Monday, November 25, 2013

Thanksgiving/Hanukkah Whines (others welcome)

Here is where the Texas comes out in me: it has been gray, cold, and rainy for FOUR days in a row. Where is my sunshine? It has not been above 42 in FOUR days. I cannot survive under these conditions.

We canceled our plan to leave yesterday afternoon due to predicted icy weather near the grandparents' house and near Sweet's doctors' appointments this morning. Said icy weather did not materialize. Our weather people are notorious for getting all excited about potential wintry weather.

So now we are at home and have rescheduled the doctors' appointments for a less-convenient time.

Possible antiwhines in the whole mess:
* not driving in this nastiness
* less stressful Sunday (I was preaching yesterday, so we couldn't leave till after church)
* I got to attend an ordination service I wanted to go to
* we are keeping Sweet's nasty snotty cold germs to ourselves for one more day
* she is not at her best, so likely would not have been cooperative with the appointments anyway (and this is one time we really need her to be cooperative).

Leaving tomorrow morning for Thanksgiving festivities and germ swapping.

P.S. Due to aforementioned festivities and germ swapping, the awards show may be delayed/canceled. You can whine about that if you want.


Liz said...

((Esperanza)), though those are some pretty good anti-whines.

W: The weather that threatened your plans is now threatening mine. Ice storm scheduled to hit here tonight (hopefully), or sometime tomorrow (not the worst), or tomorrow night and stay through Wednesday (ugh!!!!)

If it's tomorrow, and gone by Wed AM, I get to go to the hootenanny up at my mom's house. Otherwise, it's just the three of us at home.

Either way, I cook the turkey.

kathy a. said...

Oy! Sorry about the weather nastiness. Given that Esperanza was excited not all that long ago because a "cold front" was going to bring temps down to the 90's, days and days of actual cold seem stunning.

Hope the travel works out for all who are traveling! The cold/ice thing that is the new weather craze -- such timing. Also hope the snot situation improves in certain households.

AW: We are going to the big thanksgiving bash at son's girlfriend's parents' -- which will be supercharged this year since it is also Hanukkah.

AW: My son stopped by yesterday with two buddies, looking to borrow tools. Their friend died last year, and the kids have been looking out for their friend's mom -- whose fence got smashed by a tree during the windstorm. So, they spent the day mending the fence. :)

AW: Think the holiday shopping is mostly tied up -- which is good, because W: December looks deliriously busy busy busy.

This will be a low-key holiday, except for the stockings, on which I'm known to go overboard. (But only so much can fit in a stocking! It's like art therapy, assembling them.)

esperanza said...

oh, kathy a, your son and his buddies fixing the fence. So sweet.

Liz, hope your turkey gets to go to a hootenanny. (Now I think it's hilarious that spell check knows that word).

Something is sucking all the energy out of this household.

kathy a. said...

OMG, look at this recipe for stuffing cooked in pie pumpkins! Brilliant! Although I'm almost 100% certain my stuffing pumpkins would turn out less attractive than the glamorous (probably ph00t0shopped) newspaper pumpkins.

I was thinking a recipe for 3 pumpkins seems excessive, but might just do that -- one for the kinda-in-laws, one for the cool nearby cousins who will have further cousins over, and one for home use (since we won't have leftovers).

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Esperanza, we have the same energy-sucking problem in our household today.

Kathy a: oh, that's wonderful that your son and his friends are working on her fence!

Liz: I hope the bad weather holds of where you are!

AW: you guys! My football team won the Canadian equivalent of the Superbowl yesterday! And we also hosted the game this year, and so we got a home game! (This is rare.) And it's only our fourth win ever (in over a century)! (We are out-ranked by teams that haven't existed for decades, and had the words "Rugby Club" in their names.)

And then the public behaved themselves afterwards!

And tonight we're going to the movie theatre to see the Doctor Who special!

W: our apartment is a pretty good illustration of A Home After A Major Sporting Win.

W2: E and I are still sick, so much so that I had to reschedule her physical therapy appointment to next week, because her PT operates out of a hospital, and it would be really irresponsible to take our coughs to the hospital.

And E is at the crotchety stage of sickness, and is fighting naps pretty hard today. Please send reinforcements.

esperanza said...

Oh, Lil E, take a nap! For the good of everybody!

Additional AW (I'm having to write down every good thing to keep myself from wallowing in the crummy today): since we are still home, I can go pick up my re-done glasses that just came in! (They got messed up during an adjustment, of all things. Something got impressed into the lenses and created a texture that was hard to see through. They are replacing them).

kathy a. said...

Sending happy vibes to counter the energy sucking force over portions of Pixieland! Also nap vibes to those in need.

QWP -- go team go!

Esperanza -- great they are replacing the glasses. AND you can get them now!

AW: Think I got all the holiday food, including the necessary sugar pumpkins -- no butternut squash pie substitution this year. And I witnessed an elderly lady measuring about 4 foot and a squidge, who sweet-talked one of those tall people into getting stuff from a high shelf!

Sue said...

The fence mending is just so wonderful kathy a.

Sorry about the weather whines folks. I hope they don't get in the way of celebrations this weekend. I think it's so great that Thanksgiving and Hanukkah are converging.

Sorry also about the energy being mysteriously sucked out of pixie houses. It's a conundrum.

QWP - WooHoo!! I was SO excited watching the game last night. And I NEVER watch the big game. This time around I knew a bunch of people at the game. I am glad that fans kept it happy but safe/non-violent after the game.

OMG --- I am so jealous!! Dr. Who 50th special in a theater. I watched it on Saturday on tv. It looks as if the 3D would be amazing! Enjoy!

AW: Best massage ever today. She found the perfect balance between "so deep it hurts" and "put you to sleep zen". It was just what I needed.

kathy a. said...

Jealous of the massage!

esperanza said...

I would like to thank our Canadian pixies for keeping their guffaws to themselves about my weather whines. (You Canadians so polite). I'm a wimp. Winter, I'm already done with you. Adios.

Miranda said...

AW: Daughter went with me to the community interfaith Thanksgiving service last night.

AW: Which was wonderful.

AW: And the Rabbi gave us all a nice meditation about Hanukkah.

AW: My dear, confident, often-caustic 15 year old daughter clung to me through most of the service like a barnacle. "I'm channeling my younger self right now."

AW: That was exactly how she was in public when she was younger. She loved doing new things but she had to do it from the safety of mom's presence.

They really don't every fully grow up, do they?

I have the Whines in spades but I want to not focus on them until Thursday when I have wine to better cope with them.

Liz said...

Was fully expecting to be awoken at 0600 by a robocall featuring the dulcet tones of our school system's public information officer telling us that schools would closed today. (I say dulcet, but his voice is hilarious, somewhere between Walter Cronkite and a Dalek).

But no call came. So Muffin Man is at school.

And now I'm a little concerned that we're not being told that there will be early dismissal. Despite the fact that the western part of our county is already reporting icy roads.

What happened to the timid school system of the last few years?

kathy a. said...

((( Miranda ))) They do grow up, but those sweet essentials are still in there, even during times they might not show much.

Liz, fingers crossed that the weather doesn't get worse, and you don't get that mid-day call!

Hannukah -- are you supposed to take gifts? What if you already got small stocking-sized items, and they aren't coming for Christmas after all?

Liz said...

Stocking-sized gifts are perfect Hanukkah presents. That and some chocolate gelt. (real gelt, too. Only given to those 18 and under. My family gives a dime for every year plus one for luck. Or, if you're hugely generous, one dollar for every year plus one for luck up until 18, when it's just 18 because 18 is a lucky number.

kathy a. said...

I have quality chocolate gelt! Never knew that about number 18.

Liz said...

Something about the word for 18 and the word for life being the same in Hebrew, I think.

My sister and cousins on my mom's side of the family were all born on the 18th of our birth months, a fact that is kvelled over quite often by the elderly in our family.

Sue said...

Miranda, the service sounds lovely. I'm so glad you and daughter could share it. I'm all about the Wine Whines - mine will have to wait until Sunday evening, but I'll be thinking of you on Thursday.

Liz, sorry about the lack of a Dalek call today. Ah, winter...

I did not know that about the number 18 - awesome!

AW: Hubby's all set for his surgery next Thursday (the 5th). His pre-op appointment went well and we're back home watching the fireplace on tv. :)

kathy a. said...

Yay, Sue's hubby!

W/AW: I might have to do this big thing on 1/9, and that requires people to help me prepare the week before. I'ma counting it as a miracle that there are quality volunteers for 12/30.

Off to figure out what prep can decently be done 2 days ahead of the feast. ;)

kathy a. said...

It turns out that tomorrow will probably be cooking lots of pumpkins. And dolma [grape leaves]. And finding the gelt, wrapping presents for the fab aunt and the little [under 18] cousins. Which, you've got to admit, will all be fun!

Sue said...

It does sound like a fun day kathy!

Safe travels for all of our Pixies heading over the river and through the woods for Thanksgiving and Hanukkah celebrations!

Queen of West Procrastination said...

I hope everyone's Thanksgiving and Hanukkah celebrations and preparations are going well!

Selfish whine: the internet gets very quiet and boring during American Thanksgiving.

W: this cold lingers, in both E and myself. E is mostly better, but she still tires easily, is a bit grouchier than normal, and coughs when she's lying down. I'm coughing all the time and sound like Carol Channing.

Terrified: today, I'm going to sit down, and all of my progress to my supervisor, and ask for his honest opinion regarding whether it's possible for me to finish this year, considering slow progress. This year is it, and if I don't have time to finish, then I'm not finishing.

It's scary. Mr. Q and I sat down last night and talked it over. Last week I'd told him that I really was only plugging through because he seemed to want me to finish (and because I didn't want to have wasted our time and money). He told me that he supported me in whatever I decided, and that it wouldn't be a waste if I did decide to walk away from the dissertation. (I do have my coursework, my ABD, and my German training, not to mention my teaching experience.) If I decide to charge through and finish, we're going to need a lot more childcare, and I'm not sure I'm willing to spend that much time away from E at this point in her life.

So: decision time. I've given myself a week to figure this out.

kathy a. said...

Fingers crossed for decent traveling weather!

QWP, best with the big decision. It's an intensely personal one. Hope your supervisor has thoughts that are useful to you.

kathy a. said...

sm. W: husband unexpectedly underfoot. Found out his plans when he didn't go to work. He tends to supervise.

T-day report: One last trip to the store. The 2d pie pumpkin is in the oven. On the agenda are pies + bonus tarts [lotta pumpkin], the stuffing, cranberry sauce, and dolmas.

Liz, are you going over the river and through the woods?

Anonymous said...

Happy Thanksgiving to all!!!

QWP--best of luck with the decision. Trust yourself. It'll be ok whatever you decide. hugs to you.

and Happy Hanukkah too!!!

--Neighbor Lady

Anonymous said...

W: I have taken over the dining room table with all my science teaching stuff. As in, completely covered. And yet, I know where things are. But, I am totally procastinating both on doing dishes and on clearing off the table for tomorrow's feast. Which I must do. Must clear the table so we have somewhere to eat....but all I want to do is hang out and read a good book and pretend not to think about all the first trimester grades I need to work on for next week.

AW: 1/3 of the school year is done and I am still kinda afloat.

AW: We are not travelling for Thanksgiving (which I always give thanks for!) and will be eating pie for breakfast, and playing parcheesi, probably in our pajamas sometime this long weekend (it's a tradition for us).

--Neighbor Lady

kathy a. said...

Sending the dish and cleanup fairy, NL! Hooray on 1/3 through the year!

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Hooray for staying afloat a third of the way through, NL! You can do it! I know the dining room table covered in work/must get working/just want to read and relax feeling well.

W: urg, I still haven't written that email. Need to do it while the baby's still napping.

W: I may have gone overboard. E's birthday is next week, and we're having a party on the following Saturday, and then I said I'd bring birthday cake to church the next, because we're having our Christmas dinner, but it's also my birthday that day. So. I need to make all the birthday cake in the world that weekend, and it's going to make my own birthday stressful. Why did I have a baby three days before my own birthday?

Queen of West Procrastination said...

"Next day," I mean.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

And now I did it: I emailed Dr. Supervisor. Now, I have to wait and hear what he has to say, and then decide whether or not I can (or am willing to) make something work. Aaaaa!

kathy a. said...

Good for getting that out, QWP.

Do you have relatives who like to bake? Or anyone who'd like to help, so you have company and aren't juggling batter + almost-not-a-baby?

Miranda said...

I'm hiding in my room tonight trying to offgas the stress of the last seven days. This is where I wished my women friends weren't as busy and harried as me because I think that I could cope just fine if one were here for conversation and to watch me cook.

kathy a. said...

AW: Beloved did not ask me if I know what I'm doing during any of the cooking process so far (his favorite joke), AND he has just done all the dishes. Keeper.

W: When he visited his sister the other day, she was very insistent about wanting to move to an apartment near us, so she can "cook a turkey for Christmas." Umm, yeah. (In over 30 years, I only saw her cooking one time; so that's kind of startling, apart from the fact she needs to be where she is.)

AW: SIL will get a stocking with sparkles and stuff in it; a cute sweater; and some cute striped [no-skid] socks. Done.

Big AW: a cousin-in-law is going to help us offload the Giant Mountain of Useless Clothing and other objects that need new homes!

kathy a. said...

((( Miranda ))) xoxo

Sue said...

QWP - good for you for sending off the email to your supervisor. It's a big decision - trust yourself.
Sorry you're still feeling crummy.
I'm with kathy, it's time to enlist the help of baking relatives!


Yay for the awesome food (especially all things pumpkin) everyone!

Kathy a that's awesome about help with the giant mountain of clothes.

AW: lots of people showed up to decorate the sanctuary for Christmas tonight. Looks good.

Liz said...


We did not travel. We are going to my SILs tomorrow and I'm bringing t'givin to them

Queen of West Procrastination said...

AW: I already heard back from Dr. Supervisor! And things aren't as bad as I'd thought. I have time to finish, and so I'd might as well finish. As I looked over my work, to send off my progress, I felt fond of my work. I'm going to give this a shot.

Liz: I'm sorry time didn't get to go to your big family dinner, but I'm glad you're safe, and that's really nice that you're taking Thanksgiving to your in-laws.

*hands Miranda a hot beverage* (((hug)))

kathy a. said...

Go, QWP!

Liz Miller said...

Yay QWP!!! You can do it!!

esperanza said...

Briefly checking in to whine that I have Sweet's cold in full force. Yuck.

Sue said...

Yay QWP!!!!

*passing tissues and hot beverage to esperanza* Sorry you feel so awful for the holiday.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Hot beverages all around today, I think. Catching- colds - from - children solidarity, esperanza.

Anonymous said...

Yay QWP!!! You can do it!!!!

Hugs and kleenex to esperanza (and QWP).

--Neighbor Lady

kathy a. said...

Happy Thanksgiving! Hope everybody's feeling better today!

I am ever grateful for y'all.

kathy a. said...

According to the in-house taste-tester, the stuffing needed more broth and to be more thoroughly stuffed down, and the pies have less than optimal spiceage. (This is not keeping him from snarfing either product.) No complaints about the dolma. ;)

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Kathy a, I'd that the stuffing and pies must still be pretty good, since the taste-tester won't leave then alone!

Even though it isn't even a family holiday here, I still manage to have a family holiday whine: my Mom's family keeps having their Christmas dinner (five and a half hours north, in Hobbiton) on Christmas Day. They know we can't make it on that day. There was already talk of having it on Boxing Day (the day after Christmas), and we made arrangements to go then, and now here's an email from my aunt saying "I'm only available Christmas Day and Boxing Day, and so let's do Christmas Day." I get that there are only the great- grandchildren in the family, and a bunch of my cousins are kids and teens, and so this is more of an immediate family event for them, but my kid has another set of grandparents, and I already promised them Christmas morning. (The other two great- grandchildren at my aunt's grandchildren, and they live in the same yard as their other grandparents, up in Hobbiton, and so this isn't an issue for them.)

So, I'm frustrated. But I decided to be diplomatic. I hit "reply all" to the mass email and just stated that Christmas Day doesn't work for us; we've made arrangements to come up the next day, but of course it's all dependent on what works for everyone.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Three great-grandchildren, I mean.

kathy a. said...

That should work, QWP! It's not an actual conflict for La Auntie.

I've run into a conflict today, because the kinda-in-laws (with whom we are sharing dinner) just moved the time up to 3 p.m. for guest arrival, and my nearby cousin just reported that my fabulous aunt will not arrive until 3 p.m. "because she's making a pie." But the cousin thing is an all-day rolling extravaganza, and I'm pretty sure my aunt is staying over at nearby cousin's house; so I'll visit the numerous cousins early afternoon, and hopefully do breakfast with the fabulous aunt. Want to see them all!

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Oh, I hope it all works out for you, Kathy a!

Queen of West Procrastination said...

AW: church Christmas dinner is being moved from the 8th to the 15th! I only will have to bake one birthday cake per weekend, AND I'll get an actual day off on my birthday!

kathy a. said...


Oh, thanksgiving was fun! Great to see the cousins; lovely dinner at the kinda-in-laws (who also refer to us as in-laws). The guests include two of the dad's best friends -- from elementary school and college -- plus their families, so there are some quality "do you remember that time when...?" stories. I'll swing by the cousin's house this morning and bring some breakfast items.

Sue said...

I love the word "snarfing."

QWP and kathy a - sorry you are both having to navigate the treacherous straits of "Where Do We Spend the Holiday?" Rocky sailing at times, but it sounds like you've both got it figured out. Because you're awesome.

AW: Snow tires are a thing of beauty.

Miranda said...

If Thanksgiving was a sign of what Christmas is going to be like, I do not wish to participate.

AW: Tween Son is an excellent sous chef. He made my day, and the food, better. He zested lemons, rubbed seasoned butter on the chickens, helped make the gravy, did a lot of the chopping and peeling, and always asked if I could use some more help. He even made his special carrot dessert for us.

W: The game my mom brought over to play. It was not good at all.

AW: I selected Pleasantville to watch as a family. Tween Son was good at identifying instances of sexism and hypocrisy and how they related to the overall story/theme. He even grasped some of the symbolism. He talks like a miniature adult sometimes. LOVE!

W: I have few leftovers. Lots of gravy but no potatoes. Wah!!!!

AW: No one cried yesterday. Not even me and that is saying something.

kathy a. said...

((( Miranda ))) Well, let's just send over some mashed potatoes, OK? I'm sorry the day was difficult. Yay for tween son! xoxo

Saw the fabulous aunt this morning! And more cousin time, yay. But, [a] my aunt started lecturing me about this thing (undeterred by the fact that I actually have expertise in the thing she was trying to describe), and [b] Every.Last.Relative. who is an adult proceeded to lecture me on what my daughter must do to find a job, and what I must do to to "make her" get a job.

As to part [b], this has happened to our daughter every time she has contact with relatives for the past 2 years, while she has been job-hunting. I have also gotten lectures on a regular basis, with the expectation that I get tough or something. Seriously, reinforcing that she is a failure for not having a job yet is not something she needs help with. Why can't they do something helpful, like reinforce that she is a talented and wonderful person, and that the job market has been horrible lately?

kathy a. said...

I exaggerated about every last relative. It was just several of them, singin' in harmony. Geesh.

Grateful for those who refrained, and who also will help us out with some SIL-related loose ends.

Miranda said...

Kathy, ugh. No one likes that particular little choir. I'm having flashbacks to when my children were small and the first small people of their generation. I'm glad things are better for my brothers children but we had to pave the way for a lot of that ourselves.

kathy a. said...

The Meddler's Chorus -- Ralph should get to work on them.

I wouldn't mind so much if this was more of a conversation, and less of a 5 minute lecture placing blame. We haven't spent the last 2 years doing nothing, ya know?

Miranda, hear ya about being the icebreaker, and glad things are better for your brother's kids. xoxo

Liz Miller said...

Tell them to shove their advice where the sun don't shine. Unless they, themselves, have a job to offer your brilliant and talented daughter, they can go fireplace themselves

Liz Miller said...

And there I go, giving advice. Sorry

kathy a. said...

LOL! Liz, have I mentioned how much I heart you? I am pursuing a more moderate course, but it means a lot to have ninja pixies at my back.

Also, working the backroads of the family network about what will actually freaking help.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

I, for one, volunteer to lurk around the homes of Kathy a's relatives and kick them in the pants when they're not looking.

W: this fireplacing cough keeps lingering, and it means that I'll have to abstain from holding a newborn baby tomorrow.

kathy a. said...

~snort~ kick them in the pants!

Hope the cough resolves soon, QWP.

Sue said...

Is "kick them in the pants" a Canadianism? That's exactly what I was going to say. :)

Sorry about the lingering cough QWP. Missing out on baby holding is tough.

AW: Just finished a rehearsal with the liturgical dancers for tomorrow's service. I adore this group and they LOVE coming to our little church where no one clucks their tongues and rolls their eyes about women(and men) dancing in church. Most of the dancers are RC, so they especially love hearing a woman preach.

To answer your next (possible) question: No, I'm not dancing. It's better for everyone if I narrate. :)

kathy a. said...

Sounds lovely, Sue. And yay about no clucking.

What is RC?

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Is RC another Canadianism? Roman Catholic, I do believe.

Sue said...

Yes, RC. I thought it was universal for Roman Catholic.

Perhaps the Canadian short form for Really Cold.

kathy a. said...

Oh, duh. sorry. But RC could mean something else! "Royal Canadian" did not seem to fit....

esperanza said...

...about that Awards, yeah, it's not going to happen, just as I suspected.

All four of us are suffering from the snotty and coughy cold, joining QWP in her misery.

So. Awards Ceremony canceled this week. I'll leave these comments open till Monday morning.

kathy a. said...

Passing the tissues and restorative soup, Esperanza! xoxo

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Oh no! All four of you are sick? Whole family sickness is the very worst. (The second worst: sick parents, and a healthy, active, high maintenance child.) I'm passing the hot water with honey and lemon, which had been my standard drink this week.

esperanza said...

Yes, all four of least we can stop with the incessant hand washing now that we all have the same germs. Just don't come visit us.

Turkey noodle soup for supper should help, right?

Now Sweet is complaining that her tummy "won't be still," which sounds ominous. On the other hand, upset tummy usually portends ear infection for her. But on the third hand, no fever. Hoping for a quiet night, as we are both working in the morning, and our usual Sunday morning rescuer is out of town.

So, more whining but still no awards.

Sue said...

(((esperanza and family))))

kathy a. said...

Hoping everything's quiet tonight, Esperanza! Don't need no stinkin' awards, anyway.


Miranda said...

I had "real" Thanksgiving with my friends whom have been dubbed WOACA (Women Of A Certain Age) by one of the husbands. We watched a movie and then had dinner at a casual restaurant. Everyone had a best friend present. Too much fun!

AW: One of the Little Girls idolizes Teen Daughter. Teen Daughter's affection for Little Girl matches Little Girl's for her. I hope Teen Daughter stays in contact with Little Girl as LG gets older.

Miranda said...

Feel better soon Esperanza and Family! Passing some of QWP's chickpea soup. xoxoxoxo

kathy a. said...

Oh, so good, Miranda! Very sweet about LG and Teen Daughter, too.

esperanza said...

After a last waking around 9:00, Sweet slept the rest of the night. No tummy complaints this morning, no fever. She's going to Sunday School. I will still not be shaking hands this morning, as I'm afraid the cold is morphing into bronchitis, which these little old people most certainly do not need. Nor do I.

Yay, Miranda, glad your holiday improved.

Queen of West Procrastination said...

Hooray for teen daughter and LG! That is so sweet, and it sounds like your holiday got a lot better.

W: E has seemed to be pretty much over her cold for days, and now suddenly she had a fever. I worry that her cold has turned into an infection. If the fever persists through the night, I'll call our family doctor in the morning.

esperanza said...

QWP, I'd suspect ear infection, especially if she is grumpy.

kathy a. said...

Esperanza, yay for Sweet sleep!

QWP -- or, could be teething...

W: My beloved has been a grumpety grump. I know it is stress related, but seriously, snapping at me will not improve things.

AW: Cousin-in-law has already seen the Clothing Mountain and several boxes of expensive SIL crap at our house, and they + daughter are off to the storage unit to scope more -- for her to sell! One person's stress-inducing mountain of crap is another person's exciting re-sale opportunity. Win-win!