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Archive for the ‘christmas ornaments’ Category


christmas ornaments 2008: 5 years and baby

part of our christmas traditions involves collecting an ornament series that began the year we got married. these ornaments, christmas windows are sold through the hallmark keepsake ornament club and with each passing year, we get another in the series: this is our 5th year of marriage but our 6th christmas together(we got married 07/26/03).

with this being a milestone year, i wanted to celebrate and mark our 5th year with something special.

almost on cue, hallmark releases a special ornament inspired by the christmas windows series called the little window shoppers. perfect as a christmas surprise for theresa.

however, this was ultra limited and was only sold in 20 store locations around the country in the fall….none near me or the nyc area but in places like gresham, oregon and delray, flordia and murray, utah and shelby township, michigan. you get the idea.

so after google mapping a few locations, i determined that my best chances were either in tucson, arizona or alpharetta, georgia where i know some college students. i sent eden chen and carolyn tong to fetch it for me near their atlanta campuses. it is total culture shock for them as they were two young asians in a sea of mostly older white women waiting in line for this prize. but mission accomplished for fake christmas but real anniversary!

much love to eden who refused to take any of my money when he delivered it. thank you for your generosity.

i also got this special ornament to mark our pregnancy. i didn’t want to get a baby’s first christmas ornament because….there’s no baby..yet!(that’s next year)….but instead wanted to get something to remember how the magical fall turned into the magical winter and to celebrate our lives together so far. this looked right.

this ornament is also a limited edition one but easier to obtain since it was sold at my local hallmark though to club members only. i was late getting to the store when it was released and managed to get one of the last ones! when i arrived, there was only one left behind the counter and it had already been reserved for someone else. but the manager said i could have that one because he was sure he had another in the back. not wanting to ruin someone else’s fake christmas, i asked him if he wanted to double check in the stockroom before selling it to me. he waved me off ultra-confident in his memory. deciding not to be too chinese-y, i didn’t offer a second time and took the ornament and ran.

i also liked this ornament because it reminds me of the painting in our bedroom. that’s charlie brown incarnating me carrying the world on his shoulders and that’s snoopy embodying theresa without a care in the world. i like how the expressions are sublimely shifted on the ornament.

these paintings are big suckers…done by tom everhart, the only artist commissioned to do peanuts artwork. i got these awhile back when we were in maryland for a valentine’s day gift.

i purchased the snoopy ornament on august 25…way before we got pregnant or found out that we were pregnant….i was confident that we would be pregnant by christmas 2008….

why did i take this risk in buying the peanuts ornament in advance? did i believe in the power of christmas(fake or real)? did i believe in my baby making skills? did i believe in my own prophetic(pathetic)powers? no, no, and no. i believed in the power of u2 music making.

there was news that u2 was releasing a new album…sometime in november. and there’s something weird and magical in my life that happens when they do release studio albums….significant relationships, new changes usually follow…usually involving female folk(we will see in about a month if the tradition holds true).

though, ultimately the album was pushed back until march 3, 2009…it is still before our due date in june. and getting the charlie brown and snoopy christmas hug was the right call.

merry christmas eve!

Posted under christmas ornaments, ornaments


the magical fall: christmas tree

its that time of year again…the most wonderful time of the year….

i’ve been telling theresa all year that christmas is coming…and i was right….its here…along with our christmas traditions….including getting a tree and decorating it….

we love us some real christmas…and some fake christmas….

we bought the tree and gave it a day or two to breathe and spread out….then we gathered some of our city traveling companions…our nyc ‘party machine’

i like this current edition of the party machine(renamed club vision to redeem the moniker and the reputation)because there are members from every era and edition. in every city, there is a group of folks who travel in the city with us as we live life together. we called ourselves self deprecatingly and adoringly the party machine…self mockingly because c’mon, who calls themselves that seriously? worshipfully as a tribute to the snl skit janet reno’s party machine that mocked nia peeple’s party machine. friendship, joy and laughter are the marks of our gatherings.

the 2008/2009 lineup includes these members from past pm’s….weiling from the efc/chicago days, jeremy from the cbc/maryland era, debby from all the incarnations…as well as nyc members only: steph, angie, norman. then there’s me and t…theresa has been part of the md and nyc days…and i’ve been there since the start. the group reminds me of god’s goodness and provision over the past two decades.

our trimming party always has food galore including sweets and savories, breads, meats, fruit, a lil lambic framboise, quiche, fish stew, candies, juices…mostly finger food throughout the night.

after eating, most watch me and steph decorate the tree. just kidding. sorta.

for the most part, it was actually steph…but a few others helped. i primarily directed and put on the finishing touches.

Finally, the last tradition at our christmas tree trimmings: we finish the night watching a u2 concert together. last year, we watched something vintage 1989 from the joshua tree days. this year was 1983ish from red rocks and the war, pre-unforgettable fire era. some strange traditions but they are ours.

and here we are in all our glory. here we are as in olden days, happy golden days of yore. faithful friends who are dear to us gather near to us once more. through the years, we’ll always be together, if the fates allow. hang a shinning star upon the highest bough. and have yourselves a merry little christmas…now. Let your heart be light. from now on, our troubles will be out of sight. make the Yule-tide gay, from now on,
our troubles will be miles away. and have yourselves a merry little christmas…now.

Posted under christmas ornaments, fall

flashback lost style:christmas edition

a flu wiped me out at the wrong time so i’ve been behind on blogging ever since……let’s catchup…..

we said good bye to our good friends liz and leonard as they headed back to la with a meal at one of their hidden treasures in nyc. its a steakhouse right above the fairway around 72 and broadway. fairway is a regular(but very good)supermarket in nyc and inexplicably they also cook steaks. big honking steaks at reasonable(nyc)prices. we had a great time eating meat….which t and i have given up for lent….we’ll likely break lent at some point using the gift certificates for the all you can eat meat-arama that leonard and liz got for my ordination…….

we miss our friends dearly.

christmas eve and christmas day were spent at da sto. my in-laws have random shops….jewelry, pool hall, beauty supplies…..booze. its not the holidays unless……..

i spend the day catching up on dvds……futurama, alien nation and blade runner. theresa spent it helping sell 40’s and lottery tickets. the program is set up so that koreans can operate it easier.

the official name of the store is called vision! its nice to know that my faith is having an impact on the family. so when people ask me what i did at christmas, i say i spent it at vision!

we proceeded to philly to actually have a more spiritual christmas at chinese mission 2007. i did workshops. t did sound. steff did art. peter did the big talks. LT did everything.

i have done this conference every three years since 1995. but mayhaps my time with youth are drawing to a close. i can still tell some funny jh jokes. maybe that’s the only kinds i can tell.

finally, we wrapped up with a week with the tsangs before the new year! more like the brownings and the tsangs. but life was dreamy and slow…the way christmas used to be

life is good and content. then we all caught the flu. boo flu. yea, u2.
i got my u2.com fan club t-shirt as part of my dues. it also came with a double cd set of a dvd i already own. eh. the real prize we hope are access to concert tickets. i was part of the original fan club, propaganda….and they rewarded me with double access to tickets last time around. hoping to keep my status. i’m also part of the killers fan club and we are part of the hallmark ornament club which used to have two good selections per year but lately, only one. but its the club that allows us to keep collecting the christmas windows ornaments that mark our anniversary each year. more about that in may.

Posted under baltimore, christmas ornaments, jacqueline, killer victims fan club, new york eats, tsangs, u2, u2.com, vision