Those Holiday Movies

wreath
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

It is Friday and Fridays are for fun. This is the season of those holiday movies. The plots are predictable. In the end, they fall in love and start a new life. They often begin with one of the future lovebirds going home and saving the town after having a change of heart. They go from predatory capitalism to ordinary good capitalism once the holiday spirit kicks in.

As Christmas approaches there is snow on the ground but the sidewalks stay clear. Every inch of the inside of each house is filled with Christmas decorations. Every house has a fireplace with a roaring fire. Yet in some scenes, people go outside without coats or gloves.

I would love to see a holiday movie about an older woman who goes on an adventure during the holidays. Her travels are paid for by someone but not by her. She gets to do whatever she wants to for a couple of weeks. She goes someplace warm where it never snows.

For now, I’ll continue to avoid holiday movies. Spoiler alert they fall in love and live happily ever after and whatever challenges they had have been overcome.

Things to do on Black Friday

It is Friday and Fridays are for fun. Today is also Black Friday and I mention it even though I know there isn’t anyone in this capitalist country of ours who doesn’t know about Black Friday.

My plans for the day include finishing up on some work, I have a deadline for an article I am writing and need to prepare for a meeting on Monday. I will probably cook up a batch of turkey noodle soup for our evening meal. It will go well with the leftover wine. Hard to believe but I have leftover wine. I will probably go for a walk. I do that most days.

Maybe I’ll do a little decorating for the holidays. I know the cat would enjoy that very much.

Cat and tree
Cat waiting for an opportunity to chew on wires and break ornaments.

It should be a quiet day but I will be around to respond to any requests from people who want to buy or sell a house today. You don’t have to get up early or wait in line if you want to buy or sell real estate today. They won’t cost any more or less today than they will tomorrow or the next day.  You won’t save money by acting now but you will get my undivided attention while everyone else is taking advantage of Black Friday sales.

 

All real estate all the time

It is Friday and Fridays are for fun. I am sure everyone has met that guy. I don’t want to be that guy. Everything that guy does is for his business. Every holiday is a marketing opportunity and he is all real estate all the time.

christmas tree ornaments
ornaments

People who have regular W2 type jobs take time off, during the holidays. They can be with friends without advertising themselves or their companies. They don’t have to be that guy and neither do I. Besides I am not a guy.

As I am inundated with marketing tips for the holidays I am reminded that the holidays themselves are a marketing thing. We are sold on the idea that we need to spend money so that we can enjoy spending time with family and friends.

I have said enough. No, I am not going to be that guy during the holidays or any other time of the year.

1 degree can make a big difference

 

skyline
Winter from the river bluff

It is Friday and Fridays are for fun. Before I start my little rant I want everyone to know that I have a high-efficiency furnace and have made a few upgrades to the homestead over the years to make it more energy-efficient. I drive a small car that gets good mileage. I even replaced a 4-watt night light bulb with a .05 watt LED bulb. It all adds up.

There is more but writing about it would just be showing off, or worse yet virtue signaling.

We have one of those “smart” programable thermostats and have it programmed to a lower temperature at night and when we are away. A couple of years ago we raised the daytime temperature by one degree. It made a big difference. I used to be cold all of the time, now I am not. Sure I still wear sweaters and hoodies and thick socks but most of the time I am comfortable.

The one degree from 10:00 AM until 9:00 PM means that our heating bill is 1% to 3% higher during the six or seven months we run the furnace. During a cold January that could mean paying $2 or even $5.50 a month more for heating. Over an entire winter, that degree could cost as much as $30.

We are being warned that prices are going way up this winter. So far from what I have read natural gas prices will go up by 10% to 100%. If I am going to spend twice as much on heating then I want to have warm hands and feet even if that means paying $60 over the course of the winter so I’ll keep my extra degree.

That one degree is magical and it makes the other 97 to 99% of the heating bill seem more worthwhile.

What will you do with your extra hour?

It is Friday and Fridays are for fun. Daylight savings time ends this weekend. We can not really change time, and the rules of earth rotation and daylight never change.

Most of us will adjust to the time change in a few weeks. Turning the clock back is easier on the body than moving it forward. It will be light out again in the early morning hours and dark by the end of the workday as it should be.

Daylight savings time is a crime against nature but it is also a marketing opportunity.

Please set your clock back one hour before you go to bed on Saturday and call me on Sunday so I can sell your house.

Daylight savings time ends November 6th

I always have big plans for that extra hour.

Holiday shortages?

It is Friday and Fridays are for fun. I have been hearing and reading about shortages of stuff this holiday season. We are being warned to shop early. . . or risk not having every little thing our heart’s desire.

I am not buying it. Pun intended. If we are out of turkeys by Thanksgiving I won’t be cooking a turkey this year. I usually get a fresh bird and do not have enough room in my freezer to store a frozen bird which means I’ll need to shop right before the holiday,

After cooking a turkey almost every thanksgiving of my adult life I skipped it last year because it was just the two of us for the holiday and the Mr. doesn’t even like turkey. I very much regret my decision. Some members of my family roasted turkey, but I couldn’t get anyone to share.

If all we can get this year are hotdogs it won’t bother me at all to serve them on Thanksgiving.

I am not stocking up on food items and am prepared to cook and eat whatever I can find at the grocery store.

As for food and gifts, this season, none of it is an emergency. We don’t have to buy anything. It will be an adventure.  Thanksgiving is about being thankful for what we have and sharing it with those who have less. In this case for many of us scarcity is just a frame of mind.