Merry Christmas!

Christmas is forever not for just one day
more snapshots here on the 1st day of our skating season

for loving, sharing, giving are not to put away

like bells and lights and tinsel in some box upon a shelf.

The good you do for others is good you do yourself.

May we, like the angel, be the source of good tidings of great joy to all. May our hearts overflow in love and gratitude.

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Christmas Eve

When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand.
More happy memories here

The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement,
who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.

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A Christmas Carol Returns to Tower Theater

An inspiring Dickens classic tale of hope and redemption, A Christmas Carol tells the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and his magical journey from a bah-humbug miser to a loving and generous man. In this version presented by Cultural Student Performances of the Second Annual Bend Experimental Art Theatre (BEAT)--Tower Theatre Foundation, --it was directed by our old friend (through Home Program) Mary Kilpatrick, and starred in the Principal Role of Scrooge, one of our most powerful adult actors in Central Oregon Rick Jenkins.

This year's performances were presented in a very exciting new format: Performed for the first time by a mixed group of 29 seasoned adults and BEAT youth actors, with youth actors in many principal roles--Ebenezer Scrooge, Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim, Marley's Ghost, Mr. Fezziwig, Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, Future--aand a host of others bring the spirit of Christmas to the hearts of everyone--cast, audience, young, and old alike.

The morning play was sold out on the first day of sale announcement. We were fortunate to be allocated 40 tickets for the noon performance, personally by Howard Schor, Executive Director of BEAT.

BEAT continues to get amazing audience response from this holiday classic. I am thrilled that they are creating an annual holiday tradition for families in our community. This show has such an uplifting message--it’s the perfect way to celebrate the season and remind each one of us of the true meaning of giving.

A Christmas Carol is packed with humor, excitement, drama, and heartwarming moments. Everything you need for a fun, memorable Christmas event! The play was absolutely a wonderful experience from beginning to end. Don't miss a spectacular performance.

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Friends' Night Out

"We'll be Friends Forever, won't we, Pooh?" asked Piglet.


"Even longer,"
Pooh answered.
~~A.A. Milne (Winnie-the-Pooh)

Chloe and my teen wanted to go to the Charity Holiday Party hosted by/at the club so bad...I missed most part of the Moms' Night Out/Holiday Swap!

Good news: Awesome Food.
Few more snapshots here

Bad News: No other teens! Maybe next year...

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Cascade Middle School Bands & Choirs Winter Performance

It's her first public performance with Cascade Middle School Advanced Band last night, in front of an excited crowd in hundreds...parents, educators, siblings...our teen is more than ever determined to excel...

God picks up the reed-flute world and blows.
Each note is a need coming through one of us,
a passion, a longing pain.
Remember the lips
where the wind-breath originated,
and let your note be clear.
Don't try to end it.
Be your note.
~~Mawlana Jalal-al-Din Rumi

More snapshots are shown here

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15 Degrees Below Zero!!!

...gotta be the record low here in High Desert!!!

at least since we moved here over 4 years ago!

It's a paradise for boarders, telemarkers, and skiers who love powder snow! There were 6 inches or more covering our driveway in the morning...Stay warm!

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Bend Oregon Christmas Parade 2009

...isn't just a bunch of matching bands and flatbeds

It's the thing to do and see

This year's theme is It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas. The eight award categories are: Sweepstakes (most outstanding non-commercial entry,) Governer's (best commercial entry - class 1,) Grand Marshal's (best commercial entry - class 2,) Jingle Bell (see below,) Mayor's (best entry by a youth group,) Silver Snowflake (best entry with marching, drill, dance,) Judge's Award (entry with the best development theme,) and Rudolph's Reideer Award (best equestrian/animal units.) I was unable to take pictures as I did in the past...I ended up in the parade carrying a boom box almost the whole way or pushing the sleigh!

Besides having most fun getting all the reindeer dressed and ready at 8:30 in the morning and waiting to be judged for two hours in the chillin' 26° cold

Best of all, out of eighty-one entries, her musical friends and my teen daughter--representing Cascade Community School of Music--won the Jingle Bell Music Award for best entry featuring live Christmas music.

There are so many people to show appreciation for another year of wonderful festivity. Above all, thank you Shannon Devir for your amazing, inspiring leadership, being a true mentor of the children's hearts. The most important thing my teen took away from her music and working experience was confidence in herself. We are fortunate to have you in our lives and in our community. You'll be sorely missed, Shannon!

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Lion, Witch, and The Wardrobe

I love this time of the season...musical performances everywhere. COOL families gathered to see Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe performed by B.E.A.T. at Summit High. It's the best one I've seen yet.

Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
~~Dr. Seuss

A few more snapshots shown here.

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I belong when?

You Belong in 1971

Bold and brash, you take life by the horns. Whether you're partying or protesting, you give it your all!

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A Typical Day of COOL Kids Club Hollinshead Park this morning. It was a glorious autumn day!

More snapshots here.

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COOL Visits the Pumpkin Patch

Pumpkins, hayride, corn maize, field trip, popcorn, Indian corn, gourds, hay bales, corn stalks, pumpkin pie, pumpkin roll, apple ciders, funnel cakes, local honey, field trip...This week's field trip found the Central Oregon Open Learners (COOL) at the Pumpkin Patch in Terrebonne, OR. It was a beautiful day! But, today was super busy...stopped by my Friday Knit-Up group at Barnes & Noble before 10, shopped at Old Navy and got two pairs of jeans for my teenager for a two-night camping trip later in the afternoon, grabbed a bite to eat on the way...with full stomachs, DD#1 and I were off to the pumpkin patch--leaving DD#2, DS, and Hubby home groaning with flu. We missed the infamous safari maize but my teenager really wanted to be with her COOL friends. Of course, I obliged.

There were many school kids here today, it's a very popular seasonal place for field trips...besides the most glorious day in the fall season here in the secluded High Desert where the only thing more beautiful than the fall foliage is the sea of orange created by thousands of Central Oregon Pumpkin Company's pumpkins. Pumpkins range from an eye popping 150 pounds to a modest one-pounder.

There were thousands of pumpkins. So, the selection is vast and the quantity is never ending. One of the most fascinating features of the farm is the impressive selection of every mind-boggling type of pumpkin, winter squash, gourds and fall decoration. A good time was had by all.

There are quite a few entertaining animals in pens to see

and pet.

This one seemed to find his way out but is content to be back at his leisure.

This was a huge play area with lots to do in it.

Not the best picture, but this shows...the views beyond the fields were beautiful. That is Smith Rock in the background.

Just part of the view of the pumpkin patch. There were wheelbarrows to use to load big pumpkins in.

Our friends spent a long time trying to find the right pumpkins. They had quite a few requirements the pumpkins had to meet.

no-taker for this

or this

No pumpkin for us, but, this 3-pound jar of wholesome goodness did come home with me...perfect for the nasty cough we all have.

Visiting the pumpkin farm and enjoying the scenery along the way definitely put me in the mood for fall...and making my first cup of pumpkin spice latte--Ooooh. Emmm. Geeee! Of the many blessings in my life, I count this group at the top. Knowing other families are breaking the mold and seeking ways to nurture their children to live in freedom is so encouraging--we are not alone! And I love having all these kids around!

There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children.
One of these is roots;
the other is wings.~~Cecilia Lasbury

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True learning-learning that is permanent and useful,that leads to intelligent action and further learning, can arise only out of the experience, interest, and concerns of the learner.
John Holt
Real heroes are men who fall, fail and are flawed, but win out in the end because they stayed true to their ideals, beliefs and commitments.
Actor Kevin Costner

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