Saturday, November 30, 2013

Running Together

Pie Night featured a lot of girls and a lot of pies. 


Thursday morning featured a 5:15 alarm and frigid temperatures.

We had no problems getting downtown. I was feeling the spirit of the holiday while waiting to pull into a parking garage and let a car cut in front of me and was quickly rewarded with the driver of that car paying for our parking. Considerate, right?

Here is a picture of me at the start line wearing three shirts and three pairs of pants and no makeup.


When we were driving downtown, I said to Meg "how about we run together this year?" We've run a lot of the same races but we always split up at the start and run at our own pace.

But Meg's heart issues still haven't been figured out. She's still having a lot of episodes and going to a lot of appointments and getting very few answers and, while she doesn't say much about it, I know she's nervous and scared and frustrated.

Meg didn't refuse my suggestion that we run together and then I started second guessing myself. Maybe I wanted to run on my own. What if someone looks up my time and it's slower than it usually is?

Seriously. Seriously I thought that.

And then I got over myself and made the right choice on Thanksgiving.

To do what was best for me. Not what would look best. Not what I assumed others would tell me what to do.


We had a good run. Minus the cold and the snow and the increasingly slippery conditions.

I enjoyed running with my sister. It's a little embarrassing that I needed to have a revelation in order to do it. It's a little stupid that I think that anyone is looking up my 10k times.


It's a little strange that we started off our Thanksgiving with a few post-run coney dogs.

A little strange, a little awesome, a lot Detroit.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

We made it

I am thankful for so much.

Tonight, I am particularly thankful for a relatively drama-free day.

I enjoyed my family. My cousins especially. Emma included.

I ran and I ate and I washed a lot of dishes. I drank too much coffee. I was not idle. I was not overtaken with rage and I didn't have a reason to be.

I made a few choices based entirely on those choices feeling like the right ones.

I will explain it all later.

Until then, dear readers: happy Thanksgiving. (Or a happy random Thursday evening, if American Thanksgiving isn't your thing.)

I hope your day featured more pie than drama, too.


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Let's play interior decorator

I have this big empty expanse of wall over the credenza in my office that is driving me mad.

While I have been here for four months, I've just recently tackled the mess of my office. "Just put it in my office," I would say, over and over again, when my staff would ask me about this or that. You've worked here for 30 years and I've been here for 6 weeks and you're asking me? Dump it in my office. I'll figure it out eventually.

Eventually is here and now my credenza isn't piled high with boxes and binders, photos from when they hired a magician for storytime in 1979 and random computer equipment.

The clutter made me nuts. And now the blank wall is doing the same.

I feel that this whole operation is complicated by the wallpaper, which isn't exactly wallpaper but this textured, indestructible wall covering stuff that is obviously meant for high-traffic buildings. It's not going anywhere.

The clock is hideous and it needs to go. I had envisioned hanging my diplomas on another wall just above a bookcase. I could be convinced otherwise.

It's just such a big space. The credenza itself is at least six feet long.

I feel like anything small is just going to be swallowed up by the wall and I need something huge to fill it up. Or I need to get all Pinterest-y and hang a bunch of stuff up gallery style. I can't decide if that would be too busy for being adjacent to the wallpaper.

As you can see, there's an outlet up there. I could invest in a fun lamp. Maybe that would break up whatever is hanging on the wall from the whimsical, headache-inducing swirls of the wallpaper. Or a plant? Or both?

Years ago, I framed the poster Peter Max made for the 1994 World Cup.

I had intended to give it to Colin as a gift and he turned sour and I never gave it to him and it has spent the last six years living in assorted basements.

I love that poster, actually. The same one hung in my bedroom when I was a kid, when I was still dreaming about playing in a (women's) World Cup instead of planning trips to be a spectator at one.

I have never hung it up because I always assumed that it would just remind me of how young and stupid I was about Colin. But it's been six years and maybe I should just stick that damn poster in my face and use a little big of exposure therapy so I can stop feeling silly and guilty about all of the money I paid to have that poster framed for a guy who wasn't worth the cost of four thumbtacks. 


I could buy a print from Etsy. I've been coveting one Etsy print or another since the beginning of Etsy and I haven't had a good reason to buy one or a good place to hang it so I've resisted. (And purchased them for other people.)

I am total a sucker for a gorgeous letterpress print with a clever phrase or an inspirational quote. Or maybe something with a library or a book theme. That would be appropriate.

Slightly more appropriate than a shirtless David Beckham poster, which I also think would really liven up the atmosphere in my office.

As would turning the credenza into a proper bar and hanging shelves for the liquor above it. But, again, we're striving for appropriate because I am not yet independently wealthy.  

This is a lot of thought to put into decorating an office for a job that I expect to grow out of in just a few years.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Happy (?) Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving used to be my favorite holiday.

My Aunt Marie died right before Thanksgiving four years ago. It's been awful ever since. The Thanksgiving we celebrated just after her funeral was understandable awful.  We had just spent a week together, mourning and inside of a stuffy funeral home and in various states of shock.

Every year since, my cousin Emma -- her youngest daughter -- has been such a holy terror that it's basically ruined the holiday. I'm still pissed about how she behaved last year.

To say that I am approaching this Thanksgiving with trepidation would be an enormous understatement. We're still doing our annual Pie Night. (Which I used to think was the best night of the year.) Meg and I are still doing our usual Thanksgiving morning run. Mom is still hosting for 25+ and most of those 25+ won't even blink if Emma starts screaming and ranting.

It's just expected now.

That's why Thanksgiving isn't what it used to be.

I am hoping for a good holiday. Just a quiet holiday. And a trough of cranberry sauce. And a slice of pumpkin pie and a bite of pecan pie and enough stuffing to feed a softball team.

And a personal record in the 10k.

And for David Beckham to show up and carve our turkey. Shirtless. 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

A weekend, a project

I am not a particularly crafty lady. But I was with my mom at a thrift store around Halloween (we were picking up a shirt to go with her cowgirl costumed) and we stumbled across a kid's rocking chair. It was $7 and had the promise of a good project. My mom talked me into refinishing it for Lucy's oldest son, Baby A.

The timing is right: his second birthday is soon and Hanukkah is even sooner. My mom has refinished enough furniture over the years that that she could keep me from botching the entire operation. It's practical and old and a little bit sentimental. I could picture Lucy loaning that rocking chair to me -- to a baby of mine, if I am ever so fortunate -- just like my childhood rocking chair went to my cousin Emma. ...and eventually back to my mom and dad's house.
 
I sanded and I varnished this weekend. I also drank coffee and played hockey and read (This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage, the newest by Ann Patchett) and watched football. I had a turkey sandwich for lunch on Saturday. I went shopping. Late this afternoon, I dragged myself to the gym for a decent run. When I was finished, I decided to treat myself to 15 minutes in the steam room.
 
I am always in too much of a hurry for the steam room and that must change. The steam room is great. I want to kiss the steam room on the mouth.

I ran a dozen errands. I helped Meg with a few things. I ate dinner and watched Orange is the New Black with Lucy and Chet.

I packed so much in and it still felt like a relaxing weekend. It was a relaxing weekend.

And the first in a few weeks that wasn't just one day. Apparently I didn't need to be any less busy in order to recharge. I just needed to be busy with things that weren't work.  

Saturday, November 23, 2013

No patience

We're now at the point in The Coach's season that I am. so. totally. over it.

This comes up during the same week every single year. It's far enough along that I have lost my patience and he has planted his head firmly up his all-coaching-all-the-time ass. It's frustrating. And I get his side. I understand what is happening. I can comprehend it. But I am annoyed. I want to scream. Which seems unproductive. Which also annoys me.

To his credit, every other year there have been other stretches throughout the fall season when I have wanted to bash out his teeth and, generally, this year has been good and I have not felt any violence towards his teeth or any other body part.

Until this week, anyway.

It does not help that either he or I should be on the verge of embarking on a Thanksgiving trip and he is not and I am not and that makes him an idiot and it makes me a bigger idiot.

It does not help that he'll soon be embarking on a coaching trip overseas. He'll be living and breathing sport and I'll be here.

I am always here.

If I play his absence right, if I am smart, I'll use his coaching trip as a couple of weeks with the distance to figure things out. To make sure this is what I want. To figure out what I'm doing going forward. (And, if AM gets her way, sign up for Match.)

I am just over this week.

I am just ready for him to be home for Christmas.

So I can punch him. Right in his handsome face.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

One at a Time

My new job takes up significantly more mental real estate than my last job did.

It is not a problem. I had my years of a job with little responsibility other than to make my contribution to the whole. And now I'm the one holding the whole together. While trying to figure out how the whole should look.

I like it a little more every day.

But I definitely have less in me for other things.

In some ways -- in most ways -- it's good. I'm not bored. I feel challenged. I don't have the time or the mental space to worry about pointless shit.

In other ways, I'm frustrated. Because I've always filled my life up to the very top and my job takes up more volume and things are spilling over and I can only attend to one at a time. I can only do so much. I can only be in one place.

But I want to run my soccer team. And I want to be a good blogger. And I want to be the boss who brings in muffins on a random Tuesday. I want to take yoga. I want to read more. I want time to myself.

Recognizing my own limitations has been one of the hardest parts of the transition to this new job. I have not enjoyed revising my expectations. I liked doing it all. I wanted to do it all.

I still want to do it all.

I just can't do it all at once.

For example: my trip to Brazil. It was one big, nagging decision that had been simmering for months. I didn't want to deal with it. So I did not. When the timeline dictated that I absolutely had to, I booked the trip. And felt immediately lighter. One less place for me to be. One less decision taking up space in my head.

With the Brazil trip out of my mind, it cleared up space to think about other stuff that was taking up headspace, unproductively, because I couldn't address it all simultaneously. Namely the mortgage pre-approval that I need to get so that I can go shopping for the house that I need to buy so that I can make that move that I need to prioritize and just get done with already.

I also need to decide what I want to buy and where I want to buy it.

See? There I go. Getting ahead of myself. Again.

One thing at a time.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Weighty

Maybe you have a mean grandpa. Or a sensitive grandpa. Or a perverted joke telling grandpa. Or a normal grandpa. Or a forgetful grandpa. 

I have an inappropriate weight commentator grandpa. It is not his finest quality.

He is also not shy. Which makes it even better.

It's just a normal topic of conversation for him. You look like you aren't eating. You don't miss many meals, do you? You're solid.  Where do you keep that food, do you have a hollow leg?

And on. And on and on.  

He's 80 years old. Everybody knows that this is just who he is and just what he does and you get to be quirky and rude when you're old. He isn't making anyone cry at family parties. (I am not saying that there aren't tears once you've arrived home.)

But he's still making everyone roll their eyes.

His finest weight commentary came after Aunt Annette's diagnosis with multiple myeloma. Aunt Annette has always been very overweight. When she was being treated for cancer, the weight fell off. My grandpa (not her own dad -- her brother's father-in-law) would exclaim about how wonderful she looked every time he saw her. That cancer has you nearly dead but you look so svelte! (Okay, not his exact words. That's just how they sounded.)

It is so bad. He is so bad. Weight is such a sensitive subject and he has absolutely no idea. (Not that we haven't told him. We've told him.)

Nobody needs to hear it from him.

And everybody does.

At dinner on Sunday, he poked me in the side and I know that I don't need to lose a single pound and I still cannot stop thinking about it.

Not helpful, Grandpa.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Around the Corner

I was stopped at the light a block away from work yesterday -- yesterday, which was an epic and hard-fought win at the office for reasons that I will not bore you with listing -- and I watched the cars turning left in front of me.

And there was Colin.

My first reaction was to be a little bit shocked that Colin, pathetic Colin, was up and functioning at 8:30 am on a Monday.

My second reaction was to laugh.

Colin. What a loser.

I don't believe I've mentioned this: Colin's house is just around the corner from my building. If he wanted to walk here, he could walk here. If I went on a very easy jog, I would cruise past his house after a few minutes.

And yet I don't have to worry about running into him, as this place of knowledge and learning is not a place he would ever turn up.

It would be more likely to have a chance encounter at a bar in Orlando. (And I haven't been to Orlando in 15 years.)

Working just around the corner from Colin's house does not bother me.

But it does amuse me.

His tax dollars pay a portion of my salary.

Assuming he pays his taxes.  

Friday, November 15, 2013

Nine

I remember exactly where I was when I started this blog. I remember exactly where I was sitting. I remember the weather. I remember how I felt.

There isn't another moment of my 22nd year that I recall better than I can that memory. And there is little else that occurred during that year that changed me as what I started on that day.

A whole year of my life and the most defining event was an hour that I spent on the Internet.

But it changed me. Becoming a blogger and being a part of this informal and imperfect community has changed me.

I would have grown up either way. I would have navigated new jobs and disappointed by boys and frustrated by my limitations and angry at the world.

I do believe that my life is better as a result of that hour I spent on the Internet nine years ago. I believe that I am better because I have this space where I can write freely and poorly about a few things that matter to everyone and an endless number of topics that only matter to me.

At 22, I was clueless.

Yet somehow I managed to get this one right.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Settling In

I am finally getting my office in order.

Maybe this means that I'm finally getting my work life in order, too.

Taking a job over from someone who held it for over 40 years, from someone who didn't plan to leave when she did, has been challenging. I wasn't trained. I figured it out. I am figuring it out. It isn't fast, but I am getting there.

Every time I turn around, I hit a roadblock. Every decision I make is met with resistance. I am forever battling what has "always" been done, forever putting a positive spin on change, forever campaigning for growth.

But I am finally getting my office in order. And I think that may mean that I'm learning. I am taking it as a sign that I know what I need and I'll know where I should put it so that I can find it.

My desk, since July, has been stacks and piles and chaos. Much like my mind. But now I have folders and files and a method.

(Though I am still lacking in space. 40 years of paperwork is a lot of paperwork. I took over an office that was already full.)  

I am getting there.

Slowly. Shoving papers into drawers.

And maybe one day I won't even feel like I'm drowning.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Compromise

I have been struggling since the summertime with what I should do about this summer's World Cup trip.

After expressing my doubts to her one afternoon early this fall, my mom said to me "well, Meg would have to go on an organized tour if you didn't go with her," implying that my sister couldn't/wouldn't plan this trip on her own.

Thanks. The guilt, mother. Very useful.

I didn't want Meg to not go because I wasn't going.

But I also didn't want to go. No, that's not entirely true. I didn't want to go enough. And feeling so-so about a trip of that length and that expense seemed moronic.

Meg's friend/college roommate signed on to join us and it only left me feeling more uncertain. She's fine. She's a nice girl. She also erased all of the ease of traveling with a predictable entity. I know Meg better than I know myself. But Meg's friend is essentially a stranger. A stranger who I know can sometimes be a brat.

I still didn't know what to do on the eve of the early October deadline to request tickets in the lottery. So I entered the lottery. We won tickets to three of the five games we had hoped to attend. I felt cautiously excited.

Then I passed along the responsibility of booking our hotel.

Then I passed along the responsibility of booking our flights.

I felt a little more cautiously excited and significantly less crushed by the burden of planning an entire trip.

Yesterday, I bought tickets to our fourth World Cup game.

After completing the sale, I looked at the calendar and saw a gap. The first four games -- the four games we've bought tickets before -- are clustered close together. And then, after a few more days, is the fifth game.

I decided that I would go home early. I decided without hesitation. I decided without blogging about it or asking Lucy her opinion or debating it with Meg or writing a 3,000 word blog post.

I decided on ten days instead of the full two weeks. It feels like less of everything. Less hassle. Less expensive. Less overwhelming. Less time off of work.

Less soccer to watch and less vacation to enjoy, too. That isn't ideal. But it's a compromise. And now I'm more than cautiously excited. I'm just excited. Which is exactly how I wanted to feel all along.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Thinkin' about

For a Monday -- a Monday where I felt like I was the only person who had to work -- the day went by quickly. Blissfully quickly.

I suppose it was because I had a lot to think about.

I've had more than a few things on my mind.


Headaches: I've been feeling a lot better except on bloody Sundays which should be the best day and instead have been hampered by headaches. When did I last not have a Sunday headache? September?

Brazil: I could not be more on the fence about this summer's trip to Brazil to see World Cup soccer. Last Monday, I was ready to pull the plug on the trip. This morning, I got up at 5:45 am and bought more game tickets and updated our travel blog. 

The Coach: I understand him better than I used to understand him which makes me understand him even less.

The Coach's Job: It's going well and I am happy for him. I am also selfish and scared that his job is going too well and that he will never want to leave. Or well but not quite well enough so that he won't feel like he's accomplished enough and won't want to leave. Mostly I am scared that this job isn't as temporary as it felt even four months ago.  

The Coach's Holiday Plans: Aren't the same luxuriously lengthy visit home as they have been in the past and I am resigned to this fact. (I've known for over a year that this would be the case but it still sucks.) Thanksgiving is a possibility but not a strong possibility. 

The Coach Sucks At Planning: This is nothing new. 

The Coach's Job Is His Life: This is also nothing new. 

Ashley: My disappearing friend Ashley has been on my mind a lot lately. I guess I just miss her. We had so much fun when we worked for the same company and our lives were so similar. And then she left her job and moved to North Carolina and we kept in touch. But then she got the boyfriend and the boyfriend moved in with her and now we're Facebook friends. I know that this is what happens with friendships -- they aren't all for life (especially, it seems, ones that start at work) -- but I had always thought that ours had more to it.

Aunt Marie: Or, rather, Aunt Marie's ashes (to me, it doesn't feel like her ashes are truly representative of her) are back at her house. My uncle picked her up yesterday.

My grandma called my mother last week and said "so, I hear Marie is visiting."

Laughing at the absurdity of this situation is permitted and encouraged.

Running: 22 days ago I ran 13.1 miles. Today I ran 3 and that was plenty.

Control: Turns out that my job more than fills my control quota. I used to like doing everything for everyone. I told myself that I was being generous but I was being controlling. If you do it all, you do it all exactly how you want to do it.

Not so much anymore. When I am away from work, I am done. Done. I don't want to make dinner reservations. I don't want to coordinate the family Christmas gift exchange. And I sure as hell don't want to run my soccer team. (Although I am.) I will show up when you tell me to show up, but I would really like you to tell me when to show up. I'm getting my fill of being the boss, thankyouverymuch.

Blogging: I've been better, haven't I? Nothing is turning out quite how I want it. I am glad that I am still writing but I am not enamored with what I am writing. My stories feel forced. My thoughts are scattered. I have been a better blogger. But blogging, for me, is very cyclical. It will get easier. And way less bad.  

Friday, November 08, 2013

Try a little makeup

I alluded to it a few weeks ago, but I never told you the story about the woman at work giving me the business about my appearance.

It was my birthday. I had enough time in the morning to throw a few curls in my hair with my flat iron, as I do periodically.

The woman comes in, as she does frequently, and she says to me "your hair is different! It looks good!"

I thanked her. "I had a little more time to get ready this morning, so I thought I would try to make myself look like less of a slob," I added. I know better. I should have left it alone.

She saw the opening and she took it.

"Then maybe try a little makeup next time," she replies to me. Completely serious. "Like some mascara or a little bit of lip gloss."

For the record: I was wearing makeup. And far less offended than truly amused. (Which I assured the patron who subsequently whispered "well, I think you look really nice today.")  

That is the thing about working with the general public. There's always someone.

Someone who likes your hair but not your makeup.

Somebody with an opinion on the color of your scarf.

Or someone who tells you that you're beautiful.

Which is what happened yesterday.

Although, truthfully, the flattery doesn't stick nearly as well.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Staggered

I met Lucy and her babies for lunch this afternoon.

I arrived just before they did, narrowly beating out the lunch rush and getting us a table in the corner.

And it occurred to me, as Baby A barreled through the restaurant and right at my lap (where he sat until our phở arrived), that perhaps this situation is the best situation.

That as much as my jealousy stings at times, watching Lucy and her sweet boys, this may be ideal.

I get to love and spoil Lucy's little guys without distraction. Because Lucy and I aren't on the same track -- or, perhaps, we're just traveling at rapidly different speeds -- her boys don't have to share my lap with one or two of my own. They get me all to themselves. I get them all to myself.

How fortunate that they were both born when I wasn't too busy and too bogged down with my own life. When, frankly, I didn't have a lot going on in my own life so that I could be a big part of theirs. 

Sometimes, too often, I look at those two and all I can see is what I don't have.

But what I do have is really very special.   

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Cure

I don't want to jinx it, but the last two days seem to be indicating that I am finally growing out of the bad mood that has plagued me since...?

My half-marathon two weeks ago?

The week before that?

Basically I can't recall when I last wasn't an unpleasant old shrew.

Earlier this week, I decided to blame this on mercury's retrograde. I am ignorant to astrology so I don't actually know what happens when mercury is in retrograde but it seems as good a reason as any. A girl can't be premenstrual for a straight month.

The only other logical explanation is that my foul mood was a side effect of an acute cider mill donut deficiency.

On Monday, I might have told my staff that I was running to the bank. And I might have just blew off the errand at the bank and headed straight to the cider mill for a dozen donuts instead.

And things might have started looking up after one donut.

Okay, three donuts.

And hot cider.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

More than a sweater

It's been almost four years since Aunt Marie died.

Her daughter, Emma, still has the hardest time with that. Not that it's particularly easy for anyone, but Emma is just so pissed off. So, so angry. She takes it out on everyone, but on her father and her sister the most. My mom is a close third; Emma likes to lash out on my mother because my mom won't engage her. She's calm, where Emma's father and sister meet her venom with venom.

Emma is 23. She isn't a kid but she still takes a tremendous amount of my mother's energy. My mom is as close to a mother as she has. She leans very heavily on my mom. She did long before Aunt Marie died.

She takes a lot of my energy, too. That's why I practically started to cry when I saw her overnight bag at Mom and Dad's house on Saturday night. Because I knew that I would have to entertain her. And I understand that it's part of the deal, that it comes with being a part of my family. But I just don't feel like I have a whole lot of fight in me right now.

With such a limited supply of energy, it's hard to want to spend it on Emma.

"I stopped by my dad's house but he wasn't home," she told me when she arrived at the house on Saturday night. Emma's been living with my grandparents because it's closer to her job. Also because she can't get along with her dad. "There is this sweater of my mom's that I've been meaning to take for a long time."

It was a sweater that my aunt bought in Norway when she went there with her mother and her sisters.

"I went in the closet and all of her clothes were gone. Everything! I called my dad about it. He said it gave it all away two weeks ago."

If that's true -- I have a hard time determining what is true and what is not when it comes to their family -- it's pretty shitty. My aunt owned a lot of really beautiful things. I know there were a few things that had been earmarked for me.

Emma wasn't raging when she told me this. She was actually pretty calm. (She saved the fit for when she told my mother.)

"So I took her ashes. They're in my car."

She was pissed at her father so she hijacked her mother's remains.

SHE STOLE HER OWN MOTHER'S ASHES.

How do you respond to that? What do you say?

"At least bring her inside, Em."

Aunt Marie is currently sitting on a table at my mom's house.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Gift cards from here on out

I have two stories to tell you in follow-up to Saturday's rambling post.

One, the story that I will tackle today, is simple and annoying. The other, which I'll attempt later this week, is complex and annoying.

Lately I have been easily annoyed.

On Saturday, I wrote all about how excited I was to have bought a few Christmas presents because I'm a bad Christmas shopper and I never want to buy a present unless I'm certain that it's the prefect present and then I get myself all stressed out until I obtain that perfect present. I don't have the energy or the time to be all stressed out this year, so it was just so nice to have two presents out of the way.

And then I saw Meg yesterday and she was like "oh, and I bought a blow dryer this week."

My (over)reaction: "ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?"

According to my cousin Liz, Meg asked for a blow dryer for Christmas at least five times over the course of their trip to Mexico. She told Liz she wanted one. She told my aunt that she wanted one.

And in true Meg style, she just went out and bought it herself.

She always does this.

Seriously. Don't ask for a gift and and then buy it for yourself a week later. And, while you're at it, maybe don't ask, like, four different people for the very same specific gift.

She always does this.

It is so annoying.

She's getting a gift card.

I do not care.

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Saturday So Far

What I didn't wake up to: a text from The Coach. He usually wakes me up to update me on how his team does but he doesn't always update me on how his team does. (Especially if it's bad and he's pissed about it.) (It was bad.)

What was waiting in my inbox when I woke up: an email from Starbucks. Free holiday drink promotion. Not upset about it.

What I did this morning: while sitting in the living room drinking coffee, I suggested to Liz that we go to Ann Arbor, get breakfast and do a little shopping. She was heading upstairs to get ready before I had finished the suggestion.

We ate: at Angelo's. Best breakfast in Ann Arbor. End of story.


We laughed: at this picture from Halloween. Our friend's daughter and I became fast friends. (She fell hard for my red patent leather ballet flats.)



We shopped: at my favorite gift/stationery store in town.


I bought: a Christmas present! For my mom. I'm excited about it.

 
 
I headed to Mom and Dad's house: because I'm watching the dog tonight. They're in Chicago; Meg's at a wedding.
 
On the way: I stopped to pick up a Christmas present for Meg, too. All the credit to Liz, who mentioned that Meg had been coveting her hair dryer in Mexico, and Ulta for having a coupon that made it a steal.
 
 
I felt the most proud: for having two Christmas presents purchased as of November 2. I am the worst Christmas shopper. This is a huge accomplishment.
 
And then I walked in the door at Mom and Dad's house: and saw my cousin Emma's overnight bag sitting at the bar. I almost cried. I love Emma, I do, but I wasn't planning on babysitting her in addition to the dogs.
 
 
 
Pulling myself together: I have a big football game to watch.
 

 

Go Blue!

Friday, November 01, 2013

The Best Trick-or-Treater

I took a shift handing out candy last night.

It was rainy but the temperature was mild. I wasn't uncomfortable sitting out on the front porch in my dress and my tights. The scariest part of my look was, without question, my rapidly frizzing hair.

I could almost tell what some of the kids were, as they marched up the steps wearing raincoats and carrying umbrellas. Face paint was smeared and masks were soaked, but everyone was smiling. Liz lives in a great neighborhood for Halloween. The houses are close together and the subdivision is huge. We went through at least 15 bags of candy.

My favorite trick-or-treater was a boy. He was about 4 and I have no idea what he was dressed up as because he was all bundled up against the weather. His mom ushered him up the stairs and I dropped two pieces in his bag.

And then I noticed him eying the peanut butter cup sitting on top of our bowl of candy and I dumped that into his bag, too.

He thanked me and he retreated back down the steps to where his mom was waiting under her umbrella.

"SHE'S PRETTY, MA."

And then I gave him all of the rest of our candy.

Or so I was tempted.  
 
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