The Messina Family

The Messina Family
Barcelona 2010

Friday, November 23, 2007

Are you all shopping today?

Well, it was a quiet day today. Lily and I worked on making our Christmas cards for this year. With all the folks added in Norway and some in Japan, we have increased our list quite a bit this year. Most folks nearly faint when I tell them how many cards I send out at Christmas (that includes Rich) but a wise friend once told me that sending out Christmas cards was like a small gift to everyone....a piece of your heart sent to celebrate the love of the season. That has always stuck with me, even with the advent of 41 cent stamps, I still think it is well worth it to have a card, picture and letter in the hands of our friends and family all over the world. Luckily, a big stack of cards will be going to military people overseas and the military will ship it for free between bases overseas. It may take a little longer, but it is free, which is wonderful. While I lived in Japan, I got hooked on stamping cards (ergh, Megan!) and now I am crazy enough to make them every year. Today I was cutting paper pieces for the cards. Lily was counting out larger pieces to hand to me to cut. She had a really good time and I can honestly say that she had her hand in making all of these cards this year. :o) I hope that is a tradition that will live on for several years!
As I watched CNN talk about people getting up at 5 a.m. to go shop for bargains in the U.S., I smiled. I am done....however, it isn't the same shopping online! Shopping in Norway is almost not an option as everything is so very expensive. I have friends that are having babies soon and I am in a panic about gifts as just a cute little hat or a little toy is about $20 here. It is insane!
We plan to come back to the U.S. for a visit next summer and I will be shipping things to myself from there. Now I know what I miss the most. Of course an Arby's sandwich won't be shippable, but I will make sure I visit Arby's once or twice! I have already started a list.... :o) You would think that living in Japan would be more isolating, but it really wasn't because of the large base with American shopping. Here, however...there is not anything like that. My dream right now? An afternoon at a Michael's Craft store....ah...that would be nice! Then I would go to a grocery store and buy food to ship back. :o) When we went to Italy in October, we shipped back 4 boxes and 3 of them were food from the post commissary! :o)
Rich comes back from Germany tonight. Tomorrow we'll attempt to take our family Christmas picture....although the forecast is calling for rain/snow mix. We'll have to head inland and upward to the nearby mountains for a more white than wet shot. Should be fun!
Happy shopping everyone...hit a sale for me! (by the way, all my friends from Japan, they do have real sales or salg Okinawa it totally cracked us up that they advertised big sales for 5% off....goodness, you gotta make it worth the gas to get there at least!) :o)

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