Friday, December 25, 2009

on christmas day in the morning

Gracie vs the tripod
Originally uploaded by Julep67
So far this morning, I have not seen any ships come sailing in. Our neighbourhood seems very quiet and dark. We are up early by some standards but actually slept in this morning (for us anyway). The dogs are having some kibble as I type this and I think Mark is in his office checking his mail.

In a little while, we'll take our cups of coffee into the living room and watch our DVD of the Pee Wee Herman Christmas special. It's a little tradition we have, it doesn't feel like Christmas unless I've seen Grace Jones perform the little drummer boy!

Later today, we'll head to the train station to collect my brother and then go to my mum & dad's for a holiday dinner. It'll be nice to see everyone and have a visit and eat too much.

On Monday, I got the bulk of my baking done. Did it all in one morning, well most if it anyway. I did one more batch of cookies on Tuesday morning and it all went well. I am either getting better and being organized or am a better baker or something because this year it seemed a lot less chaotic than other years.

Wednesday, my mum and I took a road trip to her home town so we could deliver cookies and have little pre-Christmas visits with her siblings. It was really nice, despite driving through a blizzard on the way there, to have a little girls only road trip day. Normally, we see my mum's family on Boxing Day at a party my Aunt has. This year, she's not having the party so I wanted to be sure to get the cookies to everyone, hence the road trip.

When we got back into town, I had to pick Mark up after he finished work. We needed a few groceries so we bit the bullet and went to the store. It was a nice feeling, not having any pressure or time constraints on us while we shopped. Everyone around us seemed to be panicking, really frantic and frustrated. We were basically shopping like a normal shop, getting enough stuff to keep us away from the stores until at least Monday. Again, being organized this year (and not doing too much) made me feel really liberated from all of the holiday hysterics.

Just peeked out the window, it's still very quiet and dark out there. You can tell that there aren't a lot of little kids in our neighbourhood - I remember when we were kids, the houses with children in them would be all lit up at 5 a.m. on Christmas day.

I hope that however much sleep you go last night, and whatever you do today, if you celebrate, have a wonderful holiday. If you don't, I hope you have an awesome long weekend!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

holiday stuff

So, I'm on holidays/vacation. Today is day 3. I don't have to go back to the office until January 4. Feels a little strange but I'm enjoying it.

The first day (Tuesday), I stayed home and puttered around the house. I had a tonne of laundry to do so I got through that and hung out with the dogs (who still haven't quite figured out what's going on with the holidays and stuff). I still haven't decided if I'm putting up the tree or not. I got my lights up in our front windows, I hung my pretty, lighted garland but the tree is still in the box. The only part of me that wants to do it, only wants to do it so she can go through all the ornaments and get rid of what I'm not using anymore. Mostly, our ornaments and decorations are snowmen, Simpsons stuff or Sponge Bob. I have a tonne of Sponge Bob stuff, glass ornaments, snowglobes, stockings, I can turn my living room into a Springfield meets Bikini Bottom winter wonderland very easily. Part of me wants to keep things simple though so, I'm still on the fence about the tree. Maybe once I have finished cleaning the house (it's still pretty grubby at the moment - I'll finish it up when I have all of my errands done) I'll feel more like putting it up. We'll see.

Mark woke up with a migraine yesterday so we both went back to sleep for a couple of hours after the alarm went off. I probably should have gotten up at our normal time because I remember feeling just fine when I got up to let the dogs out at 4:30 a.m. When I got up again at 6:45 a.m., I felt all full of the cold and my sinuses were batty all morning.

While we're not traditional holiday celebration folks, I did have a bunch of errands to do yesterday and I found the whole experience to be absolutely exhausting. I probably tried to do too much with a full head but I really wanted to get some of this stuff done. Much of what I needed to do yesterday was stuff I'd put off doing until I on holidays. I always do this and then I forget how stupid people get at this time of the year. I swear everyone forgets how to drive and how to park or even how to behave in the stores. They wander around with a buggy and a look on their faces which screams to me "hello, I've lost my mind!" I sure hope I don't look like that, I'm pretty sure I don't.

A couple of hours ago, I bundled up and drove Mark to work so I could have the van for errands today. The folks on the weather channel told us that it was wicked cold out. Honestly, I think it felt colder out yesterday around here. There was a dampness that got into my bones yesterday and I couldn't warm up. Might have not been the weather though. Might have been the full head thing. Today, I have a few more errands to do but I'm being smarter about it. I'm meeting a friend for coffee before I start and then she's going with me for some of them so we can at least make fun of the situation together.

The only big holiday type of thing I do is bake. Either tomorrow or Saturday, I'll convert my kitchen into "holiday baking central" (name stolen from Rita - thanks chickie!). On Wednesday, my mum and I are tentatively scheduled to make a road trip to her home town for cookie deliveries. Normally I do them on boxing day when my Aunt Mary traditionally holds an open house. This year she's not doing that so we'll do a pre-Christmas quick tour and visit my Aunts & Uncles and drop off cookies for them.

So yeah, nothing terribly exciting is happening around here right now but I am kind of liking it that way.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

starting to think about getting ready

It's been a while since I've posted and I wish I could say that the delay is because of some really exciting stuff but honestly, it's just been sort of busy at work (where I usually post from) lately and when I do have a spare moment for farting around, I'm playing Farmville. Yep, Farmville.

My cousin's 10 year old son invited me to play it with him during the summer and I said yes. At first, I had my doubts about it but the more I played and the more weird little reward things I got, the more I got into it. He, of course, like most 10 year olds, moved on to other facebook games but I stuck it out with Farmville. Now I play with a bunch of my friend each day, we send each other animals and (this week anyway) christmas gifts. It's all very silly but in a way, the silly aspects of it distract me when I'm getting stressed about things so it can't be all bad.

Not sure what the weather is doing in your part of the world but 'round here, we're having an unseasonably beautiful fall. Except for a few flakes the other morning which didn't amount to anything, we've had no snow and the temperatures have been very mild. I'm not complaining but it is weird. What is also weird for me is the fact that I only have 5.5 days left in the office this year. I start my winter vacation on December 14 at around 2 p.m. Nice huh?? I had a bunch of vacation days leftover at the end of the year (I usually do) and I like to add them to the already generous holiday break we get where I work. I'll be off work for almost 3 weeks. Nice huh?

Last year, I didn't start to decorate until I was already off work (around the 16th) but we've started the process of moving stuff up from the basement. I always forget how many bins of stuff I have. It never looks like that much when I get it all out but boy, there are a lot of boxes. Boxes of lights, boxes of Spongebob decorations, my Simpsons Christmas village, all of my cool/funky snowmen. We're not traditional christmas folks so our decorations are more fun and silly than some folks would care for. Of course, our big December 25 tradition is to get up, drink coffee and watch our well used DVD copy of "Pee Wee's Christmas Special." For me, it's not really Christmas until you've heard Grace Jones sing the Little Drummer Boy or k.d. lang do Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree.

In other news, we've been dog sitting for the beautiful Bella for the past two weeks. Her humans are expected to be back in town tomorrow and I'm sure she'll be glad to get home. I think she has a lot of fun here with our dogs and we treat her like she's one of ours but I'm sure she'd prefer to be at home with her own people.

The three dog dynamic is very different than two dogs and I think Gracie has been most bothered by it. She has a tendency to be a little jealous so having another girl dog in the house kind of gets up her nose. The other weird thing is that Bella cannot figure out the doggie door. She has gone out on her own a couple of times while Mark was standing by the door but she won't come in on her own. She'll go through the flap but won't push on it with her nose. I know she can do it but she won't. Having to let a dog in and out for 2 weeks makes me really appreciate how lucky we are that Sam and Gracie are clever enough to come and go as they please.

On that note, things seem a little too quiet in the kitchen (where the dogs currently are) to me. I had better go make sure that they haven't figured out how get into the pantry on their own.