Ah, Christmas is almost here. It is actually Advent, the time of waiting. Which i seem to be doing a lot of, but it gives me time to count my blessings and the things for which i am thankful.
In fact, i'd like to count things i've waited for all year for which i am thankful, as well as other waiting situations.
Last Sunday was Pilgrimage, where we process from church to church listening to Christmas performances and joining in on Christmas carols. It is one of my favorite nights of the year, and the wait, as usual, was worth it.
We are waiting for Bigger Girl's car to be repaired. In the meantime, the waiting means we share cars and i am grateful none of us has ended up stranded or not been able to get where we needed to be. Our repair people keep a loaner, and i'm very thankful we were allowed to use it on the days that her car and Sweetie's were in the shop at the same time.
Also in the car department, i had to wait at the shop yesterday. Lunceford the Land Yacht had his windshield wiper switch replaced, and the wipers were still not working. They ordered a module and, because we had already replaced the wiper motors and they had malfunctioned as well, the remainder of the repair was free. Certainly worth two-and-a-half hours in the repair shop chairs, and i am very thankful the wipers now work.
Then there is the wait for the annual luminaria display in our neighborhood. It's finally here, this weekend. We are always grateful for the opportunity to support the civic association by buying luminaries and then spend a nice evening seeing the light displays, visiting with Santa, and stopping at the hot cocoa stations where we can talk to neighbors.
There was a fun wait at the post office, too. Fun? Wait? Post office? Yes. As i got into the line, one of the ladies behind the counter apologized that the line was long and there was a wait (i've never heard that before). Someone in line simply called out "'Tis the season!" and we laughed. The gentleman standing right in front of me noted that he had forgotten there would be a wait at this time of year, he had just popped in to grab a stamp.
You are waiting in this line for just a stamp? i said. He confirmed it, and i told him that he needed wait not longer, to hold my place in line, and i went outside and got a stamp from my bag in the car. He was thrilled, everyone smiled, and it made the wait easier because i was able to help someone else not wait at all.
It seemed like a long time between visits with Baby Lee, but a visit from him and Red-headed Alec and Sweet Sue is always worth both the wait and making time for the visit itself, even if it keeps me up later at night than i want to be. (They have to come after Red-headed Alec gets off work.)
The wait for mail every day is a happy one, as we get a card or something someone has ordered almost each time. Anticipating fun things in the mail makes up for the fact that the bills still come, too.
Yesterday at the shelter, i was trying to collapse one of the very stubborn ladders when it decided to give way suddenly under me and i ended up on the floor with my head hitting the sharp edge of a step. The wait at the mini-ER was not long at all (only one person ahead of me), the PA was very quick with the 11 stitches (two in the muscle, 9 external, just above my left eyebrow), and i am very grateful we didn't end up having to wait at the big ER, where it can take much longer than an hour-and-a-half.
Our wait for the dog to get a home is being mitigated by the fact that i am fond of her. No, we can't keep a high energy dog who chases cats in this house, but i am content to wait a while longer as i believe a home will turn up.
Finally, the wait for Christmas itself is fun. Every day there's a smile, a nice gesture, decorations to look at, something pleasant going on, and i almost wish this could go on longer. The wait for the big day is helped by the fact that all of our gifts are purchased or ordered or tucked neatly into their respective envelopes.
Are you enjoying the wait, savoring the season? Is there anything in particular you are grateful for at this time of year? List your thankfuls if you wish and link them up with Ms. Josie Two-Shoes at Ten Things of Thankful. It's always a good day to do that, so don't wait!
AKC/Royal Canin National Championships -- Orlando, FL, US (top dogs from around the world compete to see -- who really is top dog? through the 18th)
Barbie and Barney Backlash Day -- if you need an explanation, you don't have kids; sponsored by Wellcat Holidays
Beethoven Day -- celebrate the anniversary of his birth by listening to one of his fine works
Bijoy Dibosh -- Bangladesh (Victory Day)
Day of Reconciliation -- South Africa
Day of the Republic -- Kazakhstan (Independence from the USSR in 1991)
Festival of Sapientia -- Ancient Roman Empire (personification of wisdom and knowledge)
Hakidaore Ichi -- Tokyo, Japan (fabulous shoe festival; through tomorrow)
Icelandic Yuletide Lad of the Day, Pottasleiker -- Pot-licker, who tries to snatch unwashed pots and lick them clean
Man Will Never Fly Memorial Society Annual Meeting
National Chocolate Covered Anything Day
National Day/Independence Day -- Bahrain(1971)
Posadas Navidenas (Fiesta of the Virgin of the Lonely) -- Mexico (celebrated through the 24th, "pilgrims" go house to house seeking shelter to commemorate the search of Mary and Joseph for shelter in Bethlehem)
Simbang Gabi -- Philippines (Christmas festivals that last until Three Kings Day)
St. Adelaide's Day (Patron of abuse victims, brides, empresses, exiles, in-law problems, parenthood, parents of large families, princesses, prisoners, second marriages, step-parents, and widows)
Stupid Toy Day -- make sure you aren't giving any of those to any kids you buy for
Tea Party Day -- Boston, MA, US (anniversary of the 1773 Party)
Vijay Diwas -- India (Victory Day)
Wan Kila Haeng Chat -- Thailand (National Sports Day)
Michael McCary, 1971
Benjamin Bratt, 1963
William "Refrigerator" Perry, 1962
Jon Tenney, 1961
Alison La Placa, 1959
Billy Gibbons, 1949
Benny Andersson, 1946
Steven Bochco, 1943
Lesley Stahl, 1941
Liv Ullmann, 1939
Bruce N Ames, 1928
Arthur C. Clarke, 1917
Margaret Mead, 1901
Noel Coward, 1899
Wassily Kandinsky, 1866
George Santayana, 1863
Jane Austen, 1775
Ludwig von Beethoven, 1770
Catherine of Aragon, 1536
"One Day At a Time"(TV), 1975
"Me and My Girl"(Musical), 1937
Variety(Magazine, first issue), 1905
"From the New World"(Dvorak Symphony),
1893 (often called "New World Symphony")
Today in History:
An Lushan revolts against Chancellor Yang Guozhong at Fanyang, initiating the An Shi Rebellion during the Tang Dynasty of China, 755
Mount Vesuvious, Italy erupts, destroys 6 villages & kills 4,000, 1631
Oliver Cromwell sworn in as English Lord Protector, 1653
The last recorded eruption of Mount Fuji in Japan, 1707
A big tea party in Boston harbor -- Indians welcome -- is "celebrated" (Boston Tea Party), 1773
Fire burns over 600 buildings in NYC, 1835
In New Zealand, the Charlotte-Jane and the Randolph bring the first of the Canterbury Pilgrims to Lyttelton, 1850
The Kingdom of Nepal accepts its constitution, 1862
Antonín Dvorak's Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95, From The New World is given its world première performance at Carnegie Hall, 1893
The first submarine with an internal combustion engine is demonstrated, 1897
The "Great White Fleet" sails from Hampton Downs on its round the world tour, 1907
The first credit union in the US is formed, in Manchester, New Hampshire, 1908
The first US postage stamp picturing an airplane, a 20 cent parcel post, is issued, 1912
Albert Einstein publishes his "General Theory of Relativity", 1915
The Haiyuan earthquake, magnitude 8.5, rocks the Gansu province in China, killing an estimated 200,000, 1920
Theodore Cole and Ralph Roe attempt to escape from the American federal prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay; neither is ever seen again, 1937
Thailand joins the United Nations, 1945
William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain build the first practical point-contact transistor, 1947
Cleveland, Ohio becomes the first post-Depression era US city to default on its loans, owing $14,000,000 to local banks, 1978
An episode of Pokemon, "Denno Senshi Porygon", aired in Japan induces seizures in 685 Japanese children, 1997
George W. Bush signs the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 into law, 2003
The US National Institutes of Health places a moratorium on new studies using chimpanzees as research models when a report comes out showing that most of such research is scientifically unjustified, 2010
After years of receding, the Arctic sea ice is shown to have rebounded in extent and volume, 2013