Its Here!

15 more Hours!

15 more hours till I am in beautiful Colorado, with my beautiful family.  I don't know if I'll be able to sleep because I'm too excited, although we have to leave at 5am so I hope I get some sleep.  Besides having a sore throat I am prepared and ready!
Tickets printed- Check
3 alarm clocks set- Check
Clothes packed- Check

Christmas Spirit- Double Check



Beautiful Bocelli

How I love Andrea Bocelli.  Since junior high his cds have always been playing in our house.  He has such an amazing voice.  So I was very excited when I just saw a commercial for a concert he is doing in South Florida!

He is coming to the Bank Atlantic Center which is 10 minutes from my house!  Tickets are a little pricy, but I think I will save up and buy them.  His concert is on Valentine's day which I think would be a lovely way to spend the evening with Bobby.  

One of my favorites

Can't Wait!

Is there a Santa Clause?

One of my favorite Christmas readings, the famous 1897 letter from Virginia.  Enjoy!

Dear Editor,
I am eight years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says "If you see it in the Sun it's so." Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?

Virginia O'Hanlon.
115 W.95th St

VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank GOD! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.



This truly is a magical time of year.  Even though I am not little anymore and don't believe in Santa, I still have this wonderful feeling of warmth and excitement around my heart near Christmas.  I love everything about it.  The story of the birth of Jesus, snow, sparkly lights, the mystery of Santa, family, friends, warmth, good food, presents, Christmas songs, silent nights.

All of it makes up Christmas.  I watched an interesting documentary the other day on the history of Christmas.  A celebration during the winter started long before Jesus was born, a way for people to get through the dark, cold months.  Soon it encompassed the nativity and then became a holiday for gift giving and children and families.  So when people say that no one celebrates the true meaning of Christmas anymore, we actually do.  It is what we make it.  If we want it to be about family, and trees, and candlelight services, and caroling then that is what Christmas is all about. 

What a great idea.  To have all these wonderful wintry things all wrapped up into one Season.  The gift of God, sparkly wrapping paper, playing Parcheesi under the Christmas tree, scents of apple cider, and the north pole.  That is what Christmas means to me.

our little tree



The other night at work, Bobby passed an office window and saw this glorious thing:

Leg Lamp

It is my most favorite scene in a Christmas Story when the dad opens up his special award, a giant woman's leg:

Mr. Parker: Uh, 'frah-gee-lay!' It must be Italian!
Mrs. Parker: Oh, I think that says 'fragile,' honey.

Every time I see the word FRAGILE I can't help but say it the Italian way.  What a perfect thing to see right before Christmas.  I think I'll go netflix that movie.



Ghost Tour and Water Taxis

The other night the Stranahan House in downtown Fort Lauderdale hosted our museum for an evening of wine, ghost tours, and a water taxi ride.  It was such a fun time and the staff at the house museum were very generous and kind.

 Stranahan House on the River

The water taxi ride took us through downtown Ft. Lauderdale where we listened to the history of the river and of course the ghosts that haunt the shore line.  We got to see all of the billion dollar mansions that line the river and their gigantic yachts decorated with Christmas lights.

 The captain of the boat

The tour of the Stranahan House was great.  The house was built in 1901 and is full of history.  One of the staff took us through each room and explained the different stories of the house, along with people's personal ghost experiences.  Oooohhhh!

I was the only one who brought a camera so I was given the task to take as many pictures as possible through the tour to see if I could capture something.  To my luck, no creepy faces of children or unexplained orbs appeared in my pictures!

It was a great way to spend a Sunday evening and get out and enjoy the city.

 pretty tree

 My friend Jessica and I

 Bobby enjoying the view


It's FREEZING here!  My poor thin Florida skin is barely surviving in this cold front.  We have been having temperatures in the 20s and 30s in the mornings, a 50 degree difference from a few days ago.  Everyone at work is bundled up to their eyeballs.  The heat in my car is on full blast.  I have extra blankets on the bed and am wearing socks for the first time since last Christmas.  

As I opened the front door this morning to leave for work, the cold air hit my lungs and I started shivering.  But, deep down I was so happy that it finally felt like winter and it smelled a little like Colorado.  So far I haven't seen any comatose iguanas falling out of the trees but its supposed to be another chilly night so we'll see come morning.  

I must admit that I'm a little embarrassed by my new sensitivity to the cold.

Daddy, do you think you could turn the heat up past 68 degrees when I come home?  And maybe we could turn the fireplace on too?  The goosebumps on my arms would greatly appreciate it.


Scenes from Kickball

A few more photos from Friday Fun Day!

Jingle Kickball

Today was our office's Jingle Kickball Party.  I also got to help put up the Christmas tree which is right outside my office door and I can smell the beautiful sent of pine and it makes me too excited about my trip home that I can barely concentrate!

The Kickball teams were Museum vs. THPO.  The Museum dominated most of the game, but THPO pulled through at the end and we didn't end up losing by too many points.  I was part of the "cheerleading" section and got to sit in the warm sun and watch the game.
The playing field behind the parking lot.

Teams scored extra points for Christmas Spirit

Waiting for the first kick...


The Cheerleaders...kind of

A nice way to end a Friday at work.

Christmas Party

Wednesday was our office Christmas Party.  It was held outside under the Royal Palm Trees and Chickees.  As I sat across from my friend Jessica, eating fry bread and laughing with my co-workers I realized I was smiling for the first time in weeks.  Work has been stressful and I paused and looked around at all the amazing people I work with and thought about what an incredible and truly unique job I have.  

As jingle bells drifted through the swaying palms and the sun glittered through the palmetto I felt content.  Life is good, even with bumps, and potholes, and an occasional fender bender.

We ended the party with a game of White Elephant/Pink Flamingo (get it?) The theme was "As Seen On TV".  Lets just say there were some pretty ridiculous gifts, including the Gopher, the Snuggie, and the Booty Pop (a push up bra for your bee-hind!).  My favorite was a collectible ceramic head of Tom Selleck, Magnum P.I.   

YOURS! for ONLY 5 easy payments of $19.95! 



Two nights a week Bobby goes down and runs live music in Miami, Here.  He is pretty cool.  Miami is only for the awesome people in Florida.  It's not your typical scene of Cadillacs and golf courses. There is culture, art, and music.  Amazing.  Actually what's amazing is that I have not been brave enough to venture down to South Beach.  I'm actually pretty intimidated by all the glam and fashionistas.  Bobby invited me to come visit him at work next weekend so I think I'm going to brave it up and go see what all the fuss is about. 

On Bobby's way to work- Miami


Dance Party

Everyone I know is stressed out.  Must be the holidays and everyone is clearly in need of a break.  Work for me has been particularly stressful and last night I came home and crashed.  I started going through my iTunes and found my favorite songs.  I sat at Bobby's desk in the dark, with his cool earphones that remove all outside sound and listened to the music.

Before I knew it I was having a mini dance party.  All alone, with just the music.  I am the worst dancer in the world but who doesn't love dancing, especially when nobody is watching?

My best friend Caitlin, Jess and I would have dance parties in junior high.  Jess had a black light bulb and we would screw it into her night stand light and turn off all the lights and then practice our dance moves to Backstreet Boys.   Practice makes perfect for those junior high dances!  We would have the best time, laughing and making up new moves.  But the best thing about dance parties is that everything else in your world disappears and pretty soon its just you and the music.  

In my head I am the best dancer in the world.  Or sometimes I am the lead singer in the band.  Either way I am awesome and stress free.  


Wheat Thins Crisis

I've been feeling extra homesick this past week.  It will be 6 months since I last saw Jess and my Dad.  I feel a little sad and have tended to overreact at the drop of a hat.  I think I know the best medicine, but unfortunately I have to wait a few more weeks for some of those famous Redente hugs.  Yesterday morning was the perfect example of my not so perfect behavior:

5:50 Over slept
5:51 Jump out of bed and trip over my shoes and slam my toe
5:52 Realize I don't have time to wash my hair
5:53 Get ready
6:05 Eat Breakfast
6:12 Pack Lunch
6:14 Realize Wheat Thins are missing from the cupboard
6:15 Search for Wheat Thins, because without them I cannot eat my laughing cow cheese
6:20 Run upstairs and wake up Bobby
        Me-  Have you seen my Wheat Thins!?
        Bobby- mghaghghg
        Me- Do you know where they are?
        Bobby- they're gone
        Me- What do you mean they are GONE?
        Bobby- I ate them
        Me- How am I supposed to EAT MY LUNCH!?
6:25 Realize I'm 5 minutes late, run to the door
6:26 Realize my car keys are missing
6:27 Run around like a maniac looking for keys
6:28 Empty purse twice
6:35 Make Bobby wake up again to drive me to carpool
6:38 Find out I left my lunch on the counter
6:39 Have a good cry in the car
6:50 Get dropped off at carpool
6:51 Reach my hand into my purse and feel my keys in the inside pocket

Needless to say Bobby and I had a good laugh about it at the dinner table.  Only 20 days till I am home sweet home.