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No Krampus This Year

By Andrew St. George

Detective Leonard Keaton showing us his badge for some reason. Seriously, no one asked, this is how he chose to pose for the paper.
Detective Leonard Keaton showing us his badge for some reason. Seriously, no one asked, this is how he chose to pose for the paper.


Local Detective Leonard Keaton is credited with taking down crime lord Lloyd “Krampus” Christmas. The super villain, named by his parents after Jim Carey’s Character in “Dumb and Dumber,” has been on a crusade against Christmas since a young age. Earning the nickname of “Grinch” in his youth, it wasn’t until Christmas reached the age of 18 when the violent opposition to Christmas really took hold, and the acts of atrocity performed promoted him from the “Grinch” to “Krampus” or the “Christmas Devil.”

Christmas was behind the recent kidnapping of beloved hero Rudolph, or Rudy as his friends called him. Rudy was reported missing shortly after thanksgiving. Mr. Cringle, Rudy’s employer, stated that there was almost no way to safely navigate the treacherous trip from the North Pole without the luminescent qualities of Rudy’s famous nose. “He really was the shining light of our team” Cringle said, having to pause for a moment to contain a slight chuckle that made his belly jiggle.

The plot hatched by the evil “Krampus” essentially revolved around selling off Rudy to the highest bidder, a Chinese genetics laboratory, who intended to kill and dissect Rudy’s nose to study its bioluminescent qualities. Their intent is still currently unclear, and they refused to comment, but it is widely believed that they were looking to use the bio-tech to develop some form of light bulb for vehicles. Arthur Johnson, head scientist at BioDynamic Conglomerates, believes that the idea is technically feasible, but believes that the technology would only be slightly better that what was on the market currently.

Detective Keaton was at the airport preparing for a much needed vacation when he smelled something askew in a crate that was being packed on the plane. Pulling rank on the baggage handlers, he pried the crate open to find Rudy tied up inside with a bag over his nose to contain the glow. Using his keen detective skills, he looked at the return shipping address on the crate and recognized it as the home of Lloyd Christmas. Calling in a favor, he got a warrant issued and went to search the house and found evidence of Rudy being there, as well as a document titled “My plan to kidnap and sell Rudolph to the Chinese by Lloyd “Krampus” Christmas.” Using this evidence, Leonard arrested Christmas.

I interviewed Detective Keaton in his office, and he had this to say: “Did I save Christmas? Of course I did.”



Below are a few Christmas Photos. There are more on Flickr.

Here is Eric opening a gift. I love watching him open presents. This is very hard work for him, but he is very determined and will keep at it until he gets it open. Like many young children, he used to just like ripping the paper, but now he wants to see what’s inside, a big developmental step! Progress is good.

Eric opening a gift


Aaron enjoyed helping Anthony open his gifts. Aaron is so good with his brothers and you can tell that Anthony just adores Aaron and all the attention he gets from him.

Anthony & Aaron


This year, the only thing Aaron wanted for Christmas was “GarageBand”. GarageBand is a music creation and editing program that comes free with Macs, but is not available for PCs. I did a bit of research and found some similar programs for PCs, but nothing as good as GarageBand, so we ended up getting Aaron a Mac Mini. This is the least expansive Mac you can buy, but already I’m impressed. We’ve never had a Mac before and they are definitely cool.



Sue, John and Brian came down Christmas day. They were so happy that they finally got their power back at 11pm Christmas Eve! Sue said it was the best Christmas gift she has ever received. We also all got a chance to say hello to Nick who spent the holiday with a friend in Germany. It was pretty cool to see him and hear him on the computer via Skype. Nana cooked us a nice turkey dinner. Rich had to work, but he enjoyed the dinner before heading off to work.

Christmas has no religious significance for me. I’m not sure which I dislike more, the fables or the consumerism that surrounds this holiday. To me Christmas is all about family and the spirit of giving. So in that way, this was a nice Christmas.


Happy Holidays

Bissell boys holiday photo


Here is our traditional holiday photo of the boys. It came out nice this year. I used a green screen with a background I found on the web.

We will be staying home for Christmas. Santa will be coming tonight, because Rich has to work tomorrow. We will tell Eric that Santa does our house first;-)

My sister and family will be coming down tomorrow. Sadly, they are still without power! This is day 13 for them, which is totally unacceptable. The electric company (Unitil) that supplies the city of Fitchburg is in big trouble due to their poor response to this major power outage, as well as generally poor maintenance to their lines, which made the outage much worse than it should have been.

Happy Holidays to all!


Santa Shuffle

Two of a kind…

I can’t believe Christmas is just a few days away.  I manage to get all of my Christmas shopping done without entering a single store.  The UPS man and I are on a first name basis.

It looks like we are in for another storm today.  The snow is supposed to start around noontime into tomorrow.  Anthony’s school already canceled and I’m betting the twins will have an early dismissal.

My sister and family came down yesterday for a hot meal, a shower and to do some laundry.  They still have no power!  If they don’t get their power back today, they are in for a tough weekend with snow today and more forecasted for Sunday.  Temperatures will get into the single digits at night.  Luckily, they have a wood burning stove, which is keeping them fairly comfortable and will prevent the house pipes from freezing.  Sue was out chopping wood yesterday and said she feels like a pioneer woman.  She said the worst part is that they have no running water, so they can’t flush the toilet.  They are making trips to the reservoir and keeping water in their bath tub for flushing and buying bottled water for drinking.

I don’t ever recall loosing power for more than a couple of days here in MA. I can’t imagine going that long without power.  They are managing pretty well, but admit that it’s getting old.  Certainly gives one a different perspective.  Many people around the world live like this on a daily basis.  But then it’s hard to miss what you’ve never had.  When you look at the big picture we are pretty spoiled here in the US.

I just got the automated call that school has also been canceled for the twins, so I’m going back to bed…



Parents of kids with disabilities deal with a chronic grief that never goes away. In the beginning, it is an intense grief similar to the stages following the death of a loved one, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and eventually acceptance. We are grieving the loss of the “normal” child that might have been. But the child is still with us, so the cycle of grief never ends. Transitions in the child’s life often get the grieving cycle started again. For example, when the child starts school, has a birthday, goes to their first dance, a graduation; or worse, the child may miss out on these typical transitions.

Thankfully, the intensity of these emotions tend to fade over time and we eventually learn to cope. But the grief is always there and sometimes you just never know when it will raise it’s ugly head. Sometimes the grief can hit you when you least expect it. My life is good, my family and I are healthy and happy. I’m able to care for my boys, I’m coping well and I’m content and happy. Some people wonder how I manage to stay so positive with three children who all have special needs. For the most part I’m it that acceptance stage; after all, I’ve had 15 years to work on these issues.

Some parents of children with disabilities describe life as a roller coaster ride. Others say it’s more like bumper cars, you never know when something will sneak up on you from behind and hit you like a ton of bricks. I did feel like I was on a roller coaster when the boys were young. Things moved so fast, too fast. I could barely catch my breath. I had no control over the direction my life was heading and no way to get off the ride. But now, I think the bumper car analogy is better. You merrily drive along, minding your own business, when apparently out of nowhere, something hits you from behind. That is what happened to me today.

I was checking my morning email and I got a notice from JibJab that the new “Elf Yourself” script was out. If you’ve never heard of Elf Yourself, it’s a popular seasonal ad from OfficeMax where you can turn your family and friends into elves by sticking heads on elf bodies. It’s just silly Internet fun that I find hard to resist. This year you can make Disco Elves, and being a 70’s girl, I decided to have Rich dancing with the twins. I happily spent too much time choosing photos, cropping and fitting heads into the elf costumes. It wasn’t until I played my finished project that I got hit from behind. The overwhelming sadness of seeing Eric dancing around and looking exactly like is twin brother just made my heart sink. The boys were dancing around with their dad, just like it should have been…

So, the grieving cycle starts again. You don’t necessarily go through every stage and the emotions are in no particular order. I’m not in denial and there is no one to bargain with, so right now, I’m somewhere between anger and depression. But don’t worry; I’ll work back toward acceptance. I’m a veteran and I know this hit won’t keep me down for long!

Oh, and Happy Holidays!