Excerpt from
Life on the Other Side of Time
copyright 1996-2002  Pennie-Rich Publishing

by Richard E. Hughes

My wife, Moochie, really has a thing for holidays. Every one has to be a celebration. Even holidays that most people don't celebrate have been the object of Moochie's attention at various times. I have often said, "Moochie should have been born in France, because they have more holidays than any other country." Someone once said the French have at least 300 National Holidays. When Moochie heard this tidbit, she promptly ordered a calendar from France.

The regular holidays are really Moochie's favorites. Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, the 4th of July, Bastille Day, all appear on her social calendar. Each one is reason for special meals, decorations, and invitations to friends and family.

We have a special closet reserved just for decorations, banners, and items to make celebrations more exciting. Each year the contents are checked and some become fodder for Moochie's yearly yard sale. Christmas decoration however, are stored in the attic, the boxes being too big and too numerous.

We put a small, four thousand square foot addition on our house and Moochie decided she wanted to have lights hung up for Christmas.  For nearly a month, I placed strings of lights on the ridge lines, corners, and around windows and doors. When finished, the house was beautiful. Thirteen circuit breakers were used to prevent overloading and seven thousand light bulbs were shining brightly.

When the bill from the utility company arrived, Moochie nearly had an attack. Three Hundred Dollars extra because of the lights. Moochie sold the lights in the next yard sale for $25.00.

Birthdays, while not a National Treasure, are a good reason for Moochie to plan a party or other festive celebration. Cake and candles are merely for the "common folk," when it comes to one of Moochie's events. Festival comes to mind when Moochie plans the occasion.

Luckily, only our son, "Bear," has a birthday close to any other holiday. Most children, when their birthday happens close to Christmas, get a cake and maybe a small present, "You'll get more on Christmas." Moochie, on the other hand, feels Bear could be "emotionally damaged and resentful of the other children," if he were slighted on "his day."

In the midst of Christmas preparations, everything pauses for "Bear's Big Day." Special birthday banners, devoid of any color associated with Christmas, are hung. A three layer, Black Forest Cake, "Bear's favorite," is prepared. Friends and family are invited.  The "Best China" dishes are set out. Hours are spent preparing a feast and Moochie glows with pride as everyone stands in awe.

This year, Bear asked for a simple birthday. Hamburgers, a cake with blue and black frosting, and plain paper plates. Moochie's therapist said she is "coming along" and Bear may get his wish.

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