December 31, 2008

Good endings

The last chapter in a good book is always my favorite. The one in which you race to the end, barely reading every-other-word, trying to figure it all out. How does the story all come together? And I've read a few good books lately. But the endings have been less than stellar. The main character dies. Or divorces. Or something equally dismal. And that's how I've felt about 2008. Everytime I think it has promise, the ending takes a little shit on us. So I'm big on good endings. And I'm equally big on resolutions. Not silly "I'm going to lose x number of pounds" resolutions, but ones that make me do better things. And unlike the majority of the population, I do what I set out to do. I take on one mission a year. And I'm getting a little nervous because the minutes are ticking away to the end of the year, and I'm still not sure which one to pick. So I'm off to the neighbor's party and going to need to figure it out while I'm there. What path should I take in 2009 to develop a better me? Should it be all about me? Something for other people? Something for my family? Whatever it is, it's going to need to take me out of 2008 with a well-deserved bang. Peace to you all. And here's to a better 2009. Now I just have to figure out the "how".

Good riddance 2008

Tears, drama, loss, heartache, stress, chaos... 2008 can't go away fast enough. And to prove my point, C-man is barfing his way through to the end. While I know there are some ugly things in store for 2009 (I'll always think of them as a kind of 2008 hangover), I believe in a fresh start. Less chaos. Less ugly. Fewer heartaches. 2009 is mine. So go enjoy your new year. Because while all that Santa magic is crap, a fresh start and clean slate at the beginning of the new year isn't. That is something I can believe in. And if it doesn't work out, there's always Chinese New Year to celebrate.

December 30, 2008

9 years ago today...

...I met my husband at the Milwaukee Ale House. We celebrated today by busting C-man out of school and going to Discovery World. Tomorrow's New Years Eve - the best holiday of the year (after my birthday, of course). Enjoy it safely!

December 29, 2008

Staycation

Beerman and I have the day off, while C-man has preschool. So we had a nice breakfast, a good trip to Costco, and then went to see Slumdog Millionaire. The reviews were great, and they were underrated. We both agreed it was the best movie we'd seen for a long, long, long time. If you can get to it (it's got a really limited showing), go, because it's going to win Best Picture this year. And if you want a book recommendation, I just finished Elegance of a Hedgehog. It's very French and philosophical, but I liked it anyway.

December 28, 2008

Home Again, Home Again

As a kid, whenever we would drive into the driveway and then park in the garage, my mom would say, "Home again, home again jiggity jig." Apparently it's a nursery rhyme. The fact that the next part goes something like, "Such a fat pig", I've never understood what it meant. Nevertheless, it's what came out of my mouth today as we drove in the driveway after a long-ass ride home from C-Falls. Some things are just that ingrained in the brain. At least I didn't repeat one of my Dad's sayings...

December 26, 2008

C-man has a camera, and he knows how to use it

Dad in the middle of making Christmas breakfast
Harry's butt
Early Christmas morning Mom
Feet with some special effects thrown in
Artistic tree shot
Christmas Legos
The rocking horse named "Kyle"

December 25, 2008

"The shitter was full!" and other fun stuff

Today we're kind of living within a movie. Or maybe life does imitate art enough that we see the resemblance. But after 20 minutes of ripping open presents, and a couple hours of playing with them, and then going to mass, we decided to go out to lunch. And wouldn't you know it, the only thing open on Christmas day within a 15 mile radius is Chinese. We laughed and laughed. So after the tasty buffet lunch, we started to watch Christmas movies. We already watched the house favorite Cricket on the Hearth, moved on to Santa Clause, and right now we're on National Lampoons Christmas Vacation. Ah, nothing says Christmas like, "The shitter was full!"

December 24, 2008

The real reason for it all...

Nothing says lovin' like a warm sugar cookie...

...Unless you're C-man. Then you take one bite, spit it on the floor, and declare it "the worst cookie you've ever eaten". Sigh... I just can't win this year.

December 23, 2008

Spirit of the Season

It's no secret that I'm not very festive this year. But the truth is, this time of year has never excited me. Because beyond the cold, snow, gray and sunless skies, it requires that people act like they're festive. And you hear the most annoying things. For example: "Do you have all your shopping done?" How has shopping for a ridiculous amount of crap become a contest? When people start asking for my family's "list" before Halloween, it's become obscene. Even more depressing is when someone has to ask for my list because s/he doesn't even know me well enough to get me something interesting or thoughtful that I'd enjoy. "Are you ready for Christmas?" What does this mean, really? Do I know what time mass is? Is my house decorated? I often want to respond, but don't because I'm being "festive", that December 25th is going to come and go every year no matter what I do. "What are you getting for Christmas?" A lot of bills. And before you go and accuse me of being a Scrooge, I have purchased/wrapped/sent and/or made gifts for 32 people. I've baked breads for the Christmas programs. I bought the outfit so I could take the photo, get it printed, and then mailed all the Christmas cards out. I packed the suitcases so we could/can travel to the holiday festivities. I even purchased and delivered the Hanukkah gifts. And I am so tired that none of it is enjoyable. Bah humbug.

December 22, 2008

By the hair of my chinny-chin-chin

I have a tiny little scar on the bottom of my chin. You can't even see it unless I lift my chin and point it out. Despite being almost miniscule in size, I have one single, solitary, lonely, horrifying goat hair that grows from it. I've tried everything: plucking, shaving, Nair-ing, swearing... and the little bastard just grows right back. It's only one tiny hair that would grow longer than Crystal Gayle's if I let it, but it's totally maddening. Because after I eliminate it, I wait and wait for it to come back. And the second I feel it prickling through, I go crazy all day long waiting to get home so I can pluck the little bugger out of there. So it occurred to me that maybe I'm looking at it all wrong. Maybe I should let it grow. I could get in the Guiness Book of World Records for longest single facial hair. I could grow it even longer, and turn it into a comb-over, thereby having straight hair for the first time in my life. Maybe I could sell it to Locks of Love... I think you only need 10 inches. But I'm pretty sure then that would gross everyone out around me. So in the meantime, I'm plucking away like I'm a post-menopausal woman, hoping no one notices it before I can get home and eliminate it until next month. ***************** And for those who continue to bash the Big 3 automakers while touting Toyota as king, maybe it's time to rethink your misguided opinion. If one of the major news reporters is finally showing them as weak, you know it's bad.

Making my kid perform some more

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December 21, 2008

It would have been so much cooler my way

Beerman's birthday was this week. So a couple of weeks ago, I went to buy what he'd asked for, and what my Dad said he needed after the roofing project. I went to the big box warehouse store Dad told me to go to, because the right one was on sale. As I entered the store, I was obviously looking befuddled, because an Associate immediately asked me if he could help, and I proudly said, "I need an air compressor and pancake gun." He smiled at me and said, "How about a pancake compressor with the nail guns?" "Right!" As we were walking toward it, I could see his shoulders shaking a little bit, trying to supress laughter. So me being me, I said, "But you've got to admit, it would have been soooo much cooler my way." At which point the guy stops suppressing his laughter, pulls a couple of his fellow Associate buddies aside and tells them what I said. As they're all laughing hysterically, I proudly hoisted my new compressor/gun into the cart, and went off on my merry way. But really, a pancake gun hooked up to an air compressor? It would make Sunday mornings so much more efficient. You wouldn't even have to carry them to the dining room... ******************* And to our friends and neighbors - wishing you a happy Hanukkah. Enjoy your una candelika.

December 20, 2008

Marshmallow World in the Winter

I am obsessed with making marshmallows ever since I saw this recipe. C-man and I made it during yesterday's snow day. Now I'm transforming it and made a chocolate version. When I shared my obsessive behavior earlier today, my neighbor suggested making peppermint flavored ones. Look out people, 'cause I'm on a roll here.

December 19, 2008

Story of good news according to C-man

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At lunch he told me he remembered the rest of the story and that he'll re-take the video later.

C-me

For those of you who are acquainted with the me-me (answer revealing questions about yourself and then forward them on to an untold number of recipients), here's the C-me: a me-me all about C-man. Favorite color: orange Favorite sport: baseball Favorite baseball player: JJ Hardy Best pet to own: kitty Best friend: Mommy Favorite food: cheese Favorite drink: chocolate milk Best movie ever: Cars Best toy to sleep with: puppy Packers or Jets: Jets Bob the Builder or Handy Manny: Bob, "because I just love Bob" Best music to listen to: something really loud with drums and guitars

Snow Day

December 18, 2008

12 Days of Christmas

So I've been doing the 12 days of Christmas with my staff. They've known it's me, but I refuse to admit to anything. Each day I've dropped something different on their desks. It all started because they called me Scrooge. Which is probably true, because I don't totally love this time of year like everyone else, but I sure showed them. Anyhow, today concludes the exhausting fun 12th day. This is what they got: 1. Partridge and a pear tree: Partridge and pear ornaments 2. Turtle doves: Two turtles and two Dove chocolates 3. French hens: Wolfgang Puck chicken soup with three bird ornaments 4. Calling birds: Hitachino Nest White Ale and a voice mail with a duck quacking 5. Golden rings: Pineapple rings and bagels 6. Geese a laying: Goose Island 7. Swans a swimming: Swanson chicken broth 8. Maids a milking: St. Pauli girl 9. Ladies dancing: Hey Mambo red wine 10. Lords a leaping: sLeepytime tea with 10 soldier chocolates 11. Pipers piping: Kid's recorder 12. Drummers drumming: Chocolates in a drum tin

December 17, 2008

All because 2 people fell in love...

I've been working on my family tree. I haven't gotten super far, aka not at all, on my mom's line. But now that I have loads of pictures from that line (who are yet unnamed - hint hint Mom!), I'm hoping to build that line up a bit. I also need to go up the James and Tillie line. I'm pretty excited about being in the 1620s with the one branch. Although it is a little bit suspicious with the same last names marrying each other over and over again. It might explain a few things about our family... If you have any known additions I'd appreciate them being input. I know I did a big part of this project in 5th grade, but I'm pretty sure my mom kept all that information so I've started over. And the link above starts with me, because well, you've gotta start somewhere, so it might as well be good!

December 16, 2008

The Birthday Trifecta

Happy Birthday Beerman! The first 2 gems are courtesy of his Aunt M. This one is when Beerman was about 6 months old. Look at those cheeks!
Beerman is on the left. His brother is on the right. A cousin is in the middle. All grown up:
Happy 39th to my youthful gorgeous sister!
Happy 14th Hunterman!

December 14, 2008

Post Pelot Christmas

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*********************** Here's the link to the Frost Family pictures. I have no idea who these people are, but at least the photos are there. Maybe Mom can edit them so we know who/what they are?

December 12, 2008

Christmas Program Practice

C-man had his Christmas program practice this morning at preschool. I went, because he won't be able to be in the real one on Sunday. Now if only the kindergarten teacher would get out of the way with those flapping arms!

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I'm off to pack to go to Winter for Fesitvus for the rest of us.

December 11, 2008

Thursday Thirteen things that make me really happy

Thirteen Things that make me really happy (in no particular order)

1. A warm chocolate croissant and fresh coffee with real cream

2. Complete silence with a brilliant snow falling on the ground

3. Hearing C-man say, "Mom, I love you more"

4. Listening to Beerman tell C-man bedtime stories about the bulls or squirrels

5. Watching Riley run outside

6. A brand new earring/necklace combo

7. Learning how to do something new (this week = snowblowing)

8. Fresh sheets on the bed

9. A night out at the Hollander with Beerman...mmmm...French fries w/mayo and Hitachino Nest White Ale

10. Watching James Bond

11. Traveling someplace special with Beerman

12. Listening to the Dixie Chicks (Don't ask why, singing along just always cheers me up)

13. Having my head massaged

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here! The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

December 9, 2008

12 ways to get my kid to sleep

Inspired by the 12 Days of Christmas (which I'm kind of into this year) and C-man's ridiculously intricate nightly bedtime routine: 12: toys to arrange 11: pillows in his bed 10: minutes of storytime 9: "It's past your bedtime!" 8: sips of water 7: hugs and kisses 6: blankets 5: more minutes until bedtime, please Mom! 4: books read 3: times to heat up his hot pack 2: socks need to go on, no now off 1: sweet boy sleeping

December 8, 2008

Are my eyes always closed?

Why is it that I need 10 pictures taken of me to get one with my eyes open. Unfortunately, C-man has the same affliction. Here was our attempt last night to take a picture in front of a lit tree at my work event. Try #1, mine are half-open, his totally closed: Try #2: Now his are open, but mine totally closed:
Try #3: Guess third time isn't the charm
Finally! Maybe we need toothpicks to pry them open for photo ops.

December 7, 2008

How we all feel today

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December 6, 2008

Three Things I Learned Today

  1. St. Nick does not come for me.
  2. Spending too much money on Christmas presents does not magically put me in the Christmas spirit.
  3. It does not matter if I am sick. The only way St. Nick's Day and Christmas are going to happen is if I do them.

December 5, 2008

Dry Toast

I've been not-good all week. As in, my personal trainer sent me home on Monday because I looked like crap and Beerman was holding my hair last night and I'm trying to stomach some dry toast this morning not-good. This always happens around the holidays. At least St. Nick comes tonight! Maybe he can bring me some ginger ale.

December 4, 2008

Thursday Thirteen things I want for Christmas

Thirteen Things I want for Christmas

1. Beautiful table linens

2. Cuisinart Food Processor

3. Warm, fuzzy socks

4. A weekend away somewhere quiet

5. Beautiful jewelry (no conflict diamonds)

6. Marc Jacobs Daisy perfume

7. Spa visit

8. A housecleaning service

9. Desk toys and gadgets

10. New winter coat

11. Blue cashmere sweater

12. Great books to read

13. Ipod touch

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here! The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

December 2, 2008

Vision of Sugar Plum Harry

Once upon a time, I was an exchange student. Having been gone almost a year, my mom sent me a few Christmas ornaments to hang on the tree. I've always loved getting the mail. And in those days pre-email, when I was 17, away from home, and ached in a way that wouldn't quite get me on a plane to leave that tropical bliss, but enough to make me a trifle sad at the holidays, it was fabulous to see that package arrive. The ornaments were bought at some craft fair type thing that my mother likes to go to. And they were made out of some clay, or dough, or claydough... Anyhow, I proudly hung them on the tree. And the next day... I came home after school to half-eaten ornaments. Apparently Ulla, the stinky house weimereiner enjoyed them as well. And I cried. A lot. So fast forward to today... I arrived home after taking Riley for his radiation treatment to find this: And while he's not talking, I'm pretty sure, it was an attack from this:

December 1, 2008

Advent

Last night we went to C-man's school to do some stuff to celebrate Advent. I'm pretty sure his favorite station was the cookie frosting one. He chose vanilla and chocolate. Maybe he is my kid after all...