Monday, December 29, 2008

More pictures

This is late and I know it's old stuff but here is day 2 in South Carolina for Thanksgiving.

I am a month behind in updates, almost.


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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happiness is...

The perfect glass of Bombay Sapphire martini - a tiny bit dirty, and very very dry with 3 olives. A nice leisure dinner of beet salad, lobster tacos, Scottish salmon and Chatham Cod. At Lineage - one our favorite, "buy local" and "be green" restaurants only a half mile from the house. All washed down with a Stag's Leap sauvignon blanc.

And with my wonderful Hunny Bunny. The man of my dreams....

Happiness....

Things like this make me want to live forever.

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I could never be a housewife

I am sitting here bored even though I am working.
I am highly distracted, by I don't even know what.
And I keep wondering when Joseph will be home.
Jeez.

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Sunday, December 21, 2008

A long winter's tale...

All I have to say is never underestimate the will of a Korean woman on a mission. Because we always prevail!

So. We are having a lot of snow in Boston. Actually, let me rephrase that.
We are having a series of winter storms.
Ok. How’s this.
We are having a series of blizzards that is dumping, or will be dumping, 8-10 inches of snow at a pop.

So. Joseph’s dad gave him an old snow mower last summer. In July. He found it at a tag sale for $25, spruced it up for a few bucks more and got it running. In July. And he proudly presented it and when Joseph tried it, yup, it started right up. In July.

Now through all this, I was skeptical but kept my opinions to myself, with one eyebrow raised, of course. And last winter, with some arm pulling and sweat, Joseph managed to get it to run and although the winter was relatively mild, he seemed to have a good time snow mowing all the neighbors’ sidewalks for them. Our next door neighbor, Sloat, actually made us some lemon bread as a thank you. It was surprisingly, quite good.

So, fast forward to this year. And with news of impending snow, Joseph got out the snow mover and spiffed it up and got it running. When it was warm a few days before the storm.

Fast forward to this week. He goes out and darn if the stoopid thing refuses to start up. So in the end Joseph ends up shoveling out the walks and driveway. Now, this is only the beginning of long week of storms. It seems that it’s every other day, and some days in between, with each one worse than the last.

So, Friday night I mention to Joseph about the snow mower.
ME: So, about the snow mower...
Joseph: I am not replacing it.
ME: [blink blink] Hmmm. Even if it doesn’t start?
Joseph: I can’t replace it. My Dad gave it to me. And I have to make work.
ME: [blink blink blink] That’s ridiculous.
Joseph: I will make it work. It will start up right away next time. I am my father’s son, after all.
ME: [blink blink, thinking "that is never going to work"] Okie. Do what you want. I am just sayin’...
So Saturday, I am in the dining room as Joseph is in the swirling driving snow trying to start up the stoopid clunker. He is pulling on the manual starter so hard that he is literally jumping 2 feet into the air. Seriously. I couldn’t help myself. I go to google and search. Oh! LO AND BEHOLD! They have good ones at Home Depot. I know nothing about these things. I read the reviews. And I figure, if it starts, and it clears snow, it MUST be good.

So, I finally tell Joseph that we are going to Home Depot. And he grudgingly goes along. Of course this is after he tells his dad what I’ve been up to and his dad doesn’t even blink, and just laughs. Uh.. Yeah... really funny. Let’s see who gets the last laugh...

And we get there and what do you know... NOTHING! Not even a SHOVEL! Not even something to clear your car off with! HUH??? WTH!!!??? And this was the same thing with every Home Depot we called! Snow Mowers and Shovels are NOT A RECESSION ITEM, PEOPLE! They are a NECESSITY if you live in New England. Whoever heard about RUNNING OUT OF SNOW MOWERS IN THE WINTER??? ARG!!!!!

So, we ended up with some door mats, and returned home.

Sunday rolls around. Joseph mentions going out into YET ANOTHER blizzard to start up the old clunker. And this time, he says, he is definitely going to get it to start. He also mentions his dad suggested Sears. So, I guess he isn’t too upset about us replacing the Warm Weather Snow Clunker. And I watch him as I sit at the dining room table in front of the computer. Jumping two feet into the air, wearing out his gloves, close to dislocating his shoulder. And I start typing... www.sears.com...

Hmmm... OH! Lookie that!!! And they have CRAFTSMAN! And it’s a BIG ONE!!! Hmmm... how big is that... 28", 250 cc, Briggs and Stratton - OH! I know they are supposed to be good!!! - 250 lbs... Hmmm...oh.. That’s a little heavy... How do we lift it into the car and lift it down? What if it doesn’t fit? Ach. No matter... Hmmm...Do they have a BIGGER ONE? Oh. Not the riding plow tractor - too big... Okie. Let me call... Hmmm..... "Oh, do you still have snow mowers? Please tell me "yes..." You do??? REALLY??? WOW!!! Okay. Do I have to put one on hold? Will you run out? OMG! I NEED ONE!!! Ohhh. You have a few. Okay. WE WILL BE RIGHT THERE!!!"

I run to the back door, I shout out...
ME: GET YOUR COAT ON NOW...
Joseph: Huh?
ME: GET YOUR COAT ON.. We are going to SEARS!!! And I am going with or without you!!!
So, we go. Joseph dragging his feet, facing the inevitable... And... We meet Angel. Angel who answered the phone. The Angel that will sell me a BIG HONKIN’ SNOW MOWER!!! Along with the 5-year in home warranty (ahem). Turns out that the regional manager for Lawn and Garden ordered 1500 extra snow mowers two days before the storm hit. They were unloading them in the first storm! And kudos to that regional manager!! Finally someone who GETS IT! Not to mention that they had a TON OF SHOVELS, TOO!

We had to gerry rig it a little to make it fit into the BMW - folded the handle down, and take off the chute (which I intricately looked at to figure out you have to REMOVE THE CHUTE LEVER FIRST! Before you can actually take the chute off.)

And when we got it home, I helped Joseph lift it down. Thank GOODNESS I can lift 175 lbs from all my weight training this year.

I went inside. To wait. I saw him get the gas tank. And then he tried to start it. Lots of revving noises and then nothing. I have my eyes closed and I am praying..."pleasepleaseplease..."

Joseph bursts into the house...
ME: It won’t work...
Joseph: Not yet. I need the funny pages.
ME: Huh?
Joseph: The instructions.
ME: Oh.
Joseph: I need the key. There’s a key?
ME: [blink blink blink...thinking "GOOD GRIEF!!!"]
Joseph ran out. And I could finally hear the engine. It started. And he happily snow mowed our driveway and our sidewalk in about 20 minutes.

Afterward:
ME: You know how fortunate we are.
Joseph: Yes.
ME: I mean, not only can we afford this BUT we actually found one.
Joseph: Yes. And a good one.
ME: You know what this means...
Joseph: Yup... gotta help the neighbors...
ME: Yup. Even the mean old bags next door... you gotta do their sidewalk for them.
Joseph: And Sloat’s sidewalk.
ME: Yup.
Joseph: Maybe she will make us more lemon bread...

Merry Christmas, Hunny Bunny.
Merry Christmas to all our neighbors.
It’s going to be a good winter for all...

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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy

I am happy right now.
Happy from champagne.
Quite literally.
It's amazing what a couple of glasses of champagne can do to put you in a good mood.

After driving around and calling every Home Depot on earth to discover they were totally OUT of snow blowers, talk about being cranky. I mean... not even a SHOVEL to be had! Really! I am so annoyed!! How do you run out of snow blowers? And they're not even cheap! It's not like they are disposable. And living in New England, you would think that the market is pretty saturated. So, we go out looking for a nice new BIG electric start snow blower after watching Joseph pull his arm out of his socket for two days, trying to get the *&^%$! old snow blower to start. And amazingly, NOTHING IS LEFT! But let me just say for the record that we WILL get a new snow blower, an industrial sized snow blower before the season is done. I am a woman on a mission.

So, we came home, I threw the dough into the kneading machine for the pecan rolls I am making for tonight's dessert party, and we headed over to BRIX. It is their 5 year anniversary and since we couldn't make heir 6pm celebration, we thought we would go in and say, "hi, congratulations" and pick up a few gift bottles.

Well, out came a bottle of rose champagne with which the four of us toasted, and we picked out the gift bottles of wine, along with a few extra (ahem) bottles for ourselves, and a few bottles of Dallas Dhu scotch, and 8 bourbon glasses, with 6 more bottles of Dallas Dhu on order... we more than covered the cost of a snow blower, I think. No.... I'm pretty sure we did.

And now... I am happy. Happy happy happy!

Amazing.


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A new day dawns

I woke up with my headache. Coffee, water, and 2 Advils later, I am feeling better.

It could have been me canceling Chinese class, too.
Anyway...

Last night the dishwasher stopped working again. Same thing as the last time - something with the drainage. Sigh...

Then the oven makes a godawful racket. Need to call service to figure out what is going on with it. It's brand new and I think I've used the big oven only about 4 times in the last two years.

Then the snowblower. It's not working. It starts but sputters and stops. It works great in July. But it seems that if it gets too cold, it refuses to budge. So Poor Joseph had to shovel us out from the blizzard last night. And this morning he is trying to get the stupid thing to work! Been out there all morning. I swear his arm is going to fall off from that stupid starting pulley thing.

I think it's time to get him a new snowblower but this one came from his Dad. His Dad, who hardly can afford a snowblower, found it at a tag sale or something, fixed it up, got it going, and proudly presented it to Joseph two years ago. In July, I think it was. It worked last year. I think it's seen it's best days. And knowing Joseph, he refuses to let it go. He is his father's son, after all.

I think it's time for a surprise come next July.

In spite of all this, I am feeling better than yesterday. Less desperate. Less like the world is going to cave in. Lots to do today. Busy busy. But it's a new day and my goal is to keep smiling and not let the crankiness set in.

Hmmm.
That means I will have to EAT.
Dang.

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Friday, December 19, 2008

Holiday Rant

For me, holiday spirit is holiday stress.

I finally realized it today because I've eaten nothing but one bowl of rice and a bowl of soup.
All Day.
And I do not eat when I am stressed.
And when I do not eat, I can't be anything other than be alone.
Why?
Because I am a crab.
Because I am too tired and irritated and hungry to interact with human kind.
That's why.
This brings back vestages of years past when I would lose 10-15 pounds or more between Thanksgiving and New Years because of Holiday Stress and an (ex-)husband who thought a wife was cook, replacement socializer, and gift buyer for his mercenary commercial family.
Since I met Joseph, it's been sooooo wonderful. Too wonderful to describe because his family is the exact opposite. In fact, this year, we are all RE-GIFTING! And giving away things that are in our homes already! You can't imagine all the things you have tucked and stored away that you never think about or even knew you had until a project like this comes along.

But this year, the stress is creeping back.
This year, the holidays are fast upon us.
Work is a bear. And I mean, A BEAR!. It has not stopped.
Reorg after reorg, new management, lay offs, and more lay offs to come.
New systems and processes, people and groups moving from one group to another. The budget, budget cuts, rework - and LOTS OF IT!, reviews, and a new way to rate people which makes about 50% of the population either unhappy or totally underwhelmed. And then there is end of year travel. Which coincides with Thanksgiving travel, which it did this year. And a lackluster admin assistant who helped in causing me to go through 6 cities and 5 airports in 2 weeks. After which I immediately got sick from exhastion.
And then there is regular work on top of that.

And life goes on, right?
Well, let's see.

I am sick. Not feeling too good. Tonight we were supposed to go a dinner that got canceled. Thank goodness. I love Josh and I want to meet his girlfriend. We haven't spent time with him in a year. A YEAR! Imagine? But there is a blizzard outside as I type this. And I have a major migraine setting in.

Tomorrow, I have to make pecan rolls, go to the store to pick up ice cream, go pick up the pies, go to Chinese class, go to a dinner of running friends, have everyone over to the house for dessert, etc. I still have to do the grocery list, go to the grocery story, finish the menu, make the schedule of what to cook when, and then it's MONDAY and back to WORK!

I have Christmas Dinner. Then two days later, the Family Christmas Dinner for 18 people. Luckily I do love to cook and I do love the people who will be there - Joe's family. ALL OF THEM! My good friends Harriet and Debbie. They are MY family. And Harriet will bring Liz, who I haven't seen in over a year. So it will be mayhem but this is a dinner I am looking forward to. I just need people to leave me in my domain (the kitchen), not ask if I need any help (I don't and I never do), and NOT talk to me while I am in my cooking heaven.

Then it's New years Eve and I have to order the Lobsters and plan out a menu. And you can't just get lobster at any ole time. It doesn't magically appear. You have to go and PICK IT UP! But first, you have to ORDER IT and make sure they package what you want ahead of time!

Anyway, I enjoy days here and there. I enjoy the cooking. I do not enjoy the planning, the buying, the shopping. I certainly do not enjoy everyone being chipper and being inordinately nicer than usual. I mean, what happened to the REST of the year???

Thank God for Joseph. He got the wreath and the tree. Put the lights on the tree and put the wreath on the door. We try to keep it simple. There is beauty in a simple green unadorned wreath and a tree with just sparkling lights. It must have been like that in the early days when we didn't festoon everything with tinsel and plastic, glass balls and ribbons.

Well... tomorrow is another day. If this headache ever goes away, I might be a happier person.

Hmmm... Maybe I should cancel Chinese class....


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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Just so you know...

I am STILL doing my Christmas Shopping.
Still.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

It's that happy time of year again

When we get our 6 month reviews and are told if we get an annual bonus.
I did.

And the review was excellent.
I was told that I am:
  • well liked and highly regarded
  • rated highly among my peers
  • a tough cookie with a good, solid reputation
I've never had that kind of feedback before and I always wondered. I've only gotten feedback on my particular performance and that of my group which I lead and influence.

Also, judging from the tone of the conversation there will lots of change, lots of opportunities and I can/should work harder and differently.

And they are taking more of an interest in my second-in-command person. Which is excellent!

Interesting.
It will be a very interesting year to come.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Random Thought: Blocked ears

Ok. I hate it when I blow my nose and my ears get blocked up.
And I can't unblock them.
Sigh...

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

Happiness is...

Volunteering at your running club's road race. And knowing that you belong to the friendliest and nicest club of runners in the world.

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Menu

So, I found out yesterday that we will have about 18 people for Christmas Dinner on the 27th.
EIGHTEEN.
Just so that didn't register.

So I have decided on the menu.
  • Ham
  • Turkey - a big one
  • Drunken Stuffing - everyone gets happy on this one
  • Fully Fatted Mashed Potatoes - everyone gets fat on this one
  • Sweet Potato and Banana Mash - everyone gets high on this one
  • Root Mash
  • Creamed Onions
  • Creamed Spinach
  • Mustard Green Gratin
  • Julienne Carrots
  • Green Beans with Champagne Vinaigrette
  • Cranberry Sauce
  • Cranberry Chutney
  • Apple Strudel
  • Pies from Petsi Pie - YUMMY
  • Ice cream
The morning after, the breakfast menu:
  • Fresh Pecan Rolls
  • Baked Blueberry French Toast
  • Sausage and Cheese Strata
  • Mini Frittata
And no. I am not taking orders for stupid special ordered scrambled or over easy eggs.
You will be lucky to get crispy bacon.

So do not even ask!
Otherwise, you will piss off the cook!


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Not from our Chinese teacher

"Julia and Joe,

I've received Hank's recording, hope to receive yours tomorrow. If I receive your recording before Saturday, I'll have some time to correct the assignment for you."
Relentless.
Absolutely relentless.

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No Time Suck on Thursday

Yesterday was pretty good. Thankfully!

I worked all day again. I am on anti-biotics and was feeling much better after I took them and was much more productive. Unfortunately, I took them about 2pm after I talked to my Good Friend Dr. Kang, who said I should go ahead and take the meds since it was obviously a sinus infection. It's obvious? I guess that's why I don't play a doctor on TV, or whatever. Anyway, that meant I didn't feel better until about 3. And therefore wasn't as productive in the morning. The good news is that I finally banged out my presentation for my boss in about 3 hours.

Then it was off to the gym to see Scary Trainer around 7pm.
Got home around 8:15.
And then dinner while watching DVR'd Criminal Minds from something like 2 weeks ago.
Then off to bed.

Very productive, and crammed full.
I was happy with the Time I spent.

Right now I am feeling much better.
I am making bread for Scary Trainer. Actually, I am not making it. It's in the kneading machine warming up. I will make it 3 hours from now when it's finished kneading and rising 3 times. I'll knead and rise it the final time and then bake. If I have time I will make a loaf for Chris the Massage Therapist. I am seeing him tonight.

Happy happy!

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tracking Time

So, I am experimenting with the tracking of my time. "Where does it all go?" I asked. I am finding out.

Yesterday during the day was okay. I am sick so I am allowing myself a little time-wasting - downtime in the form of internet surfing in between accomplishments. Rewarding myself for work down with a little internet usage is motivating.
  • I spent a little over an hour commuting in a car or on a train. It is what it is and you really can't get more efficient than that.
  • I also got a hair cut, which takes about an hour and a half. Again, a necessity and it was pretty fast.
  • Dinner took an hour. We went out to Rani's for Indian food after Joseph picked me up from my hair cut. An hour isn't bad. If I had cooked, it would have taken much longer.
  • Then at home around 7:30. I immediately planted my butt on the couch and started watching TV. While I was doing that I had my laptop and was doing facebook and playing webkinz.
  • Time suck of 2.5 hours.

I could have been addressing Christmas cards, wrapping presents, etc for
at least an hour and a half of that time. I always need about an hour
to detox from the day so I am not giving up the hour of brainless time I
need.

I'm tracking time again today.
We'll see how it goes.

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Belated Birthday Photos

So if anyone is remotely interested, here are some pictures from the Birthday Party Surprise that Joseph gave for me this past August. Not a lot but more than enough to remember the occassion with warm fuzzies and a big smile.


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Goals in Review. Again.

It's almost time. I have no idea what my 2009 goals will be. None. All I know is that I haven't done enough to satisfy my 2008 Goals yet. And I only have 20 days left.

So let's take another look. It's been a month since the last look. It colud not have possibly changed much in that month since all I've been doing is TRAVELING LIKE A MANIAC and NOT HAVING A LIFE! GAH!
  1. Be consistent. Aim for 8 to 10 workouts a week - NOT HAPPENING. I will call this one DONE and Not Accomplished. Terrific. No way I can catch up in 20 days.
  2. Ride 2000 miles - Right. Not accomplished. No way I can catch up in 20 days.

  3. Run 1000 miles - Not accomplished. This is not looking so good. No way I can catch up in 20 days.
  4. Swim 3500 laps or 175,000 yards - NOT. No way I can catch up in 20 days.

  5. Sign up for and complete a century - I signed up for one. I did not do it. Something came up. Always. Ditto on the 20 days.

  6. Sign up for and complete a duathlon - Whoa! I did this one. And I got third in age group. At least it's something.

  7. Read 6 books - think I did that. I am sire I did it. I didn't keep track of all the titles. I'll do better next year.

  8. Learn 50 chinese phrases and their opposites - This was a resounding success. I know more than 50 phrases. I am not sure about the opposites but I made that up by learning more words. I know a lot of words that I can now put together into strings of words that more or less have some sort of intelligible meaning. And I also know how to WRITE! This was a good goal.

  9. Lose 5 pounds and keep it off by working out and journaling what I eat - Another resounding success! I got a trainer, can deadlist more than 160 pounds and have lost about 12 poundns - although it does go up and down by a pound or two...

  10. Run a marathon in a new state - Not yet. I'll make up for it next year.

  11. Go to 12 new restaurants:

    1. Rani Bistro, Hyderibadi (Indian)
    2. Blue Ocean (Korean)
    3. The Bob (American Grill)
    4. Smith &W Wollenski's (Steak)
    5. McSeagulls
    6. The Lobster Dock
    7. The Lobster Shack (in Maine)
    8. Genji Ya, (Japanese)
    9. BT Southern BBQ (ok. I didn't GO there, but they came to me and I am counting it)
    10. Little Anthony's Seafood Emporium (Seafood, in Winchendon)
    11. Pedrin's Dairy Bar (fast food in Adams)
    12. Kaler's Crab and Lobster House

    Okay. There were other but these are the ones off the top of my head. Glad to see that goals centered around eating are getting high marks.
  12. Take no more than 24 rest days except for injury and sickness. This includes traveling for work or pleasure. (This goal can be replaced.) -

    I should have replaced it. Between being sick, worked, tired and injured, I now have a total of 63 days where I did nothing. At least I have one goal that I can improve upon next year.
Alllllrighteeeeeee then. That about does it for the year. 4 out of 12. Not too good. Hmmm...

It's time to come up with 12 more.
I might try to make them realistic this time around.

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Some day, I want to be a Partner

Ever since I read the book "How Starbucks Saved My Life" I'm a Starbucks fan.

I never liked their coffee before. It was too acidic, too burnt, too dark, too whatever-you-can-think-of. The bottom line was, it was anything but good. I'd always avoid getting their coffee unless there was no other choice and I had to have a coffee-or-else-I-will-be-sub-human.

But now, it's my coffee purveyor of choice. Call it what you will. Call me a victim of the free-est and biggest publicity given to a company by a so called "common man." All I know is that in this case, Starbucks is a metaphor for a second life. So now, when I go into a Starbucks, I pause and notice the displays more. They seem to change either monthly or seasonally. I look closely at all the coffee of the day signs. I recognize the different offerings and they speak more clearly to me. And I pay attention to the Partners in their green aprons with what is still a very critical eye, but now with some feeling of familiarity. Of course they are not all as nice that they are described in the book.

I still don't think their coffee is the best or even all that good. My favorite is Green Mountain brand but there aren't any Green Mountain Coffee Shops. But one day, when my life needs saving, IF it ever needs saving, I'm going to don a green apron and become a proud member of the Starbucks Partners.

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It's One A.M.

And I can sleep.
Me and the cat.
Sigh...

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Time again

Since I am fixated on Time, I'll be chewing this until it is pulverized.

So, my Good Friend Cher says that there are a lot of time wasters like TV and sports and internet.

Ok. So I will give you the internet. But most of it is during work. And most if it comes into my inbox in the form of emails. Like emails from friends, and running clubs (most of which I delete with wild abandon because who the hell has the time to read the same topics over and over again...) and news updates from NYTimes and CNN and The Boston Globe. I would say about 3-4 times a day I get those. And some days, I get nothing. And when I do get them, 1 out of ten, I actually click and go to the website.

Internet at home is usually a double duty in front of the TV set.

So, let's move to the TV set. I would say that I watch about an hour to and hour and a half a night. These are usually shows that I have DVR'd and we zip through the commercials. And while I am sitting there, I surf the internet or play web games.

As for sports, I am not a huge sports viewer. I watch it if it is on - which it is because Joseph has it going almost daily - and there are many many types of sports out there, people. It is scary. And for me it's background noise. Again, I surf the internet or do some other thing like in the kitchen.

The other time is spent working, working out alone or with Scary Trainer. Going to the grocery store, running errands, cooking dinner, eating dinner, packing lunches for the next day.

But given that this has been brought up, I should check the amount of idle time I have where that time could be spent in more productive ways.

I'll report back.

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Talk about dry

I put facial oil on this moring around 8. Less than 2 hours later you can barely tell. What does that tell you about the skin ravaging dry air?

No wonder I'm sick.

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And that is why, we need to do away with career politicians

It seems the longer they stay, the more corrupt they become.

The more corrupt they become, the less they focus on affairs of the state. Instead, their position is merely a vehicle for doing their personal corruption business.

Two state senators (Diane Wilkerson and Chuck Turner) in Massachusetts indicted on charges of corruption and bribery among other things, one after the other, now being charged with collusion - with each other. Of course they are screaming racial bias. Yah. Take a number, morons.

Speaker of the house of Massachusetts, Sal Dimasi. What a damn joke. Quietly doing his personal business behind the scenes, then thrust into the limelight and suddenly revealing all. Well, that didn't take long. Time to step down.

The governor of Illinois. How stupid can you be?? 'Nuff said.

Sometimes due process is a luxury on my and all other taxpayers' dimes.

Government got compicated because they made it that way. We need to go back to the era of the statesmen when most people served as a civic duty and while holding jobs that brought in prmary income. And corrupt people need to go straight to jail.

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Random Thought: Being sick

Sucks.
Really sucks.
And people wonder, and are incredulous, about how germphobic I am.

Well, if you don't understand it, be my guest. Feel free to be sick all you want. Just don't do it in my backyard. Or anywhere within a 10 foot radius of me.

That ought to keep you at least a whole room away.

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Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Response to The Lack of Time

In response to my friend Chris in TX, who asked me to tell him when I have it figured out how it's come to this... not having any time at all for ourselves, I responded:
"Hmm. There are a LOT of us that do this and feel this way. I've had people emailing me about it. Good grief. What has happened to us? Was it this busy always? For our parents, too? And did we not notice because we were kids and didn't know any better? Do you think??? I am going to just say NO. And if I can't, I am hoping that Joseph does it for me. Seriously."
I hope that someone can illuminate us. This lack of time, in this fast paced world... who put in the super-octane gas? Who decided to rev up the engine? No one asked ME about it...

I will say that today, I worked from home again. I actually, I was sick and I barely worked. I had to move by body just to try and feel human again. So, I got changed and went to Best Buy to get some software, and then to Staples to get some more software... And I felt great!

I felt better knowing that I had another day to buy software that the company would reimburse me 20% for. Basically, I had bought the laptop on 11/09. But I picked it up on 11/10. They printed out another itemized copy when I took posession. So based on that day, I had one more day left to buy software. I know it's only 20% but still... it totals up to around $400! Ya know? That is a LOT of money! And in this economy, every little bit works toward making me just a tad less paranoid.

So tonight I actually made time to fill out the forms and stuff the envelops for the not only the reimbursement, but also a rebate (yeah!), and prep my fitness reimbursement (My company pays you up to $250 a year to exercise. Yah.). I just have to wait for a letter from my Scary Trainer and away it will go into the mail! Yahoo!

I made a sane list of things to do. I even marked off a few things as complete. I am much happier today.

I also went to the drug store to get some decongestant. I am feeling much much better. Sneezing like crazy now, but my head congestion is almost gone! YAHOO! It IS a sinus thing with a slight cold, it seems. Nothing more. But I am still pretty tired.

And the other thing. I've been home all day alone. By myself. No one around but me and the Dingle Dog and the Dingle Kitty. Not even Joseph. Sorry. I know that seems mean but even though he is the most important thing in my life, he is still another HUMAN BODY! He understands....

So, I didn't study my Chinese.
I didn't do my Christmas dinner list.
And I didn't do the work I told my boss I would try to do. But he understands. I hope.

But boy, do I feel so much better!!

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Thanksgiving in SC - Pictures

If you are interested in our Thanksgiving pictures, go here. You can see the little girls that love Uncle Joe. And the one that practically lived in Uncle Joe's arms, or on his shoulders, the entire time that we were there.

Yes. Uncle Joe is the best.

Me?
I am chopped liver.
Skip the onions.


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Monday, December 08, 2008

And the loser that I am...

I missed the one month deadline for making all eligible PC/Laptop hardware and software purchases so that I can get the 20% reimbursement from my company. I still need to get photography hardware and Adobe
professional. Which are expensive.

And WHY did I miss this deadline? I mean, a month is a long time right?

Well, it's not really. Not if you consider that my life is not my own and I am too damn busy going to functions and doing other things for other people and groups.
I am so damn pissed off that I can't see straight right now.
I hate my stupid life!
GAH!


Ok. That's a bit harsh.
I hate not having a day to myself.
I hate having to run around on behalf of other people and other organizations.
I hate having to travel, especially for work.
I hate not have a moment to even go to the bathroom during the day.
I hate having stupid commitments.
I hate having people in the same room with me most days.
I HATE IT.

I can't remember the last time I had a whole day to do nothing.
Why? Because that would mean that I would need OTHER days where I do nothing but run errands so I can do nothing on another day. That. Never. Happens. Never.

I am so mad right now that I could just SPIT!
I wish I could go to the mall. And walk around. And not even buy anything but look at things and just enjoy the sights. And I hate the mall. It has come down to that!

Ok.
I wish I could just go to Linens and Things to see what I can find on their liquidation sale. It's been on my calendar for two months.
TWO MONTHS!

I wish I could have the time to be happy homemaker and put up curtains and clean the rooms and straighten things out.

I JUST WANT TIME.
IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK??
IS IT????


What I want to know is what happened?
How did it come to this??

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Beer

I just found out how caloric beer is for you. You can find information here.

Talk about your empty calories!
The good news is that I drink Guinness draught, and then only rarely.

I am sticking to red wine.


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Sunday, December 07, 2008

...And exhaustion leads to lowered defenses...

And of course, I have a scratchy sinus area.

Sigh....
If it's not one thing, it's another.

I'm still tired this morning but my stomach weirdness is not as bad. Amazing what not eating for a day can do for you. I also drank over 2 liters of water yesterday.

We'll see how it goes today.

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Saturday, December 06, 2008

I think my body is broken

I came home late yesterday afternoon from another week of traveling. As I sat in my dining room, my stomach sent out a disagreeable rumble. And my body just sent out a wave of exhaustion. I could barely sit up.

I logged in and worked for a few hours. Then Joseph finally came home. I was deeply settling into some kinda funk. And my stomach was feeling worse. We order take out Chinese. Too much food, as always. I had about 2 tablespoons.

Joseph cleaned up, and I got worse and worse. My whole body ached. My brain ached. And God knows that my stomach ached, which was weird because I had a sandwich and chips for lunch. Nothing unusual.

About 8:30 I went to bed. Laid in bed, trying to sleep. I was too tired to sleep. And finally, managed to sleep for a few hours. Stomach was still bothering me. Then back to bed. 3 hours later. Up and down up and down...

For breakfast I had a bowl of rice in hot tea that Joseph made for me. I love my Hunny Bunny. He always takes such good care of me. Bowl of rice in hot tea is sort of like dry toast for an upset stomach. My stomach finally settled down. At 10:30 this morning, I decided to try walking around.

At 1pm, I went for my massage. Chris the MT said that was like a piece of rock. He couldn't believe it. 2 1/2 hours later, I felt much better.

I guess looking back on my last two weeks, it would have broken anyone.
  1. Two weeks ago, we left Saturday for Philly. Lots of walking, Joe's marathoning, not a moment to rest. We flew back home on Monday.
  2. Tuesday afternoon, we flew to South Carolina for Thanksgiving.
  3. Saturday morning, we flew back home.
  4. Sunday was Joseph's birthday so we stayed at home.
  5. Monday, I worked from home. At 3pm, I got picked up to go to the airport. The flight was delayed by over an hour. Then a connection through Chicago. And another hour and a half. And then the flight to Salt Lake CIty. I did not get into the hotel room in Salt Lake City until 2am local time, 4am Boston time. That is about 13 hours of travel time! THIRTEEN HOURS!!!
  6. Tuesday, got up and went to the office. Lunch out, dinner out...
  7. Wednesday morning, flew to Dallas. Arrived late afternoon. Dinner out.
    Thursday, got up and went to the office.
  8. Friday, got up and flew back home to Boston. Arrived at the house around 3:45 pm.
Two weeks of being on. Not a moment to myself. No downtime. Not to mentioned five cities in 2 weeks. Six if you count the start and end points.

I think that my body was really broken. I was mentally and physically exhausted. I have never felt anything like this before. Ever.

As it is, I haven't had anything to eat since breakfast. I do feel much better after my massage. But the unwinding is continuing and I am tired and achey. Too bad Joseph is having his party for his group tonight. I'd be upstairs in bed right now.

I will say that Christine the Caterer is in the kitchen and the food is smelling good. That is a huge improvement over yesterday for me. I actually think food smells good!

I will need 2 weeks to recover from this.
Of course, right after that will be Christmas.
And then New Years.

Can I just say how much I hate the end of the year?
And how much I hate the holidays?

I do.

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