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Christmas Eve Air.

eric byrne

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Good Morning Everyone,

Happy Christmas Eve,its really so Christmassy outside,picture postcard winter wonderland Airdrie,last three days sub-zero temps,but brilliant clear blue skies and sunshine,just prefect snow scences,all the trees have mixture of snow and frost on them,every branch down to the smallest twig,is glowing brilliant white.Got to get out to take some pics to-day.

Well shopping completed,quiet before the storm,just relaxing,Watchnight service at 11pm to-night,I just love a carol service,can I bore you again?, just in case you missed me telling you all I get to sing ,Silent Night, solo to the congregation,so looking forward to it.In Christmases past, for years, Sally and I with her parents would go to the Watchnight Service,then home to a big mug of hot home made soup,then unwrap all the prezzies,can still see them all now in my mind,what happy times,how I miss Betty and George.

Anyway its back to happy thoughts for to-morrow,for the first time ever,we are going out to a restaurant for Christmas Dinner,the extended family has got so big,we really all wanted to get to-gether under one roof and share the occassion,then its back to Susans house(she has the biggest house)for a after dinner party and fun for all.You might think approx thirty family members getting to-gether,could be a recipe for a disaster,but you would be wrong,previous events have always been brill.The only dis-functional one in the family is Sally,and we often just have to leave her at home.From being a normal happy well adjusted person,approx fifteen years ago she fell in love with alchohol,and despite all the support given to her by everyone she remains unchanged,I have just managed around her habit.As is usual she always buys me a bottle of Drambuie for my Christmas,which she has just emptied herself this morning,I had to phone her work to tell them,they all know about her little indecretions from time to time,and they still keep her on their books,she dosnt deserve such kindness from an employer,their patience is amazing.I have threatened to leave her so many times,but couldnt really in all conscience move on without worrying about how she would manage,I just know she would throw in the towel.

Sorry to share this with you,why you might ask did I?,well if we are sharing with each other its really difficult to explain to you if for example I took Irene with me to the Oran Mor and not Sally,so in fairness all round,I didnt want you to think the lesser of me for all the occassions Sallys absences were noticed.We share a house to-gether thats all,when shes sober,we communicate ok,buts thats it.

Despite these little set backs in my life,I am an extremely happy person,no I am not on some kind of happy drug,wait a wee minute,I am on a happy drug and all of you here at LCSC are that happy drug.So if my attendance here might be a wee bit disrupted in the next few days please forgive,but one things for sure,I think about you all every day.Merry Christmas Everybody

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Morning All! Thank you Eric for sharing. That must not have been easy but Sally's absence while you are out and about was noted by me. I agree you have a right and responsibility to yourself to not have your friends here wonder about you. We love you back and can hardly remember before you brought your big joyful voice to our site. Stay with us always.

It's Christmas Eve and Stan and I managed getting it together in a week. The kids will be here later, just Wendy and David like I said. Two parties tonight. I'll just go to one. We'll have a grand prime rib cooked by Stan at a lovely table set by me lol. I envy my one sister and two sister/counsins. They all have 4-6 kids and many grandchildren and even a smattering of greats. They will all have busy people-packed Christmas Eves and Days. But I'll be happy with our little gathering. We are a small family, total 7 and Dave doesn't travel with his family. Don't blame him. They want to be home and his wife's mother is up near Ovieda. Maybe someday....

Hope to get back to say Merry Christmas on the day. Have a great weekend everyone.

Judy in KW

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Eric you are truly a ray of sunshine to us all. I am sorry that your personal life is not as it should be but Ido understand.

Christmas is hard for me in many ways. Not only do I miss all of my family that have gone but all of the times when the children were growing up. I miss too all of the Christmases that Johnny and I never got the chance to share. He died just 3 weeks before what should have been our first

I too have a big family and we are all getting together at my daughters tomorrow for Christmas Dinner and most of us tonight at my granddaughters for a party. I have 3 childran and their spouses, 8 grandchildren and 3 of them are married and I also have 3 great grandchildren. It is hard to get them all together because of obligations to the in laws in some cases but we do manage at least on Christmas day. This year my son in law is missing because he is on his shift offshore and my granddaugher's husband is in Afghanstan. Nest year she and 2 of my great grand children will be stationed with him in Italy so this is a special time for us to be together.

I think all of us have some family problems but all we can do is make the best of what we have. I know that my children and grand children really miss Denis and I understand. Despite having divorced him and our problems I miss him too. I am the one who left and I have one daughter in law who has subtle ways of not letting it be forgotten. Don't get me wrong. We are very close. She looks at me more as her mama that her real mom or her stepmom. She just never got over that I am the one who left her and the rest of them to start a seoerate life for me instead of everyone else!!

Anyway Judy you sound busy and I had better get off of here or I won't get all of my cooking done. I have about 70 chicken and chesse empanadas to make for tonight along with a batch of cinnamon pecan danish and a banana nut whip cream cake for tomorrow,

Once more Merry Christmas to all of you .I hope we all make new special memories for the future years.

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Good morning, everyone!

It was 48 degrees when I got up this morning. The forecast high was 45; I think the colder air didn't get here quite as soon as they expected. The weather radar is showing a huge area of hard rain approaching from the west. It's looking like a very rainy Christmas Eve here. At least I won't be driving to Arlington for the family gathering this evening in the snow, like I did last year.

It was a cool day on the water yesterday. It was cloudy with a brisk wind and it never got out of the 40's. The crappie bite was very tough, too. I wasn't expecting that just four days after having such a great day fishing. But, that's fishing, and I always enjoy myself, even on the tough days. I ended up bringing home five crappie, enough for dinner, but not much else.

Bruce, I had a couple of cortisone shots in my back in the mid-90's. You're right; it isn't much fun. My cratered back wasn't from an injury. It was just from 25 years of acting too bulletproof while doing heavy work in machine shops. Now, 15 years later, it's quite a bit better, but was still my most serious health issue until I was diagnosed with lung cancer. That does have a way of dwarfing everything else, doesn't it? I hope yours is better soon.

MI Judy and Libby, sorry to hear of your dogs' problems. We love our dogs and hate to see anything wrong with them. Petey, our male Chihuahua, was a Christmas present from my sister in 1995. He's over 15 years old now. He's blind, moves pretty slowly, and I know he won't be with us a lot longer, but he's been a real joy to have as part of the family for the past 15 years.

Annette, when a chemo drug (gemcitabine) kept giving me a severe headache, they did an MRI on me, too. Lung cancer is so quick to spread to the brain that they really don't like headaches in someone who's had it. Compared to all the other medical tortures that have been done to me, it didn't seem that bad, though.........LOL.

Eric, I am so sorry that you have been touched so closely by alcoholism. My father was an alcoholic (and mother a mental patient for most of her adult years), and it made growing up a challenge, to say the least. I always joke that I'm enjoying my childhood now, since I didn't have one when I was young.

KW Judy and Lily, I hope you enjoy your family gatherings. I'm really looking forward to mine this evening. I was given a whole new appreciation of being with family on Christmas the year I got out of the hospital on Christmas Day. Wow, I wrote a novel! Merry Christmas, everyone!

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Bud, I just love it when you go on, wait, that's never happened before has it? lo Safe travels to you Christmas celebration.

Lily, I'm exhausted just thinking about making all that food today. Take time to enjoy, o.k.

Eric, have fun like you do and return to tell us about it.

Judy in KW

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Wow Christmas Eve and everyone is checking in on everyone - I have a smile on my face - even though some of the posts were not the kind that make you smile. They make you think how odd it is that we have formed some kind of world-wide family here - and we care about each other. Eric - thank goodness you have the humor to carry you through some times that really may be tough. I know my ex-husband put me through some horrible times back in the day - I think it may be worse than being a caregiver to one of us when you never know what you will have to clean up next.

Since my daughter, son-in-law and 2 grand children are in Oklahoma I am really doing very little. My mom and nephew will come over for dinner tomorrow so I will put a roast in the crock pot late this evening and make a couple of pies right quick (isn't Ms. Smith the greatest). So I am being a bum compared to many of you cooking for your families. Even going out sounds like the smart thing - no cooking or cleaning - well worth the price I'd say.

Bruce - my mom had several cortisone shots in her neck - she was having terrible pain turning her neck for months - she has COPD and assorted breathing problems so they won't operate but the injections have helped tremendously.

Bud - oh my - I have to tell you last night my nephew and I ran to WalMart and I was hunting for something and this older gentlemen was standing in the aisle - I looked down at his shoes and he had his bluejeans taped up. I thought - I bet he rides bikes. He noticed I was looking and actually came up to me (a little scary) - I do this because I ride bikes. I said do you I am familiar with someone who rides recumbent bikes. He said no I am a cyclist and I ride at least 30 miles every day of the year. I thought 30 miles - hmmm - okay that is nothing compared to But - but I let him prattle on and then wished him a good evening. It was an interesting conversation - and Bud won without even being there.

I'm off to catch a nap I believe - since I will be up late getting the dinner started slow cooking. I hope everyone has a wonderful evening and great Christmas tomorrow.


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What a busy AIR today! And with the holiday tomorrow, I'm so impressed!

Annette, I think Mrs. Smith's pies are the best. We have a local bakery here called Arnie's. Arnie cooked my triple chocolate cake special just for me! LOL! I really enjoy your sense of humor. And haven't we formed a wonderful world wide family? It's so awesome to see.

Bud, I think this post was a record for you! But I really enjoyed reading it. My parents were alcoholics too, not so much when I was little, but definitely when I was a young teen. Life was not easy, but we got through it. Eric, thank you for sharing that. It must have been difficult, but now we understand why Sally isn't with you on all your excursions. I admire you for staying with her, and getting out and doing all that you do in spite of her addiction. Good for you.

Lily, chicken and cheese empanadas? Cinnamon Pecan Danish? Bananna Nut Whip Cream Cake? What time is dinner. I think I can find a way to get your way, some way some how!!!

KW Judy, sounds like you will have a nice small gathering. We have our "other family" over tomorrow. They kind of adopted us years ago. We could not have children and they had 3 so we became their God parents. They graciously share their Christmas day with us and have since the kids were babies. They found out we spent Christmas alone, and said "no way, you share with us". This is actually the Christmas gathering i look forward to more than any other.

Randy's large family isn't so large anymore. His Mom and brother both passed years ago from lung cancer. His father died 9 years ago. His closest to his age brother died at 21 in a motorcycle accident. So he now has one brother in Texas, and one in a town that is about 70 miles from us. So we don't have "Christmas" with them. We'll pick a weekend night in January after all the holiday hooplah is done, and go out to dinner at a nice restaurant. We really enjoy that.

So that being said, I wish all of you a very blessed and happy time this Christmas.

MI Judy

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M's cooked two turkeys - for someone else's party! Luckily, I am invited as a guest. The rest will be picked up from a restaurant, so food will be plenty. Too many guests for my taste - up to 75 or 100? Open house, but not so big a house.

Quiet weekend ahead, smaller family (his) gathering on Monday night. We'll bring a roast. Maybe cook a lamb roast over the weekend - that's a lot of meat roasting!

Eric! I kept waiting for the punch line for that story. I am so sorry that there isn't one. I'm glad that you are in it with your eyes open and have found a way to have plenty of good times with friends and family, in spite of adverse home conditions. It's a tough call.

I'm sure I will find some oven free time to bake something in the next few days - at least a loaf of bread. The last one, a large molasses oat bread appears to be disappearing faster than usual.

Peace to all.

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I just wanted to jump in and wish all of you a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! My prayer is that by Christmas 2011 a cure will have been found for lung cancer!!!

We're cooking and preparing for a big crowd tonight and then cooking dinner for the entire family tomorrow. What a hectic time it is! I don't think I could force myself to wrap one more gift. Now, I know why gift bags are the best thing ever.

I love you all!!!


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Here's an interesting Christmas Eve story.

M cooked two whole turkeys for a party tonight. He also arranged to pick up vegetables, salads, cheese and fruit plates from a great restaurant downtown. We took two cars to pick up the food, needed as the lovely platters couldn't be stacked. M had a big round chaffing dish with the carved turkey - two full pans - already in his car - one in the chaffer, one on the side. The kitchen staff helped load the cars - at no time were the cars unlocked and left alone. We got to the party and unloaded (a quiet street on a dead end.) Unloaded the food (I now have a beet stain and a pomegranate stain in the back of my car - good luck getting those out, but not so bad.) The extra pan of turkey has disappeared! Luckily, there was easily twice as much as needed (at least by the time I left.) But where did it go? I came home before the party and double checked everywhere - nope. (I was afraid I was going to find the cat got into it and turkey all over the house.) The restaurant checked their loading dock - nope.

I am hoping that some hungry souls found it at the loading dock and are sharing a very merry christmas eve dinner (just wish we could the chaffing dish insert back!) Or laughingly suggested that the restaurant staff's 'family dinner' just might be turkey tonight?

Don't you just love a good mystery? Turning out the lights (save the one for Santa.)

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