Frisco Christmas Tree Lighting

Over the weekend the City Of Frisco’s Parks & Recreation Department through a huge Christmas celebration at Frisco Square. Their Main Street Christmas was attended by thousands of people and oh so many happy children. Santa was there, along with a few of his reindeer. There were more than a Few children’s choirs singing Christmas songs of every variety. There was even plenty of food, including some super sized corn dogs that I just had to try. The main event of the evening was the lighting of the Christmas Tree. It was a quick moment, but the crowd loved it and the tree is quite beautiful. 

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Tonight is All Hallow's Eve. Don't walk...

Tonight is All Hallow's Eve. Don't walk down any long dark hallways, don't walk alone in a big empty field and to my teenage friends - don't make out with your eyes closed. For heavens sake, if the soundtrack to your life starts getting all spooky - don't lock yourself in a room with only one way in, that's also the only way out!

Father's Day Origins

One day a year we celebrate our Fathers with a national holiday. We go to dinner or lunch. We give gifts. As a family we pay tribute to dad. Yet most of us probably don't know how it all got started. Why do we celebrate in June? Why do we have a national holiday to celebrate the day? It turns out the history is actually quite interesting, and even a little controversial.

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Memorial Day - Give Thanks

US FlagToday we celebrate our fighting men and women who gave their lives in service of their country. There is no greater sacrifice and therefore no greaterhonor that can be bestowed upon them beyond remembering their sacrifices as we have done since the end of the Civil War.  A bit of a history note, I looked up the start of Memorial Day, once known as Decoration Day, and was not surprised to see it dates back to the Civil War. I was surprised to see how it began. According to Wikipedia (http://bit.ly/mnUiOm) Memorial Day was begun back on May 1st, 1865 by freedmen (freed slaves) in Charleston, South Carolina to honor Union soldiers buried at what we know today as Hampton Park.

These freed slaves had exhumed Union soldiers buried in a mass grave at the site of a Confederate prison camp for captured union soldiers. They reinterred them in individual graves at that site, then built a fence and an entry arch declaring it a Union graveyard. On May 1st 10,000 mostly black residents of Charleston went to the new cemetery to participate in songs, speeches and picnic.

On May 5th of 1868 General John A. Logan, commander-in-chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, issue a proclamation that "Decoration Day" should be observed nationwide on May 30th. That date was chosen because it was not the anniversary of any particular battle.

Events were held in 183 cemeteries in 27 states that same year. These events were sponsored by The Women's Relief Core, which at the time was 100,000 strong.

In 1871 Michigan was the first state to make "Decoration Day" a state holiday. By 1890 every northern state had followed suit.

The name "Decoration Day" continued to be used for many years, but slowly "Memorial Day" began to be favored. After World War II it became the preferred name for the holiday.

The nation would continue to celebrate the Holiday on May 30th until 1971 when "The Uniform Holidays" bill took affect moving 4 national holidays from their date based observance to a Monday observance making four 3-day holidays. Memorial Day became the last Monday of May.

Today we celebrate Memorial Day in many ways, most concern the welcoming of summer and not our fallen heroes. A few somber traditions continue. For example veterans across America place flags on graves of soldiers at national cemeteries. There is also a national moment of silence at 3:00 pm local time. Finally many fly flags at half-mast from dawn until noon.

It doesn't truly matter how we honor those that gave so much, as long as we do honor them with our thoughts and prayers. We should also honor the living heroes of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, National Guard and Coast Guard. All currently serving are dedicated to keeping the freedom our forbarers secured with so much blood, sweat and tears.

Our nation remains a better place because of the sacrifices made by all of them yesterday and today as wells as the sacrifices yet to be made tomorrow.

Easter 2010 Photos

You will find on my flicker page photos from our family Easter celebration today. We had a great time. We enjoy some awesome food. Hunted for Easter eggs. Opened Easter baskets and even flew a kit! We had 14 folks for Easter Brunch. Wow, a lot of people, and I'm pretty sure the grandkids should be counted 3 times. The link to Flickr is below.

Easter 2010

Quiet Labor Day Weekend

It's been a pretty quiet labor day weekend for the family. Tracy is hard at work at finishing up her undergraduate degree, so if she is awake and not at work she's studying. So the kids and I do our best to stay quiet and out of her way; to varying degrees of success. She would say to ZERO degrees of success; but I'm telling the story, not her. (smile honey) Friday was a late night for everyone because Kristie had an away game in Arlington and didn't get back to school until after midnight. Which meant I had to stay up until then to pick her up. I don't stay up that late very much anymore, now that I'm old dodger with two grandkids. I mean, 39 is the nearing the end of the road right?

Saturday turned out to be quite the long day, and my arms and legs are still suffering. Kristie and I started the day off heading to WillowBend mall for lunch and then Kristie took advantage of a makeover she won from the Bodyshop. After that we did some shopping, she had birthday gift cards to use, and we had to pick-up Courtney from work and ferry her over to the boyfriends house. After that it was back home to spend some time with Tracy and then back out again to Main Event. That's where the soar arms and legs comes into play.

We went there for bowling and games. The bowling took out my arms, that and several games of air hockey. The legs took a beating during a game of laser tag. I hadn't played laser tag in years! We had a blast, well, I did anyway. You may have noticed there is a video posted of Kristie playing various games and bowling. None of me, because I didn't think to had the camera over to her. Oh well, next time.

Sunday was a little quieter, although the Kelly Car Service was still in demand. The day was Tracy's day with Kristie, and they were off to the movies. Some chick flick about a guy who keeps disappearing - traveling through time or something. Guys, can we use that excuse and actually get away with it? Only in a chick flick would a girl go for that excuse. Sunday night Courtney headed back over to spend time with the boyfriend (still need to look into access the CIA's real time satellite cameras) and Kristie was off to a birthday/slumber party. Apparently the agenda was - MORE BOWLING. For me it was a quiet night... but go figure there isn't exactly much on video or in the theaters I want to see.

Today was another quiet day. As the hours tick by and the sun sets on Labor Day 2009, I wish for another quiet day. Alas, I have to wait 4 days. Does anyone other than me find it ironic that on Labor Day we all strive our very best to labor as little as possible? Heck, I'm in management should I even get to celebrate Labor Day? Hmm, I won't tell if you won't!

Easter Sunday - 2009

Today, Tracy and I hosted Easter Sunday brunch. Carlos Sr., Desiree, Carlos Jr and Landen came over along with another young family that Carlos knows from the military. Gay and Paul also joined us. Tracy out did herself making several quiches that were devoured completely. Typically we have leftovers after big holiday meals, but not today. Apparently real men do eat quiche and a lot of it.

After brunch Tracy handed out the Easter Baskets to all the kids, grandkids and her loving husband (little, old me). Unfortunately, I almost forgot about the Easter tradition of giving baskets; but as much as it pains me to say so, Wal-Mart came to my rescue. I quickly built a basket for Tracy this morning before our guests arrived. The wrapping was a bit scary, but did the job. The Easter baskets aren’t filled with expensive items, typically just candy and a few fun items. It’s truly more about the giving, that what we are giving. It puts a smile on the faces of the children and grandchildren; and make the adults smile too.

I will say It was a quick holiday. The guests all arrived before 10:00, and all were gone by 3:00. Tracy did an absolute wonderful job as hostess; a role she very much enjoys. It’s one reason we bought the house we live in today.

Easter has a great deal of religious significance for all Christians, but it’s also about family. Easter 2009 was even more so for us because Carlos, Desiree, Carlos Jr and Landen were here to share the holiday with us. They’ve not been able to share Easter with us for sometime, any holiday for that matter. They leave for Carolina in a few weeks, so we get a little more time with them; but not enough. We’ll enjoy every moment we can though; but sharing Easter with them was extra special.

While Tracy cooked up a storm, I did my usual duty as family shutter bug. I’ve posted some of the photos I took today here for family and friends to see.

Easter 2009 Gallery


Presents Galore

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As with most years, there was no lacking in gift giving at the Spore household; however the gift giving didn’t take nearly as long as it has in the past. My first Christmas with Tracy it took over 4 hours to open all the presents. This year was simple by comparison, but never-the-less gifts were in abundance. Tracy, Courtney, Kristie and I all had a wonderful time and there were more than a few smiles to go around; as the photos certainly prove.

Hope your Christmas was as fun and as blessed as ours. Happy New Year!

Christmas 2008