Living With Don Johnson

Archive for December 2011

Posted on: December 19, 2011

Happy Birthday, Holly! Hope you have a fantastic day.


Kate, Wendy, and Don Johnson


The other day, I was thinking that this might be the last year that Wendy believed in Santa. She’d started asking some questions about how he got inside to deliver the presents and fill the stockings. I kind of beat around the bush and asked her “How do you think Santa gets inside?” She answered that she thinks that Santa does something along the lines of a ding-dong ditch. He knocks on the door, drops the presents and runs. She was satisfied with her belief, so I left it at that. (I believed until I was, like, 10 or 11. My brother knew at the age of 4. And I’m still generally the first person awake on Christmas morning. And no, Mom, I won’t call at 6 am to wake you up. Although, I’m two hours behind you, so 6am my time is really 8 am your time.) We’ve had the discussion that the Santa at the mall isn’t the “real” Santa. She knows that it is someone just dressed up in a costume. We had to have this discussion in order for her to get anywhere near him so that we could have a Santa picture. Disneyland really helped on that one. We’re able to reference back to that whenever she gets iffy “remember how Mickey Mouse is just a person wearing a costume. This Santa is just like that. He’s only wearing a costume.” I do think it is funny that there aren’t any pictures of me as a kid with Santa until I’m 7. And I have one picture of Wendy at about 6 months old with Santa, and then the next picture with Santa didn’t happen until she was 7. Like mother, like daughter, I guess.

We took her to see Arthur Christmas the other day after I got off of work. First off, let me just say Arthur Christmas was an absolutely adorable movie. Don Johnson wasn’t sure he was going to like it based off of the previews. I’d heard positive reviews from my friends who had taken their kids to see it. So, I knew it would be pretty good. The grownups in the theater all seemed to laugh through most of the movie.

I don’t want to give away the good parts of the movie for those who haven’t seen it yet (Tim), but I do want to mention one small part. On Christmas Eve, the movie shows one of the ways that Santa gets in to the houses to deliver presents. It showed a tv with the a fireplace dvd playing. The front of the tv comes unscrewed and out pops Santa where the “fireplace” was just a moment before.

For Wendy, the answer that the movie provided her was pretty good. I’m not sure whether she’ll want us to leave the fireplace dvd on in our tv when she goes to bed. Let’s just hope I don’t find her near the tv trying to help Santa by unscrewing the screws.

Anyway, Arthur Christmas. Great movie. Go see it if you get a chance.

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So, I sat down at the computer tonight to write a blog, and I was faced with writer’s block. I knew I wanted to write something, but I just wasn’t sure what I wanted to write about. Usually when I publish a post, wordpress will give some prompts but having prompts AFTER I publish a post just doesn’t work for me. Yes, I am aware that I could save some of those prompts on my desktop to use at a later date, but that thought never occurs to me until I actually want to use a prompt.

As I sat here on the couch enjoying the glow of the Christmas tree lights and the sound of Don Johnson playing xbox, I looked over at the pile of books stacked up on the edge of the couch and decided I could write a post about the books I am currently reading or my favorite books. Truth be told, this will probably be a combo of the books I am currently reading and my favorite books. I have tried to include links to the authors pages or information about the authors where possible.

Let’s start with the books I am currently reading (or have lined up to read).

  1. Inheritance by Christopher Paolini – Inheritance is the final book in the Eragon series. I truly enjoyed the first two books in the series; I believe that I finished reading them in just about a week. It took me a year to read the third book in the series. Don’t get me wrong, It was a good book, but I just had a difficult time sitting down and getting started on the story. I’m hoping that this last book reads more like the first book.
  2. The Queen’s Fool by Phillipa Gregory – Phillipa Gregory also wrote The Other Boleyn Girl. While I didn’t read that particular book, I did watch the movie. And I found it to be pretty good. When I saw this book for only a dollar at work, I decided to go ahead and pick it up. The story deals with a young girl, Hannah, who finds herself in the Royal Court as the Queen’s fool. I can’t tell you how the story ends because I haven’t reached it yet. However, it is a fairly intriguing read and when I have time to sit down and read it, I don’t want to put it down. Right now, it is in my drawer at work so sometimes I get to read it at breaks if it is quiet.
  3. Tainted and Torn by Julie Kenner– These are books one and two of the Blood Lily Chronicles. These fall into the fantasy type books. I’m only a few chapters into Tainted. It is starting off a bit on the slow side, but it is fairly similar to an upcoming book on the list as well as a series I just finished reading, so that maybe why I’m not as into it yet.
  4. Midnight’s Daughter by Karen Chance– This books is in my ‘to read’ stack. I really liked the Cassie Palmer series that Chance wrote, so I am hoping that this will be along the same lines. The Blook Lily Chronicles do feel similar to the Cassie Palmer series.
  5. The Servants Quarters by Lynn Freed– Another book in my ‘to read’ stack. I picked this up at Borders when it was going out of business. I bought it because it looked like it had promise, and it was only a couple of bucks. I figured if the story was terrible at least I wasn’t out a lot of money.
  6. This is Where We Live by Janelle Brown– In the ‘to read’ stack and purchased at Borders. I had high hopes for this book based on the cover. Yes, I am aware that you shouldn’t judge a book by the cover. I read the first several chapters, and it never drew me in the way I had hoped. The story just seems to plod along. I’ll finish it eventually, but it will probably move its way down to the bottom of the stack.
  7. Being Polite to Hitler by Robb Forman Dew- Another ‘to read’ book and Borders book. Not sure why I picked this one up. Probably because it was cheap and looked like it could be interesting. I haven’t read any part of it yet.
  8. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith (and Jane Austen)- I enjoyed Pride and Prejudice as a tween, and it seemed to get pretty decent reviews, so I figured I’d give it a try. This is at the top of my ‘to read’ stack.
  9. Waking the Witch by Kelley Armstrong– This is one of the books that seems similar to the Blood Lily Chronicles and the Cassie Palmer series. Don got it for me at Borders. I’m about half way through and, to be honest, I can’t tell you what happened in the book because it has been so long since I sat down to read it.
  10. The Russian Winter by Daphne Kalotay– Yet another entry in the ‘to read’ stack and purchased from Borders. The cover drew me in, so let’s hope it is entertaining at least.

Books I am looking forward to reading.

  1. The new Stephanie Plum book by Janet Evanovich– Book number 18 was supposed to come out in November, but I haven’t seen or heard anything about it. That doesn’t mean that it isn’t out. It just means that I’ve been busy with work and life that I haven’t bothered to look up the publish date or title. I enjoy the Stephanie Plum series. They are a lighthearted series and they don’t require a lot of my brain space. It is always interesting to guess how many of Stephanie’s cars will blow up and how many times she will have to be rescued by Ranger.
  2. The new Sue Grafton book- To be honest, I don’t even remember what letter she is on now or what the last one I read was titled. I think U was the last one I read. Kinsey Milhone is a great female lead for the series, and I have grown rather attached to her over the years. I almost think I like her more than Stephanie Plue, but Kinsey doesn’t have Ranger, so I guess it is a draw for the moment.

Books that I will read over and over again.

  1. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott– I adore this book, and without a doubt, it will always take the number one spot in my favorite books list. I think I’ve gone through several copies. I even have it on my eReader! I love the March sisters and Marmee. I still cry when Beth dies. There isn’t anything about Little Women that I don’t love. Josephine was always near the top of my list of names for potential children, but that never panned out. Although, our toothfairy’s name is Josephine.
  2. Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery- I can’t think of a girl who didn’t read Anne (with an E) growing up. We had a copy come into the store today, and all of the girls who work with me were fawning over it because it was such a pretty book.
  3. Harry Potter by J.K Rowling– It’s a great series in my opinion. I find the story to be well told. It’s entertaining and an all around good series.
  4. The Family Nobody Wanted by Helen Doss- I first read this when I was only a little bit older than Wendy, I believe. I read my mom’s copy. The book is about Helen and her husband, Carl, and their journey to have a family. They wind up adopting 12 ‘unadoptable’ kids. The story never gets old.
  5. Cheaper By the Dozen by Frank and Ernestine Gilbreth– Another one I read as a pre-teen. It’s the story of the Gilbreth’s. It’s been years since I read it, but it will always hold a spot on my list.
  6. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand– Finally, a book that isn’t a young adult book! There are lots of different opinions about Atlas Shrugged. I could go into the politics aspect of it or even the business and financial aspects of it, but I won’t. While there are parts of the book that are heavy on the descriptions and light on action, I still enjoy it. I’ve read it so many times now that I generally just skip over the parts that I know are going to be overly descriptive.
  7. Any book by Katherine Paterson– Yes, another juvenile literature selection, but really, can you argue with Bridge to Terabithia or Jacob, Have I Loved?

One author that you will NEVER (and I do mean never) see me read is Nicholas Sparks. Even typing his name makes me want to gag. He’s so formulaic and sappy. Ugh and blech

That’s all I’ve got for the moment. I look forward to the day when I can start to make a dent in my ‘to read’ pile. What about you. What books are stacked up in your ‘to read’ pile? And what are your favorite books that you can read over and over again.


And I couldn’t be happier! I absolutely adore the winter holiday season from Thanksgiving all the way up to Valentine’s Day. Yes, I said Valentine’s Day.

The Christmas carols are on the radio now. And I get to listen to them every day at work for 8 hours at a time. The other people at work are slightly over the whole Christmas music thing, but I still happily sing along as I put books on the shelves. I would totally wear a Santa hat to work if I thought I could get away with it.

We’ve already got some presents wrapped and stuck next to the entertainment center. We have yet to find a tree. We had been using a $30 fake tree that I found at Walmart in 2007. It was perfect (for me anyway). It was just a little 6 foot tree, but it had the lights already on it. It died last year. Yes, I did say that my fake Christmas tree died last year. It was not packed very well in the moving van on the way out to California. We propped it up somehow last year, and then threw it away after Christmas. We thought that we’d get a real tree this year and then buy another fake tree at the after Christmas sales. We might have to rethink that plan. Christmas trees are expensive. I don’t know if it is just a California thing or an everywhere thing. I have some major issues spending $80-100 on a tree that we’re gonna throw away in 5 weeks. I can’t justify that in my head. And the fake trees are just as expensive! Don Johnson was hoping to go cut down the family tree this year, since it is something that he remembers doing as kid. Although, we should all remember that he grew up in Michigan where they actually had forests and tree farms where you could cut down trees. They don’t have those here in California. I think what we will wind up doing will be getting a small (2 ft-ish) real tree and put it on the sideboard, and then look for a fake tree after Christmas.

Like I said, I love anything to do with the holidays, so I was happy to see that my friend, Holly, had changed the background on her blog to her holiday background. I can’t help but smile when I see the festive background.

Just a random thought, when I signed in to my blog today, it asked me at the top if I wanted to be “master of my domain” and I just had to giggle because it reminded me of the Seinfeld episode where they discussed being the “master of their castles.”

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