Friday, November 16, 2007

Saturday morning we will give out candy cane in the Hutchinson Christmas Parade. Both Wednesday and Friday afternoons I had volunteers helping me attach little tags to the candy canes promoting the Christmas Homes Tour.

The dinosaur has been washed. The signs have been printed. The candy canes are tagged. It's sort of like Santa making a list and checking it twice, but he's got all those little elves to help out.

In my case,  I have volunteers who help with the candy canes. I have Greg who ties the dino to the top of the van. I have friends who walk along and hand out candy to the kiddies and their parents. This year we also have some HCC students who are helping with candy cane dispersal.

It should be a fun morning.

After the parade I'm going to rest. It feels like I've not had a moment to stop for many months. I rarely feel tired, but I am exhausted. I think tired was happening in about May or June and it has progressed to exhausted, without me realizing it. I need to just be still. Just be still. Have some days off from work when I can just be still. Do things I want to do without any things I need to do. And rest.

I'm so overwhelmed with things I need/want to do that I can't sleep at night - even by my standards. Last night I went to sleep finally about 2:30 and woke up about 5:30. I kept trying to get back to sleep - and I did nap a bit - but I couldn't really sleep soundly. I haven't slept more than five hours a night in more weeks than I can count and often much less. My need for rest is becoming serious. Hopefully I will sleep tonight. I hope.

Window Display

This is what I did today. I created a window display. Downtown is hosting a Tablescape contest and I was asked to do a window for the MHA Homes Tour coming up on Dec. 2. Although it's hard to see in this photo, there is a table there, with two place settings on it. There are snowmen on the plates - hence the snow man theme.

Greg loaned me a couple of his snowmen, including one you can't see in this photo that is hanging. Also, the far one is an old window display one who has made a full circle now - once again gracing a window display. And the 7-up Snowman close to the sign is his, too. The others are ones I already had.

Hopefully I will get some better pix that show everything in the window, but the windows are very dirty and I'm waiting for them to clean them before trying to get some photos.

They had the blue panels and the window/shutter thing lying around in the store so I just used them for a backdrop, hanging a snowflake in the "window."

I added a few more smaller snowmen and some other finishing touches after I took the photo, but this is the basic look. Hopefully Greg will get some good pix of it all finished that I can share.

I've done a few window displays before, and the windows are always bigger than you think they are when you're planning what to do. In this case I just had to do half the window. The Art Association will do the other half. This took half a day to put together, but it's great publicity for us, and it is good for us to be involved in downtown events. My office is downtown, which I love, and I like being part of what's going on. I don't have the time to participate fully in everything the downtown group does, but I'm tickled to be able to do things like this.

I've been working hard on the MHA Christmas homes tour. It's set for Dec. 2 and it's going to be really nice. There are four homes and then I'm having refreshments at my house. Details are at This is the third Mental Health Association tour we've done and they're always good. This is the first time I've opened my home for refreshments, but it will be fun. I've been thinking about what to cook and experimenting with a few things.

I made caramel for the first time last night or the night before - I've lost track, now. It tastes great, but I made a little boo boo.

Do you see those darker flecks here and there? Yeah... those aren't supposed to be there. I didn't get the pan to pour it into out of the cabinet and ready before I started cooking. Ooops. While I was doing that, and therefore not stirring the caramel, it "burned" a bit. It's not really burned, but it caramelized in a clump instead of being very smooth - and the way you avoid that is constant stirring. Oh well - live and learn. But, it tastes very good - you can't even taste those bits. But, I think I'd like to perfect it a bit more before sharing it with people.