Terrible Awful Gifts From My Husband

    Last night Alex returned for a crazy fun weekend with our son, Jack, in Nashville. They went to see the Who perform Quadrophenia.

Proudly, Alex said, “look what I got you!”

Then he held up a large black Who concert tee-shirt with tour dates on the back. It was big ugly shirt unless you are a bearded middle aged dude who loves the Who. If you’re that guy it’s the coolest shirt ever.

Alex really did buy it for me but he’s a man, and men typically are not great gift givers. In the past Alex has given me mixing bowls, potato smashers and meat thermometers and lots and lots of lingerie. (By the way he’s a chef.)

Fortunately, I have two daughters with great taste and a son with an amazing memory. They generally help me out and  tell him what I really want. And sometimes he listens.

But the truth is I don’t get upset when Alex gives me another butcher knife or a  set of drill bits. He does lots of things that are more important, he just can’t wrap them up.

Every morning he gets up at 4:30 then re-sets the clock to 6:00 for me. Even when it’s freezing cold and sleeting, he jump-starts my car or changes the tire when I’m stuck….and he never ever bitches or complains. When I have to write a blog because it just won’t wait…he understands. He knows home much I love Muhammad Ali and surprises me with odd Ali stuff sometimes. But the most amazing thing he gives me….well, three nights a week, when I want to work out at Taekwondo for an hour, he understands, encourages me, and actually tries to get things done at the house. All these gifts add to the quality of my life so much more than “the perfect Christmas present”.

So, when I’m sitting next to the tree and open up the set of jumper cables or new cheese grater, I’m gonna give Alex a big hug and say thank you.

He just won’t know what I’m really saying “thank you” for.

My Red Neck Christmas Again….yes it’s a reprint

Fountain Lake, the community I live in, is tiny and decidedly red neck. I just ran a couple of errands, two nights before Christmas, and was overwhelmed by the Holiday Spirit. But most of us are poor southern folks who love the Ft. Lake Cobras so Christmas here, is not elegant. Still it’s beautiful.
In Fountain Lake the Holiday Spirit is a little different, but just as sweet.
First, I spotted three Wise Men and an Angel waving at strangers in front of the Fountain Lake Liquor Store and Sub-Way. How beautiful is that?

Then Pat, the generally tight video store owner, didn’t collect my late charges. He said, “Merry Christmas,” and waved me away. Cool!

As I passed Insane Auto, a “buy here, pay here”  car lot, I realized there, behind the light up nativity scene, right behind Mary and Joseph and the Baby Jesus there was a pick-up truck wrapped in Christmas lights! It was so pretty I almost teared up because the Insane Auto folks obviously spent a lot of time putting their lights and decorations out and it graces the Fountain Lake community, every year.

And finally, Tony, my daughter’s, tatted- up, kickboxing coach surprised everyone by making fudge. I sure didn’t see that one coming.

Every community celebrates the Christmas season differently. At Sandor’s school in the Christmas pagent this year there were six little kids dressed as reindeer with antlers. One of them actually had a beanie with real deer antlers poking out. A six point buck died for the Ft. Lake Christmas play. How about that?

So love and appreciate your community, maybe it’s a Starbuck sipping village with tiny silver and gold lights or a Rebel Yelling crossroads where camouflage, lip gloss and a Santa hat constitute party wear.
I want to hear about your Christmas and throw me a shout out to Fountain Lake . Leave a comment or hit me up at hampoland@gmail.com   Thanks so much for reading Hampoland. Merry Christmas!

Signs of Christmas at Hampoland…A Headless Lizard

The tree is up and looks lovely. Yesterday we started hauling Christmastubs out of the shed and I realized there are several signs of Christmas in Hampoland.

Some of them happen year after year others just started this year.

1. Before the first light is plugged in Alex and I start bartering and haggling. Is it a tinsel year? Is it a flashing light year? I hate both and he wants to make our tree flash like a gawdy landing strip. If Alex were allowed to decorate on his own, I promise you, our living room would look like an Elf threw up after eating Skittles.

2. We all look at Theo, our great big (100 pounds) old dog, and think about putting a Santa hat on him. He’d look so funny and cute with a Santa hat. But he give us “that look” and we know he will eat our arm and be embarrassed.

3. Lex will find our “Striper Angel”. She used to look elegant now she’s just tawdry and she has somehow outgrown her angel gown.  Lex spins her around, “see, her but hangs out of her dress”. How did she gain wait in the Christmas box?

4.This year I bought a new lighted ornament. It’s a four foot lighted lizard, holding a Christmas package.  But he keeps falling over, then his head pops off so the new member of our Christmas family is a headless Gecko. I still like him.

These are just a few of the signs of Christmas in Hampoland. I promise you, there will be more.

*Hey, send me a note, tell me what’s going on at your house, or e-mail me Christmas card! hampoland@gmail.com