Superb Sunday

This was indeed, a superb Sunday before Christmas. We didn’t have to be out with the masses shopping for last minute gifts, but we were able to use our mad Ninja skills and help our cousins, Rob and Joleen, a/k/a Father Christmas and Mrs. Claus, to pay a visit to our 90 year old Mom before the old boy gets too busy in a couple of days. It was great to surprise her, she enjoyed it a lot.

Mom, Father Christmas, and Joleen
Father Christmas, his wife, and Baby Brother Tim
Father Christmas looking all regal

Joleen is my cousin on Mom’s side of the family. Our mothers were sisters. Aunt Judy died a couple of years ago. Both of Joleen’s parents died within a few months of each other, and that was difficult for her. Her folks were good to all of us nieces and nephews, and we are grateful to have been close when we were growing up. I was older, so I usually babysat everyone, so that was quite different than growing up as a peer or playmate. I was another authority figure to most of my cousins. One said he always wanted to call me “Aunt Kathy”, because he knew I was close to his mom. His mom just died in October. I miss all my aunts.

Mom’s family had quite a few characters in it. And like many families, there were a slug of cousins who were the same age. At one time, my mom, her aunt, and her cousin were all pregnant, and 1951 saw three more males born into the family. Mom’s Mother, Grandma Bobell, always said when more boy babies were born, there would be another war in fifteen to twenty years. Sure enough, Vietnam reared it’s ugly head in the 1960’s. Has anyone else ever heard that? I’ll have to do some research on that subject and let you know. It could be old wives tales or just how population increases, but I though it sounded like the truth. Grandma could really sell a bill of goods, let me tell you. She was pretty funny. She passed away just before my dad did, in 1988.

Rob and Joleen had another engagement after they left Mom’s house. They were going to a NICU, at the request of a grandmother, who wanted her tiny, new grandbaby to see Santa. It was beautiful to hear them say they weren’t sure what the situation was with the baby. They have raised two daughters, and I’m sure they’ll give not only the little angel some comfort and love, they will do it for the baby, parents, and grandparents. Just like they did for my mom. This is what good people do for others at this time of year. Spread blessings even though they are not sure what to do. Just by being there, it says everything. It’s how Jesus wants us to be. I only hope I remember that the next time I’m angry, or the next time I’m too tired, or the next time someone hurts me. I want to respond with love. And patience, and understanding. I have a long way to go. We all do!

I hope this evening finds you safe, warm, and full of love. Thank you so much for reading this, the last Sunday before Christmas. I will be here again tomorrow, and I hope to meet up with you, too.

Suburban Saturday

Maybe Gretna, Nebraska isn’t considered a suburb, since it is it’s own little town. We don’t associate closely with Omaha, or Papillion and LaVista, so I suppose I should have titled this Small Town Saturday. The gist of it is, I’m snug at home, working on a quilt that has a darling scene on it. After it’s gifted, I will make sure to post the finished project. It’s a labor of love. Tomorrow, if time permits, I will begin quilting it.

I simply love to create things. Whether it’s with words or fabrics and thread, I love the whole process. My parents instilled in all of us a great imagination. Some of that, I believe, is from reading. Reading in and of itself helps create things in your imagination, your mind. Whenever I read a book as a child, I usually pictured scenes in my head. The characters were real people. Sometimes, the people resembled the characters in television shows or movies we saw. It was my brain, making something concrete out of something in my imagination, that happened to come from a book. Maybe that is why I still love fiction to this day. To think next year, I will see my name on the spine of a book I wrote is a thrill beyond belief. It won’t be without hard work. My goal is to get the process of writing so ingrained in me that it will be similar to doing a large quilting project, or a remodeling project. I’ve done lots of those over the years. When I was a single mom, it’s how my sons learned to use power tools, and make things. I had learned from watching my dad, and was able to teach them some basics, and with the help of shop class (before schools did away with it).

While I was working on my project today, it occurs to me to be mindful of those who dread the thought of Christmas. There are many, many people who are alone this year. I have been in that position, and it is hard. Yes, I had my children, but it was not the same as having an adult man to be in a relationship with. God blessed me with the Babe, and he even asked me to marry him on Christmas Eve, 1997. I couldn’t make that up. It was wonderful.

Some folks aren’t happy with their lives for one reason or another. Other folks need to make major changes in their lives to have a chance at staying alive until this time next year. Obesity, Alcoholism, Smoking, are all conditions people have control over. Their lives are dependent on it. All around us are people who are not secure in their lives and situations. Jobs can be unstable. Homelessness abounds. Children are cold and hungry. Women (and men) can be afraid of their partners. Abuse, both physical and verbal, is so rampant in life today, we cannot continue to turn a blind eye to situations in front of us. Find a way to become involved to help people who cannot escape these situations on their own.

My brothers have worked out with a cousin to surprise my mom tomorrow afternoon. You’ll see it here, I think we may render the old girl speechless, which is quite a task. Good job, brothers! Can’t wait to share it with you all.

Keep your spirits up this next week. If the holidays are hard for you, take heart. They are hard for me, too. I’ll tell that story later. It’s another one you cannot make up. I like to think of soldiers who are away from home, and hope they know how we appreciate their sacrifices. It’s tough on a family to be separated at times of family celebrations. We are such a great country because of our soldiers, who have kept us free all these years. Thank you all for your service.

First responders, nurses, doctors, workers in nursing homes, hospital workers, anyone in the service industries, know we are grateful for what you do. These are usually thankless jobs. Make sure to thank those who perform these duties.

Thank you for reading today. Let’s meet again tomorrow, and you can hear about our surprise for our 90 year old mother. I’ll be here, I really hope you are.

Finally Friday

I am so blessed. Dan and I have been married for twenty-one years. Prior to that, I was divorced for sixteen years. My ex husband had a huge family, since he was the middle of seven children. We actually babysat some of the older nieces and nephews in our early dating and marriage. Some were in high school when we divorced.

Some of the nieces send us Christmas cards. I feel so lucky to receive this mail from them! I can hardly believe their children are so grown and handsome, and the girls themselves are women of strength and spirit. I thank God for those continued relationships even after all these years. Christmas bears gifts of the type you least expect. And those are the best surprises!

Today was another day working on the quilting project I’m finishing for a friend. The deadline is whenever it’s finished, and that will be before January 1, 2020, so I’m not concerned about anything. It’s good not to be stressed during this busy week.

I’m hoping all of you stay well during the next week, too. I hear the flu is at high in Nebraska, based on the number of prescriptions for flu filled at Walgreens. Isn’t it interesting how data is collected sometimes? I wonder how their figures are broken out by age and sex? Have these people had flu shots?? I hope they all recover with no further complications. Flu can be such a wretched disease. The Babe and I are no longer in the “under 65” age category, so we are in more danger of being very ill. Yes, give us the big flu shot, and the jumbo shingles shot, too. Anything else you have for people of a certain age? Sign us up.

Yes, the time is getting shorter before Christmas. I only have two gifts to wrap, for Gavin, and I hope we have enough wrapping left to do those two gifts. I do wish we had more to wrap, it wasn’t a bad task overall. It used to take me a couple of nights (very late at night) to wrap gifts when the kids were still at home.

If you are driving to where you will be celebrating Christmas, please be careful. In the Omaha, Nebraska area alone, there have been several fatal accidents. Many were folks not wearing seat belts, some were speeding and using alcohol, some were due to weather. Please be careful as you travel, we want you back home safe and sound.

Once again, thank you so much for reading today. I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart. And I’ll see you back here tomorrow. One day closer! Have a good evening.

Christmas Cookies, Part One

Luckily, the curious puppies took a long nap while I was mixing, baking, and cooling a double batch of old fashioned Toll House Cookies. You know, Nestle doesn’t print the recipe on the packages of chocolate chips anymore. I had to look it up online to find one. I seem to remember 1/2 cup less of flour than what they called for. I also use butter. My mom, who baked these delicious morsels every week. We were popular with the neighbor kids when we could share a homemade cookie. They were heavenly. I made them for my kids too. I haven’t made any in a very long time, and these are for the cookie exchange Sunday. These turned out so well, I think they are the best ones I’ve ever made. Yay!



Love my perfect kitchen. The roomiest one I’ve ever had. Enough counter space to hold ingredients and the mixer and the cookie sheets and the cooling racks. Bonus!!
They smelled so good

I am finding a lot to be grateful for this Christmas season. I’m so happy we are on the road to The Babe feeling better, I’m just praying it continues. He still gets pretty tired, but you have to consider age and other things. His pup keeps him busy when he’s not at the Post, and she keeps growing a bunch every week She has done well with the Christmas tree, but she hasn’t grabbed anything off of it. Just thinks the glittery bulbs are balls, and she wants to play. It’s all part of the learning process for all of us.

I’m starting to plan the publishing and releasing the books I’m working on now. I believe my children’s books and the family story of loss will be ready next summer, if not before. And I do really want to take a painting class some time next year. I also want to continue finishing quilts that I have started and not finished. And read more books. And write more, too.

In the next couple days, we’re going to get the cookies finished, get the cards and little gifts mailed to the two grandkids out of state, get house back in order, sew as time permits, (I have a special project to help someone out), and work on some more writing projects. They are whirling around in my head, and need to be captured before they are forgotten. The notes may spur more memories and ideas. The process is continual, and the creative ideas flow when you practice capturing them daily. I’m grateful to God for leading me to this, especially since I’ve always wanted to do it. Next year will be the best yet.

Thank you for reading today. I appreciate it a lot. I’ll be here tomorrow, too. See you then!

Wednesday Blessings

Pretty quiet today. Some days you have to do necessary things to keep your home running well. We did a few errands and this afternoon, it’s sort of a regroup and planning the rest of the week. We have a cookie exchange Sunday and that means one day will be cookie baking day. The dogs will love it. And so will the Babe.

I have started to read a series by fellow Nebraska Writers Guild member Bonnie Lacy. She also wrote a Rage Rising: My Walk Through the Dark Tunnel of Anger, which I just finished. It was a remarkable story. I can understand how anger can bubble up from within a person, especially when a number of terrible things happen one after another. You may find her at the website: http://www.bonnielacy.com. You can find her books, read about her, and correspond with her if you wish. Her second book I’m reading is called “Released, The Great Escapes Series.” It already feels like a book I want to spend time reading and finish soon. That is how I want to write. I want to tell compelling stories. I want to tell stories that make you want to spend the time with on a free afternoon.

I’m just about finished with the Christmas tree. I was going to add a lot more ornaments but decided it had enough. I don’t want to overload it. The ornaments I didn’t put up are a collection of official White House ornaments from 1999 until now. I am collecting them for our grandson Joell. I thought he might like them to remember the time his dad worked in Washington, DC. Those ornaments are pretty cool. This year, it’s a replica of the helicopter used to transport President Eisenhower, the first president to use the helicopter. Last year, it was Truman’s White House.

Official 2018 and 2019 White House Ornaments

I have enjoyed buying these each year, and reading about the history behind the ornament and which President it honors. They are about $25, and well worth it. They are from the White House Historical Society.

Some Favorites for the Memories they Evoke

As kids, my brother and I walked to an area the fire department would flood every winter in a local park for ice skating. There is now a city swimming pool where the site was. We walked quite a way to get there, then put on our skates, and skated around until we were too tired and too cold, and then put our frozen boots back on, and trudged up the hill to our house. It was the best. Mom gave us hot chocolate and cookies. No one else was around, it was like having our own private rink. Sometimes on weekends, we would go to the local horse racing track/hockey rink and skate inside. That was always crowded and peoples skills ranged all the way from beginner to very good. I was learning how to turn and skate backwards. We became quite good. When he left home and went away to school for his freshman and half of his sophomore years, then I went there alone, rarely a girlfriend came along.

Eventually, I believe the rink closed, and they no longer flooded the park area. It was always a fun thing to do and great exercise. When I see ice skates, I think of skating as a kid. Great memory. I even have a figure skate with greenery and glitter instead of a Christmas wreath on the front door.

Looking to get some reading in before we leave to pick up our granddaughter Addison from school. Then off to meet friends for beverages and dinner at the VFW. Wednesdays are fun. Thank you for reading today, I’ll be here tomorrow, I hope you are, too.

Mom’s Addicted to Christmas

On this cold, windy Tuesday evening, we’re snuggled together around the Christmas tree and evening news. The Babe and I both went separate directions today. He had some VFW business to tend to, I needed to take my mom to Hobby Lobby and a couple other places for her last gift cards. She was eager to get out. When you’re 90 and don’t drive, I can understand that.

But to Hobby Lobby?? For Christmas decorations?? This woman begins decorating in October. No kidding. One year she had sixteen trees in her two story, eight room home. At least three five foot or taller trees on the first floor, and one in each of the four bedrooms upstairs. Nothing in the bathrooms, thank goodness. Every year she swears she’s downsizing the decorations. She works very long to string the lights and it’s hard on grey days with her vision problems. She claims she’s half blind, I believe the correct phrase is low vision from a stroke three years ago. She is quite fortunate she did not have any others yet. Its a good thing she voluntarily gave up driving, as it was making her too anxious. I’m glad she gave it up.

As soon as the decorations hit the shelves, she’s wanting to look. Over the past few years, we have scoured the aisles of Shopko (now closed), Hobby Lobby (several trips there every season), Menards (they have always had great decorations), and wherever else she can think. She’s never been to WalMart or Target, so we’re safe from them so far. She started collecting Moose about ten years ago. Her sisters went in together and got her a lighted moose for the yard for her Christmas gift that year.

Mom’s sister Judy called me about it, and the Babe and I happened to be in Menard’s on a Sunday shopping. They had the moose, so I picked it up for them. I was commissioned to take it to her house and assemble it in her living room while she was gone. (She still drove then and was usually gone on Monday). I stole into the house, and it appeared the house was deserted. I set to work.

As I opened the box and connected things to set him up, I heard her voice say, “What do you think you’re doing”? She was upstairs yelling downstairs. I said “Nothing”. She was yelling at the cat, not me. Good old Catholic guilt still has it’s grip on me. She stayed home that Monday because she was tired. She loved the Moose.

Mom’s sisters all loved Christmas decorating. They all did their homes up beautifully. They got together when they all lived in Omaha. Gatherings slowed when one moved to Arkansas thirty years ago. Their mother had passed, one moved away, leaving the three. They gathered when they could, taking turns at each other’s homes. This past October, Mom’s last sister died of cancer, so she is the lone survivor of their family. She is the oldest. Still decorating for all the sisters and their mother.

I’m glad they all loved decorating for Christmas. It means that despite losing their father to a sudden heart attack on Christmas Eve in 1964, they did not adopt the Bah Humbug attitude towards one of the most beautiful seasons there is. The one where we all receive the gift of eternal life through the birth of Jesus. They all carried on for their children and husbands, and their Mother. She lived until 1988, and saw many happy Christmases after losing her husband.

I introduced Mom to Jim Shore a number of years ago. And she had quite a collection of his Santa Clauses. Each is unique, from a different country, and in Jim Shore’s unique workmanship. His figures are dressed in clothing that has quilt blocks in them. Here is a sample of her display.

I am planning on releasing several books next year. One will be the story of losing Grandpa on Christmas Eve when I was twelve years old. I have a friend who experienced the same thing at the same age, and he is my co-author. It will tell a story of dealing with something terrible, and making good come from it. I know you will like it.

Thank you for reading today. Keep decorating and be kind to people you encounter. They may be experiencing some really difficult times. I will be back tomorrow, and I hope you are, too.

Magnificent Monday!

The sun is shining despite some gale force winds and a flurry of snow this morning. I’m so glad I can stay in today, finishing my decorating (maybe) unless I start looking at storage boxes in our basement and rediscover fun stuff. I think Addison remembers a lot from years ago, but maybe not. Surprises are fun.

Talking about surprises, I moved a box of CD’s and saw this one on top. Playing it now. This was such a good one! So, with the help of Eric Clapton, I’m going to get a lot done today, providing the dogs are good and my achy, breaky body holds up.

Eric Clapton. One of the best.

A lot of this music is almost reverent. I believe it was Clapton’s tenth album solo, in 1986. The song, “Holy Mother,” just tears at my heart. A relative was in the throes of several addictions and this song always made me think of him trying to fight his demons. He struggled a very long time. He is over twenty-six years sober. He has a lot to be proud of, but he is modest about it. He has come so far, and I’m so proud of him.

Holy Mother

written by Clapton/Bishop

Holy Mother, where are you?

Tonight I feel broken in two.

I’ve seen the stars fall from the sky.

Holy Mother, can’t keep from crying.

O I need your help this time,

Get me through this lonely night.

Tell me please, which way to turn

To find myself again.

Holy Mother, hear my prayer,

Somehow, I know you’re still there.

Send me please some peace of mind

Take away this pain.

I can’t wait, I can’t wait, I can’t wait any longer,

I can’t wait, I can’t wait, I can’t wait for you.

Holy Mother, hear my cry,

I’ve cursed your name a thousand times.

I’ve felt the anger running through my soul;

All I need is a hand to hold.

Oh I feel the end is come,

No longer my legs will run,

You know I would rather be

In your arms tonight.

When my hands no longer play,

My voice is still, I fade away.

Holy Mother, then I’ll be

Lying in, safe within your arms.

This song helps me heal, it helps me accept things I don’t want to accept. I look at it as a prayer. What do you think?? Is that possible?? I believe it is. Here are a couple of links to YouTube, so you can listen to the song. The first is Clapton alone, the second is Clapton and Pavarotti. Like most good, beautiful music, it can be sung a variety of ways.

Love this guy. His guitar playing is stellar!
Same song, different setting.

Much of what we hear in the backgrounds of our lives can help make our mood. It may depend on the genre of music, some writers can only write while instruments play in their background. I can listen to rock and roll, complete with words, and it peps me up considerably. Jazz in the background makes me get through some really mundane tasks. I have not tried writing to it, but I think it will be the same experience. I can really sew to music. It’s amazing how the repetition helps you with the words, too.

Much of what I listen to, my kids listened to at home. On Sunday mornings, we had our own “Jazz Brunch” and listened to a local radio station who played Jazz from 9 am to NOON on Sundays. It was a great time, we read the paper, ate, talked, and cleaned up the kitchen. Good times!

Thank you for joining me today. If you are out, stay warm, and be kind. Your day will go much better. I hope to see you tomorrow!

Thinking Thursday

Today was a weird day. The Babe (bless his heart) took the dogs to the lower level all day while I cleaned carpets. As I’ve said before, with a puppy in the house, they needed cleaning. I wanted to do them before I put up our new Christmas tree, so today was the day. It took several hours. I’m always amazed at what gets picked up, as well as what is picked up with the vacuum. Good thing we have those helpers in this modern world.

One thing I discovered today is all the magazines on my side table in the living room. Yes, I still subscribed to magazines until recently. I have two piles of magazines for quilting, sewing, coutour sewing, and others from Omaha Magazine, and Smithsonian Magazine. Quite a few were free subscriptions, and I’m a sucker for printed matter, especially that I can learn from. Does anyone else subscribe to magazines anymore? I do.

As most of them were for hobbies, there comes a time when you realize you probably will never, ever have enough time to make even half of those quilts you affixed a Post It note to. And don’t get me started about the outfits I once sewed with great success. I did love creating clothing throughout my life. I sewed my clothes, my kids’ clothes, and many, many beautiful bridesmaids dresses. And dressed two beautiful brides. I loved every minute of it.

I tried picking up where I left off with clothing construction a few years ago. And wow! It really was different! The patterns were way different the way they explained how to do things. Some were better, some were way worse, some made no sense at all. Sizing?? Well, the patterns for a younger, fitter me were quite different than the ones for retired, post-menopausal and breast cancer me. And fitting?? I used to be 5’9″ tall, much smaller in the waist, almost no bustline, and a bit hippy. I’m now 5’5″ tall, have nearly no waist, quite a bustline, and still hippy. Twenty five years ago, I could always just lengthen the torso, adjust the waistline, lengthen sleeves, crotch depth, and presto, change-o! There was a perfectly fitting garment. I’ve made a couple of tops in the past three years, nothing too great.

I do need to make the decision about to sew or not to sew. I have a lot of great fabric purchased for a lot of great clothes, along with a lot of great fabric for some really nice quilts, so next year will be the year of truth. I will either go back to creating clothing or I will not. If I do not, I will find a local school who is participating in the complete education of kids which will include domestic arts, sewing, or whatever you want to call it. It is a wonderfully creative art. You will not be outfitted like anyone else. That is what I loved about it. I just need to find out how to fit my later in life body. Quite a challenge.

It’s a funny thing about me. I see clothing on tv or in print, and I wonder how they made it. I see an outfit on a rack, and I have to touch the fabric and see what kind of body it has. I have to look at the seams and the lining and see how it was made. I wonder if that looks or sounds strange?? It’s just a huge part of me. And no matter how long you wait, certain things always come back in style. The “modern” sleep sacks for babies?? I made many of them in 1971 when I was expecting my first baby. I finally gave them to Goodwill a couple of years ago. They were still in great shape, clean, unstained. I tried to give them to homes for unwed mothers, but they only accepted new things. That made me sad. I hope someone got them that enjoyed them.

Whether or not I continue sewing clothing, I will for sure keep quilting. Even if I make a quilt from a pattern and use the same color ways as the pattern, it’s still my own creation. It’s amazing how I can see the progression in my skills in quilting over the past fifteen years. I know fifteen years from now, I will be able to see the improvement in my writing, too.

All of these hobbies I have are creative and they all take practice. All of them. I enjoy it all a lot. If only there were more hours in a day!

Tomorrow is definitely decorate the tree day. It will be fun. I hope you all have a good evening. Thank you for reading today, and I hope to see you again tomorrow.

Weird Wednesday

Today I’m just taking a quick break from a very busy day. You who have had a puppy and wear glasses might have had the pup knock into your face while your specs are on. Throws them out of whack for sure. The day started with a trip to the optical company we do business at. They did the adjustment in a short time. Then on to Mom’s house.

She was ready but we still hung out for a little bit. She had to mail bills and go to the bank for some cash. It’s funny, she refuses to use her DEBIT card at an ATM. She writes a check and cashes it at a teller in the bank. She refuses the drive through lane. “The only banking that should ever take place is face to face, in the institution.” I find it funny. All you can do is allow enough time for her to get out, walk inside, and stand in line. She is so hard of hearing she and has limited vision, so it’s hard. She insists on going in alone. The days of the banker who could call you by name are long gone. I did get to experience that from Packers National Bank, Laddie Kozeny. He was a wonderful man, and knew my parents.

We went to the Omaha World Herald B-62 Luncheon. It is for retirees. She did not work there, but my father did from 1952 – 1988, and my older brother did for another thirty some years. Mom still attends as she is included in the group. Nice, nice people.

Tom Shatel, a sports columnist for the OWH was the speaker today. I read his column from time to time, and it was nice to hear his talk. He spent a time on Scott Frost, Nebraska Football, and Creighton/Nebraska volleyball. All worthy subjects and he did a great job. One thing he did discuss was the Omaha Press Club, which may open up and accept membership from other than newspaper, radio, and television news. By today’s standard, this is a daily column. I wonder if I could apply?? More on that later. It could be fun.

This week is half over and my gosh! I need to get some big stuff finished up this week. Having a puppy in the house means we need to clean the carpeting before I put up the tree. I will feel better with a fresh carpet. Then decorate. There are so many things to decorate with, I will have fun doing it. And today, I received a new nutcracker in the mail. It’s a fun one. The other six I have are from the 1980’s when Shopko sold them for $10 or so, when you spent so much on gifts. So, I did. They were quite nice. Hope Goldie leaves them alone.

Hope we meet again tomorrow. I’ll be here, will you? I hope so. Thank you.

Thanksgiving Eve

Are you starting to prep any dishes for Thanksgiving dinner yet? I’m trying a new sweet potato dish. I’m prepping the dish today, and baking it tomorrow. There are all sorts of dishes you can do ahead of time. I’m going to google and find any others I can do ahead.

The dish I’m making will use sliced sweet potatoes (Slice width-wise after boiling and cooling), lay in greased pan, mix cranberries, orange juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, and some other spices, pour over potatoes and bake. Sounds easy. Baked sweet potatoes are great at a steakhouse in place of a regular baked potato. And no one else likes them, so I’m going to save portions of it for later. Yum!!

I’m also making the dressing ahead, and whatever else works out ok. No big deal. Last year, we purchased a new gas range, with five top burners (I love it!) and sure enough, it cooked so much faster than our old electric stoves did. I kid you not. We had to call our daughter and her family to come early. I’m hoping that does not happen again.

NaNoWriMo successful conclusion is still in sight. I believe 2,971 words per day for the next four days will put me in the “winner’s ” circle. It will be great to be finished. Don’t forget to enter my drawing for the Completion of NaNoWriMo. Just like the posts and comment on each day for the month of November, and you could have sixty chances to win. Use tomorrow, Friday, and Saturday to catch up!! You can read them while you’re in line waiting for Target to open! Be safe out there.

If you are a Black Friday shopper, do you know when it started?? The first recorded use of the term was in 1969, and had nothing to do with shopping. It signified the crash of the gold market on September 24, 1869.

History.com reports the city of Philadelphia coined the phrase to describe the crush of traffic and pedestrians from the suburbs out shopping the day after Thanksgiving. The cops worked twelve hour shifts in an attempt to control the chaos. Poor guys! Shoplifting was rampant. In 1961, the city fathers tried to rebrand the day to be called “Big Friday” since it had a better connotation. Didn’t work. Additionally, some businesses were also open on Friday after Thanksgiving, and many, many people called in sick, thus creating a worker shortage.

So, whatever you do, if you are out and about on Black Friday, take precautions. Hydrate, eat well, and be careful to stay out of the way of anyone who thinks a cheap TV is worth trampling people for. Keep an eye on your belongings, as thieves will mix among the shoppers like always. Be aware of your surrounding. And keep up being grateful for everything you thought of on Thanksgiving.

If you are traveling over the next few days, I hope the bad weather misses you. We got some slushy stuff and a bit of snow last night, so nothing bad. The sidewalks are tricky, but watch where you’re going, you should be fine. Walk carefully. Enter to win. Thank you for taking time to read today, and we’ll see you again tomorrow.