The hustle and bustle is over unless you were one of those who headed for the stores the day after Christmas at an hour which was much too early for me. I chose to sleep in and then mail the rest of my Christmas cards with a little note saying hope you had a good holiday yada, yada, yada and a Happy New Year. I know the cards are a little late, but my rationale is that those receiving them will have more time to enjoy them.

If you are like me, you have a tendency to open the cards as they come in, read them, and put them down to be enjoyed more after Christmas. This will give you more time to read the letters accompanying the cards and to look more carefully at the pictures of families. I envy those of you who manage to get the picture done and the letter finished in a timely manner.

I really enjoy those family photo cards, and I congratulate those of you who can get everyone together and have them all look good with no one doing bunny ears over the head of the person in front of them and no goofy smiles.

We took lots of pictures on Christmas Eve and Christmas this year. At one point there were probably four cameras shooting simultaneously, so hopefully we have some good ones. We took pictures of families, then grandparents and grandchildren, parents and children, grandchildren without parents or grandparents. Everybody is in at least two pictures depending on relationships.

Hopefully we got everybody, including Husband Joe who has been left out of many a picture because he was the one with the camera. But this time there were enough people willing to be the picture takers.

So we will get together swap pictures and tell each other how great we look and talk and laugh about the fun we had. That’s what it is all about – family and friends.

Now we get ready to start another new year, and believe it or not I already have seen Valentine’s Day items getting on to the shelves. Let’s be optimistic about 2012, remember we are all in this together. May I take this opportunity to wish you a happy, healthy, and safe New Year, because if I sent you the message in a card it might get to you too late.

Happy New Year!