Wednesday, December 31, 2008

That hardest and most wonderful of all years

Dad called the other night. "We're just sitting here enjoying these cute pictures of Nephew Bone." (One of the things I gave them for Christmas was a Nephew Bone calendar I made at Also, he doesn't actually call him Nephew Bone, which I find odd.) "There's just one thing we don't understand."

"Uhh, OK?" At this point, I'm thinking I got someone's birthday wrong or something.

"What is this fes-TEE-vus in December?"

And I thought he read my blog.

Festivus IV was a rousing success. There were thirteen survivors in all this year. That's one shy of the all-time mark set back in 2006. In hindsight, I'm glad I decided to have Festivus again this year. After all, airing the grievances I have against myself gets old after awhile.

Highlights included some of the Festivian children learning the difference between a Festivus pole and a shower curtain rod in a tree stand. The group singing of Silver Pole was a hit, as usual. Next year, I think we may try it in the round. (Or whatever you call it when you sing "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" and everyone starts at a different time.)

The Festivus Dinner featured a tempting schmeer of pizza, cupcakes, chips and salsa, and Twix--the only candy bar with the cookie crunch. As an added feature this year, we watched The Dealership episode of Seinfeld, which features George's candy lineup. ("Please, I think I've reached the point in my life where I can tell the difference between cookie and nougat. So let's not just say things that we both know are obvious fabrications!)

The Feats of Strength this year featured two card games of immense skill and lightning quick reflexes: Spoons and Egyptian Rat Screw. I wanted to play Scene It Seinfeld, but got out-voted like twelve to two. (I voted twice.) Wolfgang and Little Joe were the first people knocked the first couple games of Spoons, which resulted in Wolfgang letting the expletives fly. Fortunately, the children were gone by that time.

I also received a The Office wall calendar from LJ. Then later I found out he got Wolfgang a calendar featuring scantily clad women giving golf etiquette rules. "I didn't want to get ya'll the same thing," he explained. And here I thought he was just impressed with my golf etiquette.

So, grievances have been aired and the pole is back in the crawlspace. All that's left now is to repair damaged friendships and reflect on another year that has passed us by. And I will do that now.

Two-double-naught-eight. It was the year I first had something I'd written published in an actual book. It was the year I first became an uncle and a godfather. The year I visited Myrtle Beach for the first time. And of course, it was the year Bama spent seemingly half the season ranked #1.

But most all all, I will remember 2008 as the year the each member of my immediately family experienced one very significant event. The year began with Mom recovering from her minor stroke. Then Dad found out he needed open heart surgery and had a successful triple bypass in April. And then in August came Nephew Bone. Now the world revolves around him, and no one would have it any other way.

The worry and uncertainty about Mom and the hours sitting in the waiting room as Dad underwent his surgery were the most anxious moments of my life. Then there was the indescribable wonder, joy, and hope Nephew Bone brought with him into the world. Those are the reasons that 2008 was the hardest and most wonderful of all years.

Thank God that Mom and Dad made it through everything OK. And thank God for Nephew Bone.

In a few hours, the ball will drop on 2009. Though personally, I would prefer not to spend New Year's Eve with Ryan Seacrest. I mean, does he have to take over everything? First, it was American Top Forty. Then it was Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve. Next thing you know, he'll be guest starring on General Hospital and dating Audrina on The Hills. At which point, I will not be able to take it anymore!

I wish you all have a happy and safe New Year's and an amazing 2009.

"Today, you know, that's good enough for me. Breathing in and out's a blessing, can't you see? Today's the first day of the rest of my life. And I'm alive, and well..."


  1. Happy New Year Bone. May 2009 bring more happiness than sorrow.

  2. Happy New Year Bone! I look forward to another fun filled year of nothing. ;)

    I loved hearing about Festivus and one year I hope to attend one (can't do that at my house cuz we keep the Christmas tree up too long.)

  3. Loved hearing about Festivus. Hope and think this will be a better year for your parents and the possiblities are limitless for you, Bone

  4. Indeed 2008 was one of the best years ever! For us, it started off on a very sad note with Jawana's dad passing from cancer. But God had much good in the pipeline for our family. A few noteworthy things were:

    - Brayden, aka your godson, was born in August
    - celebrated our 1-year anniversary in November in Gatlinburgh
    - sold Jawana's house in April
    - paid off debt all year long
    - semi-adopted two neighborhood cats summer/fall
    - adopted Marleigh the yellow lab puppy yesterday
    - little bootay moved back
    - made new friends

    Looking forward to seeing the blessings of 2009!

    We have got to get togther more and play Wii for sure in '09. That was a blast Tuesday night!

    Happy New Year buddy!

  5. PennyCandy - Thank you. Happy New Year to you, too.

    Renee - Thanks. I'll do my best to keep the nothing coming. Oh, my tree is always up during Festivus. We just kind of ignore it.

    Pia - Yes, hopefully 2009 will be the year I cement my status as fave uncle.

    ArtistFormerlyKnown - Happy New Year! Oh, I forgot 2008 was the year Kate stopped blogging and then started back again ;-)

    Java - Oh, I completely forgot about Lil Bootay moving back! I'm sure that'll be in CNN's top ten stories of the year though. Thank you guys for allowing me to make it cool to be a godfather again.

  6. happy new year... and happy belated festivus for that matter to you and yours!

  7. Happy New Year to you!! So, would you want your dad to read your blog?

    He'd prolly like it :)

  8. we don't do tinsel either. My garland (which didn't get put up this year) is fake pearl beads. I'm not sure how the youngest and non-Seinfeldian would feel about a Festivus celebration...I think that perhaps we should send her to a friend's house for that.

    I hope the regifting went okay. Did you know there are now rules for that making it totally acceptable to do? nice

    And no, I'm not a close talker...we were just posing for the photo.

  9. You know, I hear more and more people discussing Festivus. I even brought it up to an African American acquaintance of mine. He replied "we don't watch Seinfeld." I said "we who?" LOL! But anyway, sounds like your 2008 was bittersweet. Hope 2009 is all sweet with no bitter. If you'd come visit, I could help you out with that!!

  10. That sounded wasn't intended to be dirty, really!

  11. Uisce - Wow, that's the first time I've ever received a belated Happy Festivus!! It's another Festivus miracle!

    Shelby - Eh, there's probably a post or ten I wouldn't mind him skipping over :)

    Renee - Well, the kids seem to enjoy my Festivus. But as I learned this year, it's a good idea to send them home when it's time for the Feats Of Strength.

    No, please link me to the regifting rules. Or I guess I could just google them.

    Carnealian - No, I wouldn't say bittersweet. There were just a few anxious moments in there. But everything turned out great in the end!

    Sure it wasn't. :)

  12. The story about your Dad is priceless. Though for the life of me, I can't figure out why he doesn't call your 'phew Nephew Bone! :)

    Los perro anos, Bone. Hope 2009 brings everything you found missing in 2008, and that God continues to be good to your family.

  13. Happy New Year! I didn't bring in the new year with Ryan Seacrest. Mine was simple. Perfect, actually.

    And I went for a bike ride yesterday. I have literally exercised EVERY SINGLE DAY this year. Whew. Go me!

  14. Happy new year! Thanks for making us laugh and spend time with you in your trials with your family. Best wishes to you in 2009!

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  16. Bone, if your dad were to call him Nephew Bone it would unduly influence your nephew to be your clone. Any influence has to come strictly from you. That way he will be the real thing, his own version of Uncle Bone...and that should be one interesting transformation to observe.

    Happy New Year.

  17. Reading your blog in 2008 was a treat, Bone. I should have read your blog more and spent less time worrying over the stock market! Happy New Year.

  18. lots of ups and downs in your 2008!I hope that 2009 is a wonderful year for you and your family! Lots of good health!


  19. Hope you have The best new year bone, I love reading your blogs.
    the name nephew bone is killer. haha
    so glad ur mom and pop are okay.

  20. What happens when there are more Nephew Bones? Will you follow George Foreman's example (Nephew Bone III, Nephew Bone IV), or will you be more like Micro$oft (Nephew Bone 2.0)? :)

  21. Two-double-naught-nine1/05/2009 09:25:00 PM


    Don't stay in 2008: we need you here. Please blog again.


  22. Happy New Year to you too :)