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Monday, December 10, 2007

Surviving Christmas

I have searched my memory and cannot remember ever anticipating Christmas with joy and calmness. Even as a child the holidays were fraught with anxiety. The parents divorced when I was 6. My brothers were 7 and 3. We never had a secure financial foundation. When it comes to finances, my whole life has been a consistent roller coaster ride. Some things never change. As adults it is only slightly easier to adjust and cope with the unexpected. Easier, none the less.

Yesterday I participated in a dismal "craft show". It was misrepresented to vendors. It was really a country club event for the children to have Santa arrive in a helicopter, not to shop at our 8 foot table spaces. We were 36 vendors crammed into a poorly lit space. The club members were eating and drinking and running amok. I had items snagged, dragged to the floor and near misses with red wine.

When we entered the venue, we were given a contract to sign. Here are some of the high (low) points. The food and beverages on site were for members only. We were to wait until the event ended and could then partake in leftovers. We paid $50.00 for table rental and donated a raffle item. We set up at noon through the side door and were not allowed to leave until after 5pm. The organizers foolishly put all the hand knits in one area, all the jewelry vendors together, etc. The vendors included Cookie Lee. Nothing against CL, I own some and enjoy wearing it- hardly the upscale handcrafted market that was promoted.

Call the craft sale police. At 3 pm I packed up my goods and exited. I had made 2 sales to friends from church that came out to support me. I appreciate them coming and I know that they are sincere fans of my bags, as they have been customers in the years past. All of the vendors nearby felt the same way I did, but chose to stay. I had better things to do. This is my rant. Thanks for the chance.

On a brighter note, I came home to an email from a women that saw one of my bags, a customer was carrying, and she wants one. She owns the local J.Jill store and perhaps she and I can get together. Of course my husband thinks I should be selling these world wide. He doesn't get that each one is so organically mine. Hand knit with an original design, each one modified and made only once with the best quality yarns from all over the world. Many purchased during trips. The yarns are one of a kind hand dyed, or yarns no longer manufactured. Oops, I may have slipped back into the rant. When I was growing up in the Detroit area there was a local columnist that wrote a weekly feature called "Monday Morning Moaning" in The Free Press. I must be channeling that energy this Monday morning.

We have just come through a winter weekend in San Diego. We had a down pouring of rain with snow above 3000 feet. Snow capped mountains are visible all around us because the air is clear and brisk. No smog from LA or marine layer off of the ocean. Spouse man took pictures and you can see what I am talking about. It has been cold. In the low 40's and high 30's, at night. Frost is on the ground. Christmas must be right around the corner.

Saturday night was a fun holiday/50th birthday party that will long be remembered for the rain on the tent and puddles and umbrellas. It was fun to need boots and coats for a change. I have busted out my gloves and been seen wearing a hat!

The house is decorated for Christmas thanks to Karen. I went traitor and purchased an artificial tree. I love it. Yet, I want to run away from home. Christmas. Look at the neat ornament one of my dear students gifted me with. I am blessed in a push me, pull me sort of way...

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