turkey wellness

Charlie and I are staying in town for Thanksgiving. I made us a reservation at a nice restaurant for an early dinner that day. I’m hoping with can hang out, go to some of our favorite haunts, see a movie, play some pool and cook. (I have jelly to make)

The weather is really nasty here today – rain then sleet, then snow with 40 mph winds. I’m so glad we’re not trying to travel anywhere unless it was SOUTH. It was 80 degrees in Miami yesterday – hard to believe.

Everyone have a fabulous holiday, try not to eat too much, try not to get too drunk and tell that relative exactly what you think of them, no fighting and no burning down the garage trying to fry a d@mn turkey – capish?  

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cooking and [whoopie] wine

Last night was fantastic!

I had stopped off at the grocery store to pick up a few things to make beef stew. This is one of my favorite wintertime soups. Once I got homeI fed the dogs and started prepping. I cut up carrots and potatoes and threw them into a beef broth and beer concoction. I threw in some frozen okra, peas and corn and cut up an onion to sate’ with the beef.

Charlie texted that she was on her way home and I went in and started a bath. I’ve been drawing her baths so when she gets home she can hop in the tub. She’s frequently dirty from work and the first thing she does when she gets home is strip and hop in either the shower or the tub.

I pulled the space heater in the bathroom and turned it on full blast and lit a candle. I put the iPod speakers in there and plugged in my phone and set it to iTunes radio on the Chill/singer songwriter station (our favorite). I opened a bottle of wine and set out two glasses.

She came in and the dogs were going crazy as they always do. I gave her a kiss and told her I had a bath going. She said, “Oh, good.” And headed for the bathroom. I poured the wine and as I was heading in with the glasses I heard, “Wow, this is nice.”

“Mind if I join you?”, I said.

She didn’t mind.

We sat in the tub and ran the jets and drank wine. It was so nice! Afterwards I said, “How about you just go right into the bedroom and don’t bother putting clothes on.”

She liked that idea.

We finished the wine……among other things. I put the heater in there with the radio and I have to say playing iTunes radio is MUCH better than trying to play the lube-smeared CD’s in the drawer. I don’t know why I didn’t think of this sooner. Historically, I always put in a CD (and, I wouldn’t recommend storing the CD’s in the same drawer as the lube). It would be, “Oh, that one again?” or we’d play this one that was really good except for one lame-ass  song that was like an opera song  that I hated. That song always fell at a very inconvenient time where I was too incapacitated to reach over and hit the fast forward button.

After we – um – finished the wine we went in and finished putting the meat in the crockpot and threw the whole thing into the fridge to make in the morning. We decided after that to make nachos with the taco leftovers in the fridge. We dumped a bunch of blue corn chips into a casserole dish and covered them with the black bean, rice and ground turkey mixture. We sprinkled on black olives, green chilies and a jalapeño. We covered it with grated queso cheese and regular grated cheddar and threw it all into the oven. It turned out amazing!

We took the nachos into the bedroom and watched The Walking Dead (this governor stuff is getting boring [yawn]) and Dexter Season 8.

We couldn’t have asked for a better evening! There’s something about cooking and whoppie that go hand in hand.

work people

“I am looking for a “dare to be great” situation.”

“I don’t want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don’t want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don’t want to do that.”     Lloyd Dobler – Say Anything

 Yesterday, we all got an email from the director to meet in the bay area. Since the last time we all met in there and was told we were being furloughed you can imagine everyone’s anxiety.

F*ck, this better not be a lay-off and right before the holidays, too. I’m gonna have to sell the house. There will be no way I can pay the mortgage just teaching.

These are the things that ran though my mind. I felt like I needed a drink. Several, in fact.

Three o’clock rolled around and we all reluctantly shuffled out to the bay area (which, I might add is not heated and cold. We were all standing there in our jackets wondering if this was going to be the last time we’d be there. I was standing next to our in-house lawyer who has blown me off three times now on a property issue I have.

“Do you know what this is about?” he asked me.

I wanted to say, F*ck I don’t know, dude.

I shook my head, no, and moved back to stand next to the environmental people. The director finally came out at ten after (no we don’t have anything better to do than stand out here in the cold waiting for you to fire us).

“I don’t know how to tell you all this –“

My stomach dropped. We were going to be let go.

“-but, I put in for retirement today and taking a job with [huge corporation in private sector]. I just wanted to let y’all know that so there wouldn’t be any rumors floating around.”

There was almost a collective sigh around the room and I thought, F*ck, is that all? Thanks for scaring the sh*t out of all of us.

So, now that makes the director leaving, BAB has applied for another job up the hill and hopefully he will be gone by January 1st and we lost an engineer and a project manager the last two weeks. People are dropping like flies over here and I don’t know what to think of it. I wonder if it will get worse or better.

For now, my December is going to be really quiet at work. I plan on getting through my real estate class that month and telecommute from home on Fridays. So, on the upside it will be low-key and that will be nice.

Charlie came home last night asking if her work people could have their holiday party at the house.

“Sure, I wanted to have a holiday party anyway.”

“Well, this is for my work people.”

“Yeah, that’s fine. We can clear out around the fridge in the carport, the lights are up anyway.”

“Yeah, and we can have a fire pit.”

“Sounds great, babe!”

Yeah, we could use some kind of a party.

I’m dreaming of a white [lie] Christmas

We sometimes tell little white lies around the holidays to make things more bearable. I was talking to my sister on the phone on the way in to work this morning. She had called the previous evening as Charlie and I were on our way to our favorite hole-in-the-wall Mexican place.

“Answer it.”

“No, I don’t want to.”

“Why?”

“Because she will have me sitting in the parking lot of the restaurant for ten minutes blathering on about the persimmon pudding she just made.”

I already knew why she was calling – she had emailed me about making pudding with her ex husband (they’re still friends so this is not unusual) and how it came out awful. Like our father, my sister likes to tell stories over and over again – I think they both have dementia.

“I’ll talk to her tomorrow.”

Safe times to call are when I know she doesn’t have long to talk like in the mornings when I know she has to get ready for work soon or when she’s on her way home from work. These are safe times. This morning I called and heard the story I knew I was going to hear. When I asked what she was doing for TG she said she lied to our step mother and said she was going to Nashville with ex husband. Our step mother was having her side of the family over for TG and invited her. I could understand. I would lie, too. Our step mother’s family and my sister and I – it’s like mixing the Honey Boo Boo’s and her family with  The Housewife of Indiana (my sister) and the gay version Dylan from Charlie’s Angels (me – well, I don’t look that good but you catch my drift).

“Yeah….it’s weird.” I said.

My sister went on to say that she had booked her gallstone removal surgery for the Thursday before Christmas but, again, lied to our step mother saying it was Friday instead because the [Former last name] Family Christmas was on Saturday.

“Oh, the [former last name] family Christmas is on Saturday. I will call Peg and tell her to move it so you can go.”  Stepmother to sister.

“No, no. It’s ok. I’ll just have to miss it this year.” Sister to stepmother.

“Don’t blow my secrets now.” Sister to me.

Fortunately, I had no reason to lie to my sister – now that we weren’t going camping. But, we were keeping to that story for other people. So, I wasn’t lying to sister but to others. That’s when I thought – we all lie when it comes to family and especially around the holidays. We lie to get out of doing things we don’t want to do.

We lie about where we got pie we brought, “Oh, that’s a recipe from Williams and Sonoma.”

When really it was bought at Kroger.

The little white lies sprinkle down like snowflakes. What do you lie to your family and/or friends about around the holidays? Or what will you lie about?  While you think on that I have provided a video for your listening enjoyment:

And, how appropriate that the video takes place in some old barn that looks vaguely like the [former last name] family barn.

 

 

filters

It was said by the character Michael Tolliver in an Armistead Maupin book (one of the Tales of the City books) that you can have a hot job, a hot lover and a hot pad but not all at once.

I’ve always found this saying to be true. Despite the candidness of the phrase it all really comes down to balance. Sure, one can have a hot job where they make a lot of money, travel everywhere and see a lot of things and they probably do have a hot pad since they have all that money to pay for it but I bet the hot lover that they never see has left by now or is getting it on with the gardener. There’s always something that is a balancer. Charlie and I were talking about this last night. I even quoted the above and said that maybe we’re not meant to have hot jobs because we have each other and this wonderful house.

I have to look at it that way or else I will go crazy. I still apply to jobs and I still look. Nothing will keep me down and I will keep trying but it’s wearing. It takes a certain amount of energy on my part to always think of the positive. It’s so easy to fall into the negative all the time. I don’t know where I get this, either. I’m my own worst enemy at times. I think it came from my parents always telling me I couldn’t do things. That I wasn’t smart enough to go to the college of my choice, actually I was told that it was because I wasn’t Roman Catholic – I wanted to go to Notre Dame – and then I was told “-plus, you’re not smart enough to go there”. I went to Purdue instead and please tell me how I managed to get through that college with a B.S. instead of Notre Dame if I wasn’t smart enough? The only saving grace was ND didn’t have my major.

I look around and realize that we have a lot of things a lot of other people don’t have. Again, I’m thankful for those things. I have come a long way but not far enough in my book. I know I’m still meant to do something more meaningful. Like Nicole Beharie as Lt. Grace Abigail “Abbie” Mills on Sleepy Hollow. She was about to transfer to Quantico but decided to stay and fight against the Horseman because she felt she had to stay because of some dream she had about 4 white trees (you’ll have to watch it to figure out what the h*ll I’m talking about but trust me). She knew she was meant to do that.

In the meantime, I put on my positive, objective filters and go on. I have two of the three and I’m ok with that.

thankfulness

I handed Charlie coffee this morning and when she said thank you I croaked out “You’re welcome.” I sounded like a forty-year old bull frog. (Felt like one, too)

Even after laying around all weekend I only feel slightly better. Saturday, I thought I was going to hang off the rafters from being cooped up all day. Sunday, I managed to get out of the house a little in the afternoon. Charlie and I went to the hardware store to pick up a few things and then on to do a little shopping downtown Decatur. We ended up stopping in at a little bar around the corner (since the new Taco Mac was 5-person deep at their bar) and catch the game (if you could call it that).  

Friday, I got a rejection from the job I interviewed with that previous Monday. This is the first time I’ve been told anything from any of the interviews I’ve went on in the past so I was grateful that they at least got back to me. I just sighed and forwarded the email to my “job” folder. This whole job hunting thing has become a joke and I’m starting to feel like it’s all a big waste of time.  Maybe I’m not meant to do this GIS thing and maybe I’m meant to stay where I am and explore other PT avenues. At least it gives me time to write and I have a few projects in mind and I have some classes I need to take so I’ll have time to do that. I’m just kind of like, whatever.

We originally wanted Charlie’s folks to come up for Thanksgiving but her Dad just had surgery so that’s out. We were going to take the camper and go camp somewhere but the extended forecast says it’s going to be really cold and I don’t want to camp in the cold. So, I made us a reservation in town for dinner that day and we’re going to do that. That way we won’t have to worry about cooking, going to someone’s weird-@ss house or going to someone’s house and dealing with their weird-@ss guests and/or relatives or dealing with my weird-@ss relatives.

On the radio this morning they were asking people to call in and tell about what they dreaded most about Thanksgiving. You wouldn’t believe the phone calls of people calling in saying they were going to come out or tell the rest of the siblings that they had to take care of mother or they were getting a divorce or bringing a lover no one had met before.

It was then I wondered if there were more homicide statistics on Thanksgiving Day than any other. You always read Labor Day weekend or 4th of July always being the most car accidents but you never hear which holidays have the highest homicide rates – I bet it’s Thanksgiving. (Maybe I’ll write a research grant on that and that’s what I’ll do for a living)

After we knew Charlie’s parents weren’t coming we asked the couple down the street (the ones we had pizza with a few weeks back) if they wanted to come by but one of them said, “Oh no. I will feel too guilty if I don’t go see my mother.”

Her mother lives in South Georgia and has never acknowledged my friend and her partner’s relationship even though they’ve been together almost twenty years.

“You going to tell her y’all got hitched?” I asked.

“Oh probably not.”

So, dread and guilt seemed to be the most prominent feelings when it comes to Thanksgiving.

“Hi, would you ladle on some of that guilt on top of my mashed potatoes?”

“I’d be happy to and would you like some dread to go with your dressing?”

I’m so THANKFUL Charlie and I don’t have to do that this year – or any.

But, I’m not thankful for those who have to proclaim something every day to be thankful for – kind of like the 25 days of Christmas – this is the 28 days of Thankfulness to Thanksgiving. This may be the reason I decide to quit Facebook once and for all – all the “Today I’m thankful for…..”s

Ok, I’m thankful for so many things every.d@mn.day but I don’t proclaim them all on FB every.d@mn.day. It makes me want to say things like, “TODAY (said in a similar tone of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address) I am thankful for underwear because it keeps my crotch from sticking to my pantz.”

Or “TODAY I am thankful for toilet paper because –“

-and, I’m going to spare you those details but you catch my drift? I just feel like it’s one of those Facebook cults. Like today whoever who writes about football on FB will have to email the top ten people on their message list this [inane message]. Pass it along, play along. Go ahead. It’s fun!

It’s almost like new age version of Paper Fortune Teller. 

I wonder why a holiday that has the words “Thanks” and “Giving” in it has to do with so much dread and guilt. I admit – it’s not one of my favorite holidays, anyway. I mean, even if initially there’s not guilt and dread – there is after you eat all that food – guilt for eating it and dread of how much you’ll weigh getting on the scales. I say skip the holiday and do something fun with a loved one or a friend or even help someone out. Skip the guilt. Skip the dread. Skip the FB games and the pressure to post one thing to be thankful for everyday. You know what you’re thankful for – you don’t owe them anything.

gone friday

I’m taking a break from everything today. Well, except for blog writing. I woke up this morning with a sore throat and decided a much-needed sick day was in order. I’m sitting in my office at home with Sadie gnawing on a bone (sounds a bit like I’m in the dentists office having them scrape my teeth – I’m trying not to think too hard about that – oh, she stopped, whew! Maybe she read my mind.) Bailey’s here on the couch. She seems like she feels better these days. I’m trying to keep all the shoes out of her reach.

I can’t remember the last time I sat in here and wrote, or played on the computer or thumbed my coveted books on the bookshelf. The solid wood bookshelf with glass doors that I came by – well, we won’t talk about that – lets just say I found it on the street just like the dining room table and chairs (six of them, I might add) and the liquor cabinet (also glass doors). They are a very nice find. But, alas I digress –

-and, the best part about all of this is that I have the weekend off! Yes, I do! Paulette even tried to get me to take her south DeKalb assignment and I said, “No way.” I just can’t do it this weekend. I don’t have another weekend in me right now. I’ve worked every weekend since Oct. 12. I have to work next weekend and a mid December class and then I’m done for the year.

The New Years Resolution for 2014 will be to work less and play more. Period.

Has anyone read this book?

gonegirl

I’m almost finished with it. I found it’s a page turner. If you’ve read it has anyone seen any characteristics of someone you dated in either character in the book? There were some things that struck a chord in me reading this book.

I’m sitting here thinking of getting my Christmas shopping done early, but then everyone’s going to get gift cards anyway so why start early

My glasses come today and I’m wondering how that’s going to be getting used to bifocals. I’ve decided that I’m going to wear these and see what I think and if I don’t like the frames then I’m going to order what I want and be done with it.

I’m not going to talk about work or jobs except for Charlie’s – she seems to be getting into her new job nicely. She likes the people she works with and they keep her very busy – which, is a good thing. It’s right up the road from the house and she even comes home for lunch. I showed her a cut-through the neighborhood  so now it takes her about only 15 minutes to get home. It’s an ideal match.

I’m thinking of going over to Big Lots and getting some canning jars so I can start making jam to give away for Christmas presents. In fact, I’m hoping I have enough energy today to do that. I hope everyone has a wonderful Friday and weekend and more later!

sidenotes

I get tired of always talking about [what I feel] are the same old things – such as work, working the weekends, interviewing, blah, blah, blah. I know people like to know what’s going on – I always like to know what’s going on with you but to me I’m so bored hearing it come out of my own mouth. So-

-I’m going to write about other things. Things I’m a little obsessed with lately. For one – big, goofy glasses. Yes, the Ray Bans and large hipster glasses have a grip on me. I’ve always wanted to look good in these types of glasses but I fear I don’t. But, it doesn’t stop me from attempting to do so. I recently sent off some Kenneth Cole vintage frames to have prescription lenses put in them (they’re in the mail in route right now). In the meantime I bought this huge pair of Ray Ban knock-off reading glasses and started wearing them around Charlie. At first it was like, “Oh, hon…..” kind of the same tone she’d use if she found my pants unzipped and knew I’d just been at a job interview with them undone the whole time. (which, happened one time – and, no, I didn’t get the job) But, see – I’m just priming her for when the real glasses come in she’ll be “OH HON!” Like the take me in the bathroom, sexy mamma, type of tone.

hipster

I’m also obsessed with nice pens, moleskin notebooks and fur lined moccasins – well, anything fur lined (not real fur, I might add). I think that means you’re getting old when you look at fur lined shoes, sweatshirts and jackets with new interest. Jackets are another obsession. I have many. Sweatshirts, leahter jackets, biker jackets, you name it – I have them.

sweatshirt shoeF804MY4GI0TJCS0_LARGE

I’m a little obsessed with iTunes radio. Specifically, the ALT+Indie station. Wow, check it out if you haven’t already. Which, leads me to trying to find a used amplifier so we can plug in speakers and the ipod – which, in turn leads to thrift stores. I rarely buy anything full price now.

I’m obsessed with vintage motorcycles. BSA, Triumph, old Honda CB’s. I have a Triumph Bonneville and I want to make even more vintage looking. (even, though it only looks vintage – it’s a 2001). I like the café’ bikes, the customized ones. I’m even starting to have an obsession (and, I never thought I’d say it in a million years) with a Harley Davidson 48. I would love to buy Charlie one of these for her birthday. Yeah, I guess I need to keep buying the lottery tickets.

bonnie (man, I wish mine looked this good!)

harley48cyrilhuze1

What are your obsessions?

 

hectic weekend & punky monday

Despite having yesterday off it was hectic. I worked all weekend and Sunday Gwen and Cathy came into town. Cathy was dropping Gwen off for me to take her to the airport the next morning. I came home from work on Sunday in enough time to visit over a beer with Cathy. After she left we took Gwen out to our favorite Mexican place. We caught up over dinner and drinks.

The next morning I took Gwen to the airport very early. Later, that morning I had an interview with a company down by the airport. (it so happens it worked out) I changed into my suit in the airport thinking I was over this quick change in bathrooms. I headed over to the place and again, it was a panel interview. When asked how it went I replied, “It went as well as all of them have. The only difference is the people and the company.”

This time I am determined as ever to find another job even if this drags on forever. I walked out thinking, “Next.”  I’ve already applied to several and what’s very strange is the guy who interviewed me three times for that last job – well, his job came up on the job board yesterday. I wonder if that’s why I never got a call or if he quit before they could hire someone for the job he interviewed me for. I went ahead and applied for his job, which, would be an interesting twist if I got an interview. I’d be like, “Yeah, I know all of you already!”  I mean, three interviews, 5 hours of my time, a $35 parking ticket and $25 paid in parking for not even a letter in the mail saying, “Thanks but no thanks.”

Seriously.

At least the one yesterday I didn’t have to pay to park. If I don’t get this job, I’m going to buy a new suit and start taking SQL classes.

After the interview I met Charlie at home for lunch and then took the dogs to the vet. They were supposed to get their Lymes shots but Bailey has been feeling punky the past few days. They checked her vitals and they seemed ok and the vet said if she didn’t act like herself by the next evening to bring her in for some tests. I think she’s going to feel better today as I think it’s just something she ate that we don’t know about.

Last night, Charlie and I grilled, had salads and watched The Walking Dead in bed. It was so nice to fall asleep in the warmth. Tonight, we’re grabbing dinner with Ellen and her new gf, Laura. This is the first time we all have hung out together since the fireworks that one time. So, for now – that’s all I got. I hope everyone has a wonderful rest of the week. More later!

friday chex

I hate getting cryptic messages from friends I haven’t heard from in ages. It makes me suspicious that someone has hacked into their account or this is a FB trick if you answer you get pulled into this stupid game where you have to post something that’s outrages that spawns all your friends to blow up your phone texting, Dude, I think someone’s hacked into your FB account or Omg keep your sh*t to yourself and don’t air it on FB –especially, from those who constantly air their sh*t on FB.

Despite having the day off on Monday I have a full day. I have to take a friend to the airport then head to that interview and then take the dogs to get their lyme disease shots. Plus, I’m working this weekend and I really need to study for this interview. I asked my co-coach if he could do most of the classroom while I studied. I’m trying to keep an open mind about things and I keep applying to other jobs.

I’m going to sign up for a month bootcamp soon. I’ve worked out four mornings this week at the gym in the main building away from BAB’s and it’s been nice and peaceful not having to hear his babbling about how I won’t really be getting a workout if I’m reading while on the treadmill, bike, elliptical. I rarely engage him anymore it’s always him walking up to me and either interrupting a conversation I’m having with someone else or just blurting out details of his workout, run, weekend, some CD he just got, etc. I just want to say, “I don’t care.”

Really I don’t.

There’s a rumor going around at work that he’s going to take another assignment. I really hope it’s true. If I’m still here by Christmas that’s what I want Santa to bring me – a new job for him somewhere else, in some other building, away, away from me! He’s like the most annoying individual. Today when he came in to announce the details of his run I put my headphones in and turned them up as loud as I could to drown him out. Remember this story? (I unlocked it and made it public if you didn’t have a chance to read it previously) Well, Rebecca is getting promoted today to the same rank as him. We’re all going to her ceremony this afternoon, too.

I walked down the hall and knocked on her office door (BAB’s office is right next door)

I said, “Hey, congratulations on your promotion!”

Loud enough for BAB to hear me. While we were in there talking BAB couldn’t stand it and poked his head in and said, “Hey, I just wanted to congratulate you on your promotion. I won’t be able to make your ceremony because I have to go to the dentist but I didn’t want you to think I was being a jerk or anything by not going.”

After he left Rebecca said softly, “I’m glad he said that because it has seemed like he’s been a jerk lately.”

“It’s not you, he IS a jerk, Rebecca.” I replied back at low volume.

I’m just glad another woman around here is the same rank as him – and, has a boat!