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Dear Viewers,

I will be back Thursday night on the air for our show — and I am delighted to be back. I hope you watch. I am grateful to my colleagues for "holding down the fort" in my absence. I like holidays, but I am now anxious to get this new year started ... I have reached my limit with cookies and other sweets. I am eager to get back into a work routine and stop eating junk food, which seems to be my theme for holidays.

There is also a big part of me that feels terrible to be on vacation having fun while I know thousands and thousands have suffered, or are suffering because of the tsunami (search) ... it just seems wrong. I think it is healthier to "disconnect" and be able to go on vacation but I just am not capable.

If you want help the tsunami victims and countries in need, here are some of the groups seeking donations:

• AmeriCares
88 Hamilton Ave.
Stamford, CT 06902
800-486-HELP
www.americares.org

• American Friends Service Committee (AFSC Crisis Fund)
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, PA
215-241-7000
www.afsc.org

• Catholic Relief Services
P.O. Box 17090
Baltimore, MD 21203
800-736-3467
www.catholicrelief.org

• Doctors Without Borders
P.O. Box 2247
New York, NY 10116-2247
www.doctorswithoutborders.org

• American Red Cross International Response Fund
P.O. Box 37243
Washington, DC 20013
800-HELP-NOW
www.redcross.org

I figured you might want to know what others who you know so well from our show did for the holidays ... so I e-mailed a few and asked them (plus got their OK to post their responses.) I received replies from Claudia Cowan, Jayne Weintraub, Laura Ingle and Jim Hammer:

E-mail No. 1 — from FNC's Claudia Cowan and her response about her holiday:

Hi Greta!
Before heading to L.A. to celebrate Christmas with my family here, Steve and I took the kids on a winter wonderland vacation to Sun Valley, Idaho.
We spent a week skiing, ice skating, sledding, and snow shoeing, and even went in a one-horse open sleigh.
It was wonderful!
Claudia

E-mail No. 2 — same question to Miami defense attorney Jayne Weintraub:

I have spent most of the holiday catching up on family time — our kids have very active after school sports activities during the school year and my husband works very long hours (even more then me!) We have been to the movies, ice skating arena (even in Miami) and the Heat games. We made a quick trip to NYC for 2 days — it was freezing! It's been nice to have "down time" and relax and watch "On the Record" at night!
The weather has been terrific here — I finally met Jim Hammer while he was taking a break in the Miami bureau. He is a lot taller in person! Warm wishes to and your family for a Healthy and Happy New Year!
Jayne Weintraub

E-mail No. 3 — same question to KFI Radio's Laura Ingle about her holiday and her e-mail response:

I'm from Sacramento, so with the Scott Peterson trial wrapping up in Redwood City, it was a road trip home for Christmas. I spent time with my family and friends. There was one thing I had to figure out while on the Christmas break though ... How to get all my stuff out of Redwood City after the holiday wrapped up, and get back to my place in Los Angeles. As you know, I literally moved to the trial, and got an apartment a block away from the San Mateo County Courthouse in May. When I initially drove my belongings to the bay area 7 months ago, I packed my SUV with EVERYTHING I could, but ended up accumulating many things while on location. Bottom line: too much stuff, not enough room in vehicle to get back.
My cousin Tim is a professional cowboy (helps run about 500 head of cattle on a ranch, rides in rodeos, and yes, wears a white cowboy hat) he suggested coming to help me since he has to "pack" mules into the mountains for his job as a High Sierra guide. So ... off to Redwood City we went with lots of rope and mule "pack bags". He was able to load everything inside and outside of my SUV, we roped it up, and headed to L.A. in a slashing rainstorm down the 5 freeways. Happy to report, I'm home, my stuff made it back, and now I know how to "lash down" my vehicle!

E-mail No. 4 — same question to Jim Hammer and Jim's e-mail response:

After the Peterson trial ended, I headed back East to get away and see some friends. On Christmas Day I flew back to San Francisco from New York City on a totally full flight. Felt bad for the airline crews who had to work, but they were great. From the airport, I drove to my parents' house where 2 of my nephews, Brandon and Justin, 6 and 3 years old, ran up to me and threw their arms around me. Turned out they had waited to open some of their Christmas presents and sat on my lap and "helped" me open mine — "help" defined as ripping the wrapping paper off of them!
As we all sat down for dinner, my Dad led us in saying grace and then we devoured the dinner my Mom cooked. Mom's a great cook. After sitting through the long Peterson trial and seeing all that Sharon Rocha and the two families suffered, I was mindful how lucky I was just to be able to be home with my family during the holiday. Merry Christmas to all.
Jim Hammer

And, once again, I have pulled e-mails from our show account from viewers and here are some:

E-mail No. 5

I am frustrated at the criticism that America is getting about our lack of generosity over the Tsunami disaster. It is not our responsibility to care for anyone when we can't care for our own poor properly! We owe no one outside of this country, anything!
We pledged $35 million, plus food, medical supplies etc. Where are the oil rich countries with their donations? Where is Bin Laden with his donation? What about all the other countries ... where are they?
Also ... why isn't the interior of each of the disaster-ridden countries shipping water and other supplies to the coast?
Why is the burden on the U.S.?
Shelley Davis

E-mail No. 6

I cannot believe this jerk we call president — when we are spending 177 million a day for his stupid war to kill Iraqis he cannot do better than 20 million for aid to the victims of the tsunami? And all these radical right-wing Christians can do is cover up that Bush failed to go public and complain that there should have been advanced warning in place — what a bunch of heartless people they are — and FOX has been the worse of all the stations in failing to stand up and demand he be counted — this war has currently cost myself and my family of four $2,120 and I think that is $2,120 more than it was worth — why are we stuck with such morons running this country anyway? — there must be a bunch of idiots living in the red states I guess.

E-mail No. 7 — on the topic of US Airways and the holiday problems with travel:

Hello Greta,
My wife is employed by US Airways in customer service and even knowing the painful decision of taking paycuts, they knew the reality of keeping their job at a decent wage. The short sightedness of a few handlers and flight attendants could cost the jobs of many for their actions. Solidarity for what? Unemployment?
I hope the consumer and management of the airline have the patience and time to outlast them. The choice is simple work for a fair wage and build the airline back or tend bar for a fraction of their current wage, with no benefits. The consumer has spoken and they are not going to pay high-ticket prices to fly, the business model is changing and if you don't you fail. Wise up union officials, employed members pay dues unemployed do not.
I hope they make it, if not be prepared to get rustled up, luv them plush vinyl seats and ride'm to the destination they choose for you (they are, based out of Texas). I witnessed the fall of the steel mills, here we go again, and we wonder why the population in our state is declining at a rapid rate.
Tks
Allan
PA

E-mail No. 8 — Wednesday in the blog I asked for ideas about how to improve our blog and/or show page:

Greta,
You asked for ideas, and I have one... How about a link to your e-mail address at the bottom of your blog. It would be nice to respond to some of the e-mails you post. I happen to have your e-mail address memorized, but when I didn't, I always had to go to the FOX News site to get it. Not a bad thing to do, just time consuming. Love your show.
Margot Kraker
St. Paul, MN

E-mail No. 9

Just wanted to know if you were going to cover the proposed large defense cuts. The F/A-22 is going to be scaled back to about 160-170 aircraft rather than 275. This seems like a huge error to me. If China decides to invade Taiwan anytime soon then we will be outnumbered by men and machines. Also, the quality of the Chinese military is growing and matching ours in many areas. Any thought? Thanks Greta, I love your show!
Sincerely,
Matthew Scott

ANSWER: As you know, I "chased" the F/A 22 in a F-16. The F/A 22 is like no other plane ... I am going to put your question to our www.gretapoll.com today to see what others think.

Greta

Send your thoughts and comments to: ontherecord@foxnews.com

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