Sunday, November 30, 2008

End of the Weekend

It snowed in Joplin today - big, fluffy, wet flakes. It's the first snow I've seen this season. And, as Greg and I were coming back from lunch I spotted this holly bush just a couple of blocks from Greg's mom's house. Yes, what can I say, I have an eagle eye for Christmas things and can spot small red berries many feet away from a car in motion. Greg took this photo, which I just love. It's a Christmas card in the making, don't you think?

Later in the day Greg got out a couple of decorations and put them on his Mom's fireplace, whereupon her cat immediately noticed said decorations.

Shortly after a double-pawed attempt to dislodge the stocking decoration, the cat gave up and posed for another photo.

This, of course, is the "what are you looking at, there's nothing to see here, move along" pose that all cats strike as soon as they realize they might be doing something that could get them in trouble. If scientists want to research nature/nurture, this would be a place to start. I think I've seen the innocent look on every cat I've ever known - farm cats, alley cats, feral cats and house cats. It must be an instinct.

It was a lovely Thanksgiving weekend. I'm so fortunate that Greg's mom includes me in their family celebrations. My family lives so far away it would be impossible for me to go every year. I talked to Mary Ann and Mattie the day before Thanksgiving. My neice, Angie, called Thanksgiving morning, but I was in the kitchen and didn't have the phone with me at the time. I need to call her back and catch up a bit. It was so nice to hear her voicemail message, though. Mark called yesterday but we were with the group in Branson so I didn't get to talk to him either. But, I'm sure we'll connect soon.

I had a great time this weekend. I wish I could have another few days with everyone.

Andy Williams Christmas Show in Branson

Greg, Mia, Miss Joy and I went to Branson today to see the Andy Williams Christmas show. Andy will be 81 on Wednesday and he's still putting on a great show.

There are other acts, but Andy is on stage almost the entire show.

He starts the show in his trademark scarf and does a couple of Christmas numbers, then changes into a more formal outfit.

The stage is simple - mostly Christmas trees and two staircases, but they do a lot with the lighting.

It's not all Christmas music, but a large portion is.

We have talked about going to see him and just never actually got around to buying the tickets and doing it. We're all glad we did.

The theatre is interesting, and there are Christmas scenes everywhere, including this life size Santa.

We ate lunch and dinner at his grill, which is next door to the theatre. We had hoped he would come over after the evening show, but he didn't. We were hoping to get photos with him. We understand he does come over often either before the early show or after the late one but he must have been too tired to do it tonight.

We went to the 3:00 p.m. show and then looked around Branson afterwards. I'd never been before. They have a new attraction, The Titanic. Greg got out to take a photo. I couldn't resist getting pix of Greg in this unnatural environment.

It's made to look like the ship, except it's only about 1/3 of the vessel and it's a corrogated building. I think we may have pinpointed part of the problem. Greg brought up an interesting question - at what point is a disaster something you can make into an attraction?

We also went to see the Trail of Lights at Shepherd of the Hills. I can't recommend it strongly enough. It's very cool. Two and a half miles of neat displays including lots of old automations.

And for your general Christmas extravaganza dollar, I think Andy Williams would be hard to beat.