Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Also getting back to the items on my list that didn’t actually get done… shhhh, I haven’t really cleaned my house yet. I know, I’m terrible. THIS WEEKEND though, I swear!
Our Christmas involved lots and lots of family time, which I can say is usually both wonderful and exhausting. Dan and I still try super hard each year to give every side of the family equal time, but it can be so trying. Believe it or not we actually hit up two separate celebrations on Christmas Eve, plus church, after both working half the day. I don’t know how this is going to continue to work when we have kids, since it’s barely working now. When we first got married it felt like there was nothing to question; of course we’d just cram it all in because neither of us could imagine not seeing our respective families on Christmas Eve. However every year that we do it, the idea of switching off year-to-year between his family and mine sounds more and more appealing. My Christmas season mantra needs to be, “You can’t make everyone happy.”
Just to make you all realize that I am not kidding with the overwhelming-ness of family commitments over Christmas, this was our schedule for those few days. I MUST reiterate that I am not making this list as a complaint, because I love how awesomely large both of our families are, and I love being able to spend time with everyone. What gets to me is how condensed all of this family time is. It constantly feels like we’re running somewhere new, and not able to enjoy the place we’re in.
Night before Christmas Eve:
8:00 – 2:00 Work/commute (and a sneak-out for a bit at lunch to finish my shopping)
3:30 – 9:00 Dinner and presents at Dan’s parents’ house
8:00 – 1:00 Work/commute
4:30 – 5:30 Church
5:45 – 8:45 Dinner and presents at my aunt’s house
9:00 – 11:00 Presents and dessert at Dan’s grandparents' house (his mom’s side)
8:00 – 9:00 Open presents at home with Dan and Bella (& COFFEE!)
10:00 – 3:00 Brunch, presents, games at my parent’s house with my immediate family
3:00 – 8:30 45 minute drive to and from Dan’s aunt’s house for his dad’s family
8:30 – 9:30 Stop by at my grandparent’s house for games
10:00 – 12:00 Crash on the couch watching Love Actually
Sunday after Christmas
12:30 – 2:00 Drive to my aunt and uncle’s place up north
2:00 – 6:30 Football, sleigh ride with real reindeer, dinner, coffee, chit-chat
6:30 – 8:00 Drive home.
After making that list, I feel like I should suck it up and shut up, because that is probably what most people’s holidays look like.
As far as gifts go, the holiday has definitely become less and less about the presents. I still LOVE shopping for presents, and wrapping presents, all of that, but for me, I really have no idea what to tell people when they ask what I’d like. It’s not that I am this great person who does not need material things… no I am all about the material things… total Material Girl. I love clothes, love makeup, love shoes, books, iPods, home décor… basically I love stuff, and love being given it. I just have no idea how to answer that inevitable question, which of course leads to me telling multiple people the same thing almost every year. This year, it was the small point-and-shoot digital camera. I already have a big honking camera that has an incredible zoom and takes great photos, but it is bulky, a bit confusing for some, and quite simply is tough to use for those long arm self-portraits that we ladies love to do. Anyway, so I asked for said small camera from both my mom and my husband without realizing. Of course they each got me one, and I had to admit this to my mom when I opened her gift. I felt like a total ass.
This is becoming very rambly, so I think I’ll bring it to a close. All-in-all, a great Christmas, but I’ve come out of it on the other side a very very tired girl. Tonight is New Year’s Eve at Liz’s place, and I can’t wait to see all my friends and commiserate over our shared exhaustion. Cheers! Be safe tonight!
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Do you ever have those mornings where it feels like your life is just in shambles? Well, that’s a really dramatic way to put it, but lately I just feel like I can’t get my act together and get out the door in a reasonable amount of time. And I know it’s because I am so unorganized at home, I work long hours, get home, make dinner, and just poop out on the couch. It doesn’t help that my house is sooooo cold, that the minute I get home I feel like I need to either get under a blanket or change into long underwear. Anyway, the point is, I am so lazy on weeknights and end up wasting them away, even when there is SO MUCH TO DO! Like right now. Right smack in the middle of the holiday season… there is so much that I just keep putting off, and it really is having a terrible affect on the rest of my life. This morning, a direct result of my laziness with laundry and inability to get out of bed at a reasonable time (and I suppose my unwillingness to forgo my morning run), I missed the first half of a really important meeting. With really important people. People who can make or break my career advancement at this company. I am stupid.
The list of things I have been forgoing each night for a glass of wine and my DVR is a mile long, and I’m going to publish it here in hopes that my acknowledgement of the list will encourage me to tackle it.
1. Christmas cards. I FINALLY ordered photo cards from Costco yesterday. After a month of looking online at cute designs and going back and forth as to which picture of Dan and me over the year to use, I finally just had to go with cheap and fast. They should be ready for pickup today at 4:00. Obviously, step two is to get them in the freaking mail. This will also involve going to the post office for stamps. Damn, I totally forgot about that stupid little errand. I hate the post office and usually prefer to order my stamps online, but of course… procrastination rears its ugly head and we do not have time for that.
2. Finish Christmas shopping. We’re doing ok here, only a few people left. Of course I have a WHOLE separate list for Christmas gifts, but this definitely needs to be included here. Now I’ve sort of got a nice matrix-list thing going on. See List 2 appendix i, column G.
3. Make cookies! I know this could totally be dropped from the list, but the holiday season just is not complete without a few baking-induced arguments in our messy little kitchen. You see, Dan and I are not always the best team when it comes to cooking. I like to boss and obviously my way is always the right way, and he does not like being told what to do. Trust me. We both become horrible versions of ourselves when we try to accomplish anything together in the kitchen. Snide comments, check. Silent treatment, check. Taking it out on our dog who is constantly under-foot causing us to trip all over ourselves, check. And what better way to honor Jesus’s birthday? (Also, I am craving like you wouldn’t believe those candy oatmeal cookies that we made last year, sooo… yea.)
4. Finish gift-wrapping. See List 2 appendix ix, column B.
5. Put away the laundry/shoes that are all over the guest bedroom, our living room, our laundry room, etc. Oh, and the clothes that are just spewed all over the two bedrooms upstairs as a result of multiple outfit crisises (crisi?). Also, organize the thousand pairs of tights I have accumulated that are hanging out of their overstuffed and disheveled dresser drawer.
6. Wash all those clothes that need “special care” that have been hanging in our laundry room for possibly two decades. I have so much cute stuff down there that I haven’t worn in ages because I avoid the laundry room like the plague. That’s Dan’s room, he handles the laundry. However rightfully so, he refuses to deal with any of my clothes that have special instructions.
7. Clean the bathroom, vacuum the first floor, scrub the kitchen, remove dog hair from furniture, make our house look less hobo.
8. Bring grandma’s gifts (for us, which we bought for ourselves) to her house, so she can wrap them. Seems wrong, yes, but I am getting an adorable kelly green peacoat with big black buttons and a round collar that makes me look skinny instead of puffy. And if it saves her a few holiday shopping freak-outs, than everyone is happy I say.
9. Do the grocery shopping for my friend Holly’s holiday party on Sunday. We’re supposed to bring a dish to share, and I’m making this dip. Holy yum. Also, we need to find and wrap two crappy things we have lying around in our house for the white elephant gift exchange they’re doing.
10. My OCD side wants this list to be an even 10 but I can’t think of an actual substantial final item to add to this list. There are thousands of little things that I’m not going to bore the internet with (hasn’t this list already bored (boreded, bore, boren?) you enough?), but those are all going on List 3 of my List Matrix, which I still need to compile from the dozens of post-its littering my office. Got it! The tenth item on this list will be to compile List 3. Genius!
So there you have it. Operation get my life on track has commenced!
Friday, November 21, 2008
It’s just that until now, considering these terrible economic conditions we’re living in, with so many people out of work, loosing their homes, and eating into their savings, I had really yet to experience a scary, first-hand impact of the sucky economy. Of course my 401K is down like a bajillion percent, and I’ve essentially lost every single penny I put into it this year plus a whole crap-load more, but I’ve been trying to just roll with the punches with my investments, keeping in mind that they are decidedly long-term, that the economy is cyclical and my retirement fund will live to see another day. Suffice it to say, what my colleagues and I were told today hit quite a bit closer to home than all those red numbers on my 401K statement.
I’ve got a job, and I was recently promoted, so I have so much to be thankful for… that’s just something I need to remember over the next year. That's WAY more than so many people in our country can say.
Also my presidential candidate was elected to office, so I’m hopeful for the future and convinced that his leadership will help us turn this around. Yes we can.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
[Update on the static cling issue: I went to Target at lunch and bought a slip, and my world is right again because my skirt doesn't ride up to my crotch when I walk. My self-imposed banishment to my office chair is over. I've been walking to the printer, going to the bathroom all the way at the other end of the building (just for fun), and getting coffee like a mad woman. And it doesn't get much better than printing reports, peeing, and drinking 16 oz cups of watered down coffee. A whole new woman I tell you.]
Anyway, the point is, I am a happy person, no worries guys. Though I may take Dan up on his offer of "finding something to cheer me up". I could always use a new pair of shoes honey. =)
The bad: Major static cling issues. I'm not kidding, it is insane. My dress rides up the moment I start walking. I've applied lotion all over my thighs & knees (on top of the tights), which usually works. Nada. I have some static cling spray stuff at work, sprayed that crap all over my self, and still no relief. I even grabbed a few fabric softener sheets as I ran out of the house today, and I've basically rubbed them all over my legs and dress to no avail. This sucks. I don't know what else to do. I would have changed before I left for work when I realized the problem, but I was already running about 10 minutes behind, and stressing about getting out the door. It's so bad, I can't even walk to the printer without walking like a hunchback and tugging at my hem.
Jason Mraz though on Thursday! Twilight on Friday! I just have to make it through this hell.
Friday, November 14, 2008
I can't believe its winter already. Seriously, how did that happen? I hate how dark it is at 5:00 PM, it really does a number on my productivity and energy.
So happy hour last night was really fun, I will be forever grateful that we ended up in a graduate program with such amazing and fun people, and I want to make sure we keep up these relationships that somehow formed over two years of group projects and commiserating over shared elevated levels of stress. For all the talk about networking in an MBA program, I think we've been lucky to have made relationships that go beyond that. It's also nice to have more people to drink and gossip with. ;-)
I'm going to go put some socks on, because my feet are freezing in this drafty old house of ours. One of the many joys of owning a house built in 1936. (I complain, but of course I love it.) I love that we have no plans until tomorrow evening, so I can look forward to a lazy morning of VH1 music videos, a pot of coffee, and some more melodramatic vampire love. Oooh, and we have bacon in the freezer, I think we'll have to break that out tomorrow. I can't even describe how much I fricken love bacon, there's a reason why I don't usually buy it.
My god this was random.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Crap, I gotta go, we're meeting up with some people from our MBA courses for happy hour downtown, and I was supposed to leave 10 minutes ago. I am so chronically late it's not funny, which I can safely say is one of those things Dan doesn't appreciate about me.
Anyway, happy weekend!
Friday, November 07, 2008
And I'm pretty sure my stomach is going to explode.
I wish I had some self control. Blechhh. I wish I could tell 1:00 PM me to not venture into the convenience store for that stupid candy. I hate you 1:00 PM Alicia.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
I’m pretty much always in the middle of reading Pride and Prejudice. I start it, finish it months and months later, and then start it again. I have a problem with all things Jane Austen, I tend to become obsessed. The weird thing is that as I read, I mix up all the actors from the different movie versions of the novel. So Lizzie Bennett is Jennifer Ehle, the chick that played her in the old BBC Miniseries, but Mr. Darcy is the guy from the Keira Knightly version. Jane is also the actress from the new version (because she’s so freaking gorgeous), but the other sisters are from the old one. Mr. Bennett is definitely Donald Sutherland, because I love him, but Mrs. Bennett is that horribly screechy woman from the BBC miniseries. Oh, almost forgot Mr. Bingley. Of course he is the adorable Simon Woods, in my head. God, is anyone still reading this? For your sake I hope not, I am becoming ridiculously rambly.
Lately I’m obsessed with Bit-O-Honey candies, which are little old people candies that we have in our candy dish at home. I can’t stop thinking about them, and have even been eating them for breakfast on my way to work. Just thought I’d throw that in, because it is incredibly random to be freaking out over weird grandparent candy. Ha! I just read that Wikipedia link and have learned that the Bit-O-Honey was voted the Most Appalling Candy at some Kentucky county fair. I guess there are many who do not agree with me that Bit-O-Honey are the bom-diggity. I am in a weird mood... it's my Friday.
Our annual Halloween party is on Saturday and I am super pumped! However… my costume this year is seriously ridiculous and UGLY, and I’m starting to regret it. Like any woman, I like to look cute on Halloween, not slutty cute, but at least pretty. I say this now, as a warning, I will not be pretty on Saturday. Ugh. I wonder if it’s too late to switch costumes. Considering our house is a mess, I have done no shopping for the party, and there are pumpkins to be carved… no, I think I’m committed. Oh well. I hope we at least get laughs if I have to endure being so damn ugly the whole night. Reminds me of when I wore my pig flannel pajamas and pigtails to the bar on Halloween during my freshman year of college. I regretted that the second we stepped into the dance club full of slutty nurses and devils.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Speaking of my issues, Dan was away for business earlier this week, and during those three days I had all by myself at home, I sort of felt like I might be cracking up. My feelings on being home alone land on two sides of the for-or-against argument. On one hand, I absolutely love it. Specifically, I love being able to eat cereal for dinner or watch whatever I want on TV, and I love being able to read in bed without getting molested. I like how whatever mess I make is MY mess, so it doesn’t bother me. I can get engrossed in Facebook stalking or reading blogs for hours without someone asking me what I’m doing, what errands we need to run, and what the plans are for dinner. But with the good, come the bad. I am the first to admit that I become SO LAZY when I’m by myself and have no real, concrete plans. No matter what I might have earlier decided I wanted to do with my night, I can’t seem to get my ass out of the house. A lot of the time it’s because I somehow become engrossed in terrible sitcoms on Lifetime (Reba? Really? What is wrong with me?) or West Wing episodes that showed up on the DVR. I have needed blush since Saturday, but I haven’t been able to drag myself to Sephora yet. I was planning on stopping to buy some zucchini the other night on my way home from work, but instead I just kept on driving and made macaroni and cheese at home and vegged out watching 27 Dresses. While I don’t begrudge myself a little vegging out, it really makes me wonder what my life would be like if I actually lived by myself. I’d like to think I would still be an active member of society who leaves her home, but I honestly can’t be sure. Thank God for Dan. Hopefully I never have to find out!
Thursday, October 02, 2008
It’s been a crazy, stressful, wonderful, exhilarating five months. And now… I am back to normal, I have my regular old life back and it is pretty damn awesome. Just in time for fall, my favorite season.
So what’s on my mind these days? In no discernable order at all, these are some things I’ve been thinking about:
- Babies. Yup.
- Chai Tea Lattes. They taste like October, I swear to God. Where have I been?
- Boots. I just bought these babies last week, and I think I’m in love. My brother works for Aldo now, which has proven to be very convenient.
- Speaking of shoes, and of course my brother’s discount, these might be next (if I can swing it with the hubs). I think two new pairs of shoes for the fall/winter seasons are respectable enough, no?
- I’ve found a few more good/terrible blogs which make me seethe with annoyance and silent judgment. Those are my favorites, and I feel like a sick masochist for continuing to go back, day after day. I wonder if there’s anyone out there seething with annoyance and silent judgment over my blog. Oh that’s right, I never write anything new here, if any ever existed, they’re likely long gone.
- Meat. Only because last night we took my parents to Fogo de Chão for my dad’s birthday. So. Much. Meat. It was overwhelming, somewhat nauseating, yet at the same time delicious.
- TV. I can watch again, as my evenings are no longer spent reading boring business text books and writing papers! I’m most excited about The Office, Pushing Daisies, Mad Men, and How I Met Your Mother. (Guilty pleasures that I am super embarrassed to be watching: Greys, Private Practice, Lipstick Jungle, and sometimes a little Real World Road Rules Challenge thrown in.)
- The Duchess. Does anyone want to see this movie with me? I know for a fact that Dan is a no-go, and Betsy, this is the mother of all “olden days” movies so I will make an educated guess you’re also not interested. I, on the other hand, am obsessed and giddy about the prospect of forbidden love, arranged marriages, constricting corsets, ridiculous wigs, and Kiera Knightly.
- Antiquing. Bring on the early morning drives to Buffalo, picking up hot coffee on the way, the kitschy vases and standing lamps, the combined smells of cinnamon, barn, and oil based paint, and the stops at the vegetable stand on the way home to stock up on funky gourds, squash, and honey crisp apples. We went last weekend, and I’m thinking about going again this Saturday.
As you can see, most of what’s on my mind these days is either superficial or mundane. But this is the good stuff of life, taking stock and getting enjoyment out of the little things, and I’m so happy to be able to take the time to do it again. I’m bracing myself for more evening walks and happy hours with the girls, reading the paper while downing whole pots of coffee on Sunday mornings, and getting excited about planning out my Halloween costume. Loving it all.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
I so desperately what to break out of this.
Thursday, March 06, 2008
Owls. I do not know why, but owls seem to be strangely hip these days, I see all the funky fashion bloggers sporting them and I find them enchanting in a vintage mod kind of way. I absolutely must have these owl earrings and this owl tote. Um, and excuse me, but who doesn’t need delicate owl-shaped french soap? And I’m thinking about having a baby JUST so I can dress him in this delectable little outfit. Cuteness overload, I almost can’t take it.
Dried fruit. Weird, I know, but I can’t get enough of it. I’ve been buying (and thus eating) the stuff by the pound. I love the banana chips the most…and dried apricots…and who knew dried pineapple was so tasty?
Soft crumbly cheeses on salads. If there is anything that will get me to eat more salad, it is topping said salad with mounds of Gorgonzola, feta, or blue cheese. Said mounds of cheese are attributable to so many additional caloric units, but so much added deliciousness!
Lost. Proving this season, once again, to be the most consistently thrilling, entertaining hour of television, week after week. Last week’s episode blew my mind into thousands of tiny pieces. I love that that show can be an edge-of-your-seat time bending adventure one second, and a heart-wrenching love-conquers-all romance the next. Desmond and Penny are the new… I have no idea. Ross and Rachel? No, Desmond is super hot and Penny does not have her own signature haircut. McDreamy and Meredith? No, they’re not doctors… nor are they annoying and whiny. Penny does have daddy issues though, so…
Pointy-toed flats. This is nothing knew, I’ve been wearing them forever, but I just can’t say enough about how fantastic they are. I love that they add a punch of hot to any outfit, without any of the discomfort you get with heals.
Cher Horowitz could very well be Bob Saget’s kids’ mother! That would be awesome. CBS not renewing one of my favorite shows, however, would be devastating. This, on top of the writer’s strike, which horror of horrors pushed me to read books instead of watching TV! What are they trying to do to couch potatoes like myself?
And I think that’s about enough random for today.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Like yesterday, it was pretty darn ordinary, which is ok, because I like my ordinary, and I’m quite thankful for my ordinary. But there was a lot of good stuff mixed in with the ordinary that doesn’t deserve to be immediately filed away.
I had to get out of the office at lunchtime, because holy crap my job can turn my brain into mush some days, so I went across the street to this great health food place that has the best sandwiches and home-made soups. I haven’t been there since the crabby snarly lady who makes no attempt to hide the fact that she simply hates her job and you, her customer, for making her do it, put mayo on my turkey wrap when I most distinctly requested that she not. I remember that day because I was super stressed at work, and when I got back to my office and saw the massive amount of white junk all over my lunch, I almost started crying. And when I attempted to scrape it off with napkins I had to choke back vomit as I gagged uncontrollably. I ate two bites and threw it away. I really hate mayo. The point of all this is that that specific horrible incident had put me off from H&H café for months, and yesterday I decided to brave the place again after going over and over in my head as to how and when I would say “no mayo” this time. My hope was to greatly minimize the probability that she would forget my special request again this time, and thereby minimize the probability that I would be crying and gagging back in my office 5 minutes later. Anyway, the point of all this is that crabby snarly sandwich lady is gone. I didn’t ask why, but she no longer works there. It was a surprising twist to be sure, she’s been working there for as long as I’ve been eating there, and I’ve been eating there as long as I’ve been working at my job. Four and a half years. Holy crap, I’ve almost been at my job for five years, how is that possible? Ok, let’s not get off topic. Unfortunately I believe that lady may have been holding the place together, because that joint was literally pure chaos yesterday. It seriously was 20 minutes before I had my sandwich, and there were only two people waiting in line at the counter when I walked in. The two ladies working were running all over the place, they had forgotten to order this, ran out of that by 10:30 AM. I left the place very stressed out and just drove to a nearby park with a pond to eat my sandwich in my car. I had planned on eating in, reading a bit, but I just couldn’t be in that madhouse anymore.
As I was eating my lunch in my car, listening to the radio, I noticed that there were all these beautiful geese sitting on the ice in the parking lot, hanging out and looking very cold. Aren’t geese supposed to fly south for the winter, what are they doing here? In the warmer months they are always running all over the place at that park, those geese are one of the reasons why I sometimes go there to eat my lunch, (the other is to absorb some happiness-inducing rays of sunlight which I have to go without throughout most of my work day), but it made me sad to see them all huddled together in the cold and the snow. I started having irrational thoughts about making a run to target to buy blankets and loaves of bread for the poor things. Anyways, maybe I’m crazy, and this is normal goose behavior. I am certainly not an expert. They just really did not look happy. They were not frolicking like they were in September.