30 Day Baseball Card Challenge

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Bittersweet Christmas

Christmas break has always been an extra special time of the year for me.  When I was a kid, it meant two weeks off from school.  These days, it means two weeks off from work... which still happens to be a school.

This year, I kicked off my break spending a few days up in Lake Oswego, Oregon with my best friend and her family.

We were all hoping for a white Christmas and our wish came true after it snowed on Christmas Eve.

The day before we took a trip down to George Rogers Park and were treated to a picturesque view of the Willamette River and a family of ducks.

The view was so beautiful, I figured I'd share it with my wallet card who hasn't seen daylight since last year.  I've been to Oregon a few times... and every time I'm blown away by how clean and quiet it is compared to California.  I can't wait to go back and visit.

Unfortunately my weekend wasn't entirely jolly.  I'll spare all of you the small details and give you the CliffsNotes version.  On Christmas Eve, I found out that my mother had fallen on Friday evening.  The next day, doctors determined she had a hip fracture that required immediate surgery.

Thankfully everything went smoothly and Mama Fuji is in the process of recovering with support from Papa Fuji and my sister's family.  However since my mother is in her 80's, rehabilitation will most likely be an uphill battle.  We're all thinking positively and she has plenty of love and support.  As soon as they hammer out a timetable, I'll schedule a trip down to my parents to help my father take care of my mom.

In the meantime... I figured I'd wrap up this post with something a little more festive: baseball cards from  The Daily Dimwit who happened to be my Secret Santa this year.  He went above and beyond the call of duty when he hooked me up with this smorgasbord of cards...

Appetizer:  A Pair of Prospects

2017 Bowman Chrome Talent Pipeline #TPM-OAK

A.J. Puk and Franklin Barreto are the Athletics two top prospects.  Both are expected to be called up sometime this season.  Munoz was shipped off to St. Louis as part of the Stephen Piscotty trade that took place a few weeks back.

Side Dishes:  A Pair of Batting Champions

2017 Topps Tribute Purple Relic #TR-JA
2003 Topps All-Time Fan Favorites Refractor #7

Jose Altuve and Rod Carew are two of the greatest hitters of their generation and are two of my newer player collections, which means they're both relatively small.  I was really excited to add these to the collection.

The Main Course:  Picture Perfect Mustache

2003 Topps Gallery Hall of Fame #70

I wish I could say that I cheered for Rollie back in the 70's when he pitched for the Athletics and helped them win three World Series titles.  Unfortunately... I was a little too young.  On the other hand, I was a big fan of him during the early 80's when he pitched in Milwaukee.  One of my childhood buddies is Rollie's nephew and he'd get together with my friend's family when the Brewers were in town.

Dessert:  Sweet Looking Card

2017 Topps Gold Label Gold Framed Auto #FA-JCO

This card is sweet.  It's features a shinydual image design, a heavy metal frame, and an on-card signature.  Cotton is kind of a wild card on the team.  After struggling in 2017, it'll be interesting to see if he becomes an everyday starter on the A's rotation in 2018.

Thank you Sam for this generous Secret Santa package!  I appreciate you going through and hand picking cards for my collection.

I'd also like to thank Mr. Scott for taking the time to organize another great year of Secret Santa gift exchanges during this busy holiday season.  Great job buddy!

I hope all of you had a very merry Christmas with your family and loved ones.

Happy Tuesday and sayonara!


  1. Best wishes for a speedy recovery Mam-Fuji-san! I too am recovering this season from yet another hernia repair and can truly appreciate the struggle to regain one's independence! I cannot imagine what another 30 years would feel like right now!! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year my friend.

  2. Here's to a speedy recovery for Mama Fuji! Also, great stuff as usual from Sam!

  3. All my best wishes go out to you and your family, Mark. May your Mom have a complete and speedy recovery.

  4. Very sorry to hear about your mother. I hope she recovers quickly!

  5. Oh dang. Best wishes for a quick recovery!

  6. Prayers for your mom - tough news. Hang in there.

  7. Sending out thoughts and prayers to your mom for a quick recovery!

  8. I haven't blogged about cards in a while.Thanks for reminding me about the infamous wallet cards!It may be time to pull mine out again after It being In my wallet for over two years now lol.

  9. Oh,and tell your mom I said to get well soon ;)

  10. Your Momma's in prayer for a speedy recovery. Best wishes to your family.

  11. No, Oregon is terrible. Salem and the Portland area are particularly bad. It's dirty, cold, rainy, and everyone should stay away. California and every other state are all far superior to Oregon.

  12. Sorry to hear about your mom's accident. Will keep her in my prayers.

  13. Best wishes Fuji, sending positive thoughts to you and Mama Fuji. Nice cards, really like the look of the Rollie.

  14. Sending positive vibes your way, hope your mom recovers as quickly as possible.

  15. My grandmother took a nasty spill a couple years ago and it's indeed a scary experience for all involved, though I'm happy to say she's basically made a full recovery, and here's hoping the same for Mama Fuji as well.

  16. I hope your mom's rehab goes well. I don't mind visiting Oregon, but I don't think I'd like to live there.

  17. Best wishes to your Mom Fuji. Glad to see you had a nice Oregon trip. I enjoyed my visit there a few years back.

  18. Thank you all for the well wishes. Her surgery was successful and she's already been up and about with a walker.

    Richard - I hope your recovery is both quick and smooth.

    Tony - It's easy to forget to let our wallet cards breathe from time to time.

    stusigpi - sorry, but i'll definitely be going back. even if it rains way too much.

    Nick - Glad to hear that. I'm hoping Mama Fuji is able to make a full recovery as well.

  19. Wishing MamaFuji a quick recovery. Prayers are with you

  20. Nice surprise and hope she recovers soon!