Tag Archives: holiday

Blowing bubbles

I’ve only written about it twice, and I’m already tired of saying ‘at Aunt Jacquie’s 60th birthday party the other week,’ so I’ve decided to shorten references to this event to AJ6BP. For efficiency’s sake . . . and also because it makes me feel like a commander pilot in some sci-fi series. *intercom buzzing noise* Incoming! Installment 3 of AJ6BP, confirm status report asap. Do you copy? I repeat, do you copy?

Yes, we’ve been watching a lot of Battlestar Galactica these days–the new series. We’re knee-deep in season 3, and I just hope cylon Sharon makes it out okay. She’s more than a machine, people! She’s a real person, with a conscience and the ability to love!

But anyway, you probably didn’t come here to get your sci-fi fix for the day. So instead of hashing out my fears about what will happen when Sharon figures out that Admiral Adama and the president conspired to fake her child’s death and secretely give the baby to an adoptive mother (who was shot during the exodus from New Caprica, resulting in the baby’s capture by a fleet of cylons), I’ll try to turn my focus to these pictures of children blowing bubbles. First up, Thomas, Mike and June’s oldest. Since he’s the son of my cousin, I believe that makes him my second cousin.

What do you think of the cylons, Thomas?

If the Colonial Fleet kills them off by infecting the Resurrection Ship with a disease, are they committing genocide? I mean, when does a machine become a person?

You don’t seem to be focusing on the question at hand, young man.

Then again, you’re probably way too young for that series anyway. It would be entirely inappropriate for you to watch until you’re about 30 years old. Too much violence . . . too much hanky panky . . . and too many confusing dilemmas about the line between man and machine.

Let’s move to Thomas’s younger sister, Eleanor, known affectionaly as ‘Snugs.’ She seems to be having trouble with the bubble-blowing device.

Looks like a compassionate adult had mercy and came over to faciliate the process.

And all is well in the world of Snugs!

This little thang is my cousin Eleanor’s friend’s daughter.

Looks like she’s a little young to overcome the mechanical difficulties of this particular brand of ‘play.’

Bubbles on your face, a big disgrace, kickin’ that toy all over the place.

Sorry, that’s just the song that came to mind. At least Eleanor seems amused.

And finally, some shots of a bubble that got caught in some shrubbery.

Personally, I think the image packs more of a punch in black and white.

Well folks, I’m signing off. See you all tomorrow for more fun and absolutely zero musings about cylons. In case that kind of put you off.

Christmas Brew

One of the quintessential elements to that Christmas feeling in my house is Christmas Brew. This is probably the smell that can make me feel like Christmas the fastest. Combine it with some carols sung by St John’s choir, and I am in holiday heaven.

When Mom and Dad popped in for a visit a few weeks ago, Mom brewed up a batch.

Basically, you toss some orange peels, whole cloves, cinnamon sticks, and bay leaves in a small to medium sized pot. Optional extras could include lemon peels, thyme, a little nutmeg, and the dregs of some mulled wine.

Isn’t it pretty?

You could even add some anise stars if you feel like walking on the wild side this season.

Fill the pot with water, and let it simmer on the stove all day. The water evaporates every couple hours, so make sure to refill it with water every so often.

No, it’s not edible. But it produces an incredible smell that just spreads like magic throughout your whole house. In fact, our apartment hallway has had a funky smell since we first moved in over a year ago. I’ve tried to get rid of it with scented oils, passionate cleaning, and candles. All methods have failed–until the Christmas brew. And as a testament to its power, even though it’s been at least a week since the brew was last used, the hallway still smells like something akin to ‘good.’

Just remember to turn the stove off at night before you go to bed (yes, I almost forgot once . . . or twice). You don’t want the forgotten Christmas brew to become The Year I Blew Up The House for the Holidays.

The next day, top the pot off with some more water, and simmer it again.

Word of warning: if you use a light-colored pot, it could slightly stain the inside. So you may want to use a dark pot that you don’t care about–aesthetically speaking, that is.

Because I care about all my pots.

Keep tossing in new peels whenever you gobble down an orange or clementine. I like to think it keeps things fresh. The brew will stay good for at least a week. I think. Just keep it simmering and that’s bound to kill off any bacteria.

This was the smell invading the house as Mom and Dad felt Heidi’s baby move for the first time.

Dibs are out on what they will call themselves now that they are going to be grandparents. I’m voting for ‘Mama Twinks’ and ‘Papa Rick’ (aka ‘Poppowick’).

Or ‘Momtaz’ and ‘Grampumps.’

Then again, I hear that grandparents’ names evolve organically from the confused and inarticulate lips of the grandchildren themselves.

That may be best after all.

I love Christmas brew. I think you will too. Give it a try!