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December 05, 2004: All the trimmings

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Hooray for decongestants. While I am grateful that the allergy shots have kicked in enough that getting a cold no longer means I have to spend a few weeks being unable to breathe, apparently they have not yet progressed to the point where my sinuses don't try to get me in some way or another. I wisely took decongestants at the first sign of sinus pressure this morning and the rest of the day was much happier than how yesterday started.

It was good that my cold has finally subsided (well, except for that pesky sinus pressure issue). Years ago I heard the John Denver and the Muppets Christmas CD for the first time (shut up the Muppets are cool) and fell in love with one of the songs. This year I finally got the chance to sing it today, in church. Considering my tendency to get winter colds at all the worst possible times I was half afraid that I'd end up too sick to sing. Again, hooray for decongestants. Yay! It actually went pretty well, and even though I was so nervous my hands were shaking, I got enough compliments afterwards that I guess no one else noticed.

The rest of the day has been pretty busy. After church I dashed home to change and wrap the present for a baby shower. It was a nice party plenty of veggies to munch on and three pregnant ladies to tease and talk to about babies. It's kind of fun that three of our group is pregnant all at once, although the other two aren't due until April. We did some of the usual baby shower games, ate cake, talked, and played baby bingo while she opened her presents (bingo cards are filled out with typical baby shower gifts encourages everyone to pay attention when the presents are unwrapped). The minute I found out this particular friend was pregnant I knew I was going to knit her a baby blanket, and a few months ago I found some incredibly soft pastel blue yarn and made this. We've all been so excited for her about this baby because they were trying for so long.

I ended up leaving the baby shower a little early, but time was running out and we still needed to get our Christmas tree. So I called Richard and he met me at the tree farm, and we grabbed a saw and a map and marched down the road to the tiny little section where the incense cedars grow. And this year I think we may have found one of the best trees we've ever had. It's straight and full and has marvelous shape, and there's not a bare patch on it anywhere. We didn't have to spend hours on the front porch hacking off knots that made the trunk too big to fit into the tree stand, or worry about which side to have facing forward. And best of all, somehow we managed to cut it to just the right height.

It's decorated now, with all the tiny colored lights and the garlands of red beads, and all our ornaments. The house smells delightfully of pine. Richard arranged all the branches we had them cut off the bottom around the front porch to give the house a bit more festivity. And then we settled down on the couch, Richard with his writing and me with my knitting (because these hats and scarves will not knit themselves, after all), and watched a very special holiday edition of Design on a Dime, where they built what might very well be the world's most hideous Christmas tree ever. And now it finally feels like Christmas.

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