My Christmas Gift

As often happens this time of year, during the night Paula got cold and she rolled over and gave me a hug in order to “steal my warmth” as she so wonderfully puts it.  I have been thinking the past few days of all the men who would give everything they had if their Christmas gift was to have their wife roll over and give them a hug – but their wife isn’t there any more.

No rational person would wish to go through the tests and surgeries and treatments and hospital visits and chemotherapies and all that goes with a diagnosis of breast cancer.  Yet, with all that this year has brought us I am grateful that Paula was persistent in going back to the doctors when the initial test results indicated that there was no cancer.  I’m so grateful that we had the help of all the surgeons and oncologists and nurses and all the people who make it their job to help people who are literally facing death.  I’ve been overwhelmed by the love and support of our friends and families.  I can only offer my heartfelt thanks.

And the only Christmas gift I want for the rest of my life is to be Paula’s “hot water bottle”.

Animal pictures of the week

clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

an ice cube filled with apples, fish and carrots at the Wilhelma Zoo in Stuttgart, Germany
Young polar bear Wilbaer, right, and his mother Corinna enjoy Wilbaer’s birthday cake: an ice cube filled with apples, fish and carrots at the Wilhelma Zoo in Stuttgart, Germany
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Penguins clad in Santa Claus costumes entertain a group of children at an amusement park in Yongin, Gyoenggi Province, South Korea
Penguins clad in Santa Claus costumes entertain a group of children at an amusement park in Yongin, Gyoenggi Province, South Korea
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

A hummingbird feeds in Los Angeles
A hummingbird feeds in Los Angeles
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

A snowy owl watches visitors at the zoo in Duisburg, Germany
A snowy owl watches visitors at the zoo
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

A monkey picks flowers off a barbed wire fence by a road in New Delhi
A monkey picks flowers off a barbed wire fence by a road in New Delhi
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Kiara, a female African lion carries one of her cubs in their enclosure at Belgrade Zoo
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

A white African lion cub, one of two born at Belgrade Zoo in Serbia, plays with another cub
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Two cubs born to a white Bengal tiger play with a ball at the Nandankanan Zoological park on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, India
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Two tigers yawn in the zoo of Frankfurt Main, Germany
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

A woman holds a sphynx cat during a cat show in Minsk, Belarus
A woman holds a sphynx cat during a cat show in Minsk, Belarus
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Frankie the cat with some of the 35 teddies and plush toys that his owner believes he has stolen from other people's homes in Swindon
Frankie the cat with some of the 35 teddies and plush toys that his owner believes he has stolen from other people’s homes in Swindon
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Henry the elderly veiled chameleon is feeling a bit off-colour - after falling off<br /> his branch and suffering a slipped disc
Henry the elderly veiled chameleon is feeling a bit off-colour – after falling off
his branch and suffering a slipped disc
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

A duck which had broken its beak recovers at Wildlives Animal Rescue<br /> and Rehabilitation Centre in Thorrington, near Colchester, Essex
A duck which had broken its beak recovers at Wildlives Animal Rescue
and Rehabilitation Centre in Thorrington, near Colchester, Essex
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Deer graze on a frosty morning in Richmond Park
Deer graze on a frosty morning in Richmond Park
clipped from www.telegraph.co.uk

Shaggy the two-year-old reindeer who has to wear a specially made reindeer toupe, after he lost his antlers during the rutting season
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Only 12 Days of Christmas

clipped from reason.com
Somebody snitched on Maryland’s North Bethesda Methodist Church. The church opened up a Christmas tree lot on its grounds on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, just as it has for the past six years. Three days later, a Montgomery County inspector showed up to tell them it’s against county ordinances to sell Christmas trees before Dec. 5. Oh, and their signs were larger than the county allows, so he shut them down.
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True Love’s Cost of the 12 Days of Christmas: Chirstmas Price Index

True Loves to face most expensive Christmas ever as PNC Christmas Price Index jumps 8.1% in 2008.

Cost of “The 12 Days of Christmas” Song Items Reflect Consumer Pricing Trends; Interactive Web Site Provides Teachers and Students With Insights on U.S. Economy.

Each year, the Christmas Price Index reflects trends in the broader economy. This year, commodities prices, concerns about increased energy and shipping costs, jobs, and a second straight minimum wage increase were major factors in the cost.

Swans have always been expensive because they are rare: in 1995 there were only 14,000. French hens are “cheaper” because they are in less demand. Performance artists such as pipers piping or drummers drumming receive higher wages due to their specialized skills – while maids-a-milking are the only unskilled laborers in the index.

clipped from www.wisdomportal.com

http://www.wisdomportal.com/Christmas/12DaysChristmasTree.jpg
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
The PNC Christmas Price Index increased by a lavish 8.1 percent over last year, the second biggest leap in the history of the whimsical economic analysis by PNC Wealth Management based on the cost of gifts in the holiday classic, “The Twelve Days of Christmas.”
the cost of the PNC CPI is $21,080 in 2008, $1,573 more than last year.
clipped from www.jpgmag.com

7 Swans-a-Swimming
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
seven swans a-swimming proved to be a driver of this year’s index, carrying the greatest weight with a whopping 33.3 percent increase due to their scarcity
clipped from www.bbc.co.uk

Five gold rings
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
True Loves will pay less for the five gold rings this year. Retail prices dropped by 11.4 percent
clipped from www.patpalermino.com

http://www.patpalermino.com/images/licensing/french_hens.jpg
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
Two other costs in the CPI dropped this year: three French hens and Six geese-a-laying
clipped from mormontabernaclechoir.org

http://mormontabernaclechoir.org/images/Christmas07/MaidsAMilking.jpg
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
eight maids a-milking received a raise for the second straight year, due to another increase in the federal minimum wage
clipped from www.bbc.co.uk

12 drummers drumming
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
the drummers drumming, pipers piping and Llrds-a-leaping—jumped a modest 3 percent
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com

PNC CHRISTMAS PRICE INDEX 1984 – 2008
clipped from www.pncchristmaspriceindex.com
True Loves will pay more than ever before—$86,609—for all 364 items, up from $78,100 in 2007
10.9 percent increase
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Ancient Mass Media Report

clipped from www.thepeoplescube.com


How did the ancient mass media report the alleged birth of Christ? The People’s Cube prepared the following compilation of quotes from the Roman and Judean sources, which should help our readers to form an unbiased opinion of what really happened in the days surrounding the so-called Christmas

� 2007 Directorate of Historical Revisionism, Karl Marx Treatment Center.
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Its Beginning to Look a Lot Like Doomsday

clipped from www.thepeoplescube.com

Lyrics by Comrade Ivan Betinov, music by Santa Claus, global warming by Al Gore

It’s beginning to look a lot like doomsday
Every-where we turn
we see ice caps are getting thin
because of our global sin  and polar bears are getting a sunburn

It’s beginning to look a lot like doomsday
Just as Gore did cry
buy a carbon credit right now
to offset your farting cow  If you don’t we’ll die!

But the Pa-r-ty bure-au-cra-ts in Bali will set all th-ings to right
Glo-bal warming deniers, they will lose their pitiful fight
The Carbon Credits guard us while we sleep And the little Dutch boy has no cause to weep…no…more!

It’s beginning to look a lot like doomsday
Don’t you dare forget:
Buy a compact flourescent light,
Turn off the heat at night, and huddle together with your household pet!

It’s beginning to look a lot like doomsday
Red banners now unfurl
And the whims of the PCC
Soon will be a state decree
All across the world,  all acro-o-oss the-e-e Wor-l-d!

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