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Long-winded Christmas musings and observations in operating My Merry Christmas.
My Merry Christmas All things relating to MMC.
Old

The Sweetest Gift

Posted 12-22-2008 at 08:17 AM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

Traveling home from a business trip on December 19th is never fun. I've done it before and I've sworn I'd never do it again. But duty called and there I found myself on a Friday night waiting at the airport as weather across the country scrambled my chances of getting home on the weekend before Christmas 2008.

The Southwest terminal in Los Angeles is a bit of a gritty place. Always busy, it was packed with holiday travellers bound for all points east -- and no one was going anywhere.

I was there for more than 5 hours. Finally our plane arrived but we had to wait an additional hour for a crew to arrive to man it. After midnight -- officially Saturday now - we finally boarded, packed in like sardines, pushed away from the gate only to sit on the tarmac for some reason for 45 minutes.

My flight was only about 1 hour and 20 minutes. I was more than 8 hours now into my nightmare.

The flight itself was uneventful. All were too tired...
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Old

What Was in The Box

Posted 11-08-2008 at 10:04 AM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

Ok, I've been hounded about this and negligent in my duties in telling the rest of the story...last I blogged I told of receiving a mystery box while out of town.

When I got home I had no sooner dragged my luggage through the door before my kids took me by the hand to my chair in the living room. My youngest daughters pushed this rather large box towards my feet and my son handed me his pocket knife.

"Open it!"

Inside was the most curious Christmas decoration we have ever seen -- a large, heavy Christmas tree made entirely of sea shells, complete with a star-fish topper.

Plug it in and it lights up.

With it was an ornament (which will go on this year's tree) and a wonderful handmade card -- all from the members of Christmas Talk.

Suddenly my 16 year old daughter blurted out "Dad got a major award!"

I could not have been more surprised.

Thanks go out to our fellow Christmas...
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Old

What is in the box?

Posted 10-14-2008 at 08:53 PM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

I have been adjusting to a major job shift since June. It has me traveling a lot more. Since the end of May I have had just one full week at home. Tonight I write via laptop from Los Angeles.

My wife tells me that today we received a big box in the mail addressed to me.

That's very strange.

Like most traveling family guys I'm sometimes a stranger in my own home. When the phone rings it is never for me (I have teenagers).

My wife handles the bills and I rarely see anything from the mail box.

Our eldest daughter has long moved out but all her junk mail comes to my house. She gets more than I do.

So the receipt of the box today is unusual.

In the past my company had occasion to send things to my house. But that was when I didn't have a staffed office.

I've now got offices in Salt Lake City, Anaheim and San Francisco. If the company had mail, they wouldn't send it to my house...
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Old

Christmas Out There

Posted 09-14-2008 at 05:10 PM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

A week ago my wife and I returned from a rare kind of vacation. We took it alone -- just the two of us.

As parents to seven children there hasn't been much "just the two of us" time. We find it important to have a date night once a week and every now and then just steal away together.

But this trip was something special. We traveled from Utah to New York state, where we explored for four days before heading off on a cruise to Canada and New England.

This destination had no special meaning to us other than a promise of cooler weather, plenty of historic sights to see and, of course, the potential for scouting of some unusual Christmas shops.

We like to find the small, out-of-the-way Christmas shops.

I think just about any true lover of Christmas out there harbors a fantasy of owning a Christmas shop. I know I do. I have a career of retail experience, know just a little about Christmas and have plenty ideas of how...
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Old

The Spirit of Christmas Within

Posted 06-07-2008 at 08:08 PM by Jeff Westover (A Merry Blog)

My Merry Christmas began on a whim and for many years endured as just a seasonal endeavor.

Never designed to be a business or a money-maker, the site has it's genesis in the pure love of the season.

I can recall those first years online. We didn't have any direction other than to just post the Santa updates from Thanksgiving to Christmas and gather information as people would email in requests.

Somewhere along the line -- around 1997, I believe -- I started to take more of a year round interest as I noticed that more and more people were contacting me in the dead months of summer to ask Christmas questions.

Back then MMC was a like a buffet -- you could just belly up to the bar and take what you wanted.

But as it grew in popularity and folks started asking for more specific things we started looking for ways to generate it. We had no budget whatsoever.

In fact, I was just a poor working slob with...
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