Monday, December 19, 2011

Holiday Traditions/Wonder

My new hourglass
As I read different photography blogs and see different prompts, I don't always encounter a photo or an experience that makes me think of that particular prompt on the right day.  The Mortal Muses prompt yesterday (December 18) was WONDER.  I didn't snap a photo yesterday that fit that, but today I snapped a couple that made me think of wonder - and then I could not get the word out of my head so I decided I needed to write down my wonders and share them (note: I don't think of wonder in the term of magical, mystical wonder. I think of it in terms of "I wonder if or how or why..." - wonder almost always precedes a question for me - rarely does it evoke an emotion of awe).

I wonder how long the hourglass runs.  Our team had holiday lunch with a secret santa'y, white elephant-ish, gift exchange.  In the classic silly gift exchange way, I stole this from someone (I think Ryan) and happily I got to keep it (Nathaniel brought it).  I can tell you after watching it that it runs for longer than five minutes and less than two hours.  I hope to nail that down later this week and find an answer to that particular wonder.

I wonder how Robbie (a teammate) can be so incredibly creative - while also working on the analytical work he does (he's about 2/3 through a doctoral program in human computer interaction).  He has written poems and songs before and is quite famous for his "Robbie Rap".  Kathy suggested he write a holiday rap for us, but he went with a poem instead.  The "rhythm" is the same as "Twas the Night Before Christmas". He read it at our holiday party lunch today and had us all laughing.  He worked in everyone's name and appropriate references to each of us. It may not make much sense to you - but it's special to all of us

‘Twas the Week before Christmas
Robert K. Morse

‘Twas the week before Christmas and all through the center,
Nathaniel checked all the projects he’d entered.
Ryan and Lisa were sick at home in their beds while upgrades of Blackboard danced in their heads.
Robbie relaxed into a Christmas time-nap while rehearsing the words to the C4IT rap!
Then on the DELC list there arose such a clatter, but Kara reminded them that Quality Matters.
Jeff sprang to action and surveyed the land and helped us create our holiday plan.
On email, on faxes, on phone calls, newsletters; communication’s improving but it still could be better.
With folders and Post-Its and colored Sharpie markers with Becky’s help we all seem much smarter!
Michele scheduled meetings and sent holiday greetings
While Adam tested SCORM and tried to stay warm.
Cathy prepared IVYC 101; she likes to say that training is fun.
So as the holiday nears, and we tell our story,
As we gather together and all think of Laurie.
We know that we’re all gathered in spirit.
The New Year is coming and we will not fear it.
Be it Christmas, or Kwanzaa, or Chanukah too.
Happy Holidays to all, Thanks for all that you do.
I wonder how Laurie and her husband Matt are doing.  Matt was injured a week ago and had hopefully his final surgery today.  The two haven't been far from my heart or my thoughts since his accident.  As she said to us in one of her updates on his condition - hug the ones you love because our bodies are fragile things.

I wonder if this will be our new holiday tradition - the lunch and the gift exchange were tremendous fun.  It's good to get out with one another and relax.

I wonder if any of the team will take me up on my offer to do a portrait session for them and/or their families sometime in 2012 - a gift I would love to give.

I also went out to dinner tonight with the "singles and unattacheds" from work.  Some of us are single while others live here in the big city during the week before heading out to homes/spouses on the weekends.  I headed to my friend Cherry Kay's before we all met for dinner.  She and I did a little wine tasting before dinner - fun! Who knew I would like the Chardonnay?!  The others were nice, but it seems that if it isn't a really, really sweet red wine, I may not like it much.

Pre-dinner wine tasting at CK's

I grabbed a couple of shots of her tree that I have coming up in a compilation of tree pictures from some of my friends trees as well as my own a little later in the week.  In the meantime, I was trying to capture the lights reflecting on my wine glass but really hated the picture as it came out of the camera (the one on the left).  The one on the right, heavily edited in lightroom, will never be one of my favorites - but it is passable I guess. 

  Wine glass with Christmas lights straight out of the camera Edited in Lightroom - wine glass
What are your favorite workplace or work group holiday traditions?  

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