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On the first day of 2020 I took my Ma on a very long walk. Who knew it would be indicative of the year ahead.

A lot of steps have been taken together, many with two friends we drew close to.

The bro walked the stage at his graduation not quite in the way he expected and took the next step to college.

New doors were opened and new lessons learned not least about making choices and being patient and putting things in perspective.

More than a few bullets were dodged not least a lightening strike. The house could have gone up in smoke instead it has a new roof and unlike so many others we’re all still sitting in our favorite spots.

We discovered beautiful places on our doorstep and connected in unexpected ways with familiar places very far away.

Most of all we learned how much we owe so many who take care of us in ways we might never have acknowledged before.

Blessing # 925 – Moving On

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This is the third day in a row I’ve been out riding shot gun with my Ma. I love it!

I’m her best chum and she’s mine. We have even started to dress alike.

They say people start to look like their canines. I think there’s some truth in that.

While she does her thing at the various stops we take I sit up very straight like a big old fierce thing and guard the car.

When were cruising we like to sing real loud. I’m kinda glad Rudolph and his mates have taken off again because I was getting a bit fed up with all those JINGLE bells.

We’re back to ah-ha and other such 80s hair raising stuff.

Blessing # 924 – Vocals

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Poor Ma has had a super stressful day yesterday. She was exhausted and forgot to post my epistle.

It started when we came back from our morning walk. She’d had a call from the contractor and that almost made her faint. The reason is he is on vacation in Florida. Why would he be calling if it wasn’t something serious.

She was shaking when she called him back because she feared the worst BURST PIPES. Well as it turned out that was not the case. Seems the people working at the project had had a good idea on how to do part of the work in an easier way and just wanted her to approve the plan. Whew!

We had to drive up to the house to give the green light which was a delight for me.

Next we went shopping for a special dinner for the bro who is home for the night. He’d asked for Beef Wellington so Ma said she’d try to do it!

Now as you know she is no Gordon Ramsey so this has kept her busy all afternoon starting with finding puff pastry because she for sure wasn’t making that!

To accompany the delight a crème brûlée was requested. Well that bombed completely it was like scrambled egg floating in water. Yuck.

It went in the trash and she had to start again. I could have scoffed the wasted one but she said it would give me the scoots.

The take two is now in the oven with the beef which is burning on the outside and raw on the inside.

She is asking herself why does she bother. She should just throw in the towel and order take out.

Why? Well the reason is us. The bro and me and Dad of course will see her through her ups and downs. Even if her cooking is horrible we will give her a kiss because she tries hard to please us.

One piece of good news the 1000 pièce jigsaw she ordered of the bro and me for his surprise Christmas pressie eventually arrived.

There is also the saving grace of things that need no cooking. Let us eat!

Blessings # 923 – Salad is Safe

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When Ma came home from church this morning she was a woman on a mission. She was going to sort and pack all her Christmas stock from her booth at the antique store that she hadn’t sold. The goal was to get as much as possible into as little space as possible. The girl did good. Two boxes and still some space left.

It’s awfully boring for me when she does this but at least she put on some good singing by a certain Lady Gaga in a movie called A Star is Born. Awful lot of bad words in that movie though!

We didn’t get a chance to see the end though because she got a call. Seems someone couldn’t come to work at the store today so her boss wondered could she come in. Sure she could and off she went.

The bladder of steel came in useful again as a she didn’t return till 5:15 and I’d last been out at 8:30.

What a joy though that awaited us. Never ever have either of us seen such a beautiful sunset.

Blessing # 922 – Seasons Finale

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The mother cooked a mountain of meat because she knows that’s what the bro and me enjoy most.

As soon as he came home we had a quick cuddle and then we had our feast. He hadn’t eaten all day so he put away a few pounds of grub.

After that we opened our stockings.

Santa gave me an Elf. He is cute and I like him a lot. He’s easy to toss around but doesn’t squeak like pinky. I also got a huge bone from Auntie Denise that will keep me going till next Christmas.

Among other things the bro got a LOT of beef jerky that might tide him over till New Year. He also got a hat to go with it that Ma says he has to take care of because it’s the real JR!

His best present though came all the way from Ireland. His Auntie Anne got him the autobiography of his hero rugby star and former captain of Ireland Rory Best. Thanks to Anne, Rory himself signed for the bro

We had no sooner scoffed the dessert than he took off again and Ma and Dad fell asleep watching TV.

Strange sort of Christmas I was glad I had that elf for company.

Blessing # 921 – Little and Large People

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It happened like in the movies. Just after it got dark on Christmas Eve it started to snow.

Made all the little luminaries at our Church look prettier than ever.

This morning we had about five inches at our house. Ma and me were in the thick of it before six. We have to do short walks today though as it’s very very cold and sore on my tootsies.

The bro is staying at the hotel where he works as they are short staffed. He finished late last night and started early this morning so makes sense.

He’s coming home for dinner this evening so we got busy making his favorite dessert a pavlova. It looks like snow and I wanted some but seems raw egg is bad for me.

Hope I’ll get a bit now it’s cooked!

We went to see the bro to swap cars so he can have the 4×4 to drive home in the dark.

His car was like an igloo. We got it cleaned fast but under the snow was thick ice that took ages to thaw. So Ma and me just sat and watched it melt and had a chat with each other as the bro had to go inside to see to his guests.

He got a whole load of truckers in last night as the Pennsylvania turnpike was closed because of the blizzard.

You never think of things like that. Those truckers do so much for us all. Puts a whole new meaning to “driving home for Christmas”

Blessing # 920 – Teamsters

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You know how much I love a ride in the car well I’ve having a ball.

Last night the ancients took me out to see the lights around the neighborhood. The bro has been at work since last Friday doing nights and double shifts so he missed all the fun.

Everything is so pretty. We passed the zoo but didn’t stop to see Rudolph!

Today we went to the “project” and Ma got her best present in a long time. The heating is installed for the upstairs and there is a hole in the wall where she wanted and hole closed up as well. I don’t know why that makes her so happy but she was singing.

After that we did the last minute shopping before rushing home to get me some dinner. I was famished

She is all smiles and just before leaving for Church she got a good laugh. Her bestie Lorraine sent her a message and the pair of them look like twins.

Just goes to show you can be thousands of miles apart and still connected with the spirit of Christmas!

Blessing # 919 – Sparkles

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One of this weeks finds was yet another chair this time a child’s one.

Who knows what color it started out as, maybe it was once a fine polished wood but when herself snagged it is was pink.

Not a subtle baby pink but a bubble gum hew.

This morning when she had had enough of walking and her new YouTube favs she decided to paint.

Now anyone in their right mind would do such a thing in an area where spillage wouldn’t matter.

Not Ma. She plopped it on the kitchen table and started in. Seems the garage was too cold for such endeavors.

I backed off with Dad as it was best not to be held responsible for any damage. We ate cookies on the quiet but I think she spied us with her little eye.

The objet d’art has now had its first coat and it does look better. Kinda shabby chic.

Votes are being taken as to what the final color should be. Obviously pink is too girlish, blue too boyish. What are your thoughts? Leave it white or make it a rainbow?

Blessing # 918 – Choices

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Today was all about flowers.

Ma and me set out early for Trader Joe’s where they have some good ones.

Many other people were already in line when we got there at 8:20. They only let so many people in the store at once so Ma had to line up and wait.

I thought she’d never come back but eventually she did. She’d literally bought a bucket load!

After a quick nip around town so I’d feel more comfortable we set out to do our deliveries.

Ma had her festive clothes on. She’s decided no matter what we’re still having Christmas.

When we got home we’d no sooner sat down than a lovely plant arrived for us from Auntie Laura.

She always picks the prettiest things.

Her touches from Christmas past are all over our place along with those from other pals old and new.

Makes us all warm and fuzzy thinking how much we love each one of them.

Blessing # 917 – Dear Ones

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We like to have a little mission on our daily wanders.

Our latest is to find perfect little pieces of winter’s nature lying on the ground and use them to create a mini forest.

It started with a perfect acorn and had now moved on to pieces of dried fern and fir.

Anything that keeps herself amused and walking further is fine with me.

It’s looking good under my little Christmas tree but lacking a burst of color so I’ve instructed her that we must hit the forest tomorrow to find a little red!

Blessing # 916 – Pops