Monday, November 28, 2011

We did it!

Despite the Preparation Paralysis, The Lists and I, with some help from Caitlin, The Farmer, and all the family members that contributed food items, pulled off a Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Whew!

And I've been relaxing ever since...The Farmer took care of dissembling the tables and chairs, and even vacuumed the messy floors for me! (And the way he vacuums, it should be good for some time now...don't tell him I said that, or that I don't plan to vacuum for a while...)

Caitlin took over camera duties for me, but since I forgot to turn the flash off "auto", we all have porcelain complexions, and so do some of the walls...but at least we have a record of a very good day with family!

More to be thankful for...

Crock Pot Cadre...

For your entertainment: Guess the Jelly Belly flavor...

...or play with Olive!
She didn't stop playing all day, and left our place exhausted.

More than just pumpkin pie for dessert...

The youngest men created their own game, some complex competition mostly likely based on a video game of some sort...I didn't ask them to explain it, and they didn't offer.

Meg's completely natural reaction to pumpkin pie...

Visit, visit, visit...

Games, and brain teasers ala Jim.

Traditional musings on what we are thankful for...
even large corporations!

"Thank you for the food before us,
the family beside us,
the love between us..."

AMEN!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Preparation Paralysis...

Thanksgiving is almost here!

Almost, but not quite...

I'm anticipating all there is to do with hosting the dinner for 26 family members this year, (and yes, I am bragging about how many I am feeding because back when I started this home-making gig, I could barely feed 2... I'm still kinda amazed about it myself!)

Anyway, I'm prepared, but paralyzed.

I've made lists, and lists of lists and organized and re-organized my thoughts and plans...It's just too soon to DO any of it!

Oh! I am so ready to take on this big task and accomplish it -- but if I start now, Thanksgiving will be a long line of people, waiting at the microwave to re-heat their dinner.

That just won't cut it.

So I wait -- and in the waiting I fear that my over-active mind will soon join the paralysis, and on the Day of Action, my anticipatory energy and clear thinking will have dribbled away into paralytic paranoia and incoherence...

Only my Lists will save me...

Excuse me, while I go make some more...

Oh -- and watch NCIS...It IS Tuesday.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Imaginary friends?

The other day I caught myself relating a story to Caitlin – and it gave her pause.


“Oh, Cait – Linda’s granddaughter, Nora, said the cutest thing the other day!” I proceeded to explain how Nora had arranged all the magnets on the fridge, then stepped back and pronounced her work ‘BOOTIFOH!’ “She is so adorable!”

Cait asked, “Who is Linda?”

“My blogger friend,” I replied.

“So where did you meet her?”

“Oh – I’ve never MET her! I know her from her blog…”

Cait looked at me with wonder – and not the awesome kind.

It’s like I told her I had an imaginary friend, or something!

But Linda is REAL, very real! We’ve never met, but I’ve commented on her blog a couple of times, so – she…well, probably…knows who I am. She’s a friend. I wonder what she and Nora have been up to, and how her husband does such great barbecue (well, it LOOKS great), and I’m waiting to hear when the newest grandbaby arrives – any time now.

I need to check in to see how Liz is feeling today…She’s had a rough time with vertigo and migraines since her darling baby girl Jane was born…I’m so relieved to hear that she is doing better. And I’m happy for her as her first book just came out…way to go, Liz!

My friend Melanie just braved the wilds of the Amazon on a trip with Compassion International. I wonder how Caroline and P survived her absence, and she survived being in the presence of reptiles and monkeys, of which she has a deathly fear…

I should check in with Kristen and get some more of her great frugal girl ideas…She is very disciplined! I am put to shame when I read her “Food Waste Friday” posts…

Amanda has a fond affection for decadently rich desserts…some of her recipes are scary rich! Like the one where you put chocolate chip cookie dough in a pan, top it with oreo’s, and then brownie batter on top of that…Sin on a plate! I love Miley & Howie too – her pair of adorable Boston Terriers. I know they would love playing with Olive…

And then there’s Edie, who just moved into her new home – the new home that replaced the one that burned down just one year ago…I so admire the way she’s handled the loss, and the disruption of their lives…And I love her new house!

I so enjoy these gals, every one of them! I’ve learned from them, and laughed with them, and got teary a few times over their troubles, admiring their strength and perspective.

So what if they don’t know I exist?

I talk about them to my family --- which has made The Fam worried about me. They think I’m losing it… relating stories about imaginary friends…

I don’t know why they doubt me. I’ve proven before that my internet friendships are with REAL people. After all, I’ve MET the Pioneer Woman…SHE knows I exist, and that has not made one iota of difference. Our friendship is as strong as the day it began…


I know it would be the same if I met ANY of my “blog friends”!

Frankly, I think The Fam should be grateful. If I didn’t have my blog friends to satisfy my need for human interest, just think how much interaction they would have to endure from me! Yes – think about all the emails and phone calls and questions you’d be fielding every day, dear family!

I"ll give you this: some aspects of blog friendships are similar to imaginary ones...All interactions can be kept on the positive side...There is no conflict, neither is there any obligation...If you choose well, bloggers and imaginary friends are very lovable...none of those pesky sensitivities or expectations to bother with!

I maintain that all friends – even imaginary ones – serve a useful purpose in our lives.

So, Family, stop worrying about me! I'm fine...I'm probably healthier for having a plethora of friends who don't know I exist than if I didn't. I'd appreciate it if you would treat my friends with the same kind of respect as I treated your imaginary friends. I always took an interest in them, didn't I?


And not one of them even had a blog, as I recall...


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Olive doesn't live here anymore...


As soon as Caitlin moved into her own home, she began to wean Olive away from her daily trips to the farm. Within a week, Olive was staying at home on her own.


We do miss her…Well, more accurately, The Farmer really misses her. Daisie and I feel her absence – and sometimes that is just fine. Don’t get me wrong…we love the little fiend, but we, uh, don’t mind having a break from her constant…uh, constant…interest in activities destructive and energetic. Despite Daisie’s relief at being the only dog in line for a biscuit, she still spends part of the morning waiting and looking out the window for Olive to arrive. I miss the morning naps Olive liked to take on my shoulder, and The Farmer is missing the tussles that interrupted his time in the office.

But it’s all good…Cait walks Olive morning, noon and night, so her confinement at home alone is working out very well.

When Olive is home alone, she is confined to the dining room behind the pet gate. In this area, Caitlin has floor length curtains, and floor length chair covers; her boot mat with her FatBaby Ariat boots(leather!), and her running shoes.

I thought she was asking for it…

But Olive has not wrecked a thing…she spends hours alone, unsupervised, and she has not wrecked A THING!

This is, in my experience, nothing short of miraculous.

But apparently, her miracles are site-specific…or something! During her visit here on Saturday, my coffee table was stripped of its leather-look trim in the brief moments in which we did not respond to her distress at a toy (the most precious ever!!!) being stuck under said coffee table. She also made her regular stop at the bathroom garbage can to lift some used Kleenex to shred and spread over the bathroom floor…and again there was a snowstorm of polyfill from the latest disemboweled toy.

I don’t know why she hates me. I don’t know why MY house is just a big box full of stuff to shred and chew…

As I said goodbye to her that day, I said to her: “ Why do you wreck my stuff? Haven’t I always been nice to you???”

Cait’s reply: “Mom – I think that’s the problem…”

What Caitlin doesn’t know is that I try to mete out justice – but I can’t catch the little bugger! I’ve even given a few swings to try to swat that little hiney of hers, but I always miss, and usually strain my shoulder trying…and chasing her around the coffee table seems more like a reward than a precursor to punishment.

Not to mention, it’s fairly humiliating…and amusing to other residents of this home who will remain unnamed…

My last ditch effort to protect my possessions will be to go to the country store, buy a bag of large animal parts that have been dried, or puffed, or cooked, or something, and keep them on hand to give out liberally when a certain little Frenchton comes for a visit…

It’s cheaper than buying a new coffee table…

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

So how did it get to be November?



I've noticed that the trees are starting to give up their leaves. We're almost to the point where the beauty of fall disappears into monochromatic winter gray. How did that happen?

It seems like it's been a leap from late summer to holiday time...and I'm feeling regretful because Fall is my favorite time of year. But I wasted a lot of it this year, spending all of September in some kind of a blue funk...A blue funk for which I kept trying to find a cause, and never really could. I finally decided to just act like I wasn't in a blue funk, and voila'! it helped! I think I shall deem that hormones were the cause -- because they are the cause of all things inexplicable...

Anyway, then October was a whirlwind of cleaning and painting, and new home excitement with Caitlin's move...and now it's November...A November in which I am a working girl! How strange for me!

My friend Sharice, who is the office manager of her husband's truck repair business, had a major heart surgery just 2 weeks ago, and will spend the next month recovering. In the meantime, I am trying to fill her shoes in the office. I go to work EVERY DAY (I don't know how you people do it!), and her husband Jon is getting to exercise patience as I try to learn truck terminology...It's weird stuff, people! Gladhands, and drag links, and stepped flywheels, and what all! And to make it even more challenging, they abbreviate the terms on the invoices. I tell you, I was relieved to find out that "assy" meant "assembly". I was beginning to wonder what kind of stuff is on these trucks! At least I don't have to know how the stuff works...most times, well -- sometimes, I can remember the terms, and that's all I need to know...get it on the bill, then send it out!

But I have to say that working EVERY DAY is really cutting into my Facebook time, and my coffee shop time, and TV watching, crafting, and just generally sitting around...Oh, yeah, and I still have to do housework! As I said, I don't know how you people do it -- and I admire you greatly, but I'm not interested in a career...

I'm spoiled...I know it, I know it well. And I will not complain about having to work EVERY DAY, because I am happy to do it, knowing that Sharice can rest every day, and get strong again...and not worry that her heart is going to do something drastic and dangerous. This makes me smile...

AND I should admit that going to work has made me more productive at home, and it's a bit of variety in my life, and I am enjoying the challenge of learning something new...I just hope when Sharice gets back she finds that I learned correctly, and that I didn't bill someone for a part that doesn't even exist...

(Last rose of the year...)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The (happily ever) After...


BEFORE...

AFTER!

Excuse the remainders of moving clutter...Cait was going to wait til it was all pristine, but I was too impatient.

BEFORE...

AFTER!
(What was I thinking?! I should have taken a close-up of the very perfect hardware that Caitlin got from Anthropologie...ON SALE!!!)


BEFORE...

AFTER!


She LOVES her BIG closet!


New light fixture in the dining room -- waiting for a paint color decision to be made...
The chair covers look great!

It's so nice to have a utility with enough room for your boot dryer!
(...and other stuff you want to hide...)

Surprise, Olive! You have your own special gate to look through...

...but only when your Girl is gone.
Otherwise, you own the couch...
well, and whatever else you decide to.

So there's the AFTER...didn't she do well?
I love it, and it's a good thing our Girl has her own ideas.
They really are much better than mine.

I still lay claim to being the superior cleaner...
and I maintain it IS the foundation of good design.

Isn't it?

About Me

Needing an outlet for various thoughts rattling in my head, I've created two blogs -- One about my real life (leslieisverbose.blogspot.com) and one where I can vent. (leslievents.blogspot.com)