Yesterday I begrudgingly took down our outdoor Christmas decorations. I realized that we were the only house on the street with our orange and brown wreaths still clinging to our windows. They were so far gone that I got a splinter from one of the needles. Next to come down were my faux pine garlands, complete with real pine cones. I "invested" in these a few years ago and I love how festive they look when we get some snow. These were the hardest to take down. Really. A ladder is required for their removal, ladders are not my favorite thing. That left the small, potted, dead, dead, dead miniature Christmas tree that decorated the little table between our rocking chairs. Into the barrel it went, and I was left with a naked porch waiting for it's next chance to dress up. I predict that in my old age I will decorate my yard with silk and plastic flowers during this dirty, brown time of year. For now, Mark is alert enough to prevent me from taking this next step into outdoor decorating madness.

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The Andy Williams Christmas C.D. is still in my Bose player, waiting for next Christmas or a rainy July afternoon.