Saturday, January 1, 2011

2010 Soldiers' Christmas & Holiday Care Packages Final Update

I received an email from Mike _____ saying that the last packages we sent out were received. If you remember, I detailed all the contents of all but one of the care packages we sent to him. I held off on that one because it was something a little special but since mike has acknowledged receipt, I can now give the details of that one to you too. The below is a copy of an email I received from Smoky Mountain Knife Works once the order shipped:

Greetings from

We thought you'd like to know that we shipped your items on 12/13/2010. Your order 9942414 is being shipped and cannot be changed by you or by our customer service department.

You can track the status of this order and all your future orders at:

The following items have been shipped to you:

Qty Item Price Shipped Subtotal

7 CASE LT1405LSS CALIBER LOCKBACK 147 (5) $11.99 7 $83.93


1 CASE KNIFE ROLL/2010 PROMO $0.00 1 $0.00

1 CASE 2-SIDED STONE AND POUCH/2010 PROMO $0.00 1 $0.00

Shipped via

Tracking number: 000241562

Item Subtotal: $155.87

Shipping and handling: $20.78
Tax: $0.00

Total: $176.65

Paid by: Card with last four digits = xxxx

This shipment was sent to:

SPC MICHAEL _____ (I deleted the last name & address)

Thank you for shopping with us. smk is a division of Smoky Mountain Knife Works, Inc.

The knives we sent to Mike and his unit were all Case brand Medium Caliber Lockback Knives. They had a choice between two colors that were included in the shipment, thus 6 of one and 7 of the other. Note that the knives usually went for $14.99 each but I somehow got 20% off; I think it was an online coupon but cannot recall for sure. Also note the knives are all CASE brand knives. That means they were MADE IN THE USA and are all quality knives. I figured that those points might be appreciated by our soldiers. The knives shipped with some freebies, also shown above, from Smoky Mountain Knife Works which is the company from which I ordered them.

So that last package with the knives accounts for what remained of the money donated toward the care packages for the 2010 Christmas holiday season; I gave a breakdown of spending for the last packages, including the knives, here.

I want to thank all of you who donated this year. There were not as many people who donated as in previous years but there was a good amount of money thanks to the generosity of those who did give something. You are all good folks and deserve a thousand thanks and a pat on the back (so feel free to start patting). You all already know that you have my thanks but I have thanks from some other folks of which I need to make you aware. So, let me convey to you the message of thanks from Mike in his most recent email to me, it was dated December 30, 2010:

hey glenn we got your packages thank you so much for the knives every on got one with one extra so i gave it to one of our civilian guys that works with us every one said thanks for the gift and thank you for everything you have sent me it means a lot. stay safe and keep in touch and tell everyone that is helping with the care packages thanks for their support as well
your friend mike

That is exactly how it appeared in his email to me (except for the color and bold face which I added).

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. I think we can rest assured that we helped some other folks, ones who deserved it most of all, have likewise.

All the best,
Glenn B

PS: Please do not send any more donations, I will not be accepting them again until next fall. I will continue to send packages to Mike ____ for him and his unit until the end of his deployment but will fund those myself. It was very nice of you all to have helped make the holiday packages much, much nicer than they would have been had I tried on my own. I am thankful to you all - you are truly very good and generous American patriots without whom it would not have happened.

One Month & A Wakeup Until The Best Holiday Of The Year

Yes you revelers of the new year, you may have all sat snug around the hearth last night and had a few hot toddies, or maybe you were the type to go out and dance the night away while sipping highballs, or maybe the heartier or wilder type to brave the chill night air (not to chill last night) at places like Times Square and watch the ball til it dropped then scream like bloody hell was upon you, or just the type (like my wife) to visit neighbors for a rather quiet party - but me I pretty much stayed home. I did manage to get out at about 900 last night for dinner. My repast consisted of a finer green bottled lager of the Netherlands and an all American classic - a cheeseburger deluxe platter but it was more than enough festivity for me to end the old year. Starting another year for me was/is nowhere as of great import as was finishing off the old one. To see another one go by is to know I have beaten the odds, cheated the devil, robbed hell of a soul that already has one foot inside it, and just made it through another one. I was delighted to walk to a local pub, have a couple of beers, eat my meal and head right back home. Once there I commenced watching the tube - then fell asleep just around 11PM. I was awakened by our dogs, who seemingly wanted out for a pee, at precisely 12:02 of the new day. I guess that was about how long it took for the first successful drunkard reveler in the neighborhood to get outside, set up the fireworks, set them off - and for their retort to reach the ears of our pooches. I only realized, about a minute after letting them out and standing in the portal awaiting their return from the dark depths of our postage stamp sized backyard, that it was the new year. I let the dogs back in, went down to the basement, turned the TV back on, tuned into the Twilight Zone, realized my wife was still out, and then dozed off watching some weird scene or another flit across my television screen in black and white.

As for the rest of the world, much of it was partying like my wife, daughter and son who were all out having a good time. I gave up on New years' celebrations long ago - it's just not my bag. Much like those wonderful in that wonderful family called Addams, I prefer the offbeat when it comes to celebrations. So, it is on the 2nd of next month, that I will celebrate the holiday of holidays. Sadly I will probably be the only one to celebrate among my family members and more sadly still I will probably wind up celebrating it alone, as in all by myself. Don't get me wrong - others celebrate it too. I mean, how could you not. It is a holiday of hope, where humanity has determined that the whims of a fairly small furry creature should decide the fate of the global climate - well at least the climate in the northern hemisphere. No, I do not mean that pompous ass Al Gore. I do mean the Ground Hog!

Yes folks, to me Ground Hog's Day is the penultimate of all holidays. Maybe that is so, first and foremost, because it is not an official holiday. I like that because no one is telling me when to celebrate. Besides that no one has created Ground Hog's day greeting cards, Ground Hog's Day floral arrangements, Ground Hog's Day candies, at least not any major retailer on a national level. About the only almost obligatory thing to do is to watch ground Hog's Day with Bill Murray and even that is really optional. Granted, I do not get the day off but I do get to waste spend a lot of it watching the TV and Internet news about Punxsutawney Phil (and all the other impostors) and their predictions for just how long winter will last or just how short it will be. Hope springs eternal folks and spring and nicer weather are hopefully always only 6 weeks away from the little fur ball giving his best shot at figuring when it will arrive.

I just love the holiday - as I said none better. I am looking forward to it and to my own personal celebration of furry little critters predicting the weather better than Al Roker and Al Gore and to the fact that hope springs eternal - so much so we pin our hopes on whether or not a rodent sees its own shadow!

All the best,