Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Last night

I have made it to the final 24 hours. Yes, my dear readers - my egyptian returns tomorrow night at 7:39pm. I am thrilled beyond belief. I miss him - even his (sometimes) grouchiness - I miss it all.

Absence does make the heart grow fonder... and stronger.

I needed this.

I needed to feel independent again.

I needed to be able to make a decision by myself, without worrying about how it would affect the other person.

I needed to learn to be calm and patient with myself and with time.

I needed to learn to sit in absolute silence, and actually enjoy my own company.

I needed to cry with complete abandon.. about so many things.

I needed to pray - out loud.

I needed to talk to friends by phone, with censoring my speech (b/c I can be quite catty sometimes, and the egyptian frowns on my "sometimes" bitchy behavior.)

I needed to sleep completely spread out across the bed.

I needed to go to sleep with the tv on.

I needed to tear through a 1/2 gallon of ice cream in one weekend without feeling guilty. ;-)

I needed to be able to come in the door, whip my bra off and hang it on the dining room table chair.

I needed to let my stray hair sit on the sink  (while I am at work) after blow drying my hair in the morning.

I needed to be able to pay the bills when I wanted to, without being reminded daily.

I needed to be able to watch tv and play on the computer and talk on the phone all at the same time without someone saying, "If you aren't watching the TV - turn it off."

I just needed time.

The egyptian should literally be boarding the plane in Cairo now - headed for Rome. He will have a short layover, and an over night flight to Atlanta - with a few hours there. Then this time tomorrow night I will pick him up at the airport.

You guys know how I dreaded this trip for him. You know how I dreaded this trip for us. But it came, I survived, and I think.. maybe.. just maybe... we might be the "better" for it. ;-)

Finding the Christmas Spirit

Today's post from the 12 Days of Christmas Blog Challenge was to write about your least favorite thing about the holidays.

Do I have to pick just one?

As your resident curmudgeon, I would like to tackle this one in one of my infamous list formats.
Shall we?

1. Christmas music overkill on adult-contemporary radio. Look, I get it. Working the the media world - this is the time radio stations can butter their bread. Ads sell like hotcakes around the holiday themed stations. But.. my favorite songs quickly become irritating to me because I hear them 5-bazillion times a day.

2. New takes on old songs. Do NOT change the tempo, or add your spice to the holiday song. It drives me bonkers. I don't want to hear Beyonce sing Hark the Herald with some funky bass. Just sing it like it was written to be sung.

3. Holiday decorations up before Halloween in the stores.

4. Rabid women shopping. Brings out the grinch in some of these people.

5. Crappy gift packs in department stores. You know the ones, packaged like an awesome gift idea for the non-creative husband to pick up. Usually includes no-name body butter, a shower puff and some stinky bath salts that claim to have the essence of vanilla?

6. Too many sweets.

7. Either too many holiday parties to attend, or NOT getting invited. I don't know which is worse.

8. Wrapping gifts, I am HORRIBLE. Everyone laughs, they always know which gift was mine by the way I wrap them!

9. Having to take off perfectly good vacation days to use during the coldest time of the year.

10. Finally - the pressure to be happy all the time.

That's it! ;-)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Decisions that make you scream, "Oh Bloody Hell."

*Warning - language.

Well damn, damn, double damn.

Woke up this morning, feeling a little better (blah blah - read the post before this one) - then at 4:30pm, I was B-E-A-T. I headed out.

As I merge onto Hwy 280, I realized I forgot to mail off my Netflix DVD.  :-(

As I am heading down the hwy - slowly, I see it is backed up for miles. It is getting dark and begins to rain.

I decide to cut across town using back roads. (only 17 miles.)

Somehow it took me from 4:30 until 6:15pm to get home.

But oops - need to go to the grocery store. Did it. Then I make it home, in the cold, dark rain - drag my laptop bag, purse, and 6 grocery bags up a flight of stairs... only to find a note on my door.

Time to renew my lease. Okay.. okay.. I knew this was coming. What I did not see coming was the MASSIVE increase. Oh holy hell.

Choices? 7-18 month lease is the same price. Month to Month - waaaay more.

Here is the thing.....

I don't know what is next for the egyptian and I.

As in - the next "state/city" chapter of our lives.

I think I should sign the 7 month lease.. and that should buy him time to figure out where he will attend graduate school. THANK GOD he gets home Wednesday.

Not only do we have DECISIONS.. we have to make the decisions quick, because a lease is about to be signed.

7 months... that's doable.. right? That would get me through my fiscal year at work...

Then what?

Then again - what if he gets the teaching job at the Islamic School and he wants to stay? Should we sign a longer lease?

OH BLOODY HELL. I hate making BIG decisions. Why? I will play out every scenario in my head and stress for weeks about this..


Sorry. ;-) Just working it out in my head. Or here. hahaha

Taking a Break from Holiday Posting

I am back in the land of the living! Sorry about the scary face shot in the last post, but you know I "don't care" and wanted you to see just how bad I felt. I thought the thermometer was such a lovely added prop. (Cassandra - you got it right! It IS from Walgreens!)

I am taking a break from the 12 Days of Christmas post (today)  -because of the theme. It is a Christmas Craft DIY theme. Yeah.. uh.. I don't craft. Now, my dear friend Leanne over at From Chaos Comes Happiness did an awesome plastic granny craft. Go check out her page! (Her button/link is under the blog roll tab.. while there, check out some of the others!)

I am actually sitting at my desk at work, about to get started on some "advocacy" projects. Basically writing a marketing plan and "letters to the editor" around our issues we would like to get passed this year in Montgomery. We are still trying to get Alabama Smoke-Free (hasn't happened yet.) And honestly, it may not. Tobacco is such a big cash crop here.

As for me - I am still under the weather. Very tired, but the make up is doing a wonderful job of hiding it. I do not have a fever, so i though it was safe to come to work.

This is one of those "catch up" "dribble" posts. Nothing of importance, just more so avoidance on my part. Procrastination on the projects I need to complete before the end of the day.

On the way into work I heard two songs that made my day: Harvey Danger's Flagpole Sitta and Lipps, Inc.'s Funkytown. If you need a pick me up - try those on for size.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Fever, Faves and the Flu

As my regulars already know, from time to time I take a moment to share with you my day and some of my "favorite things" (which are basically things I have recently purchased and I am in love with.) Since many of us have similar taste AND you may be shopping for loved ones, I thought I would share with you some of the goodies that have made it into my life this past month that I SWEAR by.

Also - I will share with you what I have been doing. Oh yeah- FLU city. So - I baked eggnog flavored scones. LOL

You will get the whole pictorial journey NOW:
I was not kidding. Here I am. (As you can tell - I have stripped the sheets from my bed (cleaning) trying to rid my house of the flu bug. I look like HELL.

So - to cheer me up, I decided to make some scones- for the very first time. I just got into scones this year, and I adore them. I bought this bag at World Market. This flavor is spiced egg nog. My whole apt smells like it now!

Dumped the product in the bowl

Added the required water

Plopped it onto my baking stone. (15 minutes later... ) But first.. a few of my favorite new things:

Limited space means I needed to get rid of all of my old coffee mugs. I replaced them with THIS! Stackable mugs from World Market. This little stack cost me $10. Each mug has little landmarks from each city. I thought it was perfect for my home and it takes up soooo little space.

My new kitchen soap. Olive Oil infused with Lavender Oil. I am a fanatic about washing my hands while in the kitchen. Everything else dried my hands out - THIS does not. Made by Olive Tree products. LOVE it.

I finally found the perfect fabric softener. The perfect smell, the perfect feel. You will never separate me from this bottle!

Sooo.. Ulta had an amazing sale going on - Earth Therapeutics (buy one get one free!) I have used this brand for quite sometime.. but it was usually hit and miss. I have the foot repair creme (always have that one on hand) - but I tried the Soothing Leg Lotion for the first time as well as the heel repair. IN LOVE.

Then let's not forget the hands! (At about age 35 I became soooo dry.. sooo.. it's that time of year again!)

My two favorite nail polish colors for winter/fall. I found the perfect tint for the perfect price and you will not believe where - PAYLESS. I swear. LOL

You guys know I am a HUGE believer in the Double Shot espresso from Starbucks.. BUT - illy has a better deal. Same price - BUT MORE ounces. Plus, they are KNOWN for their espresso. World Market has these little babies on sale for buy one get one 50% off. $13 total for a 4 pack. I drink 1 to 2 a day for a jolt of energy when needed.

I never did show you guys my Scentsy Warmer I bought from my friend Shannon. This is the "Milano" - and I bought the Mediterranean Sea brick to melt with it. My room smells like a spa. The entire cost with shipping/tax and all was $44 for everything. These warmers work with a bulb. If you are interested in getting one, let me know and I will forward you to Shannon.

While shopping for a red top - I found the cure for my messy jewelry box. I bought this zebra print ear ring holder for $15 from Cato. Love it!

Speaking of organizing.. I finally bought one of these things for my drawers. $9 at an organizer store. Love it - want more.

Bought a new bathroom soap - the Rosemary Mint makes my hands feel "cool" and refreshed!

Then I swear by linen spray and this one is THE best.

Finally - my scones. No - I did not make the wedges.. but they taste good!

Meet Me on Monday

Once again I am linking up with Java and her friends for the "Meet Me on Monday" blog hop. It is a great opportunity to showcase your blog as well as meet other writers. I always find new blog to read from time to time.

If you are interested in linking up - click on the silhouette to the left.

You have to answer the five questions below.

As for my answers, check them out, and before you go, especially if you are new to my blog - check out the tabs above (About Me, Best of, Recipes, etc.) If you like what you see - then click FOLLOW on the google followers. Or if you prefer, click on the FB fan page.

Now for my answers:

1. What is your favorite way to eat chicken?

Well, if I have to eat chicken, I like it one of two ways - Chicken Tandoori (which I have an excellent recipe for this in the recipe tab) and I like Chicken Wings (honey mustard or garlic Parmesan.)

2. Have you decorated for Christmas yet? Yep. Guilty as charged. But remember, I live in a small space - so it only took 2 hours!

3. What is your favorite article of clothing? My absolute FAVORITE piece of clothing (or outfit) is definitely not something I wear outside - it is my yoga pants and grey Tshirt. Nothing more comfortable and makes me feel soooooo happy.

4. Do you pay your bills online or write checks the old way? A little of both. Mainly online. Only rent and sometimes my car payment by check.

5. Do you make Christmas cookies? Never. However, I have graciously accepted an invitation to a friend's cookie exchange party. (EEK!) I have to make 4 dozen cookies. Honestly, I have NEVER baked a cookie a day in my life. I made scones for the first time today. Sort of a practice round. PS - I need an easy, yet delicious cookie recipe!! I am excited for the cookie exchange, but terrified I will screw up!

Hope you enjoyed this little hop. If you are new to my blog and want more - I welcome you! :-)

Dear Santa

"He who has not Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree." ~Roy L. Smith

Dear Santa,

After 37 wonderful Christmas holidays, I have yet another year to request the material items that bring me so much joy. If you don't mind, I would also like to request a few non-material items, all to improve my quality of life.

1. I would really like a new couch. I have yet to pick one out. I realize that this gift will be more so from me to me - but perhaps you can make the selection painless as I decide with my better half. Please allow us the opportunity to come to a decision without killing each other.

2. I want an omelet maker. See, the egyptian tends to want to go to Waffle House (of all places) because he loves their omelets. I believe in my heart of hearts - if I owned a proper omelet maker, we could save money. Not only that, our waistlines. The Waffle House is a House of Cardiac Issues and I really prefer not to go.

3. A Dyson Vacuum cleaner. Every other year I have to purchase a new vacuum because the one I have is a piece of crap. If only I had the top of the line suckage machine - just imagine how nice my beige carpet would look then!

4. There are a few movies I would like: Eat, Pray Love; Sex & The City 2; Twilight/New Moon/Eclipse (no I don't own a single one); The Tudors (series); True Blood (series); Marie Antoinette (with Kirsten D.).. and I am sure there are more. But for now - that will do.

5. I would like a few new cds: Bruno Mars; John Legend's latest album; The Black Eyed Peas latest album.

6. I would like a purple scarf (knitted please.)

7. I would like peacock feather ear rings.

8. I need some black boots.

9. Mitten gloves

10. Some headbands - wide (preferably) different styles

11. A pedicure set

12. A Kindle

13. a subscription to Psychology Today and Mental Floss

14. A few books: But to be perfectly honest, I am not sure what I want!!

15. More drawer organizers. I love the accordion style one I bought for my dedicates!

16. hair barrettes

17. Chanel Mademoiselle

18. New candles

19. a sewing machine (and classes arranged for me.)

20. Finally - to rekindle my relationship with my egyptian. I want 2011 to be magical and fabulous with him!

That is all, kind Sir. Please help me acquire these minor items. Many thanks!

Baby Remember My Name

As I lay here in my pjs recovering from what I am pretty sure is the flu, I have been watching episode after episode of "Fame" from the 1980s. You see, this was one of my favorite tv shows as a kid.

It just so happens, I was a dancer. Don't laugh - I really, really was. People knew me as a dancer. I took classes several days a week and I performed. I started young and kept going as long as my toes would allow me.

I was also a theater kid. BIG time. I find it ironic that my family is still involved with all of that stuff. My sister is known to be the "theater" buff - but honestly, she was a behind-the-scenes sort of girl. I was the performer.

I performed in dozens of shows as a kid/teen/young adult. I would act, dance and sing my way across middle Georgia. I probably would have stayed with it had I not gotten so caught up in other things. I really enjoyed acting and was fairly good at it.

That's where "Fame" comes in. As a kid I dreamed of moving to NYC and going to the High School of Performing Arts. Oh how I wanted to be "famous." LOL I laugh now, but as a kid it was a serious "obsession."

Watching the episodes, it reminded me of my summers at theater camp as a teenager. Oh yes, I would spend weeks at theater camp - studying theater and dance. All day we would be learning new techniques and creating amazing vignettes or theatrical productions. One summer in particular, I took lessons from a former Atlanta Ballet Dancer and was in the best shape of my life. It was hard, it was intense - but soooo worth it.

I miss that atmosphere some days. Some of the kids I was in theater camp with went on to do amazing things. Carrie Preston, for one, is now seen on True Blood, and the others - a few went to Los Angeles and are pursuing different avenues (a few have popped up here and there on commercials, or as small bit parts in movies) then there are a few that took off to NYC and are performing off Broadway.. hoping to make it to the big time.

Sometimes I think I should audition for a play at a local theater in town. Then again, it has been so long, I am not sure if I would have the time. And there is the other idea, that it is fun to remember the past and keep it there. My friends (now) have NO idea about my "performing" past and would probably not be able to even imagine it. But alas, it was a major part of who I was from 6 until my early 20s.


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Making New Traditions, Creating my OWN kind of family

I am not sure if you knew this or not, but I think I have the flu. I know, I know - 10 years and no flu. Then again, I am slowly starting to feel a little better.

While in complete delirium (fever induced I am sure) and the simple fact I just spent the past 4 days with my immediate family in my one bedroom apartment - I came to the realization that I need to create my own traditions and my "own" kind of family.

Hang in there with me folks - I am on meds..

Okay - sooo.. here is the thing.
When I got married in 2000 I was in a different place. I was 27, had the big traditional catholic wedding, married the (baptist) preacher's son and lived in a great house with 2 dogs, a few cats, a garden, and two exchange students. A ready made family, if you will. We all celebrated Christmas and Thanksgiving, Valentines Day and Easter - family is 30 minutes away (on both sides) and most of my friends I had known for years and years.

Times have changed, and I am not sure if I have accepted everything.... completely.

See, I met the egyptian right before I got divorced. No, he was not the reason I got divorced, but he was right there to pick up the pieces for me when it was all said and done. I never dealt nor had proper closure from my previous adult life. I moved into uncharted territory - a foreign man from a foreign land with different customs, language and traditions. DUH - I know, you are thinking that.

Here's the thing, I feel like the egyptian and I are like dance partners now, but we are both trying to lead and both know the steps to a different dance. The kind that ends a sloppy mess - yet our intentions are to be great dancers??? Okay.. Okay.. maybe I should write when my meds wear off - but do you understand where I am going with this?

The fact of the matter is - I will never have children of my own. My traditions (from the past) and my husband's traditions are drastically different. But that does not mean they can't become a beautiful fusion. I need to make new traditions for us (with his input - of course!) and create our own little family, a more modern/multi-cultural mix of a family. Two people make up a family unit. We need to see that.

I think another thing he and I have to realize is, unlike couples with children (who can throw themselves into the growth and development of their little ones) - we have only ourselves, with family miles (and oceans) away. I think that I seem to be "working" on my relationship more than most because, well... that's all we have.

With that - I think in 2011, it is time to create our own traditions and recognize our very special type of family. I think the next decade has a lot of amazing things in store for us, and during this holiday season, I will reflect on the traditions I want to keep in my life and the ones I think we could adapt.

What about you? Do you hold onto the past because that's what we know and are comfortable with? Are we living authentic lives and creating our new reality?

Thanksgiving Antics Part 2

The little tree on the counter

My 6 Foot Tree - not huge, but perfect for a smaller sized dwelling

Thanksgiving morning - Autumn wanted to go for a walk on the trail around my house.

1/2 way around the trail - everyone needed a break. (It is VERY hilly and looooong.)

Signs of Fall - leaves covering the path

Autumn took off running

They were searching for Ogres

Almost done!

When we got closer to my home - we found my sister, relaxing outside - reading.

Dad helped Autumn stack her blocks

I crashed!

Then the demon came and awoke me!

She kept telling me she was The Evil Doctor that planned to kill me and eat my bones.

Then the wonderful Mashed Potatoes - my favorite part!

That night - we drove to the $1 theater

Autumn enjoying her popcorn and Toy Story 3

On their last day in town - I took them to Vulcan Park. Autumn was enjoying a view of the city.

It was soooooooooooo wind and cold up there, We almost blew away.

I had to almost strangle her to keep her from running off. hahahahaaa

The third picture almost did her in. This is my sister.

My family

As you can see - my sis is trying to corrale her in..

Finally - we visited one of my favorite egyptian families in town. Autumn crashed!

Grrr.. I was forced to buy storage on Picasa. If I delete photos, I would lose them from my blog - that is NOT good.


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