I felt a semi-urgent need to post today, because I just discovered that yesterday’s post was my 666th on this particular platform, and it’s THE CHRISTMAS SEASON! The last thing I need to do is sit around eating Indian nachos and humming The First Noel with a big mark of the beast hanging around on my website. Am I right? (I am.)
We ventured out a few hours back (with our Ventura filter on) and chose our Christmas tree.
I would give you all of the details, but I have a problem with the organization from whom we purchased this year’s Scotch pine. They are slowly making strides in the right direction, but still. (Please know that Mitt Romney and I actually agree on this particular issue, so don’t think I’m just sitting around eating Indian nachos and being a big liberal jerk with a spooky mark of the beast hanging around on my website and The First Noel ringing in my head. I’d like to build the world a home and furnish it with love. Grow apple trees and honey bees and snow white turtle doves.)
This guy sawed the butt off of our tree, and he let Harper keep it. (The butt. Also, the tree.) After counting the rings, we’ve determined that Harper is the same exact age as the tree. With that said, we really don’t know what we’re doing, although Jeff was a Boy Scout. Was. WAS.
The tree is currently hanging out in the corner soaking up some water and letting her branches rest a bit. I’ll be lighting her tomorrow while the kids are at school (My mother taught me to be VERY particular about how to place lights upon (and into) a tree. It’s a job that’s best accomplished with no other humans in the house, as I tend to get pricked and then I tend to swell because I’m allergic to trees and then I tend to say The S Word.).
Speaking of my mother, she made this wreath for us a few years back, and it’s always the first thing we hang when the holiday season rolls around. And to the Earth it gave great light and so it continued both day and night. It’s happening.
The girls and I picked up a friend this morning and journeyed out for the Rock-n-Roll Craft Show. If you’re a local, tomorrow is the last day, and I do believe you will love it there.
I try to go to the RRCS every year, and every year I try to find a log pillow crafted by Scissor Scouts in Springfield. I just noticed that they’re on this year’s artist list, but I didn’t see any of their log pillows today. A log pillow WILL be mine someday. This just wasn’t my year. Again.
My score of the day? An ounce of Cup of Love tea from The ReTrailer. (You know I’m a Teavana hound. It’s nice to have a local tea master who isn’t holding hands with Starbucks. PLUS, The ReTrailer has partnered up with Tree House, which is my current favorite place to eat so ride a painted pony let the spinning wheel spin, Kevin Bacon.)
After the show, we hopped over to Panera where Meredith ate a baguette into a mask and then employed three napkins to hold the mouth art bread mask onto her face.
We’re now getting ready to watch the Mizzou game. And when I say “We’re now getting ready to watch the Mizzou game” I mean that I’m about to grab some knitting, the girls are practicing the piano, the dogs are outside, and Jeff is getting ready to watch the Mizzou game. It’s a big game.
Thanks for stopping by this month. I always love hearing from you, and I’m sure I’ll be back soon. In fact, I’ve heard we may get our Christmas tree tomorrow, and I know you’ll need proof of that. Isn’t the Internet fun?
None of us really got the EXACT boots we wanted, but sometimes you have to make compromises (My compromise saved $150!) and sometimes you do what you have to do to get in and out of a store quickly so that you can enjoy a quick root beer before the sun goes down.
We also looked around for Christmas trees, but we haven’t committed to anything just yet. We still have time.
I made Five Star Friday this week, and I think this is the third time I’ve made it and it always makes my day.
I picked Tempe up this morning at 5:15, and before you tell me that I’m part of the problem, please know that even if no stores were open at that time, it would still be fun to do what we do: Grab a coffee and hang out to watch people. (Of course, if no stores were open, we would probably be watching people through the windows of their homes, which might stir up trouble. With that said, I’m always a little bit in the mood to stir up trouble.) We were out for five hours, and during that time I saw only one person with whom I could never be friends, and her only fault was that she was unable to commit to a check-out line so I let her carry on in peace with her indecisiveness and her Hello Kitty hat.
Thanks to all for your comments yesterday. You’re appreciated more than you’ll ever know.
Today I met my freelance deadline, I shopped for the ingredients to make green bean casserole and roasted veggies, and I sat on the couch and watched Love, Actually. (I always fall asleep during the same part of the movie. Today was no exception. I still have no idea if the married guy cheated on his wife with his cute-haired co-worker.)
This scene gets me every time.
And this scene destroys me.
And although I know I’ve shared this before, I just sort of need you to know that it’s one of my favorite movie scenes from all time. (You may want to switch it to full screen so you can read the subtitles. If you’re anything like me, you won’t be able to see them properly here.)
Do you remember a few years back when I explained the whole mammogram thing to you? In a nutshell (in a nutshell?), you go to a place like Metro Imaging, you fill out some paperwork, you take off your shirt, you get smooshed four times, and then five minutes later you’re walking out the door with a smile on your face and a certificate that says, “Clear!”
This morning I went in for my mammogram. I filled out the questionnaire, I pulled off my shirt, I got smooshed four times, and then the tech came back into the room and said, “The doctor wants me to take a few more shots. We’re seeing something on your right breast.”
Me: What are you seeing?
Tech: It’s a mass. If you want, I can show it to you on the screen.
So, I walked over (with shaky legs because I’m no superhero) and checked out my mass. It’s a big white thing that sort of looks like an embryonic foot.
She took four more x-rays, but this time with really crazy smooshing. Like, borderline painful smooshing. (Actually, take out the word Borderline in that last sentence.)
Tech: Go ahead and wait in here in case he needs more images.
I sat in the chair and thought to myself, “This is how it starts for people who are about to be told that they have cancer.”
I then thought about Virginia. I thought about Virginia a lot.
Pretty soon the doctor came in and shook my hand and told me that he doesn’t really like what he’s seeing, and was wondering if we could do two more shots. If he doesn’t like how they look, he would like me to have an ultrasound.
Doctor: Your breasts are very dense.
Me: That’s probably the nicest thing anyone has said to me all day.
(I tend to ramble semi-inappropriately when I’m going through the whole rush of adrenaline thing. It’s either lift a Subaru Forester with one hand or ramble. There was no Forester in sight.)
So, they did the shots, and I was once again left in the room by myself.
That’s when I started thinking that we should probably make this Christmas really great because you never know what’s going to happen in the next year and I should probably write some letters to the girls to be opened on their prom nights and their graduation nights and their wedding nights and when/if they have babies. (I know. Do you have any idea how much of a fatalist I can be? I can definitely be a fatalist.)
The tech returned.
“He wants us to do the ultrasound.”
So, five minutes later found me lying on a table with gel squirted on my bare chest (cue the raunchy music) and I was all shaky and feeling sick and the ultrasound tech was young and pretty and wanted to talk about Black Friday.
Tech: Do you shop on Black Friday?
Me: I don’t really shop, but I like to drink coffee and watch the people. But I can’t really think about that right now.
Tech: Well, I know I won’t be going to Best Buy or any of those places where fights could break out and blah blah blah blah blah…
(I honestly couldn’t focus on a thing she was saying, because I was thinking about the knitting projects that I would like to finish and the books I need to read and the freelance chapters I want to turn in and the letters I should write and last April I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in 12 years and we’ve spent some time getting to know each other again and wondering why we’re back in each other’s lives now. Like, what is the meaning of this? Did our paths cross at that coffee place just because we were both craving cookies at the same time (I tend to not believe in coincidence), or is there a reason that goes a little bit deeper and is THIS the reason? Me on this table with ten bad x-rays and some sloppy goop on my chest and a not very positive attitude?)
((Please know that I know how DRAMATIC I am. I’m honestly the luckiest person I know, so when the system hiccups, I tend to fuhreak out. I may be charming from a distance. Close up? Beady-eyed and jittery. Think about a wet Chihuahua. That’s me, but bipedal. (Although, I run like a cheetah in my dreams.)))
Ten minutes after the ultrasound, the doctor came in.
Doctor: Are you tired of seeing me yet?
Me: Heh. Yes. No?
Doctor: I just wanted to tell you that it’s a cyst. Just a big fluid-filled cyst. Nothing to worry about.
Me: Nothing to worry about?
Doctor: Nope. Put your shirt on, and we’ll see you in a year.
I put my shirt on, walked out to my car, and numbly drove to Trader Joe’s where I purchased every single item in the store that has anything at all to do with stir frying vegetables. (Don’t ask questions. I don’t know the answers to your questions.) I also bought myself a tiny gift box of dark chocolate sea salted caramels, because my breasts are very dense and I’ll use just about anything as an excuse to treat myself to sea salted caramels.
I didn’t get the certificate this time around, and that’s okay. I have no space on my wall for certificates, and no more time to waste, and that sounds like a big profound statement, but I didn’t mean for it to be. I actually have a freelance deadline tomorrow, and my final spreadsheet is big and spooky. Like my breasts. I have no idea how to end this entry.
This afternoon during the drive from the grocery store to piano lessons, I tuned the radio to one of the two channels currently devoting all of their time to Christmas music. Sadly, instead of Christmas music, they were playing some sort of commercial for a product that helps one deal with bowel incontinence.
Me (changing the station): You know, when I’m in the mood for Christmas music, the last thing I want to hear is a story about bowel incontinence.
Meredith: It IS the oldies channel. And sometimes old people have those problems.
Harper: I don’t even know what bowel incontinence IS!
Me: It’s when you go to the bathroom in your pants, but you’re not peeing.
Meredith: You know, life is full of surprises, and sometimes those surprises are in your pants.
A few minutes later, Meredith remembered that a woman at the grocery store almost hit her with a cart.
Meredith: Did you hear her tell me that she almost rammed my bum?
Me: I did. Yipes.
Meredith: Why is it called a bum?
Me: I think different people call it different things. When I was a kid, everyone in my family called it a bom bom.
Harper: Are you kidding me?
Me: I’m not kidding. Aunt Boogie says we called it a bom bom because Grandma D called it a bom bom. BUT, I have no idea why Grandma called it a bom bom.
After spending the morning dancing through a disappointing Fandango debacle, Meredith and I were able to see Catching Fire with a few friends. (Meredith wore her District 12 Tribute shirt and her Mockingjay pin, which means she’s now one of those people who dresses up for movies. I love that so much.)
After the movie, we went home where the coat I ordered a few days back had been delivered! (This is exciting to no one but me: Eddie Bauer told me that the coat wouldn’t be delivered until December 2nd. Because they were able to beat that day by nine days, I’m suddenly full of Eddie Bauer love. That’s how they get you.) ((Also, I feel the weird need to tell you that I did NOT pay anywhere NEAR $159 for that coat. Huge sale earlier in the week and I had a coupon code for free shipping, and I AM TRYING TO BE FRUGAL, DAVE RAMSEY!!!))
Next up? Jeff built a fire and the girls and I went on a soft boot adventure. We had no luck, although Kohl’s DID have a green screen and a downloadable app, so we were able to mess around with that for about three minutes or so.
After returning home, Meredith and I had bean soup leftovers, Harper had peanut butter and toast, and Jeff ate a salad.
I just described our entire day to you. I’m currently sitting here drinking hot tea and thinking about pajamas. Harper is practicing the piano, Meredith is reading, Jeff is watching the Mizzou game downstairs, the dogs are sleeping on the couch, and the fire smells amazing. (I’ll be in bed by 9:30.)
Tomorrow I’ll be returning to church for the first time in a long time. Afterwards? Brunch and browsing things that smell like the way I might want to smell followed by walking through a Christmas light display before it’s opened to automobile traffic. It’s the most wonderful time of the year, you know.
Twenty three down and seven to go, and I’m really not minding NaBloPoMo at all. Here’s hoping you’re not minding it, either.
This evening after Meredith’s volleyball game, the four of us went out for dinner with my mom and dad to celebrate my dad’s 71st birthday. (Feel free to wish him a happy birthday. 71 is a big thing. 71 means that you pay for dinner and deliver rice krispy treats to the granddaughters, even though it’s your birthday. 71 means that even if you hurt your back earlier in the day, you still venture out to watch a bunch of fifth graders play volleyball. 71 is good.)
As we were eating our salads, my mom looked at me and said, “You’re showing a lot of Cleveland.”
Me: Oh! Yikes!
Mom: Yep. You’ve been showing cleavage all night.
Me: Sorry about that. I haven’t worn this shirt in over a year, but since it’s getting cold outside, this afternoon I decided to pull out my shirt and my boots.
Me: Yep. Boobs.
Mom: Hey! Yesterday I went to the makeup store, and when I put my stuff on the counter, the girl working the register said, “Nice bras.”
Mom: Brows. Like, eyebrows.
Earlier this week, I told Meredith to drink water with her soup so she doesn’t get aphrodisiac. (Clearly, I meant Dehydrated.) A few years ago, I spent five minutes telling a story about a woodpecker, and throughout the entire story I referred to that bird as a peckerhead. On accident.
Apparently, my baking skills and sense of humor came from my dad, and my craftiness and inability to speak coherently came from my mom.
(Maybe someday I’ll tell you the story about that peckerhead and how he kept me up all night.)