Your’e never too old for Christmas, right?

My mother may be 80 but she loves stuffed animals especially those that make noise and move. She has most of her Christmas stuffed animals on display in her bedroom suite. These photos are of just some of the decorations and stuffed animals in her bedroom. She has more on display in the hallway outside her bedroom.

You are never too old for Christmas, right?

Clackamas Fire District #1 – Operation Santa Claus

I am heading out to shop for food and toys to donate when the Santa Parade comes by my house this evening. 

“The sleigh bells from Operation Santa Claus have been ringing for the citizens of Clackamas Fire District #1 since 1974.

Firefighters recognized the need to provide toys and food baskets to families and individuals that were less fortunate, and not likely to experience the joys of the holiday season. Hence, Operation Santa Claus was formed.

Operation Santa Claus Is 100% Funded By Donations From Members Of The Community

During this month-long holiday toy and food drive, fire district volunteers and employees lead Santa’s fire engine parade down neighborhood streets to collect toys and non-perishable food items, which are used to fill hundreds of food baskets for needy families. Donated new toys bring a little extra Christmas cheer to children. Donated funds are used to purchase perishable items for food baskets, and help to cover miscellaneous expenses.”


Holiday clothing project – helping kids in need

I usually coordinate a Holiday giving project for our office of about 65 people. In the last 10 years we have given generously to many area agencies to help the homeless, abused women and their children and kids in need.

I sent an email to all of the local employees in my department on November 19th asking for suggestions for a holiday project. Coincidentally less than a week later I received an email from one of the local Telephone Pioneer’s project coordinators regarding the holiday project they were sponsoring this year.

Subject: CHILDREN IN NEED CHRISTMAS PROJECT. “Pacific View Pioneers has decided not to adopt a family this year, but instead help approximately 54 children in the Gresham-Barlowe School District, who are in desperate need of clothing. Grade levels are from 1st grade up to senior in high school”

I forwarded this email on to all my co-workers suggesting we take part in this project rather than doing our own this year. The need had already been identified, someone else was coordinating and all we have to do is pick a gift tag off the Giving Tree set up in our building’s lobby. Easy as can be!

I picked a 6th grade girl who needs a sweater. I went to Fred Meyer yesterday to buy a sweater and ended up buying three sweaters and a fleece sweatshirt. They were all on sale for 30% off. I decided to go down to the office this morning and pick a few more kids tags off the tree. I went back to Freddy’s and bought 2nd & 6th grade girls coats and gloves and a 7th grade girl shoes, socks and slippers. The girl’s coats were on sale for 50% off, gloves 40% off, shoes and socks on sale too.

Tomorrow I will deliver the purchases to the Pioneer’s store in my office building. I am hoping that many others have selected kids and made purchases to help. It makes me feel good to help others. I am glad to be in a position financially that I can help make a difference for some kids in need. Plus it was fun shopping for kids.

The Pioneer’s Giving Tree

Memorial Day – What does it mean to you?

To many people Memorial Day is just the end of the three day weekend that kicks off summer. To to others it means that the school year is almost over.


Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. men and women who died while in the military service.

“First enacted to honor Union soldiers of the American Civil War (it is celebrated near the day of reunification after the civil war), it was expanded after World War I to include American casualties of any war or military action.”

There are many stories as to Memorial Day‘s actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day. There is also evidence that organized women’s groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War.

But no matter what you may find on Google Memorial Day is really about remembering those U.S. military personnel who lost their lives fighting in wars whether you think those wars were right or wrong. 

But that does not mean that I don’t like having a three day weekend and spending Memorial Day afternoon BBQ’ing with Tara and Kelly. Especially on a beautiful sunny day.

Memorial Day History



“To help re-educate and remind Americans of the true meaning of Memorial Day, the “National Moment of Remembrance” resolution was passed on Dec 2000 which asks that at 3 p.m. local time, for all Americans “To voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a Moment of remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to ‘Taps.

The Moment of Remembrance is a step in the right direction to returning the meaning back to the day. What is needed is a full return to the original day of observance. Set aside one day out of the year for the nation to get together to remember, reflect and honor those who have given their all in service to their country.”

These videos are real tear jerkers.


Happy Mother’s Day

From a couple of emails I got this week:

25 Reasons I Owe My Mother

1. My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE .

“If you’re going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.”

2. My mother taught me RELIGION.

“You better pray that will come out of the carpet.”

3. My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL .

“If you don’t straighten up, I’m going to knock you into the middle of next week!”

4. My mother taught me LOGIC.

” Because I said so, that’s why.”

5. My mother taught me MORE LOGIC.

“If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you’re not going to the store with me.”

6. My mother taught me FORESIGHT.

“Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

7. My mother taught me IRONY

“Keep crying, and I’ll give you something to cry about.”

8. My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.

“Shut your mouth and eat your supper.”

9. My mother taught me about CONTORTION.

“Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!”

10. My mother taught me about STAMINA.

“You’ll sit there until all the spinach and olives are gone.”

11. My mother taught me about WEATHER.

“This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it.”

12. My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.

“If I told you once, I’ve told you a million times. Don’t exaggerate!”

13. My mother taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE.

“I brought you into this world, and I can take you out.”

14. My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION.

“Stop acting like your father!”

15. My mother taught me about ENVY.

“There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don’t have wonderful parents like you do.”

16. My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.

“Just wait until we get home.”

17. My mother taught me about RECEIVING .

“You are going to get it when you get home!”

18. My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.

“If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, they are going to freeze that way.”

19. My mother taught me ESP.

“Put your sweater on; don’t you think I know when you are cold?”

20. My mother taught me HUMOR.

“When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don’t come running to me.”

21. My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT .

“If you don’t eat your vegetables, you’ll never grow up.”

22. My mother taught me GENETICS.

You’re just like your father.”

23. My mother taught me about my ROOTS.

“Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?”

24. My mother taught me WISDOM.

“When you get to be my age, you’ll understand.”

25. And my favorite: My mother taught me about JUSTICE

“One day you’ll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you.