December 30, 2009

One man's trash... Posted by Lorraine Bartlett Hubby and I have several Christmases. Friday morning, we did stockings with his mother. Friday evening, we did a presents exchange with my family. On Saturday night, hubby and I did our own gift exchange. I like that. It draws out the fun, gives you something to look forward to. Stocking stuffers are always fun. We've been trying to cut down on the goodies that go into them (think chocolate: milk, dark, chili (can't wait to try that one), little boxes of Russell Stovers), but inevitably, they stockings are stuffed with them. Hubby tries to be good, and somehow I always end up with purple, pink, and turquoise pens--makes it easier to find the changes when I edit a manuscript. And he always includes those little Post-It tabs that I can use when editing a ms to mark the pages I have changes on. (By the time I'm done reading, there's a rainbow of tabs sticking out!) My brother always gets me the best stuff. This year he gave me the Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince DVD (which I did not get to see at the theater), AND Julie and Julia (which I did), AND the best of Will Farrell on Saturday Night Live, and even MORE stuff. (He really goes overboard and I LOVE IT.) On Sunday, he called me to ask what I'd gotten from my hubby. LOTS of DVDs (it's going to be tough to sit down and write the next book and NOT be tempted by all those lovely movies and the entire run of several TV shows). So I dutifully gave him low-down. His puzzled reaction: "I thought you said you got good stuff." Hey, I happen to love every one of those movies, including A Christmas Story, Inside Moves, Murder By Decree--I haven't seen the latter two in a long time and wonder if they'll hold up to what I remember. It'll be interesting to see Murder By Decree again (Sherlock Holmes as played by Christopher Plummer, with James Mason as Watson), especially considering I plan to go see the new Sherlock Holmes movie with Robert Downey Jr. (who I love!!!). And it was odd to find out that the director of Murder By Decree also directed A Christmas Story. Talk about opposite ends of the spectrum! My brother was also absolutely horrified to find out that hubby had also given me the 1096-page biography of the Queen Mum. I had to shake my head at that one. I've already read the first two chapters and can't wait to really dive into it. So I guess it's true--one man's trash is another man's (or woman's) treasure. And what did Santa bring YOU this Christmas? -------------------------------------------- P.S. I hope you'll join me on Saturdays on the Cozy Chicks Blog. They'll be returning on Sunday with a new Chick--and I'll be returning on Jan. 16th (we have a guest taking my Jan. 9th spot.) See you there!
Say "au revoir" but not "Good-bye" posted by Jeanne Munn Bracken This is it, folks. The final Writer's Plot blog. Finito. Done. Or not... Writing a weekly blog was a lot like writing a weekly column, which I did for 22 1/2 years. So the past not-quite-three years was like Old Home Day for me, except on Wednesday night instead of Thursday or, when I was really pushing the deadline envelope, Sunday night. It does seem, though, appropriate, that I get the last word, because 2010 is probably going to be a transitional year for the Brackens. I plan to retire next summer and kick back, relax, sleep late, and write the projects I've been researching for years. And besides that, I have other plans: finish two quilts I started (including a "quilt-in-a-day" quilt) make quilts using the bundles of fabric I bought in Alaska and Hawaii knit lots find a volunteer job rocking babies (since no grandchildren are on the horizon) clean the clutter and downsize (yeah, we've heard that before) Write write write write do oral history interviews with elderly folks volunteer at the Library of Congress volunteer at the Women's History Museum spend more time with friends and family, including cousins all over the place visit Iceland, Prague, England, Australia, Germany, and Alaska again go to concerts and plays write write write write write with my writing partner Nancy "Coop" Cooper learn to play my keyboard join a choir or chorus learn to play a hammered dulcimer volunteer at my alma mater the University of New Hampshire grow a mound of nasturtiums and put a flower on my summer salads drink enough Guinness or white zinfandel to sing "Proud Mary" at a karaoke bar read read read read read find or develop a group of friends to play cards (not bridge!) or board games read The Gulag Archipelago, all thousands of pages of it take up jigsaw puzzles and do crossword puzzles to my heart's content drive across Canada and visit all the states in the northwest I have missed (6 in all from North Dakota to Nevada) get another dog read a daily newspaper the day it's printed write write write write write with my friend Margie Hilton join a health club and actually go, swimming every day Since I have not yet run out of opinions to share, I will continue blogging; my new website has a blog feature I will figure out and use. ( if you're keeping score) Happy New Year to All, and to all a Good Blog.

Lorraine Bartlett

Five women, five weekdays, many surprises.

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