Out From Under the Umbrella

playing in the rain


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A Humdinger of a Humbug

I am soooo not in the Christmas spirit this year.  I normally love to do all the things.  You know, decorate everything that can have garland wrapped around it, Christmas Tree up Thanksgiving(American) weekend, baking, gifting, more baking.

Not so much this year.  It doesn’t even feel like it should be here.

TheBrit and I did go weekend before last and bought a real tree.  I haven’t had one in ages.  Years ago I bought one of those pre-lit deals.  Swore I’d never have a tree I’d have to put lights on again.  But I thought, what the heck, maybe the smell of the real deal will put me to rights.

It stood in it’s stand bare for a week.  Finally  this past Sunday I decided perhaps I should put something on the Frasier Fur that has been sacrificed for my pleasure. So there it is:

 

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I’ve bought one gift. A Star Wars Planetarium for my nephew.

We decided that since we’re not in the jingliest of moods we’d do some things for other people to get outside of ourselves.  We saw a panhandler sitting on the corner in nothing but a undershirt, a pair of trousers, and shoes.  As we were headed to that hell on earth, otherwise known as Wal-Mart, we decided to get him some boxes of non-perishable food and a hoodie.

We handed it to him, still in the bags, through the car window along with a little cash and wished him a Merry Christmas.  He said, “It’s Christmas?  I didn’t even know it was.  I don’t keep up with it anymore.”

At first TheBrit was a bit concerned as to what he might purchase with the cash.  “I don’t care what he does with it,” I said, “If I lived on the street like that I’d probably want a drink, too.  Plus, many homeless people who do drink only drink beer as it’s an appetite suppressant and it’s cheap. They don’t necessarily drink to be drunk.  The drink to not be hungry.”

Then we went by a local restaurant to pick out a child’s name for the local Tree of Giving campaign.  The wish lists are supplied by local school system social workers, The Children’s Advocacy Center, The Methodist Home for Children, The Local Battered Women’s Shelter, The Local Recreation Center and The Sheriff’s Boy’s Ranch.  There were only a few names left.  We picked one and purchased everything on the child’s list plus a little something extra, wrapped them, and returned them to the drop off location.

I should be more thankful, I know.  I have so many reasons to be.  I’m still having a humdinger of a humbug. Bah!

I’ll count my three biggest blessings and cuddle with them.  Here I am with two of them doing just that(the hubs doesn’t want his countenance published):

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21 Comments

Manufacturing Malice

The more extreme right side of Christianity has drawn attention to a certain red cup.  Now the media is being blamed for this supposed war because…wait for it….they reported on it.  redcup

Even The Donald has gotten in on the action.  When he’s president everyone will say “Merry Christmas!”.  I’m not sure how he’s going to accomplish that, but okay.

A number of my Christian friends have seen through the red cup controversy.  They see how silly it is.  They see what a caricature it makes them out to be.  The arguments are endless about it, still, with some saying it’s not just about the cup.  It’s that it’s just one more way that the left is winning.  It’s one more way that their freedoms are being eroded.

Because I’ve also been seeing this in my facebook newsfeed – a lot:

merrychristmas

Since when can we not say, “Merry Christmas?”  I do not know one.single.person. who calls a Christmas tree a holiday tree. What a crock, indeed.  If it did offend me, though, where would I go?  I’m American, too, afterall.  There are times like this, however, when I’d really rather whisper that than say it out loud because this is just embarrassing.

I’m not a Christian.  I do celebrate Christmas.  I put up a Christmas tree.  Not a holiday tree, a Christmas tree.

When I greet people at Christmastime I say, “Merry Christmas!”  When it’s New Year’s I say, “Happy New Year’s!”  Sometimes, when it’s someone I know I won’t see in between Christmas and New Year’s I say, “Happy Holidays!”  Because, well, there’s a lot of holiday packed in a short period of time and they are holidays, for crying out loud.

Do you know what has never, ever, ever happened?  I have never been corrected on any of that.  I’ve never been told I shouldn’t or couldn’t say, “Merry Christmas!”  I’ve never heard anybody say that it shouldn’t be said.

I understand why stores celebrate with “Happy Holidays!”  It’s not a war on Christmas.  It’s not eroding anyone’s freedom to say it, either.  Or celebrate it, for that matter.  It’s because this is a diverse society with any number of Jewish, Muslim, and Christians celebrating various holidays at the same time of year.  Who doesn’t understand that?

If you want to manufacture malice you really need to do it about something else.  You’re making yourselves look like a bunch of narcissists who think the only holidays that should be important to everyone else are yours.