Saturday, December 4, 2010

Where the heck did I put that seasonal spirit, anyway?

I know it's around here someplace, but while I look for it, here is a holiday diorama in an eggshell, made in art class in 1974, presented here in fuzzi-vision on last year's tree. The fact that my eggshell ornament has survived lo these many years gives me hope for finding the holiday spirit again this year.

An immediate cause of angst is that a relative went completely off in a couple of middle-of-the-night nastygrams. And pixies, my buttons were/are pushed big-time. But it's pretty much my fault for seeing if the sibs wanted to go in on something for our beloved aunt. Sigh.

So, upward and onward. Great exciting work stuff happening this entire week, and daughter will come home on Thursday. We're not doing any big presents, and the little fun ones are coming along. Tree next weekend. Fa la la.

How's it going where you live?


Sarah at ratatat said...

Kathy - sibling group presents are the only time I am glad I don't have several. It must work out in some families, right? All examples I can come up with do not have happy thoughts.

I doubt your Christmas spirit will slide in like mine, which was boosted by a nice little snow. Hang in there!

kathy a. said...

thanks, sarah! the snow sounds pretty!

it isn't about the proposed present at all -- her last screed began with how she's "in" -- but lordy. all the rest is personal jabs from the planet mars, mostly around our dad's death some years ago, and some other weirdness. can i just suggest that 3 a.m. and wasted is not the best time to resurrect a pack of lies, and tell your nearest living relatives via email?

Miranda said...

The official holiday season begins with my friends' annual Christmas bash. It is hard not to feel festive around them and it is so comforting to see the same faces every year. Even though it is an adult party, Teen Son has started coming with me which is also great because we get to make memories together and I get to see what a great person he's turned out to be. He hadn't launched himself on the world yet and that is a long way off, but he is so decent, kind, and funny that I don't worry about it the way I used to.

It was good to have the party distraction because my friend from high school lost her two month old son this weekend, another person whose path crossed mine in my late teens/early 20s was senselessly murdered a week ago, and another old friend of mine is being deployed to Afghanistan for a year. I want to hold on to all the good times because one can never know how many one will have.

Also, not looking forward to the actual family celebrations because of prickly relatives, Mom's smelly house where she insists on entertaining, and the fact that Spouse still doesn't have a firm job offer and won't start his new position, assuming said job offer materializes, until after the holidays.

esperanza said...

Oh Miranda, you've got a lot to deal with.

kathy a., sounds like your sibling's computer needs a breathalyzer. You must pass it before you can click "send."

'Tis a churchy time of year. Christmas pageant tonight: Sweet's job is to stand there and "sing." Given her speech issues, her job is to stand there and look cute. Mini's job is to hold off on the nighttime blues till we get home. Something else every Sunday in December. That's the way it goes around here. Whine is that I'm already tired.

AW: Sweet is making very good progress (like enough that other people besides me are noticing) on her speech. Yay!

Weird Whine: I pulled a ladybug (deceased) out of Mini's mouth this morning. AW: at least it was a cute kind of bug she wanted to eat.

kathy a. said...

yay, sweet! and omg esperanza, i've collapsed into a giggling lump at your last anti-whine!

((( miranda ))) so much sadness. but the party sounds sweet, and your eldest is awesome!

Miranda said...

Esperanza, I want to know how you managed to pull the bug out of Mini's mouth without screaming. EW!!! The things they never tell you when you become a parent.

I finally remembered the holiday carol that makes my teeth hurt and TMJ act up every time I hear it: Andy William's "It's That Most Wonderful Time of the Year." There is something really dark about that song.

Kathy A, I really wish family could avoid their individual holiday triggers so they could quit being ours.

esperanza said...

W: A small voice saying "poo" in the bathtub. Sister also present in tub.

AW: I had no idea I could move that quickly.

Sarah at ratatat said...

Oh Esperanza. The bug and the bath? What a day!

Hugs to Miranda, what a season. Glad the party will be a bright spot.

Sue said...

Hugs to Miranda - that is an awful lot to have on your plate, especially at this time of year. So sorry.

Kathy a. - you're picture looks exactly like our dioramas that are made in milk-weed pods! We have two of them. They are lovely.

Esperanza: Early in the week for a pook whine. Well done. When combined with a dead bug removal, you're a shoe-in for award season. Start getting your gown ready now!!!

Whine: Flu bug. I had to leave church before coffee time (I made it through worship, which is good. Who really appreciates a barking minister?) Got home just in time to bark my guts out through my nose. Yes I know - Uber Ick.

Anti-whine: Fever gone. Still nauseous, but the gravol finally working a bit.

Anti-whine: kitteh lubs a sick person.

Whine: I've already missed a bunch of work I needed to do this week.

Anti-whine: Could have been worse. It could be Xmas week. Counting my blessings here. Whew!!

kathy a. said...

miranda -- thanks for the seasonal earworm!

esperanza, you are on a roll this week.

oh, sue -- hope you are feeling better! i'm settling into this head cold/chest cold malaise, with fuzzi-headedness. bleah on sickness.

esperanza said...

Well, I was going for the gross out award, but Sue, it's all yours. Bark through the nose. Ick. That is not a good holiday feeling.

I hope all the sickies get well soon.

liz said...

(((Sue))) I hope it's a 24 hour bug!

(((Esperanza))) bugs and pook. No fun

AW: He's fine. He's really really fine.

W: Yesterday morning we got a call from school that MM was experiencing pain in his chest and left arm. By the time I got to school he was fine, but we still took him straight to the ER. EKG was fine except that there was this little extra blip and we should maybe get a pediatric cardiologist to look at him.

AW: So we took him home for a quiet afternoon, and this morning he saw the pediatric cardiologist and he's fine. There's absolutely nothing wrong with his heart.

Cardiologist suggested anxiety? Or muscle spasm?

Co-worker suggested a blockage in his intestine? Which actually makes sense considering how constipated the poor boy has been.

I'll talk to his regular pediatrician about that.

But the basic thing is, he's fine.

kathy a. said...

oh, liz! i'm glad he is fine, but omg how scary. could it be heartburn, by which i mean acid reflux from the stomach? that can feel kind of wicked, and the pain can radiate, but it passes and things like a blander diet or watching the stress help.

Days said...

We've got the pooks and the barks already, and it's only Tuesday? I think there might be a lot of contenders for the Bodily Fluids awards.

Wow, liz. So glad he's fine! What a scary way to start the week.

((sue)) - Feel better quickly. And enjoy the kitteh lub.

Miranda - Hope you enjoy the party and it lifts your spirits; it sounds like a tough week in your neck of the woods. Would some spiked egg nog help? We broke it out on Saturday, and I'm willing to share.

kathy a. - Hooray for the daughter, tree, and fun present antiwhines. Too bad about the nasty grams. Can I offer you some eggnog as well?

AW: Family Christmas event on Saturday was delightful. Food, fellowship, lovely thoughtful gifties, and the misers stayed home because they "didn't feel like going out." Win-win situation, in that case.

AW: Son's insistence on including teh dog in the family holiday photo shoot resulted in some wonderful photos of a boy and his dog.

W: Some of the family photos turned out not so wonderful for the same reason.

A/W?: Headed to the office tomorrow for the AGM.

Sue said...

Liz, I'm so glad everything is okay! That must have been such a scare.

Days, those are such great anti-whines. I love that the dog is in the pictures.

liz said...

The more I think about it, the more I am sure that my co-worker is right. Constipation: it's not just about the butt.

kathy a. said...

I'm sad that Elizabeth Edwards left so soon.

KLee said...

Liz, glad the little guy is okay! Major whew!

As for the holiday song that makes your head explode? Has to be "Santa Baby." That whole breathy, I'm-trying-to-emulate-Marilyn-Monroe thing just does. not. do. it. for. me.

The husband, however, would IMMEDIATELY nominate "We Need a Little Christmas." We did the stage show of "Mame" right about the time that I got pregnant with Offspring, and that was one of the numbers in it, and he's hated it with a passion since. I, of course, in the interest of desensitizing him, sing it at least twice a holiday season. Or, at least a verse or two, then I usually have to duck whatever's being thrown at me.

My whine for this week -- I got hit by a car today. And, like I told the world via Facebook, when I say I got hit, I do mean *I*, and not my car. Idiot woman pulled around a curve too fast, and her trunk struck me in the right hip. I'm okay, though a little achy. I feel sure I will bruise by tomorrow. Unfortunately, I was sort of occupied with being hurt, and she sped off. So, I got no license info, and no one was within my range of vision, so no witnesses, either.

Typical luck.

The only thing I *hate* about Christmas? The hordes of idiots who are out and about in the name of shopping.

esperanza said...

Yikes, KLee and Liz.

For us? Another ladybug.

Days said...

Oh my gosh, KLee! I hope you aren't too sore and am glad it wasn't much worse.

Jenevieve said...

Whine of broken records: poor. tired. taken advantage of. too tired to care. poor.

Yes, I know I chose this job. But still.

Additional whine of spoiled privilege: My GPs bought us a new iMac for a xmas/graduation gift (which they forgot to give me, so felt guilty? I guess?). Anyway,, it's lovely, but people: We're dead broke. As in,, struggling to make rent, clinging to WIC, etc. In what bizarro world am I skipping meals and typing on a $2k computer in the same month?

AW: Hubby's meds are stabilizing. WOO!

W: H is sick again. Rattly chest, high resp. rate, cough, fever. I hate when he's sick. :(

AW: Thoroughly made use of my chiropracter's visit this am. I love her.

margalit said...

I just thought, "These peole are sick of my whining" and then I remembered that this IS the place to whine. So I will commence with my various and sundry woes after offering hugs to everyone else who is going thru hell this week.

I have laryngitis and sound like a goose with a bad head cold. Sore throat, aching limbs, fever... it is the winter woe disease.

We THINK we have found an apartment in the city, nice fairly safe neighborhood, cheaper that I thought I would find, rooms for all, and an awesome kitchen. So what's the problem, you ask. The hotel we're living in ran my credit card for an extra weeks stay (part of this week, part of next) and I am now $300 overdrawn at the bank.

Plus no money means no food and we out of anything to eat and have no money to buy food. No way to get to the food pantry either. I'm down to one tuna sandwich and an apple per day and it is NOT enough to keep my blood sugar regular.

Need money to pay first, last, and deposit, plus movers in order to get apartment. Anyone have an extra 5K they want to invest in a nice family?

Cats. CATS. They are driving me to distraction. Spot puts his butt outside the litter box and poops on the floor. Disgusting. And then he scratches endlessly on the little platform the box sits on, but there is nothing to scratch. Pepper... she is back from the hinterlands and has made everyone including Spot happy...but...she has had problems sharing the litter box. As in "this looks like a nice pile of blankets, let me pee here."

We're living in a suites hotel room with no oven and a teeny kitchen which means no latkes. So I cancelled hanukkah, gave the kids GCs to Target and called it a day.

Christmas is non-existent when you're stuck in a hotel in outer slobovia. Which is the only positive thing about staying here.

Sarah at ratatat said...

Liz - how scary. Constipation can do funny things. As our ped. put it - they body is an interconnected system.

KLee - where's one of those Big Brother security cameras and a cop not afraid to use it when you need to nail a bad guy. Hit by a car. Thank goodness you're OK.

Whine: my husband is working so much I feel like I rarely see him.

Whine 2: I think my current job is hoping I will stay on as an underpaid "consultant." Must be firmer than I an anticipated.

Whine 3: the dog is back this weekend.

AW: nearly done shopping for Xmas.

Sarah at ratatat said...

And Sue, get well soon. When it comes on that fast, sometimes it disappears as quickly.

liz said...

KLee!!!! I am so sorry.

liz said...

Margalit, I've typed this and re-typed it, and re-re-typed it, and everytime I say it it comes out judge-y. And I'm not feeling judge-y AT ALL. I just don't know how else to put it, so I'm going to put it out there:

Put. Your. Own. Oxygen. Mask. On. First.

Unless your kids are helping you out with money, you need to let them swim in their own sea right now. Gifts for them, while lovely, seem to be out of place considering your circumstances. You need to make sure you have food, and shelter. Once those things are taken care of, you can go back to giving your kids gifts.

Seriously, please, please, please, get the help you need for yourself.

kathy a. said...

oh, klee! i'm so glad you weren't badly hurt, but that's scary.

jeni, glad your hubby's doing better! wish the job was not so extremely demanding, and that it paid enough to live on. yeesh.

sarah -- i guess they'll miss you!

margalit -- i second liz's suggestion that you apply your own oxygen mask first. if you can't afford to eat, you can't afford presents. in the longer view, it is unsustainable for you to carry the burdens of food, shelter, etc. for two adults who are not contributing to the household. it is not unreasonable to have adult children still at home pay rent, contribute food, do chores and running around that you cannot do. and learning to handle the practical necessities of life is a set of skills they need.

when our son graduated high school and did not want to go to college, we made him get a job and his own place. that decision was only partly financial; he was driving us nuts, wanting the independence of an adult but not any of the responsibilities. there were a few rocky patches, but it's really turned out pretty well, he has been managing all his own stuff for years now. and we get along.

liz said...

W: Mealy apple.

W: Mealy GRANNY SMITH apple.

W: Mealy apples give me the heeby-jeebies. I now have that oogy goose-walking-over-your-grave feeling.

esperanza said...

Liz, I totally concur. And Granny Smiths are usually not the culprits (I'm looking at you, Red Delicious). Ew. Makes you think you're eating a pear. Ew.

Sue said...

Oh KLee! I hope you're right and it's just a bad bruise. Document your days in terms of pain and discomfort. You never know if you might need that info. Also, it might not hurt to call your primary care physician just to let her/him know what's happened. You probably don't need a visit, but for your medical chart, it may help later on. (eg, your doc may notice an increase in headaches or something else and be able to relate it to yesterday...)

Jeni - I'm glad hubby's meds are kicking in. It's so awful that it has to get worse before it gets better....but when it gets better, it's SO great.

Margalit - I can only echo what the others have said. Please look after yourself.

AW: I'm at work today and feeling almost lifelike. It's not much, but at this point, I'll take any improvement I can get. (thanks Sarah for asking)

AW: One of our local Senior's Choirs is having a concert here today. Starts in an hour - should be a fun way to end the day.

Sue said...

AW: A sign that your son has too much time on his hands at work - his latest fb status says:

"Is Mortimer being *too* quiet?" a new book by Robert Munschausen's by Proxy.

made me lol.

(You may have to be Canadian to truly appreciate this one. Robert Munsch is a children's author and one of his most famous books, a favourite at our house, is called "Mortimer - BE QUIET!"

Days said...

Love that, Sue! And glad you're feeling better today, too.

((Margalit)) - This is definitely a circumstance in which to put yourself first. Your kids should be old enough to understand that gifts cannot be the priority this year.

((jeni))- That just sucks.

AW: I made it through half the AGM today before I couldn't handle anymore. Reports suggest that the second half was fraught with drama and pettiness and I got to go home and sleep through it.

kathy a. said...

days -- annual group meeting? good to skip the drama, in any event. who needs that?

margalit said...

Addendum: we got the apartment! Now we have to come up with the money by Friday. Donations welcomed. :-)

margalit said...

All: r.e. the gift cards. They came from a program called Jewish Family and Children's Services. Two $25 Target cards per kid. I'm not crazee. I can't afford a red cent for them, and both will be working as soon as we get settled. Even my lazy crazy son wants to work now. He is bored out of his mind and knows that I have NO MONEY to give him.

Sarah at ratatat said...

Sue - laugh of loud! Love Munsch and Mortimer is one of our faves. And I have a funny story for you and our other Canadian whiners. My first grade son is studying Canada. They've learned about moose and beavers and today they studied igloos. And his sister abruptly and rudely told him that no one in Canada lives in igloos. I concurred that it was rare, but I bet way up north, at some point, someone lived in an igloo.

Aren't we glad we don't live in igloos? That's my AW of the day.

Sue said...

Sarah - there is tea pouring out of my nose. Srsly. They actually teach that stuff? I've never even *seen* an igloo, except on that Rudolph cartoon thingy that's on every year.

~rolls eyes~

I have, on the other hand, seen my share of moose and squirrel, no, make that beavers. Heh.

esperanza said...

Igloos are sounding sort of appealing to me. At least they wouldn't have dead ladybugs laying around, right?

Days said...

Beavers and moose, yes. Igloos, no. In my experience, anyways.

A baked potato exploded in our oven today. The stench. Ugh.

AGM: Annual general meeting, which occurs more often than annually in our situation but no one is quite sure why.

Miranda said...

I am waiting to see if my distaste for the mall in December or my need for more pricey foundation is going to win out. So far it is has been distaste for the mall but not sure I will be able make it past Saturday with the amount of foundation I already have.

kathy a. said...

laryngitis. it's not affecting my typing, but maybe that face-to-face friday is better left to later.

liz said...

W: It's bloody COLD out there today.

AW: Am wearing my flannel-lined jeans and my bullet-proof sweater. Not really work-appropriate, but my office is bloody cold, too.

Sue said...

I hear ya Liz. My office is pretty chilly too. I'm wishing I had those gloves with no fingertips (so I could stay warm and still type).

Days - my chef hubby didn't believe me when I told him to always poke holes in the spud before it goes in the oven (the one cooking thing I know. Well, plus the A Gravy). Exploding spuds = ick. And a lot of clean up.

kathy a. - sorry about the laryngitis. Twelve years into this whole ministry thing, and I'm still waiting for the Sunday when I have no voice. I want to try doing a whole sermon as a game of charades. Two syllables...sounds like... can you imagine the FUN!!

Miranda - tough call. I thoroughly dislike malls, but the store where I buy my favourite bra is in the middle of the only mall in town (of course). I wish the store was near an entrance, so I could zip in, buy what I need, and leave quickly. Good luck!

Anti-whine: It's almost Friday! I have a massage tomorrow. I love my tradition of having a massage every week during the high holy seasons of the year. The problem is the disappointment when I have to go back to once a month in January. Anyway, that worry will wait for the new year - until then, tomorrow is aaaaaaaahhhhhh day.

liz said...

Shame-faced, snarky anti-whine: My boss's office is colder than the cubical area, and his sweater is not nearly as warm as mine. I giggle and yet am thoroughly ashamed of myself for it.