December 18, 2014

Stick-on bows or ribbons?

That's the question today...which do you prefer?

My mother always used the stick-on bows, because it was easy.  But, much like my love for stationery, my heart has always been with real ribbon, especially when I realized it is reusable.  With the advent of wired ribbon, my love has only deepened...particularly since I could never quite figure out how to make a beautiful bow from regular ribbon.  Until....I stumbled across this video


I LOVE the internet...how did we live without it in the good old days?

This video immediately sent me on the hunt for the ribbon mentioned on the video.  Guess what?  I couldn't find it anywhere.  When I Googled it, I discovered that's because the company has been bought.  Of course, despite multiple Googling efforts, I have been unable to discover which Offray ribbon is comparable to the C&G Pattern 800.  So I compromised.  I used something that looked like what she used.  And it worked okay.

Now that I think I've mastered the perfect bow - I've decided that for the family Christmas presents, it's just not that practical since you completely mangle the ribbon undoing the present, but for other gift giving occasions it would be totally appropriate.  Because presentation makes every gift that much more special, don't you think?

As I mentioned above - I absolutely adore the Internet.  It gives me the opportunity to learn how to do all those things I've always wanted to know how to do.  So what about you - what fabulous new thing have you recently learned thanks to the Internet?

December 15, 2014

OMG...I married a blabber-mouth.

It started out as a nice, quiet morning.  I was working on a crossword puzzle, Man-Child was doing whatever he does on the computer when the Husband walked in and said to Man-Child,

"Hey, I need to tell you...don't go in our closet because your gift is in there."

He was then puzzled when my head snapped up, I shot him a look of disbelief and then promptly began banging my head on the table in an effort to keep from killing him right then and there.

WHY would he say that?  WHY?

First of all, why in the HELL would you tell someone where you had hidden their gift?  That's just stupid.

Secondly, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, we had talked about it two days ago when we purchased this particular gift.  It is awkward to wrap and if I somehow managed to get it wrapped, the shape alone would give it away.  So I told him to leave it in the closet and that I would work up a scavenger hunt.

The plan was perfect.  Until, for whatever asinine reason, he opened his mouth.

I suppose I could find somewhere else to hide the damn gift (where?! This place is too small to have a plethora of hiding places) if, and only if, he learned his lesson and didn't mention to Man-Child exactly WHY I was mad at him.

The whole point of the scavenger hunt was to be part of the surprise; if you know it's coming it's not the same.

To say that I am irritated with him is quite the understatement.  The big, blabber-mouth.

December 13, 2014

Let's DO this....

I've finally got it ("it" being Christmas) under control.  Hallelujah.

Yesterday was the start of my extra long vacation - it appears that I will be off until the new year (pretty much - I fully expect to pop in to the office at least once or twice before then).

The tree has been standing in the corner for at least a week, bare except for the lights.  And you know what?  A tree with lights is pretty beautiful all on its own.

I think that is a major revelation for me.  

For many, many years I obsessed over the tree.  And pretty much everything else.  But after living through the unemployment, and not really enjoying the holiday due to the stress, I've learned to let it go.

How?

Tonight, we decorated the tree as a family.  The tree isn't "Pinterest Perfect."  So what?  It's still beautiful....and you won't find me secretly rearranging it when no one is looking; because it's pretty much perfect just the way it is.

As a family, we laughed over the memories that some ornaments brought to mind.  We laughed when Man-Child dropped, and broke, the pink "Baby's First Christmas" ornament (WHY it was pink is still a mystery after all these years).  We laughed, even after I somehow sliced my palm on a glass icicle.  Ouch!

The baking isn't done...but I've still got time.  And, realistically?  How much baking do I really NEED to do?  Not much.

As for the house hunt, it has been determined; I've been very open to every house we've seen.  I can say with no reservations that there have been at least three houses that I've seen which could work...with some renovations.

Here's the deal, the Husband really doesn't want to live with renovations; since he finds a reason to nix each and every house.  Didn't I predict this some time back?  But yet. he's still not quite ready to commit to building.  *sigh*  So the hunt continues.

But despite the housing woes (I am really ready for a new home!), life is good and I have no complaints.  Come on Christmas...I'm ready.

December 2, 2014

Wasting time...

That's all I seem to have done in this past week that I've been off work.

Oh sure, in a fit of guilt, I actually cleaned the house today. but that's about all that has been accomplished.

Christmas gifts that need to be purchased are still unpurchased.

I have that list of "wishes" from the family.  And they fall into three categories.

1) Ain't ever gonna happen in a million years - just forget it and give me a realistic list already, Man-Child.

2) That is the MOST ridiculous request - if I buy it, I KNOW you will never use it, dear Husband.

3)  Okay, that is a reasonable request and I know it will be used...but if I buy it and the Husband checks our bank account - as he is known to do - he will then know that I have purchased the item because why else would I be purchasing anything from that particular store?

So you see my dilemma, yes?

Despite the fact that I've accomplished nothing of value, if you discount my clean house (and you shouldn't, because that was the busiest I've been in over a week!). since last Wednesday I'm soothing myself with the fact that I still have ten more vacation days to try and get it all together.

I had hoped to at least do some minimal decorating around here today.  Only to discover that our Christmas boxes are nowhere to be found.  I vaguely recall sending a bunch of things to Goodwill last year, I'm hoping I didn't completely lose my mind and send it all.  I'm sending the Husband up into the attic this weekend (ssh, don't tell him.  It's a surprise!) - so fingers crossed that it's there because if it's not, then we don't have any decorations at all.

I also had planned to do some baking today - for the ingrates my co-workers...as you can tell from the lack of cookie aroma around here that didn't get done either.

So what have I done all day?  Who knows.  It seems, upon reflection, that I spent an inordinate amount of time driving around today (where? why? It's not like I came home with any Christmas presents) and even more time just cruising along on the internet...Alice thought she fell down a rabbit hole?  HA!  That was a cake-walk compared to the internet.

So tomorrow, I go back to work where, presumably, I will be productive and busy...


November 25, 2014

The "Catch Up" post

My last post made it sound like I was at the end of my rope...and I was.

But things have calmed down just a titch since then and I'm feeling a bit more in control.

The house hunt continues - but the intensity of it has slowed down considerably.  I suspect this is mainly due to the time of year bringing very few houses on the market.  We have looked at a couple that could work...with renovations.  In some cases, extensive renovations.  And, each and every time, the Husband has declared that to be too much.

Apparently, he can't deal with the stress of building a house or renovating one.  At this point, it looks like we will be living in this townhouse forever.

Vacation time is now in full swing.  I'm off until next Wednesday and after that?  Well, considering how much vacation time I've racked up and not used, theoretically, I will only be working seven days in December.  I say theoretically because I have offered up my previously guarded cell phone number and have offered to come in as necessary.  *sigh*  There is just far too much going on for me NOT to make myself available.  And truthfully?  With that much time off, it might actually be a relief to go in every once in a while.

I know that the call won't come unless it's absolutely necessary though.

The Christmas cards?  Yes, they are coming along.  In fact, they have taken over my dining room table and I need to deal with that before Thursday.  But, I must say that I am kinda impressed with the results.  Not enough to post pictures, but enough to mail them (so let's call that progress and move along).

And speaking of Thursday, it turns out that it will only be the three of us for Thanksgiving this year.  We had invited friends, but turns out they can't make it.  The Husband is disappointed.  Apparently, he feels that we don't appreciate his efforts as much as outsiders.  (He's delusional.  He cooks.  We appreciate!)

Which calls to mind a subject that I probably shouldn't touch on, but shall we chat for a moment about the spammer that's been hitting my (and others) inbox?  

He(?) claims to be an American man boycotting American women...here's a tip, pal...if you want to spread your so called "message"virus, malware? you might just want to move on to blogs that aren't hosted by American women, or in fact, any woman, because we WILL delete that shit nonsense immediately. 

With all this vacation time looming, I have a feeling that our checking account it about to take a major hit as I begin to seriously whittle down those Christmas wish lists - with a few things thrown in for me.  Of course.

I have told my family that the longer they wait to give me their "reasonable" gift lists the more I will spend on myself, which will result in less being spent on them.  I'm hoping that spurs them along in their gift list assembling...so far?  No such luck (any ideas for a the guys in my life?  Because, seriously, at this point I'm at a loss).

So it appears our Thanksgiving is going to be a quiet one; but after the insanity of the past few weeks, I'm actually kinda looking forward to it.  Whatever your plans may be, I wish you all the very, very best and want you to know that I am always counting you among my blessings, because without you, I'd truly be insane.

No, I'm not even kidding.

November 20, 2014

Nothing short of insanity.

Yup.  That pretty much sums up my life lately.

If you want to turn away now, feel free, because that title says it ALL.

It has just dawned on me in the past day or two that Thanksgiving is next week.  NEXT WEEK!  How did this happen?

My "plan" this year was to be organized, calm and ready to enjoy the holiday season.  So far, my plan is not going so well.  I inventoried what gifts I had bought and realized that the few gifts I have bought are far outweighed by those that I haven't.  Of course.

Those extra fancy Christmas cards I was all excited to do and send out this year?  Even with the super shortened list; I am woefully far behind.

The "Work Issue That Cannot Be Named" continues.  Which means that I've been getting to work earlier and earlier in a woeful attempt to keep up.  When that failed to produce the results I'd expected I have been staying later and later.  That seemed to have stemmed the tide.

And then Monday came along and threw a curve ball that knocked me silly and stressed me out to no end.  I have approximately fourteen days of vacation that needs to be used before the end of the year.  This coupled with all the extra work had me completely wigged out.  I told one of my coworkers that I would just have to lose the time because there was no way I could get all of this done and take my time.  Until, one of my bosses stepped in and said "Stop."  He informed me that this hot potato that another attorney (who is NOT my boss) tossed in my lap was not a high priority for me; that I had more than enough to worry about between him and one of my other bosses.  He also informed me that I was to take my vacation and not worry about anything.

So despite work being stressful at least it is no longer STRESSFUL.

Heaped on to all of the above we throw in the house hunting.  The Husband is all gung-ho and to be completely honest?  As much as I want a house, I'm ready to throw in the towel until everything else has settled down.

I haven't put my foot down and said ENOUGH yet.  But I may have to pretty soon.  Because truth be told, I don't want to even THINK about moving before the holidays.  Last year we moved into this place right at the beginning of December - and although I had a lot of time off, trying to unpack, buy Christmas, etc. it was stressful.

So I figure, if I can take that stressor off the table and just get through the next couple of weeks, I can take my vacation and try to relax and get back on board with the "plan" I mentioned above; albeit a little behind the eight ball, but still...

At any rate, I thought I'd check in and fill you in.  Now?  Now, I'm headed to bed.  I am so tired for some reason.

November 11, 2014

The Husband had a birthday and we celebrated by going to look at a house...and, it's obvious, his resolve is cracking.

The Husband had a birthday yesterday (happy birthday, you handsome devil!) so we both took the day off.

The Husband actually went to spend the night up in the mountains with Man-Child on Sunday and didn't make it back down the mountain until lunch time - which kind of cut into the whole "spending the day together" that I had planned.  But that was fine.

He had actually found a house online, in a very desirable neighborhood and we had made plans with our realtor to look at it yesterday afternoon.  I was kind of shocked that he wanted to look at this particular house; mainly because it was MUCH larger than what we had agreed upon, although the price was suspiciously low for the area.

After getting into the house, I saw why.  The house is apparently in foreclosure.  And while this house COULD be beautiful; it would take a LOT of work.  As in, if we were in the market to flip this house it would have been perfect.

But seeing as we don't have that kind of cash just sitting around we had to pass on it.

I've been watching a lot of home improvement shows on Netflix lately (and by extension, have coerced the Husband to watch a few as well) and even though I KNOW in my heart that we could have snapped that house up, gave it some love (and a BUNCH of dough), turned around and sold it for a very tidy sum; I also know that we just don't have that kind of energy and wherewithal to cope with that kind of project.

But this whole exercise has made me wonder....does the Husband protest too much when he says he is too old to get involved with a building a house?  I think so.  Because why would he be dragging me to look at a house that would require MUCH more energy than a new build?

He's cracking folks.  Slowly, but surely he's cracking.

Now, he just needs to hurry up and do it before someone else finds that particular lot that I've got my eye on.