Monday, December 29, 2008

Last Monday of the year

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all. Things are busy, and I haven't even pulled up the photos from cowboy Christmas, much less real Christmas. The kids all were out of town at home this year, so B wanted to get out and go somewhere. I had to work Friday, so we just took advantage of the cheap rates (hah, cheap compared to other days) at the big Resort Hotel Casino next door for Christmas Eve and spent a night away from the house. It was very pleasant - fancy food at a great steakhouse, drinks and a good band down next to the casino, a great breakfast at Boudon's, where I have wanted to go for ages, and some time at a different place. The room was very nice - pictures to come. Not bad for the biggest hotel in the world. Last year occupancy was 40% for the eve, this year with lower rates it was up to 85% and the casino was fairly crowded. Wynn is having some specials next month, so we might do the one night thing again. As for New Year’s Eve, well, it’s just probably getting to sleep early as we have been doing.

Not much under our tree this year; since it’s just the two of us we don’t really wait until the end of the year to get things, if we want something we just get it without fanfare. It makes it difficult that way to get anything for the other guy, but I did get B some books and CDs she wasn’t expecting. I got her some nice necklaces last year, but she is not really into wearing jewelry so there was nothing like that this year. She got me some tools that I didn’t have - something unusual in itself, as I tend to buy a new toy whenever I have a new project. We did a video conference with Portland, and got to watch E dancing around. It was mid afternoon, and they were still opening presents. It’s not that she got a lot, it’s just that she had to play with each item as it was opened without regard to the concept of opening everything at once. If she opened a book (of which she got quite a few) she had to sit down and read it, ignoring the calls to open the next thing. If she got a toy she took time to play with it, disregarding the others still wrapped. I hope that it stays like that, but I am sure that next year it will be ‘is that all?’ We’ll see.

Our day of snow has come and gone, and we are into the cold month. Temperatures at our house differ from the ‘official’ weather station down at the airport. Last night it was 35f there, but 27f at our house when we got up. Today it should get up to the mid 50’s then warming up the rest of the week, with our twenty degree swing between night and day that means 39f at night and 60f during the day, not too bad for New Year’s celebrations. This year they are still expecting 250,000 out on the Strip, not much compared to Times Square but still a crowd. The fireworks will be a little tamer, no shooting them off of rooftops due to new fire regulations but just out of parking lots down on the ground. We did get up last year to watch the fireworks from our front yard, we get glimpses of the Strip down the hill between the houses across the street. Hope you all have fun (but please do not drink and drive).

I didn’t get to say goodby to Ertha Kitt last week, she died on Christmas day. But her rendition of this is one of my favorite holiday songs. Here live in combination with Old Fashioned Girl:

I don’t remember much of her singing, she seemed to be over in Europe a lot due to her outspoken political stands, but do remember her from the old Batman TV show, where she was one of the many that played Cat Woman. Here with both the Joker and that Batman theme, the one with the lyrics that were so difficult to remember:

And for no reason other than I like it let’s throw in a little Billy Holiday. Along with one of the best lineups of classic Jazz musicians.

Oh, sorry I missed E Friday last week. We left early and I just ran into too many things to do at home. Here, have one to hold you over.

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