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Upended Traditions and Why I love A CHRISTMAS STORY December 8, 2010

Filed under: christine glover,writer — christineglover @ 10:00 am
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One of my favorite Christmas movies is A CHRISTMAS STORY. I’m not sure how many of my followers have seen the movie, but it if you haven’t seen it, I might spoil it with this blog. It is set in the fifties and is about this boy, Ralphie, who desperately wants a BB Gun for Christmas. Everyone tells him he’ll shoot his eye out, even Santa. But he persists in his petitions to receive the BB Gun. Meanwhile, the movie is chock full of adventures, boy adventures, with bullies and snow and double dog dares. The parents are baffled, befuddled, but loving. The Dad (as played by Darren McGavin) is fabulous–especially when he receives his prize from a company: a lamp in the shape of a lady’s leg. Very fun. The entire movie just makes you root for Ralphie and it is heartwarming. I think the reason it works is that this is not a picture perfect family with all its ducks in a row. Martha Stewart traditions don’t prevail. In the end, even the best traditions get upended by the dogs. Their Christmas dinner is destroyed and stolen. What do they do? They go out for Chinese and they have a good time.

And this is how traditions become different for every family. For we all want to have the comfort of the same and the tried and true traditions as we approach the holiday season. But the truth is, traditions get upended all the time because of health problems, family problems, money problems, and the list goes on. Last year we traveled to Texas just before Christmas because my father-in-law was ill, and we wanted to see him one more time. I remember another year when my daughter was in pre-school and her teacher said her mom was so sick that year that they didn’t shop at all for Christmas. They clipped money to the tree, made a big pot of chili and hung out in their PJs. Then they went out the day after Christmas and spent their money at all the sales. A new tradition was born out of a serious necessity. This year I know a friend, my neighbor, who has ill parents on both sides of the family. They’ve got three young children. They won’t be home for Christmas because they’re traveling 14 hours to two different sets of parents to support them during this holiday season. Together we brainstormed how to create a solution and a “new” tradition for this year. One that would be fun for the kids and would take the pressure off the parents as they cope with their ailing ones.

See, that is why A Christmas Story works. Because it shows that it is in how we respond to the winds of change that we recreate new bonds and forge new traditions. So this year, as we head into the holiday season, my wish for all of my readers is that they kick back, lift off as many of the “shoulds” from their shoulders, and create new traditions in the face of any setback.

Happy Holidays and for Your Reading Pleasure click the links below to learn about other folks and how they cope with the holidays!

A Christmas Story
Bits and Pieces

Goodness Me It Is Goodie Making Time! December 6, 2010

December is here! It’s time to make some goodies. And I’ve got some retro blogs with some of my favorite receipes for the holidays in them. First up? Oreo Truffles thanks to my Heart of Dixie friends at The Writing Playground.

Next? My fabulous friend Lori’s mini eggnog loaf cakes. Here is the recipe:

Lori’s Eggnog Mini Loaves
2 1/4 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup eggnog
1/2 cup melted butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp rum extract (I couldn’t find any so I used imitation and it was fine)
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. In another bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, eggnog, butter and extracts. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until moistened. Pour into three greased 5 3/4 by 3 inch by 2 inch loaf pans (I used eight smaller cute pans with neat Christmas imprints at the bottom–and they turned out great!–planning cupcakes next). Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes till a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing and putting on wire racks.
Yield’s 3 loaves, or 8 mini mini loaves.

I’d love some more fun and easy recipes. What do you make every year that gives your family happy hearts?


Countdown to Christmas December 1, 2010

We’re counting the days till Christmas morning. We’ll be busy running around buying presents, planning events, watching Darling Teenager perform in her voice recital, baking and making our annual Christmas goodies (yes, stay tuned for the recipes!), putting together an Angel Tree package for an adopted senior (last year I had an elderly man who wanted a stuffed animal–loved that!), sending Christmas cards, making calendars and photo albums for our friends & family………


And I love it. I love the candles glowing, the light of the tree illuminating our family room, the good food, the friends and the celebrations. I love learning about the other cultures and their traditions during this time.

What is your favorite holiday memory? What special cultural things do you do that make your holiday special?


Christmas Fun While I’m in Texas December 23, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — christineglover @ 3:23 am

I’m pretty busy dealing with family stuff, but even though I am in Texas, I want to say “hi” to all my friends in blog land.

First up, a funny beer band:

Bowen Beer Band does a Christmas Carol

I Want A Hippopotamus for Christmas

And a good one, Carol of the Bells, Mannheim Steamroller.



One More Sleep! December 24, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — christineglover @ 12:21 pm
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I have to admit I am a sucker for Christmas morning. And this year is no exception. We are incredibly blessed during a very difficult time in our world. We have our health, a beautiful new home, and a healthy child. My husband and I still enjoy rattling around the cage together after 23 years of marriage. Life is good.

I am also following my heart and pursuing my dreams because I have the support of my family.

And I’ve learned that I have the ability to write in any circumstance. If I have an hour a day or so, give or take, I can keep plowing forward. That is a good thing to know should I return to the workforce after my daughter goes to college.

I’ve given myself time to pursue the goal and a deadline for publishing. If I am not published by the time I am 50, I will reevaluate and look to getting a part time job as well as continue my writing. I thought at first I would give it up completely, but I have no desire to do that and now I know I can do both–heck I am raising my child and writing. Why can’t I work and write for nothing till I am published.

The greatest gift is knowing you have found your passion and are pursuing it without regard for the reward or the end of the game.

One more sleep till Christmas, but in this house, I feel I have already been given the greatest of all gifts… home, health, happiness!


Deadlines in a Surreal World December 23, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — christineglover @ 12:28 pm
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I want to do Book in a Week. But it starts January 5th and I am not sure I can give this 3rd book what it needs if I rush through it. I counted the pages left and I need to revise/work on 10 pages a day over 10 days if I want to finish it before the 5th. I don’t see that happening. Not realistically in my world of being mom, wife, maid, and friend over the next 12 days. Christmas is off, the first is off, and surprises happen. Meanwhile, I am hosting 3 more events at my place. When am I supposed to focus on 10 pages a day?

I am seeing where I am at by this Friday. Then I will make a decision.

If someone were paying me, I would have no choice. But how do I justify time away from my other “jobs” if I am not getting paid for this one?


Christmas Week December 22, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — christineglover @ 2:50 pm
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I managed to get through a weekend where I had to organize and hold a work party for my DH and held a sleepover for the little miss. We also delivered goodie bags to 8 neighbors. Writing accomplished-zero. Monday morning, 3 sleeps till Christmas and I hope to accomplish some writing this week until the 25th. We’ll see if I succeed. At this point, merely writing a half an hour a day might be more manageable, with less guilt, and it’s equivalent to 100 words a day. Anything more is a crapshoot.

Goals for the week:

*write Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday
*write a minimum of half an hour a day or more on each of those days
*continue reading about writing
*ponder the BIAW course and decide if I want to take it by Friday morning