Sitting in the kitchen, absent-mindedly decapitating gingerbread men, we tried to find sense in the madness that surrounded us.
"First it was multicolored chasing lights around the garage. Last year it was twinkling lights in clear plastic tubes shaped like Santa and his reindeer," she said softly. "This year? I'm not sure, but it appears to require several singing puppet-like creatures."
I winced, anticipating my neighbor's yard occupied by harmonizing mannequins.
Our spouses were getting out of hand. A neighborly holiday decorating project had escalated to the point where no extension cord was safe. Outlined in several thousand white lights, our homes were recently mistaken for Marley Station mall.
"Yesterday he bought a Disney tree topper to replace the heirloom star entrusted to me by my grandmother. Every 27 seconds Mickey waves and squeaks 'Merry Christmas.' I've begun to twitch," she cried.
For a moment we sat quietly, dreaming of the starkness of January. Suddenly I noticed my husband heading out the door. With the checkbook clenched in his teeth, I was unable to interpret exactly what he said.
But I swear it involved Huey, Dewey, Louie and three wise men.
Shine on, Glen Burnie.
Twelve-year-old Amber Coffman and her friends from Happy Helpers for the Homeless made Christmas a little brighter for several families at a holiday party Saturday in the Glen Burnie Improvement Association hall.
This is the second year Happy Helpers has held a holiday party for the homeless in Glen Burnie. Each of the invited guests received a box lunch and more than $40 in gifts. Members of the Patriot Pride Singers from Old Mill Middle School South sang holiday songs to add to the festivities.
Every Saturday through the year, Amber and some friends gather at the Coffman home to make approximately 400 box lunches for the homeless. While most of the lunches are distributed by a larger service organization, the youthful volunteers make deliveries to homeless Glen Burnie residents.
Bobbi Coffman, Amber's mom and partner in Happy Helpers, was delighted with the number of student volunteers who helped out at the party.
"We had 34 Happy Helpers come and spend the day with us including 7 new volunteers," Ms. Coffman said.
Holiday gifts were donated by Angie Gwin, Jessica Hungelmann, Angi Kennedy, Kim Fox, Matthew Quarrick, the St. Paul's Lutheran Church youth group and the Vineyard Christian Fellowship of Millersville. Elizabeth Higdon, district manager for Avon, also donated gifts and personal care items.
Several area restaurants contributed free dinner certificates: Honey Bee Restaurant, Horn & Horn Smorgasbord, Sizzler Restaurant and Friendly's on Crain Highway.
For information on the Happy Helpers, call 766-4973.
Take a moment to reward yourself for your shopping efforts with an open pit beef sandwich cooked by members of Glen Burnie Park Scout Troop 873 at 10 a.m., Saturday in the Burwood Shopping Plaza on Baltimore-Annapolis Blvd.
Once again, the honor of chief chef goes to assistant scoutmaster John Barber, who promises his secret barbecue sauce -- "not for the faint of heart" -- will be available upon request.
The North Arundel Church will present two holiday programs for the community's enjoyment and spiritual enrichment.
"Journey to the Center of Christmas," a children's program of drama and music, will be presented at 7 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. Sunday.
For adults, the program will be "What Is This Immanuel?," a contemporary music presentation of the Christmas story, at 7 p.m. Dec. 24 and 10 a.m. Dec. 25.
The congregation of North Arundel Church meets above the Glen Laundromat, 7442 Baltimore-Annapolis Blvd.
For information, call 768-4846.
Santa Claus will be the guest of the District 32 Democratic Club at 7 p.m. tomorrow at the Ferndale Volunteer Fire Station.
After the meeting, members will gather for the club's traditional pot luck dinner at 7:30 p.m. Members and guests are asked to bring a meat, vegetable or dessert dinner to share.
For information, call Evelyn Kellner, 969-9325, or Valerie Serio, 850-0470.
If you have information for the Glen Burnie Neighbors column, call Bonita Formwalt, 766-4549.