Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Eve.

What am I doing?  Working.  That's what I do.  The kids are still out of school for the holidays, but I've been back at work since the day after Christmas.  I think I'm almost done for the day.  I just whipped up some yummy gluten free chili and out of necessity tonight, I'm staying in and nesting or something.  Yesterday, my vehicle had a weird little episode that's going to cost us a couple of hundred dollars at least and is requiring me to stay home tonight.  Technically, I guess maybe I could take my husband's car, but I'm okay with staying here.  We were gone almost all day yesterday to a family party and as usual, I came home exhausted.  Why do those kind of things make a person so tired?  It's worse than work, worse than volunteering at the hospital, worse than housecleaning, the kind of tired I get from a family party.  I need to start working out and maybe imbibe some red bull or something.  Maybe Xanax.  :-)  (kidding!).   

As to my friends I posted about yesterday, the one friend's mom did die, as expected.  She was 88 and she was ready and it was peaceful.  She lived on her own, at home, until a week ago and was happy and productive.  You can't beat that really, as a way to go.  I hope her family has peace with her passing.   One of her daughters was a late in life baby and is in her 40s, so it might be hardest for her.  I don't know. 

My other friend's husband is now at a bigger more sophisticated ICU in the city, but he's doing a little bit better, moving his hands and wiggling his toes a little bit on request.  He's still on a ventilator and they still have a very hard row to hoe as they say here in Kentucky, but it sounds hopeful.  I hope so for his wife's sake and for their kid's sake. 

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Difficult things.

I've now got 2 dear friends going through some very difficult times.   The friend's husband who is in the ICU is still there.  There's no change in his condition and they were unsuccessful at weaning him off of the ventilator yesterday.  She may have to make an unbearably difficult decision in the next few days, choosing to let him go and be widowed for the second time. 

Then another dear friend called me this morning and said that she thinks today might be her mom's last day here on earth.  She said that they were sitting and talking about heaven and her mom is ready to go, but it's still so hard. 

We, on the other hand, have another Christmas celebration today and instead of stressing out about what kind of gluten free, dairy free food I can take, am going to go buy a rotisserie chicken, try to enjoy myself and not forget to count my blessings today. 

Saturday, December 29, 2012

A little dusting.

We only got a little dusting of snow today.  Just enough to make everything look pretty but not enough to make the driving treacherous.  Yesterday was an okay kind of day.  I finished work and then went up to see my friend whose husband is in the ICU with diabetic ketoacidosis and on a ventilator.   It's a pretty scary situation. They are going to try and wean him off of it today.  I'm worried about how they will make it.  They've had a really difficult couple of months.  Anyway, after that, I came home and played one of the new games Pictionary Man with some of my blessings.   After I got home, this pretty little snowfall started and since then, I've been trying to keep warm and trying to think of more ways to help my friend.  It's kind of complicated when you don't want to embarrass someone by offering help, but you don't want to not offer help if you are able to.

For today, I'm going to clean and then do some cooking.  My oldest son has been home for one of his 3 weeks already and so my time to spoil him with my good cooking is 1/3 over.  My daughter and I have made several of his favorites and we want to make him several more.  While he's been at school, he's been very cautious about his 2 dietary restrictions, gluten and dairy and has basically eaten only steamed veggies, fish and fruit:  healthy, but not tasty like Mom's home cooking.  :-)  

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The book or the other book or the other book.

My 2 youngest children were talking about my youngest son's book character.  I inquired about what book and they informed me that was a valid question, since he is writing a book, reading a book and listening to 2 books on his new MP3 player.  :-P

I think maybe the boy needs to read more, what do you think?

Sleep and other things.

I'm kind of starting to think that I have the African sleeping sickness, though having never been outside the continental US, I have no idea how I might have picked that up.  I slept 12 hours night before last, then last night, at about 6:00 p.m., I took a 3 hour nap, then went back to bed at 1:00 a.m. and slept until 10.  It's a good thing I didn't have to work today.  We all seem to be getting our days and nights reversed this week.   Tomorrow I have to be working by 9:00 a.m. so hopefully, I will get up.  I am taking a medicine that makes me a little drowsy, but I have been on it for a month and only this week I've really had this issue.  Could it just be holiday exhaustion?  The crazy holiday food probably makes our bodies go all wacky.  I do admit to eating a ton of junk food the last couple of days.  Also, I dreamed that all my teeth fell out.  That's one of the top 5 recurring dreams apparently, but what it means, no-one seems to know.  I find it very unpleasant.  I've had that dream 3 or 4 times in my life.  Maybe I was worried about not brushing the night before last?  Maybe because my nephew lost his 2 front teeth at Christmas?  Who knows?  Not me.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Happy Day-After-Christmas.

We had a nice Christmas.  As usual, it was kind of tiring.  We went to church at 11 p.m. on Christmas Eve and then we were up early Christmas day to open presents, then off to my mother-in-law's for breakfast and then back home for a little while and then to my mom's house for dinner.  We got home around 8:30 p.m. last night (I think) and soon afterwards, I went and laid down in my bed, fully dressed, with my contact lenses still in,  (I have no idea if I brushed my teeth or not but knowing me, I probably did.  I brush them all the time!), and slept until 9:00 this morning.   I think most of the gifts were a hit.  My oldest son got a lot of gift cards and things like that because all the things he wanted are expensive and at this point, we don't know whether he's going to find a car to buy to drive back to school or if he's going to have to fly.  If he flies, he won't be able to carry a whole lot with him.   My youngest son got a really cool MP3 player that he can play audio books on.  His addiction to audio books that I have blogged about in the past, has not gone away.  He still listens to them a lot.  He, unlike me, can do other things while listening and keep up with the book and his vocabulary is really large, so I guess it's okay.  My daughter got a bunch of yarn and also a tablet for her computer (not a standalone tablet, but a drawing tablet to use with a computer) and some sketch books and pencils, etc. for her art.  She stayed up after I went to bed at 1:00 a.m. on Christmas eve and crocheted me a scarf, so she got especially tired and is still sleeping, going on about 15 hours now for her.  Whew.  Luckily we have some down-time for a few days now.  Of course, I'm working but that's easier than holidaying.  A lot easier.  :-P

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

I hope your day was wonderful. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve!

"Can't believe it's Christmas, la la la la la la la la la, can't believe it's Christmas, oh it's finally here"  This song from a Veggie Tales long ago is running through my mind today.  It's a little annoying, but I'm just going to be thankful it's not the chipmunk song :-).  I'm working of course.  I always work since I don't get paid time off.  The kids are still sleeping and the dogs and I have had an exciting time because the UPS man came and delivered the last package and it was a total bark-fest, probably the most exciting thing that has happened to the dogs all week.  Unusually, we don't have plans for tonight so I'm not sure what we will do.  That feels kind of funny.  I've always had plans to go somewhere on Christmas Eve - every Christmas Eve of my whole life. 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Now it really seems like Christmas.

These are the ornaments that we made at 4H last month.  Blogger is finally letting me post photos again.  :-)
At my church, we have this tradition that we put on a play and then they give out treats.  Everyone gets an apple, an orange and a candy cane in a brown paper bag.  This tradition has been going on for 60+ years and it never feels like Christmas, really, until we do it.  It's so silly, but it's fun.  We did it tonight and so I officially changed my Facebook picture from the Grinch to a real picture of me, cause now it feels like Christmas. 

Christmas Eve, Eve.

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve so today is Christmas Eve, Eve.  With the slight change in our normal Christmas plans I don't know if the youngest is going to be as excited today as usual.  We'll see I guess.  We have some things to do and my doubts about all the things I have purchased are sinking in.  Is that the right size?  Will they like it?  Should I have bought more?  Less?  It goes on and on.  We had photos taken yesterday of the kids and they turned out wonderful, what I've seen of them so far.  Now I will need to order Christmas cards.  It's not too late for that, is it?  

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Okay, Come on Christmas.

I'm ready now.  My son is home.  My shopping is done.  I think I will enjoy the 3 days cushion of time before the big day though.  We've got quite a bit to do, but it doesn't seem like too much.  We're having pictures made today.  I've got to work today and Monday.  We've got special Christmas services at church tomorrow.   We moved the usual Christmas Eve celebration at my moms to Christmas day in the afternoon, to accommodate my brother's new girlfriend, a wonderful person that I'm so glad he found, so maybe my family can start a new Christmas Eve tradition?  Or maybe we will go to my mom's anyway, just to be with her.  We haven't decided what to do yet.  It's new, it's different, but holiday celebrations have to evolve through the years with changes in families. 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Dare I say it?

I think my Christmas shopping may be done.  Possibly.  I still need to recheck the lists (you know, checking it twice)  and make sure but I think I might be done.  Also, my oldest son is coming home from Mississippi tomorrow for Christmas.  Yay.   And school is out.  And while I was gone to volunteer at the NICU, my daughter cleaned up the living room, swept and vacuumed.  That was wonderful to come home to.  So it may be time to change my picture to this one. 

Do I hear 10? How about 15?

Have you ever put something in your mouth and started chewing it, only to find that it seems to be getting bigger, not smaller?  That's kind of how it's going with my Christmas list, although I made a proper dent in it last night.  I really got my mom's shopping done, my mother-in-law's shopping done and my shopping done.  Now, I only need to pick up a couple of things on Santa's behalf at Hobby Lobby.  ( Is that how you spell behalf, because that really doesn't look right, but the spellcheck didn't underline it in red, like it did the word "spellcheck".  which apparently is not a word.)  Anyway, I guess I'm getting there.  I have officially changed my Facebook profile picture to this. 
And I'm going to keep it that way until some of my Grinch-i-ness passes.  I hope soon to get my good humor back.  Once the shopping is done and my son gets home from Mississippi, maybe I can settle in and actually enjoy the season. 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Really, it's more like 10.

I've been making my to do list and adding to it and currently have 10 things I need to do or get.   It is starting to stress me out.  I hope I get most of it done this evening.  My daughter is going to a party from 6-9 and I hope to goodness I get the majority of the things I need to do done between those hours this evening.   There are also some things I need to do tomorrow.  I just hope I can get it all done! 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A couple of things. Okay 7.

I got a couple of things crossed off the list.  The 4H/kids party was today.  My mom's shopping is done.  Between my mother-in-law and me, we've got 6 things to pick up.  I can do those tomorrow and Thursday.  It's not cutting it close or anything is it?  I've got a total of 7 things to either do or pick up, not including regular housekeeping, work and school chores.  It sounds pretty much doable.  Let's hope that it is.  :-P

This afternoon, my daughter made a scarf as an experiment with 2 different kinds of yarn, a Christmas mixed colors regular yarn and a silver eyelash.  My husband said it looked like peppermint, a Christmas tree and tinsel all together.  Here I am modeling it.  Please ignore the wild look in my eyes.  That might be my inner Grinch peeking out. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Okay, break's over.

Today, we begin again, school and work.  We've got 4H and the kid's Christmas party tomorrow.  Wednesday, choir, Thursday volunteering, Friday picking up oldest from airport, Saturday working and hopefully getting pictures of the kids made, Sunday performing the cantata at the nursing home then Monday is Christmas Eve.  Sometime in the midst of all that I've got to finish my shopping, take mom shopping,  finish my mother-in-law's shopping, get the house cleaned, organize, wrap and I don't know what all else.  Also, I have to work every day but Thursday and Sunday. 

We needed that break.  It had been a tiring and emotionally draining weekend.  The news from Connecticut upset me on Friday, but I had a concert to go to and other people depending on my to drive them, so I went.  It seemed kind of weird that they didn't cancel it, but it ended up being a good experience and better than staying home.  Then Saturday we were busy with the craft fair, etc from about 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. before I was done with work and things had settled down.  It's no wonder we crashed on Sunday is it?  

Anyway,  today we're right back at it.  Life goes on.   It's been a rough one today with the hospital I work for being way behind and the work flow personnel begging us to type more and more and more and the phone constantly interrupting, a thunderstorm temporarily turning the lights off and making me stop for a while, but I'm done now and I guess I'll take my mom shopping although I really just want to take another nap.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

A tiny break?

We've been running like chickens with our heads off for the past few days.    Thursday I was volunteering, then tried to do some Christmas shopping while I was in the big town but Hobby Lobby was closed.  Then, Friday, let's see, work then out to a Christmas concert and we didn't get home until 11 ish.  Then, yesterday, the craft sale and some Christmas shopping (we were at a mall, after all and also right across the street from Hobby Lobby).  We finally got home at about 7:00 p.m. and I realized that I had some supplies that I needed to get in town and so I headed to our local small town to get those necessities, finally getting home around 8 ish and then I still had to work.

Then this morning, we had church and we sang the cantata.  I'm exhausted now.  I tell you.  I am.  I probably should get some Christmas shopping done and I might.  Later.  Right now, I'm going to eat lunch and then take a nap, possibly or watch a movie.  Chill out for a while.  Then, later, if I feel like it, I'll shop.

 Update:  5:00 p.m.  No movie.  Just nap.  My daughter watched old reruns of the Dick Van Dyke Show from the 1960s and I watched a couple with her, then went to sleep and slept for several hours.  I do feel better.  I'm not sure I feel like shopping though.  :-/

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Craft Sale 2.

My daughter had another craft sale today.  This is the children's one that we always go to.  She did really well.  It was in the afternoon instead of the morning and today is one of the biggest shopping days of the year, so she had quite a few customers.  She made another 60 dollars so she's very happy with her crafting experiences this year.  Now we have to stock up on yarn so she can get started again!  After the sale, we did a little bit of Christmas shopping and now we are worn out.    

Friday, December 14, 2012

Sleep/chore correlation schedule, day 1.

It's going very well.  The kids and I revised the schedule last night, because they question everything.  (Life with teens, right?)  Anyway, we came up with a schedule that says that if they get up by 9, no chores at all and then the later they get up, the more chores they have.  I think it's fair.  They both got up a little after 10, which is reasonable, I think, for teenagers.  They do have a biological need to go to sleep later and get up later.   So today, they have a smaller chore time than they are used to and only have to do general cleaning, picking up and putting away for 5 minutes.  They also have assigned chores like loading and unloading the dishwasher that need to be done the same as always and are not affected, but giving them a little break like this makes them happy and I'm still getting some picking up and straightening done, so I'm okay with it.  I really don't forsee them very often getting up early enough to have no chores, though it could happen I guess.  :-) 

Now we need to add back in the "mom has to exercise or the kids don't have to do school" clause in our school schedule because I have really been slacking in my exercise and this is a way to help me do it.  Although, on second thought, I think that can wait until January, don't you?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Making a little progress.

I guess I'm making a little progress in my shopping.  I am loading up my Amazon cart with just a few more things.  I have found a couple of books for my mom and a few other items for a few other people.  I may stop by Hobby Lobby this evening while I am near there and get something for my niece.  Then tomorrow I've got to work and then go to a concert and then Saturday I've got to work and I've been invited to a play.  Then Sunday, the Christmas cantata in which I am the soloist, and then possibly another play?  I'm not sure about that one.  I may just fall over on Sunday afternoon and take a much-needed break.  Whew.  I am exhausted this morning and I have only Christmas shopped and cleaned half a bathroom.  I just checked and I'm running a low grade fever.  Is there some kind of treatment for people who just run fevers all the time for unknown reasons?  Grrr. 

On the homeschooling front, we are still schooling.  My oldest son doesn't get to come home until the 21st. That's the day he has his last class.  He'll go immediately from class to the airport and fly home.  It's kind of crazy, but I think we'll just keep homeschooling right up until that day too.  We'll see.

On the teens wanting to stay up all night front, I think I may have a plan.  I'm thinking of assigning chores for each day based on what time they get up.  For example, if they get up at 9, they have 9 minutes of cleaning.  (They can do a lot in 9 minutes each, every day),  so then 10 is 10 minutes, 11 is 11 minutes and 12 is half an hour, 1 is 1 hour and 2 is 2 hours.  Hey, I just made that up as I was typing this and it's pretty good, isn't it?  And, yes, they would sleep until 2 in the afternoon if I would let them.  When I am working, especially if I have a deadline of having to leave and go somewhere at 3 in the afternoon, I'm rushing and I don't have time to keep after them.   I have forgotten them on those days a couple of times and they have slept that late.   I'm also going to give them alarm clocks.  I am tired of the struggle.  

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

It's coming so fast.

Borax crystal snowflake from one of our first years of homeschooling.
This Christmas season is just zip, zip, zipping by.   As always, I am worried I won't get my shopping done.  :-(    I need to remind myself that if I do have to just go pick up a bunch of gift cards, it won't be the end of the world, but gift cards kind of feel like I'm cheating.  Does anyone else feel that way?  I think deep down, I feel like, not only should I keep working this holiday season with no time off (except Christmas day) but I should keep volunteering, go to all the special events and parties, keep my house clean and buy everyone absolutely the perfect gifts.   It's not happening of course.  The first thing, always the first thing I give up, is any thought of having a clean house.  I may have a party when my oldest is going back to school and if I do, then I'll clean the house.  :-P  Really though, I do like having it clean-ish on Christmas morning before the gifts are opened.  This is about the time when I kind of start wishing it was all over.  I'm trying to get myself into good spirits by playing the Go Fish Christmas Album.  I do love their harmonies so much. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Two weeks!

It's only 2 weeks till Christmas ya'll.  Can you believe it?  We still have a lot of shopping to do and it seems, just a lot of everything to do.  I guess we'll get most of it done, though possibly not done perfectly.  I tend to want to buy everyone the perfect gift, but that's just not possible.  I'm stumped, for example, on what to get my oldest son whose wishes all seem to be out of our price range and my mom, who doesn't really need anything or want anything.  Sigh.

We've also got a couple of birthday parties this month, including 1 tonight, choir practices, volunteering, work, school, etc.  I know some families take the whole month of December off for the festivities, and I'd like to be able to do that too, but we started kind of late this summer, with our trip to Mississippi and all, so we're going to try to get in as many days as we can.  

Saturday, December 08, 2012


My daughter and I went Christmas shopping tonight for a few things.  It took longer than it should because we are so bad at making decisions.  We finally picked out a couple of things.  Whew.   Later, I will have to go back to a craft store and buy my daughter a bunch of yarn because that's what she wants.  I asked her tonight if she wanted to go ahead and pick some up but she wants to be surprised.  I know I'll be in the yarn aisle for a while that day.  I don't look forward to it, but I guess I'll live.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Thursday. 18 days until Christmas.

Or so my youngest says and if anyone knows, it's him.  We've got so much going on, it seems like, but my husband and I did sit down yesterday and get most of the shopping done.  We ordered everything online.  It's really so much easier than going into the stores, I don't know why I whine so much.  With my husband doing the techy gifts, we got most of it taken care of.  I have 3 or 4 things left to buy and then I will be able to enjoy the holiday season.  Maybe.  I kind of over think it and stress out over it and think I don't have enough stuff and then realize that I probably have too much stuff.  You know, the usual.   Meanwhile, we're getting work and school done as usual.  My youngest son has started his novel and that's been his favorite thing to do this week.  It's really good so far.  I hope he keeps up with it.  He has a plan to write a book, get money and then start a business or a think tank or something, where he can play and somehow get paid for it.  :-)

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Wednesday, December 5.

Yes, I am going through my December Denial phase again.  I always do this.  Can't believe it's December.  Whine about my shopping.  Don't start shopping.  Whine some more.  Then finally do it and swear not to put it off next year.  As the kids have gotten older, the shopping has got more complicated and more techy.  Some of the things they want, I don't even know what they are.  I mean, I kind of know, but I have no way of knowing which kind to buy, if you know what I mean.  One of my kids is asking for a solid state drive for a laptop.  I think that's right.  Anyway, I'm going to enlist my husband's help and we are going to take the teens somewhere tomorrow and just tackle the darn shopping.  I kind of will be glad when I reach my mom's stage of life, give people money or have other people do your shopping for you.  You know?  Yes, I'm whiny and really I don't have reason to be.  I'll be virtually shopping for the most part and I won't even have to trudge through the stores.  I think the worry that I'll buy the wrong things just kind of paralyzes me a bit. 

Maybe we'll get it done tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Gettin better.

My cold is quite a lot better.  They almost never knock me out for long, thank goodness.  I still feel kind of draggy, but I managed to get my work done today and now I'm going to run a couple errands and go see my mom.  I haven't seen her for several days because I didn't want to give her the cold syndrome.  I've pretty much stopped coughing now, and my throat feels pretty normal, so I think it will be okay.  I just checked and I do still have a slight fever, darn it.  Still, I probably will go and try not to breathe on mom while we're playing UpWords.  That's our favorite game and we're both quite good at it.  She's one of very few people who can give me some good competition.  My brother is the other one.  Okay, 2 people.  My Dad was the only other one.  We used to play some very close 4 way games and I really didn't know if I'd be able to play it again after he passed away, but Mom and I have picked it back up now and we enjoy it. 

The other day, we made kind of a (short) poem, while talking about our dismal letter selections.

She said  "I have 1 vowel and its an E."
and I said "I have 6 vowels.  And a T."

Sheer poetry, I tell you.

And since I can't share any new photos on my blog without paying for the privilege, I'll share some photos from UpWords games past and my blog archives.  I challenge, you, my blog readers to spell something with each of these sets of letters.  ;-) 

This set of letters would be pretty easy to make a word out of.

This set of letters is basically impossible without being able to see the board, since there are no vowels.  If there is an I in a suitable place on the board, you could spell ZINC.     In this picture, you can see that we've almost worn the letters off and have written them back with a Sharpie.  Since then, I bought new letters on Ebay.

This one would be easy to make a word out of because someone has already made the word FOE.  Can you come up with a different word? 

Monday, December 03, 2012


It's an ordinary Monday, I guess.  Our new ordinary, in which one of our children lives in another state.  I'm still a bit under the weather, not too bad, but I'm probably contagious so I'm not going to volunteer at the children's hospital tonight.  I'm going to continue taking it easy.  I talked to the oldest son this morning on Facebook and he said that he was having an earache and so I looked online and found a walk-in clinic near him that takes our health insurance.  Hopefully he will go.  It's very hard to make kids do something they don't really want to do when they are so far away. 

I'm trying to lose weight but not working too hard at it.  I made a veggie lunch and I am going to try and eat more green beans and broccoli since they are low cal and healthy foods that I like.  However, I'm also trying to fight the urge to get up and go in the kitchen and make a crustless pecan pie.  I'm craving it and we have the pecans in there.  Do you all think a pecan pie and green bean diet sounds reasonable?  I doubt I'd lose much weight on it.  :-)

My youngest son is counting down the days to Christmas on and it is 21 days, 8 hours and 34 minutes and 52 seconds until Christmas and I haven't even really started shopping! 

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Sunday, resting.

I'm resting today.  I got up sick this morning and realized that my husband had shared his cold with me.  He is braving it and went to work, and I wimped out of church and stayed home.  This morning, I had no voice at all and couldn't even speak, but now I can but I don't want to.  I'm watching TV and playing The Sims and just generally not doing much of anything.  It's actually kind of nice, since really I don't feel all that bad.  I'm taking Cold-Eeze in the hopes that it will go away quickly.  I may do some work on the Christmas lists today.  They need organizing.  Seriously.  It's already December second!!!!  I am going to switch into my before-Christmas-stressing-out-because-I-think-Christmas-is-coming-too-quickly mode, just like I do every year, but not until after today.  My little unplanned break from the business.


Saturday, December 01, 2012

Craft Sale!

Next week is the annual kids craft sale my daughter usually participates in.  It's kid's crafts and hers are pretty advanced, so I never really feel like she gets very good prices there.  All the crafts are priced low and that seems to be what people expect.  This Wednesday, we heard from a friend about a craft show today and we were invited to participate in it.  The fee for a table was 25.00 but our friend negotiated my daughter a better rate, since she is just a kid.  :-)  So anyway, we got there today and it was really nice and there were some serious shoppers there who were willing to pay real prices.  She made over 60 bucks and was very, very happy.  The really good news is that they have craft shows several times a year and actually the fall ones are better attended, (way better) so next October, she'll be cleaning up and earning college money!  :-) 


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