SO HOW'S your holiday decorating going?" my friend asked as she sidestepped a light-up plastic Santa face I swear I have thrown out every January since 1978.
Surrounded by an array of tangled tinsel, wickless candles and a denuded miniature Christmas tree, I did not respond. I could summon no holiday spirit.
"What's wrong with her?" she asked my son as he worked to disengage himself from an 11-foot orange extension cord my husband insisted we could discreetly work into the living room decor.
"She's mad because everyone in the neighborhood has those hanging icicle Christmas lights, and we're the last house on the block to put them up," he explained. "Instead of being tasteful trendsetters, we're just another house with illuminated dangling wires hanging from the eaves wasting electricity."
He ducked as a gilded pine cone whizzed past his head.
"She's also upset because it's hot and dad won't turn on the air conditioner so she can wear her wool Santa sweater while she decorates like she does every year," he added. "I suggested she could sew a candy cane on a tank top, but she just keep putting ice cubes in her hot chocolate and ignoring me."
Later that night I sat with my family waiting for the automatic timers to hit 5 p.m. Suddenly our home was ablaze in holiday lights. Once again Santa's head peered out from an upstairs window. The sound of Bing Crosby filled the air. My family safe beside me, I felt embarrassed by my earlier pouting. We are so fortunate, so lucky. Full of the holiday spirit, I savored the moment until.
"Mom, if you won't let us get out of the car, at least turn the air conditioning down a little. After all, you're the only one wearing a wool sweater."
It's starting to look a lot like Christmas, Glen Burnie.
North Pole mailbox
I hope someone will write to Santa and request seasonable weather. To guarantee delivery of such requests to the North Pole, the Glen Burnie Improvement Association has set up a mailbox in front of the association's hall at 19 Crain Highway.
Children who drop off their holiday wish lists before Dec. 19 will receive a personal response, thanks to holiday helpers like Brenda Kelly and her 15-year-old daughter, Meghan. This is the second year the Kelly family has helped with the special delivery.
For information, call the GBIA office, 410-766-6760.
Another of Santa's helpers is looking to the community to make )) this a bright Christmas for those less fortunate.
Happy Helpers for the Homeless, a nonprofit organization founded by 16-year-old Amber Coffman, is accepting donations of clothing, blankets, toys and personal hygiene products for distribution to homeless men, women and children at Christmas.
This is the sixth year Happy Helpers has been collecting for the holiday handout. Amber's wish-list includes wash cloths, socks, toys, meal certificates, thermal underwear, sweat suits, hats, gloves, tote bags and towels.
Amber's mother, Bobbi Coffman, notes that the collection has been less successful this year than in years past.
"We have not had a good turnout of donations so far, and we're getting closer to Christmas," she said.
For information on donating to the project, call 410-766-4793.
The congregation of the Abundant Life Church invites the community to enjoy the holiday production "Mary's Lamb" at 6: 30 p.m. Sunday in the church hall, 7305 E. Furnace Branch Road.
The free musical drama is presented by the Meyers Family Ministries, with cast members from the church. The play features a cast of 20, each of whom presents a message of the perfect lamb.
The Meyers Family will also present a musical tale, "True Treasures," at the 9 a.m. and 10: 30 a.m. Sunday services.
For information, call the church office, 410-761-9075.
Pub Date: 12/09/98