Christmas Countdown Post by SMJ

Christmas Countdown, Behind, But Still Trying!

I know, I’m lagging behind again. Sandra’s been writing like crazy and won’t let me near the keyboard! She also isn’t done with her holiday baking or shopping. That’s the only reason I don’t feel TOO bad. Actually, she just pulled four mini loaves of Cranberry Orange bread from the oven. I might have to see if I can sneak a piece after I finish this. With my luck, Lil Sock will beat me to it, though. That kid has a terrible sweet tooth. It doesn’t hurt that he lives with Sandra, too. Sock Mittens & Shovel

Anyway, I just wanted to give you a peek at the outside here. We got a little more snow last night. Here’s a pic of my buddies, the Mitten Sock twins. They just finished helping Sandra shovel the driveway and sidewalk. They don’t get out much except in winter. Sandra loves how they keep her hands toasty warm in the winter though. They’re her favorites on cold days that she has to go outside.

HeBirdhouse & sidewalkre’s a shot of the sidewalk and step to the front door. I think they did a pretty good job, how about you?

They worked extra hard because they wanted it to be safe for the mailman/woman, or any other folks who might be delivering packages. Those folks all work so hard. They shouldn’t have to trudge through snowy and slippery sidewalks. Sock Munkees salute all the U. S. Postal Service men and women for the extra hours and friendly greetings they share during this super busy time. Hats off to UPS, FedEx, and all the other delivery service personnel who try so hard to get everyone’s packages to them before Christmas. I added some links to these folks so you can check holiday dates and deliveries.

For now, Sandra’s clammering to get back to work. She’s almost done with the Valentine’s Day novella. Yeah! Anyway, here are a couple of more pictures of our snowy day here in Colorado. It’s not so much cloudy today (though it looks like it) as still foggy. If you don’t have any snow, you can use these pics to make it feel more like Christmastime for you.

Catch ya later!   SMJ

Hidden moutains

This is to let you see how the mountains have disappeared in the fog. Sorry about the screen being in there, but it didn’t really matter. The Rocky Mountains can’t be found. LOLSMJ

backyard snow

The view from our backyard toward the big field out back. This one is to show you how foggy it is. Those tracks in the snow are from Rudy playing.

front porch shot

Here’s our front patio. Since we don’t use it in the winter, we don’t shovel it. The foot prints are from fixing the fireplace vent. 🙂

 

 

 

An SMJ Christmas Countdown Moment

Giving Hope at Christmas!

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Good morning from the little village and lowly manger at Sandra’s house. I love this display Sandra puts up every year. I asked her for a picture and she sent me this one taken first thing in the morning with the lights on. Isn’t it awesome and peaceful at the same time? It helped remind me of why we celebrate Christmas in the first place (it’s Jesus’ birthday!) after my crazy shopping frenzy the other day, so I wanted to share it with you. I hope you don’t get too carried away with all the parties, shopping, and craziness of the holiday season like I did. Remember to take some time and think about the event that started it all.Sock sharing w Salvation Army

After you do, maybe you’ll feel like giving someone else hope this Christmas. I have a great and easy way to do that. Drop some change or bills in the Salvation Army bucket. I met the man in the background and a lady who was too shy to be in the picture, ringing bells for the Salvation Army the other day. They were so friendly and happy. They were giving of their time to ring the bells and said Merry Christmas to pretty much everyone who walked by. You didn’t even have to put money in to get a smile from them, but it always got a little bigger when someone did.

The Red Kettle fund drive began in 1891, by Salvation Army Captain Joseph McFee in San Francisco. He wanted to give the large numbers of poor a Christmas dinner but needed a way to fund it. A memory from his sailor days in Liverpool England gave him the idea. The story of how he started the Red Kettle campaign is really interesting. I think you will enjoy reading more about it. Just follow the link to learn more. Here’s an interesting piece of trivia. This is the 125th year for the Red Kettle Campaign. It was kicked off at the Dallas Cowboys vs Carolina Panthers game on Thanksgiving Day.

I had a lot of fun hanging out with the bell ringers that day. I hope they raised a lot of money to help others in need. IS the season of giving. How have you given hope or volunteered this season?

Catcha later!

SMJ

SMJ’s Christmas Countdown is Back!

Another edition of SMJ’s Christmas Countdown!

TodaIMG_0946y has been a busy day. I got up early, had a breakfast of hot cocoa and peanut butter graham crackers so I would have plenty of energy. See, it’s getting late in the season and I haven’t finished shopping for my family and friends. By doing it today, I think I’ll get in just under the deadline to receive it before Christmas. If I’m lucky, and being a sock monkey I usually am, I might get it a few days early so I’ll have time to wrap them up. And, yes, I know that’s another one of Sandra’s favorite mugs, but she let me borrow it since it’s been so cold outside I wanted to be reminded of warm weather. She said I could use her Ron Jon mug from Cocoa Beach, Florida. I think it added to my energy thinking of all that warm air and sunshine.

So, after that scrumptious breakfast, I ran downstairs and hopped on the computer. You have to get uSock online shoppingp early to get on before anyone else. Here I am typing in my order on one of several websites I visited. I have a long list of gifts so I need to visit a lot of different online stores. If I can’t find everything online, I’ll have to sweet talk Casey into taking me out. Don’t worry, she will. She loves hanging out with me.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to type on a keyboard when your fingers are as stubby as mine? Well, let me tell you, it’s not easy. I had to back space and correct a bunch of times before I got the item number entered correctly. I had a feeling this was going to take a while and I was right. By the time I finished it was time for lunch.

In need of some fresh air, I called up a friend and we met for lunch at McDonalds. I think he supersized his meal. He SM lunch on way to COis a pretty good sized monkey. Quite a bit bigger than me. I’m more of a Happy Meal kinda guy. Besides, you get cool toys to play with while you wait for everyone else to finish eating.

When we were finished with lunch, my friend dropped me back at my house because I needed to finish shoppinSock at the computerg.

As you can see, I’m hard back at it. With these fingers I’m not sure I’ll ever get finished. I guess I should focus on one thing at a time, so I can finish. I’ll sign off for now.

Oh, one last thing. Are you done with your Christmas shopping? If so, leave me a comment letting me know how you did it so I can do it that way next year.

Catch ya later, alligator!

SMJ

SMJ’s Christmas Countdown Continues

Apologies, Apologies for missing so many days of the Christmas Countdown!

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I really have to apologize. There is no excuse for my lack of posting the past few days except…no, there’s no excuse. Can I make it up to you by giving you some M&M’s? I don’t mind sharing even though M&M Peanuts are my favorite.

You’re probably thinking, what’s he doing with M&M Peanuts. Didn’t he just recently make chocolate chip cookies?

I know, but I needed a change from cookies. Besides, I know I’ll be making more cookies over at Sandra’s someday soon. She likes to bake up a bunch of different kinds of cookies. I can’t wait to find out what we’ll make this year. One cookie she makes that I really like looks like a candy cane. They’re fun to make and eat. If she makes them, I’ll try to remember to post a picture. I’ll also see if she’ll share the recipe with you, though I can’t promise. You know how people can be about ‘secret’ recipes.

So, while there are other things to tell you about, I thought I would show you what I was doing yesterday when I should have been posting. See, it was a SNOW DAY for most of the schools in the area. You know what that means, right? We hChristmasTreead a bunch of snow! I mean a bunch! Oh, first, let me show you how snowy and cold it was with a picture Sandra sent me. I know, I know, it’s another Christmas tree picture, but look out the window behind the tree. That’s not just snow on the window, that’s how hard it was snowing outside. The little dog at the bottom of the picture is Rudy, Sandra’s dog. Here’s a fun piece of trivia. Rudy is a rescue from Japan. Yep, you read that right, Japan. Before you ask, no, he doesn’t bark in Japanese, silly.

As you can see from that picture it was pretty crazy weather. We had to wait until the afternoon to go outside and play because it was too windy. When it stopped snowing and the wind eased up a little bit, some of my Sock
Munkee family here at Mom’s house and I went outside to play in the snow.

IMG_20151215_052233Yes, yes, that is a reindeer Sock Munkee, but it isn’t the one from the last post. I’m still hoping Mom might bring him home for Christmas. Although, as long as he finds a good home, I’ll be happy and I know Santa will make sure he does.

This is only part of the crew. They pushed past the rest of us and ran out the door. Then they all jumped in the snow and started singing. Silly, silly, monkeys.IMG_20151215_052159

Over to the right, you can see a couple more of the family. See the one with the orange sweatshirt? He never takes that thing off. He’s such a Syracuse fan. He watches or listens to all the games. When they don’t win or at least play well, he is not fun to be around. He pouts and grumbles for hours. Now that I think about it, he acts kind of like Sandra does when her Yankees don’t do well. Sheesh, sports fans are a little crazy.

FIMG_20151215_052447or now, here’s one more picture of all of them after we came in from playing.
I’m not in the picture, because I took it . I’m getting to be pretty good with the camera. Don’t you think so? It’s a pretty good family pic, but there’s still more family. I’ll have to remember to get Mom or Casey to take one of all of us for Christmas so you can see everyone.

I promise to try and do more catching up tomorrow. What did you do on your last snow day?

Later!

SMJ

SMJ’s Christmas Countdown #10

Christmas Tree Viewing with New and Old Friends.

Welcome back everybody! I think this will be the last time for a Christmas tree post. Well, unless I see one that I just can’t resist showing you. If that happens I’ll sneak it into a post somewhere. Teehee. Hmmm, that reminds me. I haven’t posted Sandra’s decorated Christmas tree yet. Look for it in a future post.

Let’s start tIMG_20151209_075649his adventure through Christmas trees with an introduction to a new Sock Monkey, Reindeer Sock. I can’t remember ever seeing a monkey with antlers before, but I try not to judge by looks. Besides, he is pretty cute. He’s also generous. See the sticker on the floor next to him? It says Sock Monkey Peppermint Candy Canes. Really, they were labeled as HIS candy canes, so there was no doubt who they belonged to. However, he shared them with anyone who came by him. What a guy! I LOVE candy canes. If we hang them on the tree at my house they don’t last long because I keep climbing up the tree and eating them. I know, it’s naughty, but I just like them so much! Mom just shakes her head and reminds me I still have to eat dinner. Anyway, back to Reindeer Sock. I really wanted to bring him home with us, but mom said no. I didn’t gripe or whine, though. It is only a couple weeks until Christmas. I don’t want anymore naughty marks on Santa’s Naughty or Nice list. I did glance up at her soon after we walked away from him and she had this silly little smile on her face. That usually means she has a surprise planned. I wonder if she already arranged for Reindeer Sock to live with us after Christmas. I hope so. If not us, I hope someone gives him a great home because he’s such a sweet kid.IMG_16691559204088

The next friend I wanted to introduce you to is hidden inside this shiny tree. Can you see him? Look right in the middle and you’ll see two little eyes and a pink nose. That’s Pooh, Casey’s kittie. When I saw this picture I imagined I was in a safari with lions and tigers hiding everywhere. Then I remembered there aren’t any white, frilly, trees in the jungle and they definitely wouldn’t have pink and blue lights on them. Whatever Pooh was thinking, he looked a little silly with all the white branches and sparkling lights around his little face. He’s usually not this daring. On the other hand, his brother Tigger? He’s another story.

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You met Tigger before. He was in the black and white picture I had in a previous post. His eyes were glowing just like the tree lights in that picture. Here I think he’s trying to help decorate. Granted, it’s more likely he was trying to knock it over or grab something off of it to play with. Tigger is one of those kitties who looks for trouble. He really doesn’t have to look hard. It usually finds him.

I shouldn’t pick on him too much. He’s a Cool Cat. Like how I did that, made him sound like he’s the Cat’s Meow. Oh, someone stop me!

“Thanks, Tigger.” He gave me a little swat with his paw (no claws, he wouldn’t do that) to snap me out of silly line phase I’d fallen into. See, I can always count on Tigger to help out.

Next up in the Christmas tree tour today is Casey’s tree. This one is reminiscent of CharlieIMG_20141201_101205 Brown’s tree in A Charlie Brown Christmas. The show came out in 1965 and it’s still a favorite of people everywhere. Just so those of you living out here in Colorado’s time zone don’t miss it, here’s a link to all the best Christmas movies and where/when to watch them. I don’t think A Charlie Brown Christmas will be on again until Christmas Eve. Although, you can see his tree right here. Or, Casey’s version of his tree. She puts it up every year. I think she feels sorry for all the passed over trees left in Christmas Tree lots. This is her way of telling them someone loves them no matter how many needles they’ve lost. Isn’t that what Christmas is all about, showing love to the world? That’s what I believe.

What do you think is the true meaning of Christmas. I’d love to hear it. Leave a comment and I promise I’ll read it and comment back. Connecting, that’s another great part of Christmas!

More later!

SMJ

#9 on SMJ’s Christmas Countdown

Find a Great Book for Christmas!

IMG_20151210_081114Hey everybody! I don’t know about you, but I love books. Of course, you already knew that since I help promote Sandra’s books. What you don’t know is I love going to the library. I think I got that from Granny. She lives behind a library and walks over a couple of times a week. Man, can that old lady read.

Anyway, I stopped into the local library the other day and took some pics with the trees theIMG_20151210_081031y have displayed around the place. This one was pretty cool with all different kinds of ornaments on it. I liked sitting by it. It made me feel as special as a present.

This one has hats and scarves on it. I think, but I’m not sure, the hats are going to be given to kids who don’t have hats to keep their heads warm in the cold. It was decorated by the Loomy Knitters and is appropriately called the “Hat Tree.” Pretty cool for the library to do something like that. I liked that they used the hats to decorate the tree. It looks like the tree is playing dress up.

This next one might be my favorite. It’s called the “Oragami Tree.’ All the ornaments, IMG_20151210_080928eve the gold star on top are made with paper. That’s a lot of folding and creasing. I hope it wasn’t one person doing all the work. Can you imagine how long that would take? Some of these ornaments are really detailed. Although I’m usually not into white trees, this one really shows off the paper ornaments.

These three trees were brought to you by the Loveland Public Library. Right now they have a special Winter reading program going on. Click the link above and you can learn all about it. Kids from K-12 can win prizes for reading this winter. Cool deal!

If you visit the library, I’ll bet you can find some of my favorite Christmas books. A Christmas Carol, The Nutcracker, The Night Before Christmas, and of course the original The Christmas Story about baby Jesus. Sandra has a set of all four books and they’re pop-up books. In The Night Before Christmas one there’s a page where Santa pops up while putting presents under the tree. In The Christmas Story, the first page has a donkey and lamb that pop up. These were the books she read to her boys at Christmas time before they grew up. She still has them and someday her boys will probably read them to their kids. It’s one of those Christmas tradition things.

So, do you have a favorite Christmas book? Leave a comment telling me what it is so I can go to the library and check it out.

Time to go grab a book to read before I go to bed. Until next time!

SMJ