Amy Winstonhouse

Well, Christmas has come and gone another year, and as usual I have garnered 4,952 presents. I am sorry. I am an only child.


And by the way, Marvin outdid himself not only on trying to find every way possible to get all the attention himself (and by the way, I guess that stocking is going to be yours for the rest of TIME, Marvin. Gross.), he also got me some fine gifts.


First of all, about three months ago I said to him, "Aren't these tennis shoes the bomb?" as I was looking in a catalog. I swear that was as long as the conversation got, and yet he remembered and even knew my size. He probably felt sorry for me because he knows that dog has eaten all my shoes. And he did actually buy me a left and a right. I don't have to go around with one slipper like that time Mary Tyler Moore won the award and she had a bad cold and had one slipper on. Am I the only one who remembers that episode of The Mary Tyler Moore Show? That was a good show. Stood the test of time.

I will tell you the other great thing he got me as the grand finale to this post, as a reason to keep you hanging on through the torture, the drivel, that is the rest.


For instance, I photographed this package because my mother was obsessed with showing me how the tag matched the wrapping paper. She was killing my buzz, man. I just wanted to rip into my gift, and she's all gettin' aesthetic on me. So here it is, immortalized.


Speaking of a buzz, some in our home did not care so much that it was Christmas.

Until a mysterious sock came out, embroidered in mice, that wonder of wonders, had the nip in it.


I love this picture, with Ruby's silhouette-y self leaping up there to see if there is any of her drug of choice left.

They had other stuff in their stocking, too, including Francis' annual Baked Lay's, which he guarded like a sentinel all afternoon, and if you tried to get near them you pulled back a bloody stump, but Winnie was more into the catnip. Which he may have overindulged in.

Lizardking I am the lizard king! I can do anything!

After we talked old high-on off the roof and washed the gold body paint off him, we went on an afternoon constitutional, where we saw an Irish Setter gladly wearing reindeer antlers. I am not even kidding. She was fine with them.



Really, we saw all sorts of things that were just kind of wrong, and yet oh so right.

Oh! And in a really terrible segue that takes you back in time to the opening-of-presents part of the day which you were probably over already, a while back my mother called me with the Vermont Country Store catalog in hand and asked me to get mine. Then we went through it and I told her what I liked. She kept saying, "Ew. I don't like that, honey. I don't want to get you that." Okay, why does it matter if SHE likes it?


Anyway, this is one of the many items I just loved that she was creeped out by, and as you can see she acquiesced and got them for me. What says Christmas better than scary little holly-headed girl salt-and-pepper shakers wearing Christmas tree dresses?

Okay, but finally, and I know you are glad this whole recap of my day is coming to an end, here is what Marvin did. When I was a kid, I was obsessed with my local zoo. I went all the time. Did I mention I'm an only child? So if my parents weren't taking me, some grandparent or aunt was. It didn't even really have anything very exotic. A couple of spider monkeys, some llamas, a macaw. When I got older, I dragged my cousins there constantly, even as they were teenagers.

ZooI'm the big-haired one on the right, and I know that is shocking news, dragging my cousin to the zoo when she was, like, 17 and over it. See the train in back?

I got married right across the street from the zoo, and the day before my wedding a bunch of my guests and I went there.

The best part of the zoo? The train. It rode you through the whole thing, which took about a minute and a half because this zoo is small. But it went through a tunnel and you had to SCREAAAAAAAAAMMMMMMM! as loudly as you could through that tunnel, for no reason that I can think of, and your throat would be totally raw when you came out the other side.

So. My old boyfriend, the one who said, "Come upstairs, it's cooler" alerted me to the important fact that the old sign for my zoo was on sale on eBay! I mean, this sign is huge. It was the sign that was in front of the zoo for years, and it is a wooden, multi-colored train that reads "Children's Zoo" across it.

I showed Marvin that it was for sale, and who do you think got it for me for Christmas?! It was the last gift he gave me, although it is not physically here. If it were I'd probably be typing you outside as there would be no room. "It's in my garage," my mother said, with the excitement of a tree sloth. Apparently we're going to try to get it this summer. It's so exciting! I think we're gonna set it up in the back yard, although just between you and me I TOTALLY wanna hang it in the living room somehow.

So that was my Christmas, and now it must be time for next Christmas, as that took forever. I will talk at you later. I have to get Winston to rehab.

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At one point, I was sort of hot, in a "she's 27 and probably a 7" kind of a way. Now I'm old and have to develop a charming personality. Guess how that's going.

23 thoughts on “Amy Winstonhouse”

  1. What an awesome present! I love the zoo. My boyfriend and I go all the time. We’re never getting married but the closest we ever came to being tempted was when we found out that you can get married at our local zoo. What a great idea!
    And I’m a middle child but I always get the most presents. My parents (yes I still celebrate Christmas with my parents even though I left home ten years ago) start by saying we have to take it in turns to open a present each, but then there’s a big stack left for me. Ha ha! I love Christmas, who can tell why? 🙂


  2. oh, yes, ma’am, I’d put that sign in the house. Check out the decor blogs. They’re all bringing big signs in the house. Very cool looking.


  3. That sign is an awesome gift. And your ex boyfriend is pretty cool too for alerting you to the sign!
    Can’t wait to see a photo.


  4. OMG!!!! You bought the sign to the Zoo? Our zoo? The same sign that I walked past EVERY SINGLE DAY of my young life, until I was 5 and HAD to go to school? Remember the whale?
    I hate you. (Is jealous, insanely jealous.) Please leave it to me if you die. Please. Please. please.
    Marvin is the bomb for getting that for you.


  5. Marvin gets jillions of Christmas-elf points for the zoo sign. What an incredibly wonderful gift. There is a tiny nature center in a park near my job, and my co-worker and I often visit, taking our lunches on sunny, clear days. Among the inhabitants is a sheep named Mary and a bull named Isaac. The most exotic creatures are probably the peacocks. There is no train, but the grounds are beautiful, including the rose, butterfly and scent gardens. It’s a peaceful spot.


  6. Oh and please explain sleeping beauty’s previous post comment. We are supposed to click the BlogHer advertisements and you get rich? One click and you’re on the way to Lifestyles of the _____and _____ ?


  7. I too am a MTM fan; but have you actually watched the show lately? My brother picked up the DVD’s for me, and it was almost embarrassing to watch. Women were so wimpy then! And the clothes! Oh, my…


  8. Wait, Mr. “I’ve got a serious foot fettish” Marvin Gardensalad, put the stocking on his foot? Was he trying to make you crazy, or what? Geez….!!!! You have so got to do the soap slivers in an old nylon stocking tied to the shower to drive him bonkers! And I say this in the most loving way, seeing as how he bought you such fab gifts! Bcause, geez!
    Catnip and cats, you can’t buy better entertainment! They aren’t even subtle about it! They are like Carrie Fisher on the hunt for her next hit (pharmaceutical or televised) – can you tell I used to live in Tinsletown?
    Merry Christmas to all the Gardensalads; Gardensalad the younger and the elder!


  9. Do those salt and pepper shakers come alive at night and dance around the table? Yeah, the the zoo sign in the living room. Sounds like a great plan to me. I didn’t think you had to rehab recreational drug users.


  10. Shana,
    I guess my photo cuts it off, but Marvin is placing the stocking on his disgusting foot. You know, FOOD goes in that stocking, Marvin. Geez.


  11. Loved Paula’s comment – I would say something like that. She should win the comment of the week.
    Sounds like a great day – the salt/peper shakers are a little creepy – is there a china set to match?


  12. Oh. MY. GAWD! The Saginaw Zoo sign? Are you even kidding? We went there together all the time! I’m soooooo jealous and happy for you! What a great Christmas gift! Marvin gets lots of brownie points!
    Meant to call you to wish you a Merry Ho Ho but got crazy busy with company and cooking…So, here I am a day late!
    Sounds like you had a wonderful day!
    Say hi to your Momma for me! 🙂
    Yours truly,


  13. Marvin just won “Best Husband of the Year” award. Could he BE any sweeter?!?!?
    Merry Christmas. Get that cat some help, pronto!


  14. I’m hoping we’re going to get to see the sign at some point. I’d totally want to hang it inside. When else would you be able to have a one of a kind item like that for decor? All the big designers pay thousands for unique objects — and the bigger the better I say!


  15. I *LOVED* Mary Tyler Moore! My cats were also enjoying some holiday ‘nip. Oh, funny story: When I was buying the catnip there was a guy behind me in line. He asked what did we do with the catnip. I said we gave it to the cat. He said YES but in a bowl or what. I said, oh sometimes in a bowl, sometimes in a bong and sometimes we roll a fatty for them. My daughter was with me and she was HORRIFIED and then when we got outside she told me that the guy was my son’s old basketball coach. Grrrrrreeeeeaaaaaattttt. I hope he didn’t recognize me either!


  16. I soooo agree with your Mom on the creepiness of that S&P shaker… I’m going to have nightmares… they remind me of my Mom’s Hummel collection…
    Man oh man… that cat certainly can look upon humans with disdain 🙂
    Cheers Eva


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