Moment In Time: DECEMBER

By Mickey Dunaway | Reprinted with Permission by Limitless Magazine | Cornelius, NC

Limitless Magazine is now calling “This Month in History”— “A Moment in Time.” Since I like name, and it really fits my monthly column’s content, I will use it for Southern Exposures, too.

Why have I not written more blogs recently? There is only one explanation. We put down new floors throughout the house. The process of taking up and installing the new floors only took a little over two days for the installers when they showed up as expected on November 29th. Our contract called for them to move the furniture; however, we had to move everything INSIDE the furniture. In addition, I had to detach three IKEA bookcases from the walls. Before moving anything to the garage, we had to clean out the garage. Trip to the dump. Then we put the contents of the furniture into boxes and moved them to the garage. Sore muscles. Once the installers came, they installed quarter-round molding to finish the floor. The molding they used was prepped for painting but not painted. So, we got the installers back again to paint the quarter rounds and the baseboards. More waiting. Once the painting was complete, we started moving things back from the garage. More sore muscles. Yes, this was just like an actual move, and then for a week, we couldn’t find anything we really needed. As of today, DEC 17, we are pretty much back to normal with only a few more things to be put back where they belonged before the new floor was installed.

After almost everything was in place came the ordering of rugs for the den, hallway, and two bedrooms. Yes, I understand the conundrum of putting down new state-of-the-art vinyl floors and then covering the floors up with rugs—so you need not comment on that!

I promise to do better going forward—unless my back acts up or my hands start aching with the next cold front to come through. Anyway… that’s my story, and I am sticking to it.

__________

Limitless Magazine from which this blog comes seems aimed at those of us who fall into the group “Seasoned Citizens,” as Rush Limbaugh used to call us.  Christmas giving is particularly hard for our group if the giftee has aged gracefully and is called Meemaw, Pawpaw, Bombom, Nanna, Poppop, Dandan, Deedee, or the traditional Granddaddy. 

The problem: At my advancing age what the hell can I get that I have not already gotten or rejected? 

By the time the December edition of Limitless hits the stands, the question of what-do-you-want-for-Christmas will have been asked numerous times. Still, as I write this in early November, I don’t know what my answer will be this year.

So, for December in History, I am focusing on unique Christmas gifts of the last 75 years and some suggestions for the faithful readers of Limitless.

__________

Limitless Magazine seems aimed at those of us who fall into the group “Seasoned Citizens,” as Rush Limbaugh used to call us.  Christmas giving is particularly hard for our group if the giftee has aged gracefully and is called Meemaw, Pawpaw, Bombom, Nanna, Poppop, Dandan, Deedee, or the traditional Granddaddy, which is how my grandchildren refer to me. 

I will be 75 this Christmas. What the hell can I get that I have not already gotten or rejected? 

By the time the December edition of Limitless hits the stands, the question of what-do-you-want-for-Christmas will have been asked numerous times. Still, as I write this in early November, I don’t know what my answer will be this year.

So, for December in History, I am focusing on unique Christmas gifts of the last 75 years and some suggestions for the faithful readers of Limitless.

__________


Decade 
ToyComment
1940sBiggest Hit: Bubble SolutionWhat kid doesn’t love Bubbles! And they have been studied by physicists, too! 
1950sBiggest Hit: 
Water Balloon or Water Grenades
Personally, I think PEZ should have been the winner.
1960sBiggest Hit:
Etch-a-Sketch 
Unlike an iPad, no battery to run down. 
1970sBiggest Hit:
Nerf Ball
I sure wish I still had my children’s Star Wars Action Figures or those Star Trek Phasers! 
1980sBiggest Hit: Cabbage Patch KidsThose Cabbage Patch Kids were as adorable as they were impossible to find. 
1990sBiggest Hit:
Little Tikes Log Cabin  
My young son’s favorite of all time was the Little Tykes Cozy Coupe Car. That was one well-made toy to sustain the number of wrecks it had in our house! 
2000-10Biggest Hit:
Bratz Dolls  
Lots of electronics in this decade, but Bratz dolls beat out Barbie. 
NOW2021 Biggest Hit: Star Wars Baby Yoda Who does not love Star Wars Baby Yoda 
***

So, we have come to THE QUESTION: What is the best Toy … er … Gift for Those of Us of a Certain Age?

__________

According to Southern Living, “The Best Christmas Gift Ideas for Grandparents” were:

1. Eufy RobotVac by Anker headed their list

2. #10 Cast Iron Skillet by Smithey Ironware Co.

3. The Tea Drop Sampler from Amazon. Just drop one in your cup. No steeping teabags required

4. Shutterfly Photo Puzzle of the grandkids

5. Matching aprons for Grandma and the Grandkis

6. A Marble Tic-Tac-Toe Game Set.

*Really? After #2, it seems the Southern Living folks got into the Scotch under the desk! Speaking of which, a fine bottle of single malt would come in at least at #2 on my list! 

____________

In 2020, USA Today published its 40 Best Gifts for Everyone (I only listed a half-dozen):

1. Roku Streaming Stick 

2. 12-inch Lodge Cast Iron Skillet

3. A Disney + Streaming subscription for all those who have cut the cord.

4. The Apple Air Pods Pro.

5. For the chronically cold, the Barefoot Dreams Throw Blanket was a must-give gift.

6. Finally on our reduced list is the Eufy RoboVac.  

*USA Today’s list was better than Southern Living, but what is it with the cast iron skillet craze?

__________

Mickey Dunaway’s Recommendations (There are no paid endorsements here, just suggestions based on experience, Google research on gift-giving, and I hope some commonsense.)

1. First on my list is a year’s (or a month’s) supply of Kona or Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee Beans. You can either of these in a blend very reasonably at Costco. If you want the 100% real deal, you will pay a lot more. However, I think it is worth it and you can get them online.

*Great beans make all the difference. No Keurig can compete, nor can Starbucks.

2. If your giftee is already a coffee drinker, you can really improved their ability to make consistently great coffee with an OXO Brew Coffee Grinder and a decent drip coffeemaker that heats the water to 190 degrees each time.

*After great beans, grinding the beans correctly every time is the best insurance of a great cup of coffee, even in an average drip coffeemaker. And don’t spend an outrageous amount on a coffee maker. You can find very good ones for a little more than $100 from Braun or KitchenAid at Amazon.

3. I have to agree that the Apple AirPods Pro, especially for people who have an iPhone will be greatly appreciated, even if you gift them to yourself.

*The new generation of earbuds are remarkably comfortable, great at reproducing sound or blocking out noise wherever you may be—in an airplane or on your pillow.

4. Even though at the time this writing we are still in the COVID oppressed America, an all-paid (reasonably priced) weeklong getawayespecially for couples—is a wonderful gift for each other. 

*I am not yet comfortable with cruises yet, but a get-a-way you can drive to might be just the ticket to relieve some anxiety and stress that COVID has produced.

5. I also agree on the usefulness of the Anker Eufy RoboVac or Eufy Vac/Mop is a remarkable gift. I am still amazed to watch our work itself around the furniture. And it is amazing how much dirt, lint, and discarded skin cells it can get up in one trip around the den.

*If you choose a RoboVac make sure it has maximum sucking power. Many other brands are as good as the Eufy but are usually more expensive

6. Turntables are making a comeback in a big way. If you know someone who has LPs still have in the attic, this is a good choice.

*This was my last year’s Christmas “ask for,” and I am still pleased with it and really enjoying looking for LPs at yard sales and antique shops.

__________

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Joyful Hannukah— Y’all!

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