Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Busy Bookworm Challenge 2010!

I'm waiting for CJR to finish up her fabulous 2010 Busy Bookworm Challenge button so I can post it in my blog, but I figured I could still draft my list of all the books I plan to read in 2010.

Here they are in no particular order...

- The Host by Stephanie Meyer
- Look Me in the Eye by John Elder Robison
- To Dance with the White Dog by Terry Kay
- Dogs of Dreamtime by Karen Shanley
- The Hidden Life of Dogs by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas
- The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
- The Hunger Games (#3) by Suzanne Collins
- Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
- Lord of the Flies by William Golding
- The Giver by Lois Lowry (I want to read this again since I last read it in 6th grade)

Anyone else jumping on the Busy Bookworm bandwagon?

(you totally should.)

(even I'm doing it and I was never a big "reader" until this past year.)

(who doesn't have time to read one book a month?)

(that's why it's called the BUSY bookworm challenge, silly.)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas Shenanigans

I hope everyone had a very merry Christmas. I just so happened to have a great one. Here are a few tidbits of my fabulous last few days.

- Snow on Christmas Eve in Texas! Yup, that's right. We had a blizzard all day on the 24th. I have never seen snow blow completely horizontally. See below...

- Dreaming of a white Christmas? Snow was still on the ground Christmas morning. :)

- My baby drove up Christmas day to spend the next few days with me. I wish he could have been here for all our Christmas Eve traditions, but he had a family shindig. I am just happy to have him when I could. Compromise is something I'm still getting used to when it comes to holidays and families in three different cities.

- Catchphrase is the world's most AWESOME game. Playing sober is fun, but playing after a few drinks is UBER fun. I think we played for 6 hours. I have video on that too, but I don't want to embarrass/incriminate my loved ones in my blog. ;) I would never do such a thing.

- My biggest surprise gift this year had to be my Keurig K-cup coffee machine. I had a perfectly (cheap) basic Mr. Coffee pot and didn't expect anything coffee-related at all. But now that I have my Keurig, I don't see how I've survived 27 years without it! (Ok, only like 8 years of my coffee-drinking life). You plop in a K cup, press it down firmly, press the shiny blue button and BAM, you've got a perfect cup of coffee. Brilliant.

- My most-used gift was definitely my Flip video camera that my boyfriend bought me. I got snow/blizzard footage, church service footage, silly Catchphrase footage, future brother-in-law screaming like a girl while making a snow angel footage, etc.

- I made the infamous Monkey Bread for the first time. Turned out great! So did my broccoli cheese casserole on Christmas day. Score!

- I got sick on Dec. 23 for the second year in a row. I made my annual trip to the doctor and let him do another strep test. This year, it's not strep! Yay! But it was a bacterial thing. Boo! Not to worry though, I got me some amoxicillin.

- I made myself (and my mom) a deal that I wouldn't completely wig out about being unemployed over the holidays (since there is essentially nothing I can do over Christmas). I continued obsessively applying through the 23rd. Since that time, I have made a concerted effort to just relax. That's not to say that a few Eeyore moments haven't crept up on me, but I'm doing fairly well. I will likely (99% sure) get back on the obsessive-compulsive job hunt tomorrow.

- I thoroughly THOROUGHLY enjoyed having the whole family together. I'm so very blessed to have two amazing parents, my sister and her fiance, and my boyfriend all spend quality time together under one roof. I made sure to take lots of mental pictures (and flip videos).

Now that the company has all gone home and the house is quiet, I realize that New Year's Eve is only a few days away. So I must go rest up (I'm going to sleep like a rock) and recover from my tequila induced Catchphrase over-indulgence that was this weekend.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Happy Award!

Thanks to CJR at Girl v. The World, I now have a new Shiny! A "Ten Things That Make Me Happy" Award!

Here are the rules of the award:

Copy the award image in your post.
List 10 things that make you happy, and try to do at least one of them today.
Then, tag 10 bloggers that make you happy!
For the 10 bloggers who get the award, link back to me and spread the happiness!

Here is my list:

1) I couldn't survive day-to-day without the amazing support and love from my mom, dad, and two beautiful (inside and out) sisters. My family makes me incredibly happy.

2) Happy Pants (boyfriend). I'm insanely lucky to have a guy who not only adores me, but talks about the future with me without any fear in his voice, loves his family as much as I love mine, and automatically knows when something is on my mind. Couldn't have asked for a better man.

3) Christmas trees, Christmas music, Christmas gift-giving, Christmas lights, Christmas caroling, Christmas martinis. You see a pattern? I really like Christmas season (minus the annoying crowds).

4) Baking goodies for other people. This is a new love of mine. It's quite fun.

5) My dog. I love to make him happy. I love to see his little face looking up at me. I love waking up next to him. He makes me so happy and I'm not sure he realizes that I may need him more than he needs me.

6) Speaking of my dog - animals. They make me happy. I believe they are inherently good and pure.

7) My Squishy (aka my new SUV). I really love my car. Every time I climb in or see it in my driveway, I giggle. Is that really mine? Did I really buy that? Hehe.

8) A steaming cup of glorious coffee and big breakfast on a Saturday morning. How is that not appealing as heck?

9) Experiencing new things. When you get to feel like a kid again, seeing something for the first time, there's really no better feeling. Everyone should explore their inner child every now and then.

10) Cupcakes. I don't know what it is about them. It could taste like cardboard and I'm thrilled to be eating it!

Four Christmas (in one day)

I attended my 2nd annual "MoB" (mother of boyfriend) gathering. And when I say gathering, I don't use that term lightly. We're talking 25 people (at least) at each party. They all live within walking distance of each other. So when you go visit boyfriend's mom, expect to have dinner with 12-30 others, each arriving with a hefty platter of food. We are never under-fed. ;)

This Christmas I knew it would be a short and sweet visit. Not because I'm busy and employed, but because boyfriend is.

We arrived at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. Wait, let me back up for a second. I ended up stopping at no other than Starbucks (my mecca) to grab some java, and quickly (ha!) change my clothes into more presentable attire. Once I finally get into the bathroom, I try to change so quickly that I end up twisting my ankle while maneuvering my way into my jeans. Who does that? (It was also brought up later, and I felt silly explaining how one twists one's ankle at Starbucks). But I digress...

So 12:30, and we are already late for par-tay #1. It was at some aunts (??) house. We're really just there to take up space and use up oxygen, as this party is mostly about the kiddos. So we eat dinner #1 (I pace myself) and the four of us (me, boyfriend, his brother, and brother's girlfriend) crack dirty jokes in the corner, laugh and amuse ourselves while 5-year-olds open gifts and squeal with delight.

End of par-tay #1. We then sneak - literally sneak, because I was told "leave now...or else" and realize that obligatory family pictures were being taken. We sneak (run) back over to mom's house and watch football (ugh) until par-tay #2.

Par-tay #2 starts around 2:00 p.m. This party holds a whole different large group of people. I am more familiar with these folks. There was Derek who told me last year, and I quote, "Knowing this guy, I may not see you next year." What??!!! Did he really say that? Everyone gasped. He meant it as a jab at boyfriend that I would surely dump him by next year, but it came out more like he would bring a different girl next year. So, as I greeted Derek on year #2, I made sure to give him the stink eye...and a whole lotta crap!

Let's not leave out gift time. We all sat around and did a gift exchange. Just pass and open. Nothing fancy, organized, or quiet. Pretty much as much chaos as you'd expect with a room full of infants and children and smart-alecky 20 and 30-somethings (who, us???). I open my gift from his Mimi and Papaw and realize it's an 8 x 10 picture of boyfriend during his pubescent years!! AHAHAHAHAHA! I have never seen that boy embarrassed, but I think he was. The second his brother and brother's girlfriend cracked some jokes at his expense, the girlfriend opened her own picture of boyf's brother in 8th grade!! AHAHAHAH! But the funniest part was that Mimi was completely serious. Giving us those pics was no joke for Mimi! I told boyfriend I would proudly place it right on my desk. ;)

Par-tay #3. Getting closer. We are presented with yet another dinner. This is a different group of adults and children. I remember the 4 cute little girls well from last year. I became friends with one this year. I let her be my white elephant gift exchange helper. She ate it up! Boyfriend said later that as he was watching us unwrap a gift together, he realized that she looks like she could be my daughter. I guess we DO have the same features. I would have had to have her at 20 though. Totally do-able. (awww, he thinks about me as a mom??!!!)

Anyhoo, I ended up with the SAME white elephant gift as I received at christmas #1. I got a santa holding decorative Christmas towels. Last year it was a reindeer holding decorative Christmas towels. What are the odds? And where will I put them?

Par-tay #4 took place late at night, around 11:00 p.m. with just boyfriend's family; a total of seven. Whew! I was deliriously tired from all previous par-tays, and a speedy trip to Walmart for chillable red wine, but I managed to stay awake. Lots of fab gifts were exchanged.

One thing I learned this Christmas that I will NEVER again forget is this: Never, ever leave the plans to boyfriend. He doesn't know what's going on. Either because he has gotten the wrong information, or because he doesn't bother to ask. I try to make it clear to him that I am a girl and I need details. Well, I could not have felt like a bigger ASS when his brother and brother's girlfriend got me gifts and I had NOTHING to give them in return. I had asked again and again and he said not to worry about it. But I shall try not to dwell on the negative..

All complaints aside, a great, whirl wind-y, four Christmases all in one day! I survived year #2 and Derek better look out when I show up for year #3!


Monday, December 14, 2009

Non-Resolutions of 2010

I got this idea from My Soul is a Butterfly. Genius. Pure genius.

I have mixed feelings on creating New Year's resolutions because, a) it just sets you up for failure, and b) no one ever keeps track of them to see whether you did or did not fail miserably. I find it somewhat freeing to create a list of things you have no intention of changing about yourself.

Non-resolutions of 2010:

- I will likely bite my nails
- I will probably never find the desire to exercise in the dead heat of summer or the bitter cold of winter
- I will continue to claim that Patron is superior to Don Julio
- I will baby my dog
- I will continue to make checklists and not necessarily check everything off each day
- I will continue to tell my mom everything
- I may always have a messy desk and (hopefully) a clear mind
- I will probably never enjoy yoga
- I do not resolve to make my bed every morning, as I will only mess it up each night
- I will continue to have an aversion to sponges as a cleaning tool
- I may always wish I had gone to medical school
- I may never be a "planner" but I will always plan enough

What are some of your resolutions (or non-resolutions)?

Sunday, December 6, 2009

My Weekend In Numbers

I had a great weekend. My baby came to visit, I cooked for us (successfully) and there was much football. Had we done any Christmas shopping, then it may have just been the perfect weekend.

My weekend in numbers...

1.5 - number of hours it took me to make King Ranch Chicken. Turned out so good! I will totally make this again.

45 - number of minutes I allowed myself for a nap on Saturday.

10 - number of minutes I actually slept out of that 45 allowance.

4:30 - the time we arrived at the Cowboy's stadium to tailgate for the Big 12 Championship game.

25 - number of minutes I had to stand in line at the ONE port-o-potty near our tailgate. Miserable? Yes, considering it felt like ten degrees outside. And let's not discuss how disgusting the port-o-potty actually was. (shudder). Let's also not discuss how I dropped my glove on the nasty, E. coli covered floor (double shudder). And we may as well just leave out the fact that someone ahead of me went the big #2 and I had to endure it when my turn finally arrived (quadruple shudder!).

2 - number of hours that I froze my little butt off tailgating. I then sat in my car with my heater full blast and let my raw fingers thaw out. They started to itch like crazy (proof that I had minor frostbite as a child).

467 - number of ultimate nachos for $8.50. I ate about 7 of them. Then I had heartburn.

13/12 - final score of the Texas/Nebraska game! HOOK 'EM HORNS!!!

2:30 - time on Sunday that my man had to leave me. Wahh!!!

2:40 - time that he texted me, "Babe, I'm coming back for you. Pack up your stuff." I actually considered and let him know that I would not need much convincing. I could easily pack myself and my chihuahua. Might be fun. No? Then reality set in, and I don't have a job, which means I couldn't get a place of my own...so I guess that won't work.....

45 - number of degrees outside when I took a nice evening stroll - chihuahua wrapped up in my jacket and all. It was cold and misty, but at least I got my walk on.

Hope everyone else had an equally fab weekend.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Another One Bites The Dust

I went on my first job interview in the three months of trying to land a job. Was I at all excited about this interview? Nope.

Did I feel obligated to go since it's the first interview I've been offered. You bet.

So I drive an hour and find the place. I go inside and expect a cattle call of other unemployed folks who, like me, are desperate for a job. Instead, it's just me. Then I go into this office that clearly belongs to no one (blank walls, clean desk, no computer) and interview with a short hispanic guy. He asked me a list of 5 basic interview questions (i.e., what is your favorite color? What is the airspeed velocity of a coconut laden swallow?) (just kidding).

The "interview" takes a total of ten minutes, if that. Then I am dismissed and told that I would be given a call around 4 p.m. if I'm a good fit. Then there would be a series of two more in-depth interviews. Oh joy.

Here's what I wanted to say: "You do realize that this 10 minute chit-chat could have been done BY PHONE, don't you? Then I would have known enough about this so-called "job" and not wasted my time and make-up. And in turn, you could have hired someone who believes they might actually make money off of this crap."

But instead I said: "Thank you."

At exactly 3:40 p.m. I get a phone call. I don't answer. Five minutes later, I listen to the very vague voice message. Then I call back and I'm offered a job. I very politely tell them thanks but no thanks.

Forgive me, but I just don't think I want to go door-to-door selling cable packages. I didn't think you could do door-to-door sales anymore. This was also a legal pyramid scheme and commission pay only. So if I didn't get shot trespassing, I probably still couldn't pay my bills off of commission only.

Sorry Charlie.