it will turn up like the proverbial vintage suitcase, covered in travel stickers.

I checked again. It just left Miami. At least it won’t leave the country; it doesn’t have a passport. Sigh.

© Judy Parsons 2019