Join Me on Vacation

It’s that time of year. No, not the one where we stress ourselves by chasing our tail to parties and shopping for gifts. Vacation time!

This year, my husband and I are heading to the South to visit family…and experience the joys of the holiday season in Branson, Missouri. Maybe while I’m gone, some angels will drop by my house and wrap all the gifts and spruce up the decorations.

I know I’ve been pretty quiet the past month, and it’s probably that December will be another “one post per week” time her at Sharon Lee Hughson, Author’s blog. I’ll try to jump online while I’m away (for ten days) and give you a sample of my trip to “Nashville of the Ozarks.” But I’m not making any promises.

To whet your appetite for the trip, here’s a brief itinerary:

  • Today: Fly to OKC
  • Tomorrow: Spend the day with my Aunt Betty
  • Sunday: Travel to Branson and see THIS
  • Monday: Vacate…yes, that’s the verb for what you do on vacation. I know you think it means something else, but right here and right now, it means I’m vacationing.
  • Tuesday: Watch the Miracle of Christmas
  • Wednesday & Thursday: Cruise the town, see some sights, sample some goodies, more vacating
  • Friday: Check out the Dixie Stampede
  • Saturday: Squeeze in any last minute “must see” action
  • Sunday: Return to OKC and fly home

No, that’s not all we’re going to do. But if you’ve read any of my other posts on vacation (like this one or this one), then you know I’m NOT a fan of booking every day with activities.

In short, that’s a key to stress for me…and I vacate to relax. (Notice what I did there? Using my new definition in a sentence. Oh, yeah. Oxford will be adding that definition to their dictionary soon.)

Christmas is first about Christ and second about the twinkling lights. While we’re in Branson, we also plan to check out the glory of the lights. Lights in the square and in one (two or even all three) of the drive through light shows they have in Nashville of the Ozarks.

Have you been to Branson? What would you suggest is a “must see”?

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It’s a short work week – and other reasons to be grateful

Another Friday. Another week of life slid past. Where did it go?

Maybe the week seemed short because there were only four work days.

Or we could be getting old.

Nah! Short work week all the way.

Here’s this week’s gratitude memes in review (only five since it IS a short week and all):

Monday

Do you light off fireworks? My kids are adults and they still play with sparklers.
Do you light off fireworks? My kids are adults and they still play with sparklers.

Tuesday

Most of the time my cat lays UNDER my lounger, but he's keeping my company.
Most of the time my cat lays UNDER my lounger, but he’s keeping my company.

Wednesday

Wash away the dead weight, my friend. Be free to pursue your dreams.
Wash away the dead weight, my friend. Be free to pursue your dreams.

Thursday

I apologize to all the golfers and fishermen. Your good times bore me.
I apologize to all the golfers and fishermen. Your good times bore me.

Friday

Hey but I'm outside getting my daily dose of Vitamin D so I'll stop complaining now
Hey but I’m outside getting my daily dose of Vitamin D so I’ll stop complaining now

What are you feeling thankful for this week? You made it through another one. It’s the weekend.

Life is short. Celebrate everything.

Home for the Holidays

No snow flurries accompanied the holiday bustle this year, but that didn’t stop the flurry of activity. Whenever my sons come home for the holidays, things get a little more boisterous around the house.

What’s not to love about being awoken from a deep sleep by your son yelling – at his computer game? Okay, maybe he was yelling at the people he was playing the game with. Isn’t that just semantics? When it’s after midnight and you have to get up at 5am the next day for work, rude awakenings such as this are just – rude!

It’s so refreshing to be quietly enjoying a book on the couch and have your adult son demand, “What’s for lunch?” I don’t know? What are you making me? He’s always so surprised and almost has a hurt tone of voice when he realizes, “We’re on our own for lunch?” Oh, yes, you are on your own.

Look at them enjoying their Christmas cookie tradition
Look at them enjoying their Christmas cookie tradition

I didn’t paint a single Christmas cookie this year. The mess they made and the haranguing they gave each other while doing it was quite entertaining. We managed to keep our most important Christmas morning traditions. We didn’t even have to turn on lights in order to read the Christmas story from Luke chapter two. Oh, the glories of an iPad!We’ve had a few fun moments playing Just Dance 4. “You’d have to do this for hours to burn any calories” (my youngest) has morphed into “I had to take a break after 28 minutes” (my oldest). Something about sitting in front of a computer tends to keep the cardiovascular system from operating at optimal capacity.

On the 29th, Tanner’s girlfriend came to stay with us for a week. We went to a Portland Trailblazers’ game at the Rose Garden that night after picking her up from the bus station.

There were shopping trips to spend gift cards and eating meals out. Returned gifts have been extinct in our household since the invention of gift cards. Of course, judging by the lines at the Customer Service counters, this isn’t true in the lives of everyone.

Christmas morning joy
Christmas morning joy

Holidays meant I didn’t write. I apologize for missing a week of posts on my blog. I had good intentions, but when my sons wanted to play a game or we had to head out for another social obligation, the intentions went to the resolution graveyard. Welcome to January! I’m pretty sure plenty of other new graves will be dug there within the next few weeks.

As much as my “bah humbug” rampaged in the weeks leading up to the holidays, I must admit that they weren’t as stressful as I feared. Isn’t that the way of things? We worry, fret and stress only to be disappointed surprised when things aren’t as bad as we expected.

Happy New Year! What are your goals for this new year?