Merry Christmas!

SMJ’s Last Christmas Countdown Entry

Merry Christmas everyone!

Well, it’s Christmas Eve and I wanted to post this since I’ll be busy with family tomorrow as I’m sure you all will be!

It’s not exactly a silent night, but imagine us singing it to you.

 

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Until next year this is SMJ & Sandra saying have a blessed Christmas and a

joyous New Year!

 

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 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

SMJ’s Christmas Countdown Day 7

Decorating the Christmas tree. Yippee!

Sorry, everyone but I have to interrupt the tree decorating post for a special announcement.

I met SANTA CLAUSE!

Sock and Santa at Christmas Party

Remember I told you about Henderson Management donating a bunch of goodies for our Christmas packages? Well, they also host a Christmas party for children of their tenants every year and I attended. My mom works for them. Anyway, she asked if I could get my picture taken with Santa and they said yes! I was SOOOO happy.

Okay, SMJ and Christmas Lightsback to decorating the Christmas tree.

Like everyone else, I started with the lights. Obviously, that didn’t go so well. I was trying to untangle them when someone plugged them in. It startled me and I ended up in the middle of the tangled string of lights. It took quite a while for mom to get me untangled. By the time they freed me and we got the lights on the tree, I needed a break. So, mom fixed me some hot cocoa.Sock with Hot Cocoa in Sandra's favorite mug.

Mom’s the best. She even gave me extra marshmallows! Can you read the mug? We borrowed it from Sandra. It’s her favorite mug. My mom gave it to her as a gift one year because Sandra always says her characters talk to her until she writes their stories down. I like to use it once in a while in the hopes that characters will start talking to me and I can become a writer like Sandra.

Okay, if you haIMG_20151116_093513ve been following the countdown, you know I really decorated my tree earlier. You remember the picture with me hanging the shoes from the Mastering the Brides book on the tree? No? Here’s a picture of me with the shoes and other ornaments I wanted to put on the tree. It took some time to talk mom into puttiIMG_20151116_094218ng shoes on the tree, but I pleaded my case (and maybe whined just a little) and she gave in.

Of course, she wasn’t thrilled when I climbed up the tree to hang them. She told me I was supposed to use a step stool or some such thing. Personally, I thought climbing was fine, but then, I AM a monkey. 🙂

Next post I’ll show you some of the Christmas treats I made.

So, do you have characters talking inside your head? Or, have you silenced them by writing their stories? Any Christmas stories?

Until next time, this is SMJ signing off.

SMJ w/Day 6 of Christmas Countdown

CHRISTMAS TREATS FOR SOME

MILITARY PERSONNEL!

Hey everyone, I just wanted to post this quick before I have to go run errands. I have a LOT of errands today, so I’ll post more later. At least, I hope to get back and post more later.

I know, I said I’d post about decorating the tree I brought home yesterday, but I had something very important to do last night and I wanted to share that first. My ‘uncle’ Karl is floating out in one of the oceans somewhere with other U.S. sailors. I told Mom and Sandra thought it would be a great idea to send them some stuff. Mom told the people at her office at Henderson Management and they offered to help. I mean REALLY help. IMG_1013 (1)Look at everything they donated to our cause! I guess you can understand what I was doing last night. That’s right. I was boxing all this stuff up. I’m certain all the sailors will enjoy the treats.

We alsoSMJ addressing Christmas cards for sailors got a list of some military personnel and worked up cards to send. I had to pose for a bunch of pictures and then we picked out four of them for the card. I hope the people like them. To the left you’ll see me addressing envelopes, oh and there’s a shot of the card, too. Do you have any idea how long it takes to address envelopes to almost 200 different people? I definitely had writer’s cramp after that endeavor, but it was worth it. I knoSMJ stuffing envelopes with Christmas cards for sailorsw the silly pictures of me will give a chuckle to a lot of folks who can’t be home with their families for Christmas.

To the right, you’ll see me stuffing the cards into all those envelopes. It took more than one cup of cocoa to wash all the yucky taste off my tongue after sealing them. Then again, I’d do just about anything for a cup of cocoa, wouldn’t you?

So, here’s the final pic for now. What do you think of that stack? Huh? Pretty good work, don’t you think? Okay, I’ll admit, Mom and Sandra helped a little.

Well, now you can see why I’m getting a late start today. I slept in after all that work last night. One of the errands I have to run is trying to mail everything. Hopefully, the lines aren’t too long aSMJ with stack of Christmas cardsnd the mail people won’t think I have too much to send. If they let me, I’ll post pictures of sending them off later.

Have you sent cards or treats to some military personnel? Leave a comment letting me know so we can share the love all over!

Until then, have a great day!
SMJ