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Its cold, the river is icing, and snow is on the ground

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I want to be in Florida.......got to wait for my shots at the end of December, but I am already getting cabin fever. I am done with winter the day after Christmas, but in Illinois it is usually mid April before you start to get pleasant weather.

We have to be careful with the dogs. The geese will fly off the islands and then walk on thin ice approaching the main channel where the flow has delayed ice formation. My daughter's dog affectionately called box of rocks will swim into the water chasing the geese, who simply once getting her in the water will fly upstream and within about ten yards squawk at box of rocks who obliges and begins swimming into the current making no progress as the geese just relish what a dumb predator they have found. With ice, box of rocks is a goner. I had strict rules with my children concerning ice. In fifth grade, I had a twin on my bowling team fall through the ice at the post office taking a shortcut over the river. His brother made it. I fell through ice when I was in third grade. I could not get out, and I could not feel the bottom. The more I tried, the more the surface ice would break, and still not bottom. I was alone and starting to slip from the effects of the cold water on my body when I found bottom, and just began running from the pain of the cold. I ran probably close to six blocks when all of a sudden I realized that the water next to my body had warmed and the running saved me. The final ice event was falling off an oil tank with a full elbow cast on a broken arm and getting caught in the river current as it moved me to an ice flow which I would go under.....again I found bottom and made it to shore.

So my kids who are adults and have kids always shake their head when I start lecturing about ice, but understand......a dog can drown on ice, but unless you have proper tools to rescue a dog and people to back that up.......you do not go on ice.

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If you have always lived in the south, you don't realize the dangers.

It must be beautiful to see the snow covered islands.

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Snow makes it impossible to use the golf cart, and I wear out to easy to try to hike around the islands, so I am not a big fan of the snow and ice. I like running the dog on the islands and watching the wildlife. Now I can only see things from the distance.

Got the grandsons this weekend and my wife just got a text that their mom wants us to take them to Santa. My wife and I believe that is more of a parental thing, and we had activities planned out. She has been on the internet looking for a Santa thing. Nothing. I told my wife that we will pick them up later Saturday and mom can find her own Santa thing before we pick them up. I do not know how that response will be taken, but I was worn out after taking the granddaughters shopping, and we had planned to do the same with the boys, and another activity just is not in the cards. Plus, I know my luck....I will probably spoil the Santa Claus thing by inadvertently telling the truth.

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2seaoat wrote:I will probably spoil the Santa Claus thing by inadvertently telling the truth.

HA on the "inadvertently" part. LOL

But seriously, I'm glad you're sticking to your guns and standing up for yourselves. This "Santa thing" request actually irritated me some, and I'm not even the one up there dealing with it. So glad you are able to JUST. SAY. NO.

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I agree with mom doing the Santa thing.

I am so far behind on my Christmas preparations. Nothing is wrapped, no outside decorations (just had the outside trim painted..no outside lights this year). But... I have enjoyed 5-6 basketball games a week. Had to pull quite a few 12-13 hour days of grandkids the last couple of weeks as my girls finish classes. Thankfully the little 2 year old loves going to the games with me. She occassionally sits with the cheerleaders when she is not trekking up and down the bleacher steps.

Oh well it will get done in the next few days.

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My daughter in law is a quite successful manufacture rep who is making a six figure salary and has to travel the country giving seminars on her products. My son has done a wonderful job working as real estate broker to work his schedule from home as he plays Mr. Mom as she has been absent from the kids lives more than any of us feel is healthy. When she starts dictating how we get to spend time with the kids to fill her parental responsibility, we can see a slippery slope. Mrs. Seaoat made it clear that I am not feeling up to any Santa breakfast or a store Santa. I must say the cancer excuse is really pretty cool on getting out of things you do not want to do. So we are good. She will try to take them to Santa. We like our time with the grandchildren to be unscripted and laid back. We are hoping the snow will melt away so we can take the boys for a golf cart ride on the islands. It is really fun to explore the islands in the winter, but with the ice, you cannot take your eyes off the dog or the kids for a second.

I quit believing in Santa Claus in second grade when the neighborhood pitched in and got a Santa to stop at all the houses. I took one look at Santa and recognized him as the neighbor two blocks from our house. My parents went through this whole charade of how cool Santa was not understanding that a Child's imagination is much better than reality. I simply said.....I thought that was Mr. Smith dressed as Santa......parental silence.....end of that magical childlike imagination. I often feel that way about religion. I have faith in God, but when somebody else tries to pretend they have the path to God and want to lecture me, I just see the fake Santa on my front porch and my parents trying to sell it.

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I tell the kids the truth....I believe in Santa. Always will be a magical time for me.

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Seaoat- we just got a touch of some of the weather you've been experiencing. We drove up to Gatlinburg on Saturday and there was beautiful snow on the interstate between Montgomery and Birmingham. Got some great pictures up there while we were on our way, but we also saw at least 6 vehicles that had slid off bridges on the way up. We almost slid off a bridge up near Birmingham-we were towing our camper and my husband only slowed down to about 40 when we saw the bridge coming, no matter that my daughter and I were telling him he needed to go slower. Suffice to say, if there had been another vehicle next to us in the Northbound lane, we'd have had a very serious accident. The trailer went one way and the truck another and we were just lucky to get out of it alive. By the time we got to Gatlinburg, the snow from the night before had pretty much melted down to mush, but it was 22 degrees one of the nights we were there. Also, the main road through the Smokies was closed because of snow, and the side road to Cades cove was also roped off just a little way up the road. So, we did some shopping and saw the lights in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. The lights were beautiful, but it was bitterly cold, even in the middle of the day. Very few crazy tourists like ourselves in sight. It was the quietest I've ever seen that area. We were so happy to get back to Pensacola- I won't ever go north like that in December again. The snow isn't worth the cold and the danger of the highway.

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I have had plenty of close calls with ice and snow, and sliding off roads. I had my 76 honda civic totaled because of an icy bridge. I do not like going through Birmingham at any time because I believe they blew the grades which are steeper than they need to be. My grandmother's house was in the middle of the north bound lane of 65 in North Birmingham.

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The boys had a good time, but I was sleeping most of the day fighting liver pain. Not a lot of fun for the boys. My wife kept them busy, and they actually got cold on a golf cart ride, which considering my health, I am glad I passed. They wanted toys when my wife took them shopping, but she got them matching PJs and sweaters. The youngest just threw a fit because he did not want to leave. We promised to bring them out after Christmas and before they go back to school. That seemed to work. I have to find some grasshoppers. I promised them a grasshopper pizza......yea papa is twisted......yet when my father got some chocalate grasshoppers.....I too did not want to eat them, but after he ate one......crunchy.....salty.......and after living a lifetime....it is time to pass that grasshopper thing along.

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Glad the boys were there.

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