Friday, November 28, 2008


The leftovers are put away, out-of-towners are heading home, bellies are full, and Thanksgiving 2008 was an AMAZING success! I feel SO proud of how everything turned out, and everyone loved EVERYTHING! I don't think my in-laws knew quite what to think of my brothers and their humor, but we had a great night. Lots of laughs and jokes, just a great night all around (though I've never spent that long in a kitchen before, I was beat!)

Today I'm parked near the phone and my laptop for my big Thanksgiving Weekend sale (details at We went out for breakfast and are just visiting with everyone now, and I'm contemplating a slice of pie for lunch :)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

28 years ago today. . .

I was born :)

(and 33 years ago today, M was born!) Happy Birthday to us!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Things I Learned Today

1 - If you think you're out of string cheese, check the back of the fridge, behind the shelves on the bottom. If its been 8 months since you last bought string cheese, its probably best to throw that one out.

2 - Jell-O Pudding Singles suck. Pudding cups are more convenient. I don't have to mix it myself or wait 5 minutes, it isn't lumpy and it fits just as well in a lunch box or purse. Sure, I have to bring a spoon, but its a heck of a lot easier than bringing 1/2 cup of milk.

3 - Fry's (Kroger if you're not from 'round these parts) is the best grocery store EVER. Why? Because we bought a 22lb turkey for LESS THAN NINE DOLLARS.

Yeah. You read that right. 22lbs of turkey. $8.75. Bad ASS.

4 - Give me a hot glue gun, some PVC pipe, ribbon, seed beads and a week, and I can turn out some pretty gorgeous napkin rings. Now, give me your digital camera, and I will show them to you. ;)

5 - Hot Glue Guns are messy.

6 - Bourbon Pecan Chicken is delicious.

7 - my 20 year old cat, Buttons, has 1 tooth left on her upper jaw. I estimate that she has about 15 teeth. Looks like all of her incisors are there, plus 3 canine teeth. That's all. She should have about 30 teeth. Buttons, who has hated wet food ALL of her long life, can now only eat wet food. This makes me incredibly sad. I know she's old. I know that death is an inevitable part of life, and I know that - outside of moving a lot and having poop issues and bulimia, she's had a good, well loved life... but she's always been little bitty Buttons (well, big fat little bitty Buttons). She's MY Buttons, and to think that she's...

OK. can't finish THAT thought.

So instead, here are some lovely, recent pictures of Miss B.

Photos courtesy of J. Bills

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thanksgiving, as I know it, is ruined

Well. Not MY Thanksgiving...but everything I ever thought about Thanksgiving.

You see, I've ALWAYS loved my Mom's stuffing recipe. Its moist and flavorful and light and fluffy and just PERFECT. Since we've been going to Matt's family's for Thanksgiving for so many years, I've really missed having Mom's stuffing - and because they're big fans of cornbread dressing (and I'm not), it just doesn't feel like the Thanksgiving I know and love.

This year, as I mentioned, I'm hosting the big day for the first time, and so I'm pulling together lots of new recipes, hoping to find a few to start traditions of our own. The stuffing recipe I plan to make actually combines cornbread AND French bread, so I thought that perhaps it would be the best of both worlds. I started feeling a little nervous about trying something new though, because as we all know, stuffing is a BIG part of the Thanksgiving tradition, so I called my mom and asked, in a panic, for her recipe, so that perhaps I can just have something familiar and not find myself having a nervous breakdown, curled up in a corner of the kitchen, rocking back and forth, worried about ruining Thanksgiving. Mom said. . .

"well I don't really have a recipe. Its really easy though, just add pineapple chunks and walnuts to your boxes of Stove Top"

(I sat in stunned silence...)

what? ADD to the Stove Top? What do you mean, you used Stove Top all these years?

Memories of Thanksgivings past crumbled at my feet. My Mom, who in my eyes was always the best cook EVER, used boxed stuffing. It was all an illusion. Smoke and Mirrors. Pineapple and Walnuts. Carefully disguised (and boxes covertly thrown away) BOXED STUFFING.

Of course, I don't think less of it - I still love it and now that I know the secret, I can make Mom's stuffing anytime I want, but I would be lying if I wasn't totally stunned.

What Thanksgiving "secrets" do YOU have in your family?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Think Thin Thursday (and other thtuff)

Watching your weight this holiday season? Please click the "Think Thin Thursday" banner on your left and join my friends and I on our quest to not eat everything in sight this year! Bridgette is one of my dearest friends, and oh how her blog puts mine to shame!

In other news...

So I don't know about you, but I love "buy one get one free" deals. M and I used a BOGO free coupon today for iced coffees at Dunkin Donuts. I've received 4 BOGO free emails for various restaurants (and so has M!) as our birthday is next Tuesday. I plan to use them all. Free food is great ;) But sometimes, companies go overboard. Case in point - M recently went to Walgreens to grab a bottle of Aleve for my aching fingers. The box was shrink-wrapped with TWO boxes together! Hooray for free drugs, right?

The second box was preprinted with a faux bow and gift tag (complete with space for To and From) and the wrapper had a sticker "Buy one for you, give one as a gift!"

Really? Buy one bottle of Aleve and give one as a gift. Hm. Is there something I'm missing? Am I supposed to be giving OTC pain medications as gifts to all of my loved ones? Did I miss a boat somewhere, or does this fall under the "ridiculous" category with anyone else? Merry Christmas, now take two of these and call me on Boxing Day, I guess.

In other, other news...

Have I mentioned that my birthday is next Tuesday? ;) M's too, and normally, I'd be all excited, but as it falls on a Tuesday, the day M is usually gone ALL day long, I'm prepared to feel a little lonely. Well, not TOO lonely, as M's parents will be arriving on Monday. "Happy birthday, hang out with my parents all day and I'll be home too late to go out to a nice dinner with everyone" :( I asked M to check with his very easygoing professor, to see perhaps, what they were going to be doing next week, in the event its a class he can miss or leave early. Maybe I'm spoiled or selfish, but I'd just like to spend OUR birthday TOGETHER. In the past eight years, we've never NOT spent the day together. Normally, we're driving home from NM, so our birthday is uneventful, but at least we're together, sharing a fancy birthday meal of KFC on the road in the middle of nowhere...

M's response was rather hesitant, which made me more blue than I care to really admit. As if he didn't even WANT to spend the day with me. Perhaps he's just reluctant to admit that he'll be 33 this year, but still. And as it turns out, all they're supposed to be doing next week is watching "Goodnight and Good luck" - a movie we planned to rent anyway, so what's the big deal? We'll rent the movie this weekend, he can make an appearance in class for any notes or homework, and then we can go out for our Regularly Scheduled Birthday Dinner and I can stop whining and bitching about spending the night watching (and feeling like) The Biggest Loser on the couch with my in-laws (whom I love DEARLY, by the way, I'm not one of those cranky girls who loathes her in-laws, like almost ALL of my friends.)

And finally, all birthday unfun aside, I AM looking forward to/am extremely nervous about Thanksgiving 2008. This year, I will be hosting and cooking my very first Thanksgiving, and cooking food, for the first time, for more than four people. I'm nervous as hell, am probably way over thinking and picking entirely too many recipes (thank you very much Pioneer Woman!) My guests include my in-laws, my brother A, my brother G and his girlfriend, and of course, Matt and I. I don't know where we're going to sit. I don't know HOW I'm supposed to cook all of this food in my teeny apartment kitchen (so far, in addition to the standard turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes, I have my brother's homemade applesauce, FOUR other vegetable dishes, 3 pies, 2 appetizer/nibblers, and a partridge in a pear tree...). And I wish my Mom was coming out too :(

Monday, November 17, 2008

ahh, weekends part 2

Gotta love how just as soon as I feel rotten about spending a day alone, like I did on Saturday, we follow it up with something fun and amazing.

Saturday night we had a little dinner party with 2 of M's coworkers. Wine was supplied, and I brought the fixins for my white pizza (which was gobbled up and thoroughly enjoyed). We had a lot of fun and really enjoyed the company.

Sunday, though we were exhausted (we didn't go to bed until 4am!), we had errands to run, so we spent the whole groggy day together. And of course, it was wonderful.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

ahh, weekends.

There's nothing like a good weekend - sleeping late, sharing a pot of coffee, spending time togeth...

oh wait.

M's not here. Damn.

I thought weekends were supposed to be the time we spent together, since we never see each other during the week anymore...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

One week down

Its been a week since I made my little promise to myself - no more trash talking ME. I've actually gone a whole week without saying one negative thing about myself. I had one near-setback the other day, but stopped before the thought had even finished in my head. Feels good to appreciate me for a change :)

But the loneliness I'm still feeling, I could do without. I really need to make some friends out here. Lately, we've been spending more time with some of M's coworkers, who I like a lot, they're a lot of fun, but as it always seems to be, they all wind up talking about work, while I sit back and listen. It was like this back in TX - M's friends from high school and college, every time we'd all get together, it was "Oh! Remember So-and-So? I saw them last weekend" or "hey, what about that time that you and whatsherface..." All funny stories, but all before M and I even met.

How do you deal with situations like that? For me, like I said, I tend to just get quiet. Listen. Laugh when appropriate. Lots of nodding and smiling. But that only goes so far when it comes to wanting to be social, and at the end of the night, I feel even more left out and lonely than I did when the night began.

Friday, November 7, 2008

he knows.

M wasn't feeling well last night. About an hour after I posted, he got up and was throwing up for about an hour, poor guy.

He went to class this afternoon, but he could tell my mood wasn't great. He showed up about 40 minutes later than I expected...

with flowers in hand, then he took me out to dinner. Sweetie. I needed that.

(he also said he wondered if I had a hot date tonight without him, since I almost never blow dry my hair or style it, unless its a special occassion. I'll just pretend I made him a little jealous, and that's what worked ;) )

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Feeling lonely

Ever have those days where you just feel crappy and lonely?

Sunday night and Monday were those days for me. Sunday was actually pretty cool. M's coworker, a photographer, came over to shoot for a project M has for school. The project is really going to be great, I think, and I'm really proud of M for putting so much thought into it. Sunday night, though, I started feeling kinda blue. The 3+ week dry spell I mentioned before was getting to me. I was feeling just down in the dumps. Nothing helped.

Monday started off much the same. When I have days like this, I tend to stew over it for a day or two, then I break out of the funk. I was trying to break out of it - not very successfully, I might add - when I stumbled getting down onto the ground to open a box, mildly spraining my wrist and doing something weird to my knee (it "hurt", but only in a sense that I think it hurt, as I can't actually feel pain in that leg...). The pain did NOT help my mood. I was tired. I wanted to nap. I lay down on the couch to nap, and my doorbell rings, and an acquaintance and her dog come in to visit. I don't mind the visiting. I do mind her denying that it was her dog who peed on my carpet, blaming it on my cat (who DOES, admittedly, have a bladder issue, as she's 20, but she hadn't moved from her spot all day. Leave it to my miracle cat to pee from across the room...) I went to work, sore, tired and cranky. I came home. I ate dinner. I went to bed.

Tuesday and Wednesday were better. My knee felt better. My wrist still hurt. I worked it out. My hair looked cute and curly. Good hair days help a bad mood.

Thursday felt GREAT. My knee didn't hurt at all. My wrist hurt less. My hair looked even better than it had on Wednesday. I got a bunch of stuff done. I made a promise to myself to follow the Golden Rule, but backwards. "Treat others as you would want to be treated". My vow? "Treat yourself the way you treat others". If I wouldn't tell someone that they look terrible, it shouldn't be okay to tell myself the same thing. Maybe its silly, but I really do have a rotten self image, and I really do want to change that. I want to be the woman who is confident all the time, not just when she puts on a confident face. I want to be the woman who owns her curves, is proud of them, is strong. Not the woman I currently see in the mirror (when I'm not too ashamed to look)

I was feeling great. I had my day, I went to work, I had a good day there. I came home, we made dinner...and then...


I was feeling affectionate - or at least, in NEED of affection. I received none. I got chilly and wanted to cuddle. M got up to take his contacts out, and brought the cat back on his lap. No cuddling for me, just the cat. Now I'm suddenly back to Sunday night. Feeling lonely. Feeling "why bother? He didn't notice my hair looked pretty today, or the smile I wore that he used to like. He doesn't want me to touch him. He hardly wants me near him."

I feel like I may need to work a little extra hard tomorrow to work myself out of tonight. I hope my hair dryer can handle that...

(sorry for the funk, y'all)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Go Vote!

Have you voted yet? We mailed in our ballots a week or two ago, and its nice to know that its already done! Make sure you get out and vote today if you haven't yet - you know what they say: "If you don't vote, you can't complain!"

Saturday, November 1, 2008

it is much too early for ABBA.

Good morning from work. Love how we open at 7am on Saturday, and most weekends, nobody comes in until about 8:30. Someone remind me why we don't change the hours? I'd much prefer to not have to get up at 6am on a Saturday to be here at 7 and sit by myself for 90 minutes eating dry Apple Jacks.

I did have one member in this morning, actually, so that was nice. A little social interaction is always welcome. I've been trying to get out of the house a little more - failing miserably, I'm sure. I try not to count my regular deliveries, so spending an hour "hanging out" with my apartment manager (she was bored too!) on Thursday was something different, and though we've been to 2 concerts already, with a 3rd (Local H!) in about 10 days, that's about as active as my social life seems to get.

I have a small group of friends here, and we have a local message board so we keep in touch daily, most of us from work, but we don't get together all that often anymore. Everyone is busy lately, and with the holidays fast approaching, I know it just gets worse from here. Having to share the car makes it a lot more difficult. The few times the girls do meet up for lunch or Happy Hour, I usually can't make it, because M has class or is at work. It sucks to be lonely. Being on the insecure side that I am, I can't help but wonder about once a month if somehow I irritated everyone; perhaps they get together more than I realize, and I've just not been invited. Its all silly paranoia leftover from a crappy high school experience, and at least I can acknowledge that.

M and I have been...distant..too. We spend just as much time together as we normally do since school started, but I've been feeling lonely when it comes to us too. Sure, we had a blast at both concerts. We had fun watching the basketball game last night, passing out candy to the few trick-or-treaters we saw, but things feel off. Maybe its stress; I know he's trying to think of a subject for his next film project on top of two other class projects to work on plus his regular day-to-day garbage for work. I'm sure at least some of that is contributing to the 3 week (and counting) dry spell, but it certainly doesn't help me to feel any less lonely. I try to want to go to bed at the same time he does, "just in case...", but I have trouble feeling tired at 10:30 or 11pm when I've spent all day at home doing a lot of nothing and busy work, so I fumble my way to bed around 2am, when he's long since asleep, and lay awake in the dark, wishing I could have my husband back.