Monday, December 11, 2017

Still not feeling it!

So this sums up how I'm feeling about the whole Christmas thing right now. 
I actually have a small porcelain Angel that would fit on this smaller tree perfectly - but as a joke I put this hat on it and it's stayed.  Miss Angela knows its there & is entertained by it, not sure if Randy knows....

I still don't have my nutcrackers in the house.  I barely have any shopping done. 
The snowman countdown wall-hanging is out, as well at my Nativity Scene - so that'll have to do for decor! 
However the tree IS decorated (finally! as of last night)
It's just not in this picture. 
Funny that Rusty ignored the tree until I sat down on the floor near it to sort thru the ornaments (choosing the non-breakable variety, which means a lot of my favorites didn't even get to come out ~sniff!).  Then he suddenly realized there was a soft & warm fleece tree skirt under there!  And he napped under the tree until I hung that deer ornament!  I watched him try to sniff it then his mouth opened to bite it and I told him NO!  So he kept pushing it around with his nose. 
But so far, so good.  Nothing seems to be amiss. 
This year's Asshole Santa.  The bulb is perfectly fine, it just doesn't want to stay lit. 
The last 2 years, the title of Asshole belonged to the little Santa in front. 
The final product!
Randy says the tomato cage trees on each side of the door look like fangs.  
Maybe I should hang a wreath with lights inside the door so it has a nose!
So winter has finally gotten here.  
We've got a couple inches out there already.  
Luckily powdery snow is easy to shovel! 
Saturday night was my company Christmas party.  It was nice.  It's been held the past couple years at a fancy Italian restaurant.  The food is excellent & we always get a nice bottle of red wine with a beautiful carving on the bottle. 
This year they did a raffle & I won a gift card to yet another fancy Italian restaurant.  We've never been to this other place, so it'll be a nice date night. 

The evening's entertainment was a take on the 12 Days of Christmas, but instead it was the 12 Days of Rossisms.  Ross, the owner of the company, as all these phrases that he uses all the time, so our Director of Operations took 12 (and it was tough to help her choose just 12!) and turned it into the song and recruited a bunch of us to sing it.  It ended up being quite hilarious and he absolutely loved it!
 Wednesday I'm going shopping with Mom & the sisters at Bronners ("the Christmas Wonderland").  Linda is coming by with Mom at like 7:30am and we'll go get Laurie, then hopefully be there when they open at 9.  It'll be a fun trip, I think!  Besides the huge store - the grounds are beautiful to walk around.  Too bad it's supposed to be so darn cold! 

Anyhooooo, signing off for the evening! Angel insisted on going over to the boy friend's house so I told her to take clothes, since I didn't want her out driving in this mess.  He lives in a huge McMansion on the other side of town and is an only child, so I'm 110% certain she's got her own room over there.  And I know his mom thinks she's the greatest thing since sliced bread, so I'm certain she's safe over there.  Randy's over there comfortable on the bed with multiple cats, watching TV, so I think I'll join him!

 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

In Christmas denial....

So Thanksgiving has come & gone.  On the plus side, I was down almost a pound at weigh in tonight!  Pretty sure a lovely bout of food poisoning helped that along, tho.   Words of wisdom....if you EVER hear someone in another room say "I don't think this should have been left out on the counter over night - even in an "insulated" bag!"  It's wise to find out exactly WHAT was left out on the counter overnight!   
Needless to say, I found out. 

OK, we don't know exactly 100% for sure if the lil Smokey's sausages were the offending item, but it was the only thing that only Mom & I both ate right from the package.  Everyone ate them after they'd been reheated in the crockpot and were fine.  Yeah, Mom was sick, too. 

It wasn't pretty.  And I'm still - 5 days later - feeling some affects from that night.  I've been really selective with my food lately, lemme tell ya!
I took my Thanksgiving nutcrackers with me to dinner!

So Angel & I went to sister Laurie's house as planned Wednesday night & we went out to dinner with her, Mom & Linda.  Then back to her house for the longest game of Yahtzee ever and some Bailey's over coffee ice cubes.  

Laurie likes when we come over, since I'll go take care of the horses in the morning and she gets to sleep in. 
Jack's snazzy new hunter orange jacket made him perfectly visbile in the early light. 
 Even if you don't actually have food, I'll stare at you because your'e sitting at the table and some food *might* appear magically!!

Thursday - watching the parade from Detroit & the Lions lose, then dinner.  The usual yummy stuff.  And we draw names for Christmas since most everyone is there anyway.   Thursday overnight, I'd rather not think about.  It didn't hit me until 3:30am and luckily everyone except for Linda & I had gone home already so I didn't have to compete for the bathroom. 

The plan Friday was to take advantage of the nice day and go riding.  I thought I was dying all morning, but mid-afternoon I was feeling good enough to go for a ride.  Laurie's friend Sherry came over with her horse and we went on a good 2 1/2 hour ride. 

I started out on Kisses - the black & white mare.  But she'd had leg & foot problems most of the summer, so she was only ridden a very few times all year.  So she was feeling pretty ornery.  We spent more time going backwards or sideways, or doing mini-bucks.  After she went backwards off the road and across someone's lawn - Laurie told me to switch with her.  So I got to ride the new horse, Remington!  I know she wanted to ride Remi, since he is still new to her and she wants to get to know him better.  So instead she also got to see how he did with someone else, which was great!  The only thing he really freaked out at was a tractor coming towards us pulling a huge, smelly tanker of liquid manure.  But all 3 horses were in the ditch at that one!  But he was OK with cars and even a garbage truck coming up from behind and passing us & trash cans on the side of the road, etc. 
By the time we got back to Laurie's house, I was beat.  I haven't been on a horse that long in forever and that really hadn't been the best day to try it!  I thought I was going to have to ride into the barn and just roll off the saddle onto the hay bales.  Then Angel called me and asked if I'd go shopping with her when I got home.  It wasn't happening.  I had a hard time keeping my eyes uncrossed on the way home and between the white lines on the road!  So when I got home and she still wanted to go, I tried to take a layer of riding clothes off, but broke down & cried because I couldn't find one of my tennis shoes.  All I wanted to do is take a hot shower and crawl into bed.  So she went shopping without me.  And I was in bed by 9:30pm.

Saturday, I was pretty useless.  I sure didn't feel like eating!  Then Angel wanted Chinese food for dinner, but our usual place was closed so the family could go back home to China for a couple weeks.  So we went to the mall and walked around a little bit, then stopped at the Flaming Wok in the food court.  I was surprised that some egg drop soup & sesame chicken tasted so good and settled my stomach a lot! 

Sunday I got up and put the Christmas blowmolds out.  This shouldn't have taken long, but I'd never put the lights back in them after cleaning them up and switching them around when we put the Halloween guys away. So I had to test each light & reinstall it.  Then carry it to the front yard.  From there I figured out where to put them and place bricks in the bottoms.  Then had to run extension cords.  Blargh.  
Anyhoo.  We'll probably put a string of lights along the front of the house when Randy gets home and that'll be about all we do!  Our house isn't the most exciting shape for Christmas lights.  And I sure don't do as much as I do for Halloween!  But nobody else has blowmolds (at least not to the extent as me) so my display is still unique!     
I told Randy & Angel that I used up all my Christmas spirit putting the blowmolds out, so I decided that this is going to be our Christmas tree this year! 
We sure don't have to worry about any of the cats climbing it!  

I need to gather up all my Halloween hand towels from the laundry & dirty clothes & bathrooms & such and get them washed so I can use them to wrap up the last pieces of Halloween decor that is still out.  I have my Yankee Candle Boney Bunch guys staged on the kitchen table and the totes nearby, so I just need those towels and I'll finally be done!  Today I got the Christmas totes in the garage moved to the front so I'm ready (I guess) to bring some stuff in. Why am I not in the Christmas spirit???  I refuse to list to Christmas music yet.  I will always make fun of Laurie & Angel for watching their cheesy-ass Hallmark movies.  I am enjoying seeing people's lights so maybe the spirit is just dim for the moment.

Sigh.  Guess I better round up some laundry!  
Has the Christmas spirit gotten to you yet?
 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving!


But in all seriousness, I'm thankful for many things, too many to list here!
Hope you all have a wonderful day!

 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png

Sunday, November 19, 2017

This & That & The Other

Happy Weekend! 
Let's start from where I left off, shall I?

So last Friday, the 10th.  I went with the sisters & niece to Motor City Casino to see the "Thunder from Down Under".  It was 1000 times better than the "Girls Night Out" that we went to last year!!!
btw - Scrumpy's cider is ~amazing~!

 We got to the casino early and had a few drinks while waiting for the rest of our party.  We were supposed to have 12 people in our group, but 6 backed out at the last minute for various reasons - the bums.  One lady got 2 others at the last minute and we even offered tickets to the bartender & the lady who pointed us in the right direction from the parking structure (the bartender looked SO tempted, but she was stuck behind the bar until 10). 
The venue was super nice & we had awesome seats.  And it was more of an actual entertaining SHOW and not grubbing for cash like GNO was. 
 We thought it would have been better if they had more than 5 guys and the Emcee, tho.  They're supposedly Australian (2 had the accent at least) but based out of Vegas, so that show is probably bigger.
I hope this video works - you can clearly see that some guys can dance - and some cannot, even with this basic choreography.  The song ruined this for me, since Miss Angela did tap to it last year, which is why I recorded it!

But it was fun.  We walked out to the car with a lady (one of only a very few) who'd gotten pulled up on stage.  I think it was a mutual thing, since she was by herself and if she hadn't joined us, we would have invited her to walk with us (we felt safe in the parking garage, but nobody should be walking around alone in Detroit!!) But anyhoo, we asked her all about her experience.  She laughed and wondered how she was going to explain to her husband why her hands smell like coconut oil and there's a torn up t-shirt in her pocket!   

So last Saturday was the first craft show we all go to.  Usually there's just 4 of us - Mom & me & my 2 sisters.  But this time 2 nieces and a cousin also went and there were just too many of us to keep track of, so we split up for a while.  I bought some earrings & a scarf & a beautiful wooden ceiling fan pull from this old man that I buy wooden stuff from every year.  Love his work!  Also a lovely stained glass cross for the mother-in-law and some catnip mats for the cats.  Nothing too exciting.  
Daisy was the first to show up for catnip!

There was mandatory "Diversity & Inclusion" training at work, then this showed up on one of the desks in dispatch.  
Really, peeps?  We work at a trucking company - and while it's not TOO excessive, most of us do embrace the colorful trucker-speak.  So far I've only physically seen 2 people drop quarters in, but I heard that one of the supervisors puts a couple $ in at the beginning of his shift to cover that day.    

Tuesday I "power mowed" the lawn for the last time.  The last time the front yard was mowed was right before I set up for Halloween, and it had been even longer for the back yard!  We were in danger of losing Jack back there.  I'd planned to do it Saturday, but I couldn't get the damn mower started.  So I tried again when it was a wee bit warmer and then had to race the sunset.  I used the mower bag in the front yard so I could dump clippings on the flower beds.  Then the back yard I just mulched.  I even skipped parts. If anyone complains - they're more than welcome to finish the rest!  But I got done a lot quicker than I thought and was even able to make it to my WW meeting.   I've learned that if I get on the scale after working out, I'm up.  And mowing my lawn is one hell of a workout so the +1 lb really wasn't much of a surprise.  I was even sore the next day or two - especially my shoulder after yanking on the mower for about 5 minutes.  I coulda filled that swear jar!!

Last Wednesday we went out to dinner because Randy left for Arkansas Thursday.  We had to send him off with a nice evening all together.  He goes to his best friends' house in Fayetteville early every November to play radio and alternates years spending Thanksgiving with his mom in Hot Springs.  This year he's there at Thanksgiving, next year we'll be there at Christmas.  

Friday night I happily went and had dinner & a couple drinks with some girls from work.  I needed it after the day I'd had!  I went into work like usual and discovered that the only other person in my department decided to take Friday & Monday off and "forgot" to tell me. It was a last minute thing, because I had looked at the vacation schedule Tuesday and she wast NOT on it! Of course I thought something was wrong and texted her.  I'd just hit send when I heard her in the lobby. Apparently she had a doctor's appointment and her husband was in town (he works out of state a lot) so she took some time off.  Gee, thanks for giving me a damn heads-up!  Not that it would have changed anything, but I could have been mentally prepared for the extra 1 1/2 hours I stay when she's gone!  And I could have prioritized my own work a little better to get some stuff done sooner instead of it all getting shoved to the side since I can't do both jobs at the same time.  Pissed me off something fierce.  And I worked my ass off nonstop.   

So today was the other craft show that we always go to.  It was back to just the 4 of us.  I really didn't spend a whole lot of $$ this time!  I had to get Rusty a Christmas ornament.  I got Angel a white turkey cookie that came with a paint brush and edible paints so you could color it yourself.  Then a messy-bun hat for Angel (don't tell her - it's gonna be a Christmas present!) and a hunter's orange dog vest for Jack to wear when we got to sister Laurie's for Thanksgiving.  That's all I came home with!!  

We went to lunch after shopping and made our list of things to contribute to Thanksgiving dinner.  Actually - its more than that.  We'll got to Laurie's Wednesday night and come home either Friday or Saturday.  So we plan for the extra meals & snacks & what games & beverages to bring, etc. 
You know what's awesome about Michigan?  Most Thanksgivings & Easters are still cold, so we're able to use the garage as an extra refrigerator.  Fun fact!

*****gratuitous cat photos*****
because they're adorable!       
 Sorry for the sideways photo - Daisy's been taking advantage of my lap a lot lately.  
She's just too cute, tho!
Rusty was grooming Daisy here.   
Here's Rusty being all snuggly against my knee this morning. 

The weirdest thing happened today!  When Linda dropped me off at home after the craft show today - I could see Jack in the living room window.  That in itself in not unusual.  He likes to lay on the back of the couch and look outside. I came in and went directly to my bedroom and got comfortable and relaxed for a bit.  I wandered into the kitchen a little while later, shortly before Angel got home from dance....and noticed the TV was on and the end credits of a DVD were on the screen!  
It had all been off when I left and nobody had been home. 
Somehow...someone managed to turn the TV on.  And turned the power to the DVD player on.  AND changed the input so that the DVD that had been in the player may or may not have actually played in its entirety.  If this whole operation used one remote, I could guess maybe Jack stepped on it getting on or off the couch...but the DVD player needs its own remote! 
Guess someone wanted to watch the 2105 dance recital!! 
twilight zone deedee deedee deedee deedee GIF
Creepy.

So the rest of the weekend?  Hmm.  I really should put the indoor Halloween stuff away.  Most of it is still staged on the kitchen table. Yeah.... that sounds like a plan.  And lunch or dinner at the restaurant that Angel's working at now.  I'm supposed to ask to be put in her section so she can be my server.  Dinner at a sit-down restaurant by myself.....alrighty!  

Until later......
 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Skywatch Friday 11/17/17

We had a completely spectacular sunrise yesterday.
 I saw a lot of posts on Facebook & Instagram about it. 
 From my driveway as I left for work (7am-ish)
 At the end of my block....
 At the end of my street - maybe 1/3 mile away from home
 Approximately 20 minutes later from my work parking lot. 

Stunning!

Linking up at Skywatch Friday

 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Back on track

Alrighty!  I was pleasantly surprised when I got on the scale this evening.  My leader weighed me in, and as I stood on the scale, she leaned forward to look at the screen, then clapped her hands together.  I was thinking "oh, I'm probably down 0.2 lb or something, which is better than a gain anyway".  Nope!  I was down 3.6 lbs!!  

I'm not tempting fate - I'm not expecting to be that lucky again.  I haven't gone too crazy with the leftover Halloween candy and I didn't really snitch too much beforehand.  I do give out full-sized candy bars during trick or treating, but I really wasn't feeling anything.  The almond Snickers wasn't as good as I hoped, and I really haven't been tempted by anything else.  Maybe next year I'll stick with the Skittles & Starbursts, since 1) the kids seemed to be most excited about those anyway and 2) I don't like chewy candy.  I'd be OK with sending the rest to the studio with Angel.  But the bag of Reeses Cups that Randy got on clearance are a different story.  I've been grazing on those, plus I polished off 1 of the 2 boxes of Pumpkin Pie Pop Tarts in the past week (which, btw, are 8 points each / 16 points per package!) 
Image result for going down the candy aisle like
Anyhoo.  I did indeed make it to they gym last night.  I'm not as sore as I expected to be.  I did 2+ miles (walking at a brisk pace) on the treadmill and did some of the machines, mainly for arms & back.  So back again tomorrow!  

 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png

Sunday, November 5, 2017

October Wrap-Up

sweeping clean up GIF


Brushing off the ol' blog here since I've sorely neglected it the past month or so!

So Halloween was what I'd call a success.  We only had about 40 kids, but that's about average.  Sad, because there are so many kids in our neighborhood, but the lack of streetlights on our street, no sidewalks and the fact there are maybe only 4 of us in the middle of the block who turn our lights on probably are a good explanation.  But that's OK - that means I can afford to give out full sized candy bars and toys!  
My favorite costume of the night?  A couple came up with their baby.  Mom was wearing baby in a front-facing carrier (she was probably 8 months old or so) and she was wrapped in a cardboard box painted like a podium with a Presidential seal on it.  Mom & Dad were dressed as Secret Service men!  Black suits, sunglasses, earpieces, the works!  Hilarious,  Close second was 2 year old Minnie Mouse who came running up the driveway, just giggling like crazy!  Too cute!

What I thought was funny were the parents wanting to get their kids' picture in front of the pony....and I could see the kids looking around all confused,  probably looking for ....
PONY
 
but this is really what was there!
Skeleton PONY! 
The horse is named ZipTie so of course the pony is DucTape!

I was pretty tweaked to get a text from my sister from Home Depot that they had their Halloween stuff half off - so I scored him for $50 Sunday - 2 days before Halloween!  He was actually on my list to get for next year, so this was a happy bonus.

I had a half day off work on Halloween so I texted Angel as I left work and asked if she wanted to grab some lunch.  This is how she went to lunch!
Luckily we chose to go to a restaurant she used to work at and the waitress was a girl she has danced with for years! 

I did my makeup right before trick-or-treating - it apparently looked pretty creepy after dark.  I actually forgot I was painted up like that, so some of the little kids were sort of hesitant to say anything to me - they just stared!   In fact when I came in,  Randy made me wash my face!

As of yesterday, all of the outdoor Halloween stuff has been put away for the season.  We emptied & cleaned out the shed of the squirrel carnage (I posted about that HERE), then put the Halloween blowmolds away and cleaned up & staged the Christmas ones in front so they'll be easy to get to after Thanksgiving. I still have to get the minimal indoor decor put away, but there's not a lot of that.

A bunch of us went to a haunted house / hayride on the Saturday before Halloween.  I haven't been to a haunted house in years and I've heard a lot about Slaughtered at Sundown.  We sat on the back of the wagon for the hayride and I made the mistake of being between Target & Target Jr. (my sister Laurie & Miss Angela) so the 'ghouls' kept going after them since they (and niece Lisa's boyfriend AJ) were freaked out the most. They kept trying to drag them off the wagon (it was one of those places that the actors could touch you). I thought it was funny & random that we were stopped in the woods and the wagon was swarming with ghouls and this girls walks up with a tray of donuts & cups of cider, shoving her way between the ghouls, offering them to us!   

I was disappointed in not being able to see the scenery - they clearly made these (probably really cool) scenes along the trail but weren't lit up well enough to see anything.
Lisa Owens's photo. 
The haunted house was pretty good.  I asked Lisa which of us was going to lead, and who bring up the rear, so we could protect the weenies in the middle.  As it was, a ghoul followed me in and kept reaching around me to grab at AJ!  It was hilarious!   We had paid extra for a VIP pass to get us to the head of the line so we walked right up and saw a couple girls Angel dances with in line.  They wanted to go thru with us but it would have been too big a group, so the guy at the door wouldn't let them.  As it was, being the back of our group of 5 I missed a lot since things happened at the beginning.  

Speaking of dance, they had their annual WERK intensive early this year.  Usually it's in mid-November, it was Oct 22 this year..  This is where they have 6 guest teachers come in and they get their happy little butts worked off for the day.  They love it!
 #teamDOS
I volunteered to take pictures again and one of the other moms did SnapChat videos. It was a lot of fun for me, too.  I like to be able to go into the studios and watch.  I confess I almost forgot to take pics during tap & hiphop because the guys who were teaching were completely mesmerizing. 

Their first competition is in February this year - regionals!  And they just decided this past week to scrap the hiphop line (all ages) dance and revisit the one they did so well last year.  So they can spend the next couple months polishing & tweaking it instead of learning an entirely new one.  There's a small line up change, but it's mostly the same girls.  We probably won't have to get a new costume,  woot!  The owner of the studio has high hopes for this dance.

Moving on - on Friday the 13th, Laurie had to have Captain put down.
Pic is from 2014 so he still looks good here.  He'd lost a lot of weight toward the end.

He was like 25 years old and hadn't been ridden in probably 2 years due to bad legs / arthritis / old age.  He had a hard time last winter, so Laurie was kind of expecting the inevitable.  So much so that she'd been looking for a new horse to help her other horse, Kisses, when this did happen.  She'd been looking all summer and just bought Remington about a month prior.  She called me the night before from his stall and she told me that he was telling her he just just tired and ready to go. He was having a hard time standing and even more of a hard time getting up from when he was lying down.  So she called the vet, gave him an extra dose of horse aspirin to keep him comfortable and spent most of the night in the barn with him.  The next morning, she treated it like any other day, gave him breakfast & let him outside.  So his last hours were peaceful & happy for him. It's been a few weeks now.  She said Kisses & Remi are settling into their new routine quickly.  It's sad.  She'd had him for a good 15 years.  He was such a good boy.

So that's all the excitement here,  I think I'm going to stop at the gym on my way home tomorrow and get back into a routine of moving my carcass.  It seems to silly to be paying for both Weight Watchers & Planet Fitness when A) I'm not following the plan so the fact I've only lost like 8 lbs in the last year is my own damn fault and B) I haven't been there in months.   So yeah.  Even tho I heard it's time for Weight Watchers to update their program again next month, I need to get my lazy ass doing some meal planning.  Exercise will help, too.  I didn't want to go back during October since it was crazy getting ready for Halloween, but now that it's passed.....game on! 

And I'll get back in the habit of updating my WIP page and posting here, too.

This Friday I'm going to see the Thunder from Down Under at the Motor City Casino with my sisters - so that should be something fun to post about!   We're hoping it's better than 'Girls Night Out' that we went to last year - words cannot describe how awful that show was. 
Another gratuitous Daisy pic!
 
Until later!
 photo http---signatures.mylivesignature.com-54494-124-9BF74C716651145ECAC7EDD1AB729D6B_zpsxkuumtdq.png