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Showing posts from December, 2010

Christmas Dinner

I didn't take pictures of the deviled eggs I made (one regular batch and one made with Slap Ya Mama cajun spice mix) or the other hearty treats we enjoyed over the holiday. Glad to be home so I can get back in the gym! I also rode my bike to work today for the first time. Pudge-o-rama...

Juggling Elf

For my Christmas present to Shawn I gave him three light up juggling balls. They are amazing, and I may have to attempt a video in the dark. But they still look pretty cool on first juggle. On the way home he was hassled at the X-ray machine, but they let him through with them after he explained (no demonstration required). I'm EXTRA glad I shipped them to Danville instead of carrying them on the way there -- the surprise would have been spoiled!

White Christmas 2010

Being in Danville this year was our second white Christmas in a row, after last year's blizzard in Oklahoma. Here's what we saw out the back door at the inlaws' house. (Of course I stupidly didn't take pictures of us IN the snow ... I didn't even step outside on Christmas Day!)

Dear Santa

Watching Miracle on 34th Street for the first time, and I have been cooking for our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinners -- so far just the deviled eggs and cranberry salad. Yum-oh. Tonight we're having ham and tomorrow will be turkey. Just the four of us (thank goodness for Christmas Day NBA basketball games!), and then on Boxing Day we'll go to Shawn's aunt's house for a bigger party with the rest of the extended fam. We had dinner with Shawn's dad's family on Tuesday after we arrived.

Thinking about Santa puts me in a greedy frame of mind. Gimme, gimme, gimme. I just perused my Google bookmarks, and the category labeled "i want." In the past couple years I've been using it I've amassed 100 bookmarks of items I want, and that doesn't count items on my Amazon list. Some of them are dead links now -- like a dress I liked over a year ago that's no longer available. A lot of letterpress stuff, tons of specific Etsy things, travel prod…

My First New York

My First New York: Early Adventures in the Big City (As Remembered by Actors, Artists, Athletes, Chefs, Comedians, Filmmakers, Mayors, Models, Moguls, Porn Stars, Rockers, Writers, and Others by New York Magazine

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A birthday gift from my mother-in-law. I put the book on my Amazon wish list once I read about it on The Noisiest Passenger blog. Basically a collection of New York magazine essays by famous people about when they first moved to New York.

I don't remember as clearly when I moved to New York in November 2007, probably because I was working to be vague about my living situation and I can even fool myself. But I have distinct memories of moving Shawn there that August. The heat without the air conditioning in the stuffy little studio, moving every box just the two of us and how filthy it was.

When he left to go get his office keys and I lay on the bed, listening to the city. In particular I listened to the noise made by the nearby bookstore's side…


Been a busy Saturday. After working out and our usual pancake lunch I indulged in a Hallmark Christmas movie and then we went on a bike ride. For the first time we went to the levy -- it's so close and easy! I only had to walk my bike up one of the inclines ... and a true biker rode by me and said "yeah, that part is tough." HA! I can only get better from here...

Once we were back from that I started in on the Christmas cookies. I made the dough yesterday and baked and decorated today. The dough was stickier than normal even though I had chilled it overnight, so I had to work in some more flour.

Not eating/tasting the dough produces more cookies -- actually made there be not quite enough icing. So I just didn't frost the broken ones (broken = goodie for Shawn). I focused my will power on not eating the cookies ... so far so good, but man they look tasty! 10 bells, 12 stockings, 15 trees, 9 stars plus a few broken ones of almost each. They're drying now and then I…

2010: The Places I Have Slept

View 2010 in a larger map

Edit: Thanks to my eagle eye commenter I've edited this to reflect the nights slept on the cruise ship. I just added the ports -- no way to know for sure where we were on all the nights we were at sea, but I know I woke up in each of these places -- plus a couple out on the water. Thanks, CG!


upgraded my website,, to a wordpress set up instead of straight html (which basically meant i never really updated it). i haven't decided whether to shift this blog from blogger. i am weirdly loyal to google though. there are still a lot of random html pages i need to clean off my server space, but i'm going to focus on something OTHER than my own vanity site...

while i was tooling around my bookmarks and blog i found this befunky site that allows fast editing of photos with weird overlays, and spent some time playing:


I've been working on blog posts in my head but haven't taken the time to type them out... Here are some topics, in case I don't get around to true posts:
Mail - I love opening the box to Christmas cards. And today bonus: my This American Life USB came!Make-up ... how wearing it changes things and how I finally succumbed, as my 20s closed, to wearing it to work every dayWeather -- I am certainly getting used to the balmy winter. 70s in December, yes please!Gift Guides -- Etsy Taste Test ... uh, this was pretty good on what I like BUT seriously I love most everything on Etsy! Then there's this Hunch Gift-o-Matic where you put in a Twitter handle and it spits out a list of suggested gifts. I have a suspicion it's just a shuffled list for everyone, but still a really neat concept.Recent conversations about work/career planning. I'm not sure I have any better grasp on what I should be doing, but I feel mostly OK. Especially because I'm taking some time off for th…

Elfing Tradition

I have made these for two or three years now, and this time I couldn't pick just one dance... Sorry for the ads you have to watch before you can see the video ... doesn't really make me want to go to Office Max, but there you go.


I'd been without exercise for too many days, but today was able to get back in the gym. The misses were worthy -- illness, Bible study and a fun goodbye dinner. But it's nice to get back into a routine, at least while I can.

A couple updates -- I overreacted (naturally) to the work thing, and all seems to be OK, at least with me. It was an external force creating the call and I need to get over myself! I was able to listen to the call while my teeth were being cleaned (best dentist ever -- really). And then I got them polished and got compliments on my teeth -- love that. He commented on how straight they are -- thanks, Mama!

And the other update: my lunchbox left in Mobile is on its way back to me. I called earlier this week and they connected me to lost and found, called me back and sure enough they've got it. They'll send it to me, which is very nice. I think this is just one reason to ALWAYS TIP HOUSEKEEPING!

photo © 2008 Nick Ares | more info (via: Wylio)I ran an e…

Work in Progress

Accomplished sending the Christmas cards and setting up a dentist appointment for tomorrow. Of course as soon as I get the appt. confirmed one of my bosses sets a conference call -- BUT it's a call that he had to arrange with more than 24 hours notice because outside people are involved.

One of many professional lessons I'm learning, or trying to learn: don't take things personally and just let go/let it unfold. I can't be so territorial, and I certainly can't do everything. I can't even do everything I want to do. It's fine if I'm not on this call. (And I will get to hear the first 15 minutes ... or more if the dentist is running late.)

Aside: I think this is Rory Gilmore syndrome ... in one of the last seasons of Gilmore Girls her internship boss/boyfriend's dad tells her she'll make a great assistant someday but to not even pursue a career in journalism. And she just believed him! I'm coming to that conclusion on my own at least?

So I…

1,082 Miles

And I'm also unhappy with my haircut. Insult to injury or something. At least Shawn is home. I should go to bed instead of blogging ... Meh.


Being sick and overtired is leading to mistakes and stupid errors. In addition to dropping the computer (still working -- knock on wood), I left my lunch box in Mobile in the hotel fridge. What a bummer! And it was a gift. I guess I can call them and see if they can send it to me. Blurgh.

Today at work I bonked myself on the head on the shelf over my desk and wanted to burst into tears. I'm so tired ... but at least I know this cold is temporary, and my body is generally healthy and can fight this off.

So I gotta get this fighting. I gotta get resting and drinking fluids. Maybe I'll have something besides griping to write in the near future. A ha ha ha -- what a knee slapper!

Recent Reads

From the library:
John Wesley: A Biography, by Stephen TomkinsA Lesson Before Dying, by Ernest J. GainesFrom the library as audio books:
A Little Bit Wicked, by Kristin ChenowethCommitted, by Elizabeth Gilbert (about an hour left on this one)Fearless Fourteen, by Janet EvanovichPlum Lucky, by Janet EvanovichRandom book I bought and read: My Horizontal Life, by Chelsea Handler.

Now that I have a Kindle (have I mentioned I got a Kindle for my birthday?!), I will be reading a lot more I think. I didn't read at all today, but maybe some before bed. I'm still ploughing (plowing?) through some books from my birthday. Waste not, want not, right?

But before that I'm going to treat myself to one more lie down on the couch, trying to get this awful cold virus out of my system. I've been drinking plenty of fluids but not resting as much as I should. I went to church today (although didn't touch or breathe on anyone, for what that's worth), then did a Target run before comi…

Grading Hotels

Another night in a hotel. Last night's was a sorta-swanky downtown hotel in Mobile. Now I'm in a decent hotel in Tallahassee. BUT the way I determine if a hotel is really nice: by its towels, if it has a bathrobe and its stationery. Neither hotel provides bathrobes or stationery. What a rip.

I've traveled and traveled. I drove until I was blurry in the eyes. I am exhausted and starting to get sick. A sore throat, achy muscles and starting to feel head-stuffed or something. I just want to go home to my Shawn. I hate feeling so resentful toward my work. But I don't know how to stop. I especially hate that the travel makes me a less efficient worker -- and I'm just spacey. I forgot to zip up my bag and the computer bounced on the asphalt when I got it out of the car. So far it still works, but it's a pricey piece of equipment. Whine!

Next week I'll be staying home, but of course Shawn goes out of town on Sunday for a night in Atlanta, back late Monday. Good th…