So the blog has a new do. I can change out the header and background much easier with only one column although I’m not sure if I enjoy the scrolling so much. I kept the header basically the same for now (not even going to think about making it festive for Christmas as there aren’t enough weeks left to enjoy it). I’ve been trying to feel a little more in the Christmas spirit. It’s a little hard without the kids. Carrie’s coming home, but not Sarah, and I haven’t felt well enough to decorate or shop. I have made up for it with Christmas music though. This past summer I went to the library and brought home stacks of CDs, many of them Christmas, so they’ve been playing a lot on my ipod. I’ve also hit the itunes store. One of my purchases was the lovely CD I Dreamed a Dream by Susan Boyle. Wow! She is just incredible. I think “Wild Horses” is my favorite track on the album. Whoever thought of doing that old Rolling Stones hit in that manner is pure genius!
I’ve also been watching a lot of Christmas shows on the tube. Every year I love watching the White House Christmas Open House, and tonight it was on ABC with Oprah Winfrey. It was good to see little kids in the White House again. Sarah was lucky enough a few years ago, actually it was right after 9-11 in early December, to get to visit the White House at Christmastime and see all the beautiful trees and decorations. She was a member of the Ball State University Singers, and they were invited to both the White House and the Pentagon to entertain the police officers and firemen. Here is a layout from that bittersweet time.
Another memory of Christmas is coming back to mind, and it’s not a very good one either. Right after the White House Show the Evansville TV Channel 25 put on images of the University of Evansville plane crash. Thirty-two years ago this very night I was a senior music major at the University of Evansville. I was in my regular practice mode, spending several hours playing the piano in a little closet-sized room in the basement of the UE Music Building. I took a little break, left my books, and went to the lounge to get a pop. There were kids out in the corridors huddled, some visibly upset. It was shocking to hear that our whole basketball team, all the coaches and some sportswriters, were killed in a plane crash at the local airport. The temperature was below freezing, and the ice had built up on the wings, causing it to crash on the hillside. I knew one of the sportswriters, Marv Bates. He was in a summer class of only about 12 people with me in the summer of ’77, and I thought he was a great guy. A few of the ballplayers were in my classes too. It was a rough week, singing at the funeral in Roberts Stadium, and then coming home for Christmas (and finding out my dog was killed by a car, by my future brother-in-law, no less). I became engaged to Mark within a few more days, so I can safely say that 1977 was my most memorable Christmas season.
I hope everyone has a memorable Christmas–but only good memories that will last for years to come.