It seems we get very lazy during the holiday season. I know for sure that I have relaxed my rules. I have been eating anything and everything, and not exercising with regularity. I will enjoy it for the next 2 days, but then a new year begins. It is time to eat right, exercise, work on the mind, and improve the spirit. But for today and tomorrow, it is all about beer and relaxing!
5 1/2 days off and now I am back to work. Thanks goodness I only work today and a 1/2 day tomorrow. This working thing stinks!
Here is a brief recap of our holiday:
December 21 - I worked a 1/2 day, and Bill came to pick me up. He finally got to see our offices and meet a few colleagues he had not met prior to this visit. We ate lunch, went to the bike store to get his Christmas present (new pedals and shoes), then the museum. It was so wonderful to see a special exhibit when there was no crowd. There was no pushing, little noise, and we could really appreciate the landscapes at our own pace. We finished the day with a stop at Big Boss for a beer, dinner at Tyler's, and home for a DVD (The Simpsons Movie).
December 22 - We went down to Southern Pines to help Bill's parents. Bill cleaned their gutters while his mom and I supervised. I can't even remember what we did after coming home. I think we watched The Sting.
December 23 - We hung out at home, but did take our sweet puppy Christmas shopping at Pet Smart. She loves going there and picked out some treats for herself. We sent the evening at a Christmas party with friends. When we got home, we watched The BourneUltimatum.
December 24 - The entire Morrison clan was together for the first time in 2 years when the crew came up to our place. We met our new nephew, Ryan, and had lunch with the family. It was a nice day to play with the kids and socialize. That evening, we watched Christmas Vacation.
December 25 - We got up and followed the Krueger family tradition. We opened our stockings first, then ate breakfast before opening the remainder of our gifts. I think Bill really enjoyed the gifts I got him and I know I love the gifts I received. I got 2 new ornaments for the tree (a high heeled shoe and a handbag), a book, a robe, and 2 special surprises. Bill gave me a box filled with rocks. I thought it was part of another gift, but Bill said I should check the entire box. At the bottom, I found a gift card for a hot stone massage. I can't wait to get that - I have always wanted to try it. Bill also upgraded my diamond earrings. I have been wearing them every day since Christmas. I got running gear from Dad, Bunny, and Jamie, and chick lit books from my best pal in California. We quickly dressed after opening our gifts, and headed to So. Pines once again. The kids were already hyped up when we arrived, but seeing more gifts made them even crazier. They really liked the cars we got them, and played with them the rest of the day. We had traditional turkey dinner, and just enjoyed family for the rest of the day. When we got home, we watched the first half of The Holiday (which I received with Harry Potter 5 and a gift card from my favorite store, Nordstrom, from my sister-in-law) and will watch the rest tonight.
December 26 - I got up at 6:00 am to go shopping. Bill thought I was crazy to be wasting a vacation day. I got to the mall at about 7:20. It was not too crowded, except for the hundreds of people waiting outside of Crate and Barrel. I bought some holiday things at Pottery Barn, gift wrap and stickers at Hallmark, 2 shirts at Banana Republic, and a few other odds and ends. I was out of there by 10:00. I went to Barnes & Noble to exchange 2 books, then to Target and lunch. I got to the other mall, but did not stay long as I was very tired. The shopping this year was not as good as I expected. I think the fact that it was raining did not help either. I headed home at about 1:30 pm. Bill came home about 4:30 and we headed to a nice dinner before seeing the stage play White Christmas. It was a very nice way to end the holiday.
What a fantastic holiday season!! My Christmas was fantastic. I have so much to share, but I will post it all later. I had a great day today and received many wonderful gifts. The best gifts I got, however, were 4 1/2 days with my husband, and 2 days with the entire Morrison clan. Family is what this season is all about, and I am so thankful that I was able to be with mine.
Yeah!! Today is my last work day before Christmas. I am really lucky - my company closes for 3 days at Christmas, so we will be off December 24-26. I am taking a half day today. Bill is going to pick me up at 1:00 pm. I am excited for him to see our new offices and to see all of the decorations we have up. We will go to lunch, then a little Christmas shopping, and a trip to the art museum. I am ready to leave now.
It has been a great holiday season so far. My big boss gave us gifts this morning. We all received a beautiful holiday plate with a $10 gift card for Chick-fil-a. It was a very sweet gift, and one that will be used. I have been very lucky with the gifts I have received so far - I love them all. My office mate gave me a lovely pair of tiger eye earrings yesterday. It is not strictly about gifts, though. I just feel lighter and brighter during the holiday season. Everyone is cheery and in good moods. I love Christmas music and all the lights. It's like Scrooge says - I need to find a way to keep Christmas in my heart all year long. That sounds like a good goal for 2008 (among many others!).
Things are slowing down as the big holiday approaches. Work has been quiet, and I know it will be dead tomorrow. Luckily, I am taking a 1/2 day, so I will be out of here at 1:00pm. Bill has the whole day off (as well as the 4 following it), so we are going to go to see an exhibit at the art museum in the afternoon.
We did have a nice event yesterday. The three of us from accounting went out with the 4 ladies of reimbursement. We are all considered finance, but we have never done anything in a large group. It was nice to celebrate the season and December birthdays with the 7 of us. We even got coffee after our lunch, and we spent a few minutes browsing in Barnes & Noble (we were already there to get Starbucks). It was a nice way to kill 2 hours in a work day. Gotta love those work lunches!!
My day started with a bang. I was trying to place the sweet potato casserole I made for the company holiday potluck in the oven when I made an unfortunate shift. The glass lid of the Corning dish slipped off the top and shattered into about 200 pieces on the floor. I thought "Oh, great, that's how this day is going to be."
Well, I am pleased to say that was the worst part of my day. I arrived at work to find out that I had won a contest from the local newspaper. I will be receiving a copy of The Bourne Ultimatumon DVD. I should have it before the weekend.
My supervisor then asked if we could go over my one year evaluation (if is a little early, but I think she wanted to get it done prior to the holidays). It was the best review I have ever received. There are some places I need to continue to improve, but it was a very good review overall. I am so happy with my success at work, and I will be seeing a bump in my paycheck come January.
When I arrived back at my desk after the review, a Christmas present I purchased for Bill had arrived. I was so worried that it would not get here for Christmas, and it arrived with a week to spare.
We had our holiday potluck lunch, and everyone had a good time. The food was wonderful, the "Dirty Santa" gift exchange was fun. I got a DVD copy of "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation." I have never seen the movie all the way through, so I look forward to watching it soon.
After lunch, my supervisor gave us our Christmas gifts. She got me a 2008 calendar of 365 days of shoes. I love it!! It is so me. I can't wait to get to 2008 so I can begin looking at all of the glorious shoes! She gave me the perfect gift, and I am thrilled.
I can hardly wait to see what tomorrow brings...
PS - Don't you love Bumble Beer? My favorite holiday cartoon and my favorite beverage all in one!!
We just found out yesterday that my sister-in-law, Sally, is pregnant with her second child (Matthew will be 4 next month). We are thrilled to be getting a new addition to the family! After 3 nephews, I know that I am really hoping that this baby will be a girl (and so is my mother-in-law!). I don't think we will have many more chances!
Bill and I hosted our second annual holiday party this past Saturday night. The turn out was not as high as last year, but the people who are most important to us did show up. Our friends are the greatest. It was pouring rain, and they still came. A few had to overcome babysitting problems (our neighbors bought their 3 year old daughter at our request and she was absolutely delightful). Many had scheduling conflicts (Janet and Dan stopped by at 11:00 pm after seeing our lights on - they had been to 2 other parties already). Some even worked while at our house (Terry and Jon hooked up our big screen so that the HD feature now works properly - after 2 1/2 years!). Best of all was just to share the holidays with our dearest friends. It was a great evening (after massive stress levels earlier in the day) and I am already looking forward to our next party.
Darn if I don't get a phone call this morning from our credit card company asking about suspicious charges. Three strange charges posted last night from a L4Hinc.com. I knew they were not mine, but Bill thought they could have been business related. I decided to check out the website to see what the company did. Well, it is adult websites. The company Bill purchased from was LADD.com. So, I had to call the credit card company back and confirm that the charges were fraudulent.
Our account was shut off immediately. I asked when I could expect my new credit cards with new account numbers, and was told 7-10 business days. That long at Christmas time!! I told the rep that would not work. Luckily, she was able to expedite the claim and I will get the cards on Monday. Of course, I have to be home to sign for the package between 8 am and noon. I will be using the 4 hours of comp time my boss just gave me so I can sit at home and wait for the cards. I guess I should not complain - I could be with out Visa for 10 days!!
So, it's December - the most wonderful time of the year. It is wonderful, but it is also tough. It seems that I am constantly running around and doing things. First, we decorated the house. Then, I sent out 75 Christmas cards. I seem to be at the mall all the time, and I am still looking for presents. I am wrapping gifts in the evening and in the morning. Tonight, I am dropping off gifts to mail to Boston at the UPS store on the way home, then we are going grocery shopping for our party. Bill and I will spend the rest of the time to Saturday evening cooking and cleaning. I still need to finds gifts for two of our nephews, Bill's parents, and Bill. On top of it all, it is year end for my company and our auditors arrived today. Luckily, they will leave on Friday. Then, we have our holiday potluck for work next week, a council holiday dinner for JLDOC, and more shopping.
I love Christmas. It is the most wonderful time of the year. I am really looking forward to my 5 day vacation, though.
The local paper had a front page story about the outgoing system chief for the state's community colleges says that illegal aliens should be let in to the schools. His reasoning is that with the huge amount of illegal immigrants in this area, we need them to be educated and able to take more demanding jobs. It would be a strain to have to support them if they were not educated.
I see his point, but if these people are smart enough to attend college, can't they become American citizens? I don't understand why our country gives so much to people who will not stand up and become our citizens. Why should we support you if you are not here by legal means? Why should a freeloader get the same benefits are a citizen? If my taxes go to support the community colleges, I want to support people who are citizens who will be giving back to this country over time. It may not be politically correct, but it is how I feel.
On Saturday, Bill and I participated in the Jingle Bell Run in Raleigh. It was a 5K race benefiting the Arthritis Foundation. What a great day for the race! The temperature was cool, but not cold, and the skies were clear and filled with sunshine. Race participants were given jingle bells to tie to their shoes, and several runners were in holiday garb . I wore my red running shirt and had my Santa earrings as well as my jingle bells on. Santa Claus was even there to cheer for the runners. I guess it was the holiday atmosphere that got me running faster. I set a personal best for a 5K. I was pretty darn excited. I think it helped to have a few friends in the race, one who I kept pace with for the whole course. She really pushed me at the end and helped me to sprint for the finish. I am happy to say that we ended with the same official time.
What did we do to celebrate our great race? Go to the Sauce, of course, for a few celebratory beers.
I am a frustrated writer trying to get the thoughts out of my head. I thought that this blog would be a good way to journal my life and my ideas and to keep up with friends and family. I have a busy and wonderful life. I have a great husband and two wonderful dogs. I have good friends and a crazy (but great) family. I am a runner, a beer drinker, a Georgia Bulldawg, a Caniac, and a triathlete, not to mention a full time employee. I love to shop, watch movies, and read chick lit. If I am not over scheduled, I am just not living!!