Bits and pieces, odds and ends, scattered thoughts, a little of this and a little of that …
The first bit … I would like you to take a look at the cutest, most life-like teddy bear I have ever seen. (It is being sold on Ebay this week as a fundraiser – link). It is designed after Hope the bear cub that was born on the internet from Ely, MN. (I have had many posts about the Ely Bear Center and Hope in the past).
The sale of this teddy bear is going to help improve the Bear Center which is in the process of building a learning center. (When you visit the Ebay link, be sure to scroll to the bottom and see all the terrific pictures of this special teddy bear and how it was made by hand.) I would love to bid on this one of a kind – gorgeous teddy, but the price is already up into the thousands of dollars. I wonder if this will turn out to be the most expensive teddy bear ever? Anyone know the record?
Another piece … There are no worries here in northern MN about having a white Christmas this year … we have received lots and lots of snow the past few days with many more inches (10-15) to come today. The worst part has been the stress of driving in this winter mess. Well, the shoveling has not been much fun, either (who needs a gym membership :-)). Today turned out to be our first “partial” school snow day of the year .. which allowed me to do something fun – catch up on my blogging world. This big snow event (something the weather people like to call it) is taking place way too soon in the season for me, basically because the snows life here seems to be never-ending come Spring . It could be here for another 5 months (or more, like it did last year). But, it is beautiful to see … the snow fall today goes great with a fire in the fireplace and a steaming hot cup of special coffee.
Scattered thought … I see that I just presented a conflicted view of winter … however, I am not going to rewrite it .. I am conflicted about winter and snow. I have a fluctuating love/hate relationship with it. Like the picture I took of the snow today .. gray, blurry … rather dismal. As opposed to the snow pictures I posted a few days ago on my photo blog (Wasn’t it Just Yesterday?).
An odd piece … Lately, this consumerism season we are in has become irritating for me. On NPR today, that was the topic of discussion that caught my ear on the drive home (in a foot of blowing snow). Why is it “Giving Tuesday” is put off until after all the manic shopping days? Maybe it is a way of paying for the guilt of all the self-indulgences Black Friday and Cyber Monday invoke? It is sad that Christmas seems to get lost in the “sales” and “special deals”. I am not a big shopper and I am definitely not a “Black Friday shopper”. There is absolutely nothing in this world I need (or want) that badly to fight my way through that shopping battle … Cyber Monday is more my style but, only for very special deals and things I may have had my eye on for a while.
The end piece … another frustrating shopping issue that popped up this month has to do with various companies. For instance, the companies who have shrunk their products and charge the same amount or even a little bit more … (Specifically .. shame on you Charmin for taking 1/2″ off the width of the roll of tp and on Kashi who has removed a whole serving of cereal out of my favorite box of Cinnamon Harvest.) What happened to the days of companies offering generous perks to us for choosing their products? The competition to provide the best product for the best price? I dislike how they get sneaky and hide the fact that they are raising their prices. (I will stop now before it turns into a rant :-))
A little of this … a little bit of snow, tiny dust like snowflakes sure pile up fast and blow around in a fury. Similarly, a cup of comfort food this time of year sure goes a long way to adding warmth and peace to your soul. The holidays are filled with special foods and treats that are traditional and awaken many memories. However, there are many ordinary foods that provide much comfort during these cold winter days … like potato chowder soup, homemade bread, fresh-baked pie, warm cookies out of the oven, a hot cup of cinnamon apple tea, a bowl of popcorn, etc … it does not take much to make you forget all about the cold outside. What is your favorite winter comfort food?