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Family-Friendly “Horror” Movies, Pennsylvania, and Holiday Wishes

Happy Holidays!!

Before I decided to write my soul-searching post, I’d been considering a post of an entirely different nature. I’m actually looking for suggestions on a couple of small things.

Family-Friendly Horror Movies?

My daughter, aged twelve, has been swept up in the Five Nights at Freddy’s mania. The problem is, they’ve announced a FNAF movie, to be released in 2018. Up until recently, DD had never watched a horror movie at all, but she’s determined to be ready to see this movie in theaters when it’s released. To this end, she essentially decided to go into training. Horror movie training, that is, with me as her coach.

The problem?

Well, I’m a big fan of horror movies, so I was ready and willing to help her out. But it turns out my idea of a “beginner” movie — Final Destination or Nightmare on Elm Street — was more than she could handle. So we’re taking a step back.

We need horror movies that aren’t quite horror movies.

So far, we’ve managed Coraline, Arachnophobia, and Watcher in the Woods. Tonight, we’re trying The Thing (the original — I figured the goofy special effects will nullify most of the horror). Other movies on our “to be watched” list include Tremors, Alien, and Beetlejuice. But after that, I’m sort of out of ideas.

So, I’m looking for suggestions: can you recommend a not-quite-horror movie that’s pretty low-key, and appropriate for a squeamish 12-year old?

Are You Familiar with Pennsylvania?

Also, I’d like to talk to somebody who’s familiar with Pennsylvania, but not necessarily Pittsburgh or Philadelphia. Specifically, I’m looking for somebody who knows the rural (I think it’s rural!) area around Altoona. So if you’re familiar with that region, please let me know. Maybe leave your email address, and I’ll get in touch sometime after the first of the year.

It’s That Time of Year

It’s always busy this time of year. I’m sure almost everybody reading this is in the same boat as me, wondering how it could possibly be Christmas already. Between hockey games, football games, holiday parties, a (very minor) upcoming surgery, and a trip to Louisiana to visit my uncle and grandmother, I feel like I won’t have a free minute until 2017.

Still, things are good. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving with the entire family. We threw a surprise party for my MIL’s 76th birthday (we totally missed her 75th, because we’re bad children — but this way, she was extra surprised). My daughter’s musical theater class just had their performances of Tom Sawyer this weekend, and she did great (she played Muff, the bank robber). DD’s also learning to bake, which is actually pretty amazing (even if it is bad for my waistline).

Giving Thanks

Cat Tree + Christmas Tree

I could make a list of the things I have to be grateful for, but it’d be lengthy. I’m thankful that my daughter is happy and healthy. (If only her grades were decent, she’d be perfect!) I’m glad to have my family close. I’m glad we can keep the home warm, have our entire family over for Thanksgiving dinner and/or Christmas brunch, and still put presents under the tree without having to stress. We’re not wealthy, by any stretch of the imagination, but we’re still “rich” in the ways that truly count. So I’m grateful for that.

Also, despite all my bellyaching over my career, please know that I am eternally grateful for every one of you who’s ever decided to take a chance on one of my books. I’m especially thankful to those of you who keep coming back for more. If it weren’t for you, I wouldn’t be here at all. I’d have had to go back to my EDJ (working for doctors) years ago. I can’t tell you how grateful I am to *not* be doing that. 🙂 So… thank you. I mean that.

Happy Holiday!

And finally, whatever or however you celebrate this time of year, I want to wish you all a happy and peaceful holiday season.

 

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