Morning Fog


Now in my 5th year of teaching full time, I have grown accustomed to the cold. To the runny-ness, the stuffiness, and the fogginess – not to mention the coughy-ness…not to be confused with the equally pertinent coffee-ness.

I give up. I no longer just hate being sick, I loathe it with the white hot loathing a slave has for its master. And with the same degree of complacency of knowing I can’t do a damn thing about it for it is my destiny to serve.

Speaking of serving, I have been awash in testosterone, Italian made, on the home front for years. Even my daughter was a tomboy, sandwiched between two overactive brothers. Even the dog is a tomboy, as dogs tend to be.

It is probably good that I work in a school where almost all of the teachers are female. It gives my life a little balance, and reminds me that there is nothing wrong with girliness. The fact that I am expecting a grand-daughter soon – my daughter’s daughter – fuels that fire.

One thing I have noticed working in a school full of females is that it isn’t at all like working in an office full of them was in the old days. That is a roundabout way of saying how touched I was when one of my fellow teachers brought me homemade chicken soup last week. She knows that when mom gets sick, there’s nobody to take care of her. I immediately started feeling sorry for myself when I realized that nobody does look out for me or take care of me, and I don’t particularly miss that because I thrive on the caring and the looking out for others…but it does feel good to be soothed now and then. Really good. It made me miss my mom, not just in her death, but I miss having had a mom for the 15 years or so before that. The mom that disappeared in herself after her stroke. I miss the mom. I used to know. I miss having had a mom close by all these year. Independence and adulthood and motherhood and self-reliance are awesome sirens, but sometimes I would trade it all to have my mom stroke my hair and give me a hug.

Anyway, the chicken soup was delicious, and I think it did help my cold. I know it soothed my soul.

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New Deal

I joined up with BLOG 365. At the rate I’ve been going, I would only make about 120, but it’s a goal people. No matter how busy I am with teaching, it is relaxing to stop, drop and roll out the words. It’s fun. I need fun. Not that teaching isn’t fun…teaching 1st grade is a lot of fun. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Yeehaw.

So there is a cool new badge on my page, which if truth be told, is the main reason I joined up. I love the badge. So my new year officially starts with my last consecutive postings.

I am feeling much better today. The zicam/sudafed/aspirin/airborne combo is working pretty well. I still sound a little froggy, but I needed only one short nap today, and I’ve been running around like a busy little bee all day. I am still trying to get a sub for Tuesday though. Just my luck, everybody is sick and it hasn’t been easy. I am 0 for 2 right now, with a call into #3. Darn it, I want my day off.

Spring has officially sprung, at least for now. It was in the mid-70’s this weekend and it felt so warm and sunny that it was hard not to start feeling better. I wish I could say that it is going to be warm from here on out, but since it is only early February, that probably isn’t the case. Some trees are blossoming though, and it is starting to look pretty.

Now I have to spend what’s left of my weekend planning lessons for this week. Planning homework. Keeping my fingers crossed that I find a sub.
In case you hadn’t heard, I really want to take off on Tuesday.

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Up, barely

I literally did not get out of bed today until 5pm. And that wasn’t just me sitting in bed reading or watching or TV or something. No, I slept that long, with only a few brief waking moments here and there.

I am still sick, but much better I prepare to go back to bed, a mere 7 hours later. It was great sleeping and all that…but I get a mere two days off, and I wasted one of them sleeping it away. I know I needed it, and it did help, but dayum I feel robbed.

Regarding Airborne, I suck that stuff down like crazy. And actually, I do believe it works. And I think I missed taking it at a crucial moment this time and maybe that is why I did get as sick as I did. Usually the instant I feel even the slightest tickle in my throat, or congestion in my head, I take the Airborne. It usually works. But if you don’t take it soon enough, it doesn’t help as much. I am still taking it a couple of times per day though. It is my crutch. That and Zicam.
This is my current cold-treating protocol: Zicam swabbed in my nose along with a dose of Aspirin and Sudafed washed down with Airborne. Toss in the occasional cough drop. And sleep.
I will be victorious. And I am going to try to get a sub for Tuesday. I have too much to do on Monday, but if I can get someone on Tuesday, that will be good. A little extra rest. And a chance to go watch something my son’s class is doing at his school on Tuesday morning. Remind me to call a sub tomorrow, ‘kay? I already checked with one and she was busy. The more I think about it, the more I want to take off.

Someone mentioned my still having my sanity even though it is February.
All I can say is that sanity is relative. I love my class, and I seem to have won over the parents as well, for the most part. And hey, it’s only first grade. My goal is to prepare these little guys as completely as possible for the next grade…but things like grades aren’t the big deal they are in older grades. My “VG” instead of an “O” isn’t exactly keeping someone out of their favorite college. All parents are different, but I think that for the most part, parents want to see progress, know their kids are learning something, that they are being nurtured, and that interaction between the kids and me and all the stuff that happens on the playground is fair and that negatives are addressed and lessons are learned. And I am blessed because all 23 little ones can be a delight. 18 of the 23 are reading well above grade level, so that makes things easy. 22 of the 23 are at least at grade level. Only one is really struggling, but it is amazing how he can suck up so much of my time and energy. If I had a bunch like him, it would be darn near impossible. And some classrooms are like that. It is one of the perks of being in a private school…I may be making (a lot) less money, but I think my job is (a lot) easier in some ways.

On that note, time for Zicam, Sudafed, aspirin, Airborne and sleep.

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Dead Celebrities

I am sitting in what I now refer to as The Dead Celebrity Room. It was formerly known as Sprite’s Bedroom, but since she is now living in her own pad with her own husband, and since she took her desk and computer last night, making her departure formal at last, and since I have now moved my desk and computer in here since I have missed having a den/office/study, wait, where was I?

Dead Celebrities.

The room is still decorated a la Sprite. Behind me is a gigantic poster of Marilyn Monroe, with the caption I want to be loved by you. To my right, over her Zebra-print-covered-former-bed (yes, zebra print) is an even bigger poster, of Elvis. Young Elvis. Studly Elvis. Dead Elvis.

To the left of that we have two posters of The Beatles. Young perky innocent Beatles, and Abbey Road-era Beatles. Technically only 50% dead, but that band has been broken up for 38 years, so that has to count for something.

38 years?

Holy cow. I remember when they broke up. How can it be that long, and when will I stop marveling at how old I am and just accept it already? Probably never. I am still 18 on the inside and I guess I always will be.

Speaking of which, when I was growing up, women were generally considered to be Over The Hill at 25. Nobody talks like that anymore, but they did then. 25 was it. Had to be married by 25 or you would be an old maid. Over the hill. Undesirable. Phooey, of course, but whatever.

I always thought the whole Over The Hill thing was a lot of rubbish. But lately I have come up with a theory and have decided there is a hill after all. I call it 45. I think once you hit 45, you are definitely sliding down the other side. If you haven’t hit 45 yet, just wait.

I think a woman who has taken reasonably good care of herself can look almost as good at 44 as she did at 18. But when you go around that corner, over that hill, down that river called “45” you don’t come out at 46 the same way you went in.
I have noticed this over and over, and especially in myself. I thought I would be immune for some reason. But alas. At 43, 44, people didn’t believe my age, thought I was too young to have kids my age, kept insisting I couldn’t be 40 yet, yadda yadda yadda. I ate it up thinking that I would, of course, always look that way. Why not? Because I hadn’t hit 45 yet, that’s why!

Hey, I just realized that three out of four of these dead celebrities never even made it to 45! Better over the hill than under it, I guess…

Whilst in the shower a while ago, I also realized that I have spent 34 of my 48 years tied to one Catholic Institution or another, in some way or another. 70% of my life as a student, parent, volunteer or employee. Or even various combinations of those at one time. Moreover, I have had at least one child in a Catholic school continuously since Jolt started kindergarten in 1989. By the time Squirt graduates from high school (assuming Catholic high school and I don’t even want to think about college) I will have paid…um, carry the one…26 straight years of Catholic school tuition between the three kids.

Hey, you know what else I was just thinking?
Insanity Season has pretty much come to an end.

My Own Personal Insanity Season starts October 30th and ends on January 8th.

Why? I’ll tell you why.

October 30 – Dad’s birthday
October 31 – Halloween
November 15 – Mom and Dad’s anniversary
November (varies) – Thanksgiving
November 29 – MIL’s birthday
December 3 – my wedding anniversary
December 4 – BIL’s birthday
December 10 – husband’s birthday
December 24 – Christmas eve
December 25 – Christmas
December 26 – Niece’s birthday
December 27 – Mom’s birthday
December 31 – New Year’s Eve
January 1 – New Year’s Day
January 8 – Daughter’s birthday

And you know there is a whole lotta stuff going on during that time…parties, gift exchanges, school christmas programs, NOT TO MENTION all the usual holiday stuff you do because you have to do it.

We had dinner with Sprite and her Marine to celebrate her birthday, finally. I still owe her a bit of a shopping trip to get a gift, but I am poised to take a deep breath and exclaim it’s over!
That dinner was great, actually. All three kids, plus Sprite’s Marine and Jolt’s Surfergirl. I wonder if I should still think of her as SurferGirl? I mean, sure, she surfs like everyday, but as a PhD student, she is a whole lot more than just a surfer.

Which got me thinking earlier today…
markers of intelligence and education.

At Sprite and her Marine’s apartment, you will probably find the books she needs for her upcoming semester (if she has bought them yet, which she probably hasn’t) and her computer that she just took over. I will venture to say that is about it. I don’t count the XBOX. She has 3 semesters of college under her belt, and he has zero.

At Jolt’s place, I know there are at least three computers between the three roommates, and I wouldn’t be surprised if there are four. As in maybe one of them has a laptop and a desktop. There are books galore, and all three of them graduated from one of the best universities in the state. Roomie #1 has her Masters already, roomie #2 (Surfergirl) is in a PhD program, and roomie #3, Jolt, has deferred two PhD program acceptances and will probably end up in one. I laugh at how different my two kids are, and they surround themselves with people just like them. In Jolt’s case, it is great. In Sprite’s case, I wish she had gone the Opposites Attract route and chosen a scholar of some sort. But she wouldn’t.

True story…he got kicked out of Spanish in high school. Why? His teacher was dissing the war and the troops, and he spoke out. His brother was in the Marines and in Iraq at the time, and he couldn’t take the Spanish teacher’s anti diatribe. So he got kicked out of Spanish class for it! All was not lost, they put him in Drama, which was probably a lot more fun. But do you know how many times in high school my daughter spoke out that way? A lot. Never in such a confrontational way, and she took Drama by choice 🙂 But I am sure she hears that kind of story from him and just swoons.

Anyhoo…I need to go disappear into the abyss that is lesson planning. Adieu.



So much to say this time.

I did so many things I have never done. Or haven’t done in a while. And not one single thing was illegal or immoral. At least one was fattening, but you can’t win them all.

This was the MIL’s last full day here in SoCal. Tomorrow she heads back to Philadelphia, chaperoned by Sprite, bless her heart. WHEW HEW HEW I cannot wait to have my house back. Happy dancing all over the keyboard. While she is relatively quiet and unobtrusive, it isn’t easy having a ninety-year old in-law underfoot all the time. Having said that, I must add that I am impressed that she is able to be underfoot at ninety…it is really the In-Law part. We get along fine, it isn’t that. It is just that some of her ways annoy me. THEY HAVE BEEN ANNOYING THE HELL OUT OF ME FOR 6 *FECKING* WEEKS. AND YES I AM SCREAMING.

So we made her last day nice and pleasant. We went to lunch somewhere new, an Irish Tavern, to be exact. The Irish part made her verrrrry happy, but since she only had a hot dog (there’re Irish?) she really could have gone almost anywhere. She joked that the dirty coffee mug and knife proved that yes indeed the place was Irish. And she added that she could say that, being Irish herself. Whatever that means. I am sure she wasn’t implying that the Irish are dirty or anything.

And then we went to see Sprite and her marine’s new apartment, being all married and everything like they are, they have an apartment now that he is back from deployment. They had furniture delivered this morning, and since Mr. Wonderful and the 90 year old MIL had never seen where they were living, we went over. We also met her sister-in-law and niece. My daughter is an aunt. I guess that makes me a great aunt? I have to think about this. I will get back to you on that one.

I then went to school, yes on a vacation day, to do some work.
1. I took dirty cake pans, left by a well-meaning mom but dirty nonetheless, to the faculty room and washed them. Just what I wanted to do.
2. I washed 25 teeny-tiny first grade desks (read: bending over to reach them, stressing my back) with anti-bacterial wipes.
3. I washed the white boards.
4. I reset the fancy-schmancy calendar on the math board to reflect the new month.
5. I figured out what spelling unit to teach when we come back.
6. I took down all the remaining Christmas decorations.
7. I took down all the remaining Christmas artwork to send home.
8. I emailed a sub to see if she could come in one day when I have a conference to go to.
9. I watered the flowers outside, and the two poinsettias in my classroom.
10. I found a Target giftcard someone gave me the last day of school.
11. I gathered some planning and work materials to bring home.

Eh, that’s about it. Just a drop in the bucket compared to all I could have done.
But at least I am rested. I was so warn out and exhausted by the time school was out that I really couldn’t have gone on. I seriously needed a good week and a half to feel alive again. And to not cry every time someone asked for something. Or snap at my husband every time he looked sideways at me.

Okay after the whole school thing, I stopped and returned the giganto jeans I bought last week. Or earlier this week. Whenever that was. I couldn’t take it any more. They were just falling off me. Loose is great, but this was ridiculous. So I returned them and bought a size smaller without even trying them on. It worked. I am wearing them as I type and it is a big improvement. So yay on that front. I also found a cute little tote bag for Sprite’s birthday next week. It has Audrey Hepburn from Breakfast at Tiffany’s on it. Her favorite movie. She’ll think it’s cute, I’m sure.

Then we all met for dinner. The MIL, Mr. Wonderful, all three kids plus Sprite’s Marine. Seven of us for a celebration good-bye dinner. It was nice to have everyone together and of course I ate too much and am still very full.

Before Squirt went to bed, we played a little video game together because I love doing things that make me feel totally inept. Really, it’s a blast.

We watched some of the Iowa caucus returns.
I have no idea yet who I want to be President next. But I am sooooooo excited about Obama’s win. And Edwards taking second place on the Dem ticket. ONLY because that meanst that Hillary came in third. Yes. Third! I hate her with a white-hot hate and am thrilled that she came in third. I’m sure that is killing her. Happy dancing again. The best man for the job could very well be a woman, but one thing I know is that it isn’t THAT woman.

Bringing me to the point that I am SO insulted every time I hear people say that women will vote for her just because we are all women. I am so insulted by that sentiment that I cannot even elaborate on it. Almost any other reason to vote for her would carry more weight with me than that one…she is a women and so are 50+% of people in our country. I am damn sure that I wouldn’t vote for most of them, so why would I vote for her just because of her sex? Her education, maybe. Her position as first lady, maybe. Her job as senator, maybe. Her goals and visions, maybe. But her GENDER? How does that give her any automatic qualification. I, for one, gave up the whole boys against the girls thing in about 5th grade, but apparently there are people out there who think that grown people sort their peer groups and leaders that way. Amazing.


good things

1. I am lying on the top bench in the sauna. Yes, I am.

2. The principal emailed me back and we will meet next week.
Plausible deniability still intact.

Now, who thinks that the heat in here will zap iPhone, and
who thinks it will be my sweat?


Feeling a little peppier

Yesterday, I just checked out.
Everything was finally over…the last day of school and Christmas shopping and cooking and Christmas Eve and Christmas day, and the day after Christmas and my mother’s birthday. Finally.
And I just stayed in bed. Everything hurt, and I was so tired that I slept most of the day away…something I hate doing, but I thought of it as a sick day.
I finally dragged myself out of bed, took my third prescription strength dose of Advil (something had gone kaflooey in my back) and went to the gym. Of course, after 10 minutes on the bike, my legs mutinied and dragged me to the sauna.

The sauna. My favorite place to be.

Unless there is a naked lady in there, then it is my most favorite place to feel uncomfortable as I try not to stare.

After I was done there, I went to my most favoritest nail salon, where the people are Vietnamese, but actually speak really good English. Most of them. As many women have discovered, it is not imperative that you actually communicate with your nail tech, but it does help sometimes. I like having that option. So anyway, I got a manicure and a pedicure and something from Starbucks, and called it my vacation day. To top it all off, my husband didn’t call once while I was gone, which is miraculous. That alone was worth it. That sounds cruel, but sometimes I feel like our phones are an electronic umbilical cord. The lack of missed calls when I finally checked my phone was like a little gift.

Today I felt much better. And he bought me jeans.
I didn’t want jeans. I have come to the conclusion that jeans only look good on the young and the thin. Fat old people just look dumpy and unimaginative in them. I have some, but never ever wear them anymore.
But we went out shopping while the Littlest one was at a party, and Mr. Wonderful force fed me jeans in the dressing room until I relented.
The ones I bought, I must confess, look okay. But they are too big. They are falling off me, and I think I am going to have to dig out a belt now. Bummer. I have stayed away from belts for a long time too.

So funny thing about these jeans, they fit my curves and aren’t tight so I don’t hate them. But they are kinda low cut, so they lay on my hips and that means they also tend to hang off them a bit. I like them, and they are driving me crazy at the same time.

But they are so much better than some I tried on…the kinds that grab at the top of the the thigh and bottom of the knee, and make my legs look like sausages in a denim casing. That is such a ridiculous look on me. One pair coupled that with such a baggy belly that I could have passed for a kangaroo. Or not. Just sayin’
And these are long enough too! That is always a bonus. I can wear my Bjorn clogs and the pants are still dragging the ground.

Okay, I know, enough of the sounding like I have never had jeans before. These will probably die in the back of my closet too. As soon as I lose a few holiday pounds, they probably will be too big to wear, even loving the looseness as I do. Oh well. Maybe I can take them in or something…I hate shopping for jeans. Always have, but for different reasons now. Used to be that my waist was so tiny that I would go through a dozen pairs before I could find one that fit in my thighs without hanging off me at the waist. That was when I was like a size 4.
I am not a size 4 now, but although substantially larger, I am built proportionately the same way. So now I have trouble getting the right fit, and the added bonus of looking like a cow at the same time.

Do you see how shopping can bring out the self-loathing in even the most confident of us? Damn disgrace, that’s what it is. Oh, did I mention that I’m dieting too? Starting the New Year’s farce early.

Seriously, I weigh 10 pounds more than I did the morning after I got back from Philadelphia (when I went to pick up my MIL right before Thanksgiving). That hurts, since I did a great job losing 20 during the summer, and more or less kept it off till now. Hence the club and the sauna and did I mention the Costco sized bottle of something called Zipfizz?

This stuff has a fat blocker, a carbohydrate blocker, an appetite suppressant, an energy booster and a personal trainer all rolled into a tiny capsule. Okay, I might have been exaggerating about the personal trainer. In fact the website says that you “have to exert your will power.” Bummer. I would love to buy a tube of will power. In fact, I am willing to go on record as stating unequivocally that lack of will power is the prime source of my downfall. There, I said it.

But, in an attempt to place blame elsewhere (like, say, on my mother-in-law) I have to tell you that she believes in the four food groups…and three of them are sweets. Candy. Ice cream. Cake. Try living with that, Zipfizz!! Will power my sweet patootie!

I think that brings us up to date.
Oh yes, I also sent a vague and noncommital email to my son’s principal. She will most certainly assume that it is job-related. However, the vagueness gives me deniability, should that be necessary. I could be a spy, I tell you.

Thanks for the advice, re the job dilemma.
For the record, I have worked in my son’s school and at different schools. I like being at his school better. And most teachers I know teach at their kids’ schools. Teaching is just such an all-consuming job that it makes it easier to balance work and home when they overlap that way.
Someone in a position to know better, whom I respect, counseled me to stay away from his school too. That is why I didn’t apply there last year. With all due respect, however, she never had children so never faced this dilemma herself. So while I admit certain points are valid (as some readers echoed) I still think I want to go for being at his school, unless the Principal feels otherwise. We’ll see what happens. I am hoping things work out for the best, whatever that may be.


Virtual White Christmas

If you are reading me via a feed, you NEED to click through and see the snow falling on my blog. That is a very big deal, my friends. It was 71 degrees and sunny here today, so a little of the white stuff, even if it is only pretend, makes it feel like Christmas.

You have no idea, unless you grew up in the sun/warm belt like me, how deprived you feel as a child when you keep hearing about White Christmases and see pictures of snow and snowmen and snowflakes and mittens and scarves and all that jazz. Oh sure, we get some cold weather, but come on.

One of the biggest thrills of my life was when we got snow on Christmas Eve one year when we lived in St. Petersburg, Florida. That was miraculous.

Enough about the weather. Weather is weather, right? Cold in winter, hot in summer. Lots of variation and anomalies and constant change, but basically, just background noise most of the time.

Okay…Now the important things: first of all Merry Christmas! to all and to all a good night. Mine was very nice and not so nice for different reasons.

In the naughty category:

1. The fact that I worked until Friday really cramped my style. I know I could get better organized and do more of this stuff earlier, but there is that whole “old dog new tricks” thing to take into consideration.

2. Corollary to above: I never sent even one Christmas card out. I used to send a lot of them. Cute pictures of the kids, the whole shebang. Sigh.

3. All the Christmas gifts that my assistant and I ordered in September, wrapped and boxed and have had sitting in the corner of my room? Still sitting there. I totally forgot to give them to the kids on the last day. Double sigh.

4. Good excuse for above, but still sucks: my daughter’s car accident Thursday night preoccupied my mind and kept me up all night so it is logical and understandable that I forgot to give out the gifts. But I would rather have had no accident to use as an excuse, you know? Cause it is 50-50 I would have forgotten them anyway.

5. My daughter is out of state and wasn’t with us. First time I was without one of my kids on Christmas. Double suck.

6. My mother-in-law has been here way too long.

7. My father-in-law wasn’t here…first Christmas since his death.

8. I didn’t get to see my parents. I am putting this in the bad category, but seriously, it is a double edged sword. Great to be with them, hell to be with them. Capice?

9. I never heard a peep out of youngest child, all day…too busy with his gifts. Whoops, this should go in the good column. /giggle

10. Cooking. Cooking. Cooking. Cleaning. Cleaning. Complaining. Complaining.

In the nice category:

1. I don’t have to go back to school until January 7th. Yeehaw.

2. My daughter is going to be fine.

3. I got a nice bonus from school, and lots of nice things from the parents/kids in my class. Especially the big gift that the parents got together on…an obscene amount of money to use at a ritzy spa. Hello. How did they know that I needed relaxation and pampering? How did they know their kids were running me ragged? I have to say, it is nice to feel appreciated. That is one of the perks of this job. If the parents like you, they make you feel like some kind of Goddess for being able to do your job. Of course, it can totally go the the other way with parents too, so really parents are the wildcard, aren’t they?

4. The tree, the tree. We do have the most beautiful tree ever this year. Ever. Of course, I decorated it piecemeal over the course of three weekends, but what the hell. A living room full of rubbermaid tubs and tissue paper is a small price to pay for a work of art like this. Right?

5. My oldest was here all weekend and Monday and Today. It was like he came home for Christmas, which of course would have been overkill since he lives 10 minutes away. But seeing him every day was great, and almost made up for the absence of the middle child.

6. My youngest is a total gift giving genius. This child is amazing the way he zeroes in on people’s personalities and tastes and picks an appropriate gift. I think he is doing all my shopping for me next year. And wrapping? He is a speedy and efficient wrapper. We are working on finesse…but between my style and his speed, we might be on to something here. Have I mentioned how much I adore this child?

7. Speaking of him….watching him serve midnight mass (which was actually at 10 pm, don’t ask) really choked me up. I have really super-vivid memories of having to hold him on my lap, arms around him like a straight-jacket, to get him to sit still in church. So seeing him sitting up there, carrying the cross out, doing altar boy stuff, really makes me beam a little. Ok, a lot.

8. Speaking of midnight mass (at 10 pm) that was the highlight of my holiday this year. First, we got there really early since my smallest wonder was serving mass. So we sat through 15 minutes or so of a Christmas concert that was going on between the 8 and 10 pm masses. It was magnificent, truly. You would be hard pressed to come up with a more professional and majestic church choir performance. Towards the end, our pastor sang a song. In French. He is French, and I have heard him sing during mass of course, and I think parts of Christmas Carols in French in the past. He has a beautiful, deep, expressive, voice and the song he sang was stupendous. I could have listened to him all night.
I tell you, there is something magical about sitting in a dark church on Christmas Eve, with all the candles and the people all dressed up and singing…and knowing that all those people are there for the same reason you are. That all the extraneous trappings of the holiday fall away, and we all just gather together and celebrate and REMEMBER why we have Christmas after all. I can’t tell you what a good feeling that was. It also made me realize that, despite all the other things I could have been doing between 9:30 and 11:30 that night…nothing was more important, and apparently a church full of people agreed with me. And so I sat there…with my husband at my side. With my mother-in-law and my oldest son nearby. With my youngest son serving mass at the altar. With the French priests who sound so melodious and enchanting. With the amazing choir and beautiful Christmas music. The church was full, in so many ways, and there was something comforting, almost womblike, about sitting there that night.

9. Saw my brother on Sunday. Mr. Entertainment. In town for the day. We went to Little Italy after lunch and yes, that helped make my Christmas. It also helped make my most yummy Lasagna.

10. I had a little meltdown on Saturday. But Mr. Wonderful held me and sympathized with me and reminded me that it isn’t things that are important at Christmas, it is relationships. And you know, that helped, even if it wasn’t rocket science. Because Christmas still came and it was still good. Those of us who were together had a great time, and we got to talk to those who weren’t. And just knowing that my husband, my partner, wasn’t putting unrealistic expectations on me was helpful. To be quite honest, as long as he gets laid, he’s good. Well, you know, he likes the food to be hot and tasty, the wine full bodied and not too sweet or dry, and dessert to show up when he has a craving. So I guess it is really food and sex. The rest is gravy.

I think there are more than 10, but that’ll do. For now.
I am off to sleep till noon tomorrow. That was an order from my MIL, so I guess I must sleep till noon. Like I actually listen to her….


Out of the mouths

Dear cheap house builders from the 1970’s,

I know that we live in Southern California. I also know that since it never rains here, it obviously never gets cold here either. Having said that, I still think that perhaps you could have used glass that is thicker than toilet paper for the windows, and maybe put in a skylight that actually seals in the bathroom.

I know that lows in the high 30’s and low 40’s aren’t all that cold. I have lived in places where they describe the temperature in terms of “wind chill” so I realize it could be worse…however, 38 degrees is 38 degress whether you are in California or Michigan, and taking a shower in a walk-in refrigerator is NOT my idea of fun. Especially tonight, when I took a shower while my youngest was finishing up. We measure his showers in terms of hours, not minutes and my nice hot shower was lukewarm at best and the room was colder. We have heat in there…good old forced air heat that evaporates out the skylight as soon as it hits the room HENCE my outrage. It’s been building for awhile.

“Wah,” to quote one of my students.
I can’t wait for school to be out ON FRIDAY giving me a whopping 2 days before Christmas Eve. And trust me, when you are a teacher…a member of this soul-and-time-sucking profession…you don’t get much time to shop until you are done. At least in my household where there is a young child still at home and a dog and a husband and a visiting mother-in-law and two older kids who somehow STILL seem to be able to come up with ways to abscond with my time. Not that I’m complaining. Much. Wah. Just wah. I really want to finish up school on Friday, sleep for a week, then do all my Christmas shopping, wrapping, card writing, and food shopping. And some baking and cooking. And more decorating.
Can we reschedule Christmas for, um, February? Ya think?


Someone asked

Someone asked if this is my actual house here on my blog page. (Sorry, if you are reading a feed you need to click through to see it).

I have to say that it is NOT my house.
It is not in my neighborhood.
Or my city.
Nor my state.

Nay, it is not even in my country.

Maybe one day I will actually post the whole thing, not just a little chunk, and you can all have a good laugh.

I don’t know why I am living in a little virtual house that is pink these days.
My current house is not pink.
It is yellow, as were the majority of houses I have lived in, come to think of it.

The house my parents bought when I was 10, and where they still live, was pink when they bought it and of course they then painted it golden yellow. I always wished it had stayed pink.

I love old pink houses and old pink hotels. I guess if my husband weren’t such a pinkophobe, I would indeed live in a pink house.

Of course, we have a goldfish now, and I never thought he would let that fly either. He’s a fishophobe too, unless it on his plate.

Okay, enough nonsense. You know when I prattle like this it is only because there is so much on my mind that I can’t budge any of it loose. So I should go and sleep and dream and hopefully, one day, return to the land of the fine folks who have the time, energy and inclination to do THIS with some heart and some gusto.

Me? I am all gusto’d out…spent it on those 23 little rug rats darlings in my class.