Friday, December 30, 2011

And a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you!

The festivities of Christmas are over.  The spouse and I have returned from our sojourn to the deep and dirty south.  We have shed our faux accents, although the phrase "Ah'm a gonna give ya'll a fist full of shut up if'n you don' cut it out!" will stay with me for a very, very long time.  Another Christmas memory to cherish.

I obtained a very healthy Xanax prescription before we left for North Carolina.  It just seemed prudent in light of the many circumstances we were apt to encounter whilst visiting.  Happily I did not need them and even more happily, I took them anyway...well I had paid for them after all.  So I spent the first couple daze in a haze and enjoyed myself.  We had a yummy luncheon with the spouses offspring  at a  (what else) BBQ place on our way to Asheville one day.  Picture this:  Pulled pork plate with sides of cole slaw (just slaw if you're from there) and hush puppies and two kinds of BBQ sauce.  Bliss.  I have some roots as a daughter of the south, but we just won't go in to that right now.  At any rate I luuuuuuve hush puppies and BBQ and Slaw so the visit was starting out to be just fine.  We then visited a truly depressing and worn out used book store in the hinky part of Asheville.  I really like old bookstores, but for what ever reason this one just made me want to hang myself.  Before you sit up too alertly, be it known that I did not hang myself, rather I played Dominoes on my phone, the corner...alone in a Xanax enhanced euphoria.  Not soon enough we left and went to an arty gallery in a better (read expensive) part of town.  So I got better.

Another day we drove back up to Asheville to go shopping with mother of spouse, or M.I.L. (mother-in-law)  I wonder if Mike Tindall refers to P.A. as MIL.  Kinda like that idea.  I digress.  So we had another yummy lunch, this time at a place our current "Leader of the Free World" has been known to frequent.  He was not there on the occasion of our visit, but we were made aware that there is a plaque some where in the restaurant that proclaims this to be true.  So there.  Anyway, after another scrumptious meal we headed off to the gallery we had visited before, indeed had visited the time before this on another visit.  But whatever.  We shopped and had a grand old time before we headed off to the Biltmore Estate for a tour of the manse built by some Vanderbilt.  It was really big.  And really cool.  I could easily have lived there because there were so many bathrooms.  And there are quarters for the domestics downstairs near the bowling alley.  Not sure if that was on purpose or not.  It goes on my list of neat things I've seen, but for pure opulence and over-doing it, Hearst Castle wins by a fair margin.  The castles and what not in Europe etc. still win hands down for building homes that are just enormous for what ever reason.

We had a couple dinners with the good friends of my MIL during our stay.  I feel fairly confident announcing that we have had quite enough of the "churching up talk" to last a good long time.  But we also had great meals and we are grateful that they were Episcopalians so we could drink heavily.

The long dreaded Christmas eve at the starter wife's house came to pass without a hitch that I remember.  I do know that Steve was given a mostly unbroken horse of some suspect lineage by his former spouse.  The beast stands over 17 hands (5'8" at the wither, we've been through this so I shan't go further) is pretty dark haired and has the amusing propensity to run you over.  The ex-spouse recommended "Natural Horsemanship" to cure him of this habit.  I wait breathlessly for this to arrive to our home and hearth.  Oh right, his name (currently) is Biggie Small.  Lucky Stevie.  We think we should send it to Derek (you awake there sport?) for some "joining up".  Spread the joy as it were.  Happy Holidays!

So we got through Christmas day by visiting Spartanburg, South Carolina.  It is indeed spartan and the tallest building there says "Denny's" right on the very top.  We assume it means that that is the world famous world headquarters of the national (international?) chain of the same name.  We didn't go to Spartanburg to see that, though it would have been worthy of the visit in any case.  No, we went to Spartanburg to go to the movies.  War Horse if you must.  I think it falls on the "yeah, go see it" list, but at times it was pretty much "Black Beauty goes to War" if you know what I mean.  The horse was spectacular to look at, though he had a nasty stop in him. (if you don't ride, go ask someone what this means, I'm busy right now.)

And now we are home.  Sick with some vileness we procured on our travels.  Why even as I patiently type this missive to y'all, the spouse is moaning pitifully from his bed demanding I rush out, in to the cold no less, to gather up more sick room supplies.  Specifically 1.) Aloe Puffs 2.) Air Borne 3.) the fixins' for meatloaf and also for macaroni and cheese.  what.ever.Steve.

I saw two of my delightful children yesterday at Fairy Tale Town.  I also saw my Auntie, my cousins wife, my cousins daughter and two of her offspring and my own grandchildren.  And we had a grand old time watching the urchins scamper about the nursery rhymed theme park that I remember scampering about on when, a long, long, long time ago I too was a child.  In any case there were four generations of my family there and they varied in ages from one year to ninety years old.  I think that is pretty remarkable.  So cheers to us all.  pip pip

Since we are sick, we have no plans for New Year's Eve.  Since we are lazy we  also have no New Year's resolutions to proclaim.  And with that, I sign off for the last time in 2011!  Raise a glass and what not and a prosperous, happy New Year 2012 to all y'all.


Monday, December 12, 2011

Better Watch Out

Today was a banner day in so many ways.  Number one being the fact that I did not leave the house.  Number two, my mother-in-law friended me on FaceBook and finally, I finished a project in time for Christmas giving.  Enormous pat on the head!  What did you do?

After months of angst, I have finally discovered what became of my down comforter.  It's been missing and now that we are in the winter weather I need it on my bed to keep me comfy, warm and toasty.  Naturally I was quick to assume that the daughter of Steve mistakenly took it off to school and I was grumpy about that.  Then I started pricing similar comforters and was horrified to discover that I would have to give up about 10 tanks of gas to pay for it.  We've been huddling and shivering under the summer weight down blanket and a quilt which I assure you after many years of down puffiness when it is cold, down flatness is a poor substitute.  So anyway, I've been crying and whining and muttering and sending not so subtle hints about this catastrophe for some time now.  Last night I asked the spouse to send a text to his child to inquire if she had the comforter and if so would she bring it home so we could get it when we visit at Christmas and he said ok.  He said it in that way that you just know really means, "if you will just shut up I will agree to anything you have to moan and bitch about."  This being the case, I reminded him this morning to text the child and he said, "You know I think I might have that at the office from when I took it to sleep with when I had to spend countless evenings sleeping on the floor of my office during the fair."  He went on to say, "Would you like me to drop it off at the dry cleaners?"  This can only mean that I should probably, in the case of public health and what not, contact the guys in the hazard suits to come dispose of it.  I'd forgotten that little inconvenience for him, it in no way affected me.  So a conundrum.  Do I whine and cry because I still don't have a comforter?  Do I praise the addle-pated spouse for belatedly remembering that he was the culprit in the missing comforter case?  And more importantly, do I have to apologize to the child for defaming her character, or do I just keep quiet and assume that no doubt I missed some other egregious act and the defaming was warranted?  You just don't find the answers to stuff like this on Jerry Springer.  Or even Ellen.

I have many gifts to still buy.  Basically I have a mother-in-law, two son-in-laws, two daughters and a granddaughter done.  Which means one son-in-law, one daughter, one husband and four grandsons are giftless.  The daughters always say, "Oh Mama, you don't have to get us anything." and "The kids have all they need."   But they don't mean it.  I know they don't.  I'm not very good at remembering anniversaries and have a bit of a time with birthday presents, but Christmas?  Not too easy to forget is it?  And the "other" parents IE: my ex and his current will get them all something appropriate and tasteful and exactly what they want.  I have a lot of competing creativeness to do between now and then. 

And what do I want?  Oh, you mean besides world peace and good will towards y'all?  I was thinking of the 2012 Equine Coach.  Bonus:  We can live in it.  Bonus:  I'd have to get a horse to put in it.  Bonus:  We could move whenever we wanted without having to pack.  We move a lot.  I've never lived in a house longer than something like five years in my life and in the past ten years we've moved five times.  So if you think about it we'd be saving like a whole forest of trees if we lived in the equine coach just in not having to get moving boxes.  Always doing my part for the environment.  You're welcome.

So this time next week we'll have placed the doggies in puppy purgatory at the kennel, and should be winging our way to North Carolina for the holidays.  I've already regaled you with the anticipated expectations, great or not.  It's the holiday travel that has me in knots.  We leave on the 19th, which may be early and we might, just might miss the havoc that is holiday bad travel juju.  But we come home on the 26th.  Now tell me, is this a good day to travel or a really stupid idea in its entirety?   There is always the possibility of getting bumped due to the airline over selling the seats and the ever present opportunity to get free flights to where ever you want.  Conversely there is the danger of sitting next to Uncle Joe in the middle seat.  He will be grossly overweight and suffering from way too much brandy in his eggnog and a little too much stuffing in his gullet.  These types always like to tell you about every aspect of their lives with little regard to mortifying halitosis.  Since at that point Christmas will be over and therefore there will be no point in being good and watching out, I fear that my limit will be breached in a remarkably short time span.  The FFA frowns on cranky passengers.  I must desperately  hope for the free flight and the bumping it entails.  And speaking of bumping ticketed passengers.  WTF airline?  And what's with the $$charge for bags?  And in what level of sanity do you expect people to b.u.y. that swill you foist on them disguised as a meal?  I feel a full on "episode" coming my way.  Wanna go with?

But before we enjoy our trip, we must first get through this week.  It looks something like this:
Monday - nothing except the above noted highlights
Tuesday - go badger Honey and admire her horses then later, go have a boozy dinner with Chris
Wednesday - ride in the morning, thanks Andrea, and then have a boozy dinner with Linnea and Debbie and hopefully Megan and Lindsey. 
Thursday:  Thank God Steve finally turns fifty!  Act all lovey dovey.
Friday:  Have boozy celebratory dinner with family in extended birthday celebration of Steve's fiftieth
Saturday:  Go to boozy holiday party
Sunday:  Celebrate no booze

That about sums it up.  I was going to go to a boozy cookie party on Friday, but the hostess was invited to a better party which will involve dancing and dressing up and such like and so we all got the boot.  The hostess did ask if I would still send cookies.  I cannot print my response.

I hope you all have the holiday you deserve.  Or at least, deserve a holiday.