Archive for the ‘Christmas’ Category

These Twenty Dash years are speeding along rapidly, although I have to admit that I was happy to see 2013 exit the stage.  My ankle surgery in October and the government shutdown were rather disruptive forces, and then in mid November I developed what was inconclusively walking pneumonia or a vicious viral infection.  Either way, by the Friday after Thanksgiving I was in the bed.  Two and a half weeks of antibiotics, a steroid pack, and five sick days later, and it was almost Christmas.  Seriously, I didn’t drink alcohol or coffee for almost three weeks, in December, to give y’all an idea of how ill I truly was. Obviously, ankle surgery and a terrible hacking cold with a racking cough that last a month is not the worst thing that could happen, but it did make me appreciate all the things I take for granted.  Like walking, and breathing.  It made me a little more compassionate towards the subjective complaints of the claimants.  Additionally, in the instance of my ankle and my respiratory difficulties, I was required to see more than one doctor and be my own health advocate to fight for additional treatment options and testing.  Not because my doctors aren’t competent, but because many of them are overworked and jaded and under appreciated, and lacked the time or effort to waste on an otherwise seemingly healthy young person with no real health risk factors.    I’m not going to get into all the nuances involved in health care, suffice it to say, being sick or injured sucks, and if you don’t like the answers you are receiving, keep asking your questions, find additional opinions.

When I woke up from being sick and realized that it was almost Christmas, I had to play catch up on the festivities.  My friends and I threw an oyster roast/skeet shoot, which we’ve decided will be known as the First Annual Christmas Clays.

Here are my friends shooting skeet.


They were some of the best oysters I’ve ever had the pleasure of destroying.

We had a blue grass band, oysters, skeet, venison chili,ham, Frog Island Punch, koozies, and a lot of fun with all of the frogs.  The party was held at my friend Zan’s family’s property, and Zan and his father are sculptors, and the property is littered with artwork.


Shannon and me playing in the froggy scrap yard.


Me and my favorite frog.


This is Jack, and Briscoe was a really great sport.

Christmas brought the arrival of a new family member at my parents house –

Christmas Day with besties from home.

Christmas Day with besties from home.


Polar Bear Plunge with some of the greatest friends ever!

Christmas was great, and I got to see a lot of old friends.  New Year’s Eve was Alicia and Bryan’s beautiful wedding.  And New Year’s Day, we all jumped in the ocean to celebrate 2014, and then we ate hoppin’ johns and collards, with mac and cheese, and the best wings in america, washed down with a game changer at Home Team.

Overall, the last two weeks of December more than made up for feeling like I was on restriction from the beginning of October until the middle of December.  And 2013 will always be the year that I really found a home in Charleston, with amazing friendships, a job I love, and an unrivaled picturesque natural setting.

As a side note, I do have to admit that I’m currently freezing to death at my house, whilst wearing an obscene amount of clothing and my uggs, wrapped in a blanket, with my arm warmers.  My power still works, but my house was not designed for the cold, and it’s all my little heater can do to keep up.  This is the coldest weather I’ve experienced since I moved to Charleston in Fall 2010.  The upside is that it’s suppose to be in the 70s this weekend. I’ve started running again, and yesterday I ran two miles, which is the furthest I’ve run since I stopped running in December 2012.  I’m looking forward to my first yoga class since September tonight, and can’t wait to be in the suffocating heat, after this freezing day.

Speaking of freezing, this weather has brought to my attention that I only have the bare minimum of cold weather gear.  I’m going skiing in February, and I think I need some new gear.  You know, like gloves with fingers.  None of my gloves have fingers.  Suggestions?

You kids try to stay warm out there, and if winter ever gets to be too much, come on down to Charleston some weekend, the cold weather never lasts for more than a couple of days.  I promise to take you to Home Team and to an oyster roast.  My new year’s resolutions are obviously to blog more, and to get back into fighting shape.  I’m going to get back on the mat, back on the tennis court, and take some things out on the pavement.

Cheers to 2014 being the best year yet!  Happy New Year!

The Big Bridge

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I literally cannot believe that is already 2013.  Life moves shockingly fast these days.  I feel like all I’ve done in the past few weeks is eat and drink.  Let’s think about 2012 for a minute.  I read a lot of books in 2012.  Most recently, I read Liars and Saints, which I highly recommend. Rarely, I come across an author that has a syntax or voice that I can only describe as hitting the right cord, where I don’t actually care what they are writing about, because simply reading the words is enjoyable.  I haven’t figured out exactly what I mean by that, but Maile Meloy writes in a way that I find immensely satisfying.  For example, I don’t particularly like depressing stories, but I love Jack London because of his writing.  There is something chewy and piercing about it.  Obviously, the really great writers make people feel this way, but I think there is something very personal about who hits me like this.  There are lots of fantastically talented writers who I can acknowledge that their work is quality, but who don’t resonate with me.  Steinbeck and Faulkner don’t do it for me.  Robert Louis Stevenson and F. Scott Fitzgerald do.

I read The Tiger’s Wife in early 2012, and that story really stuck with me.  The structure of the book was different, and there was a detached and dry quality to it that made the fantastical side of the book seem more believable.

My favorite book of 2012 was The Night Circus.  This book was highly fantastical, and maybe not for everyone.  But I found the emotion conveyed through the story to be moving and enthralling.

I also read the Silver Lining Playbook (awesome! read it), The Forgotten Garden (didn’t love it), Ready Player One (a fun read for any child of the 80s), The House of Mirth (Edith, you are so beautiful, and your stories could not be more depressing), Wicked (so much love for this book), Let’s Pretend This Never Happened (you will cry laughing and feel more normal), The Mists of Avalon (enjoyable, if you are into long drawn out medival sagas, and really, who isn’t?), The Casual Vacancy (J.K. Rowling’s first adult novel.  A good read, but certain things seemed forced for the purpose of proving it was NOT A CHILDREN’S BOOK), and I started Freedom, but then I got bored with it and never finished it.

I feel like I saw a lot of movies this year too.  It’s amazing how hard it is to remember.  Let’s see, maybe I can go backwards.  Les Miserables (awesome, obviously), Life of Pi (heartbreaking and visually captivating), Anna Karinina (I read this book in high school, and I was impressed at how they were able to pack the whole story into an appropriate length movie, but it’s a depressing story), Skyfall (I love Bond movies, and Daniel Craig is fun),  Beast of the Southern Wild (man, everyone should see this movie.  Unbelievable.  Hush Puppy is fantastic), Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson is a proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy), The Hunger Games (people who don’t like Jennifer Lawrence are just jealous), Magic Mike (people who don’t like Channing Tatum are just jealous), Being Flynn (everyone likes Robert De Nero), and finally, The Iron Lady (I felt more educated after this movie).  I feel like I had to have seen more movies at the beginning of the year, but now I can’t remember.  That’s a strong showing, but I still feel like I’ve missed some huge movies.  Argo, The Hobbit, The Silver Lining Playbook, Django Unchained.  I’ve also tried to catch up on some of last year’s movies in the comfort of my own home.  Hugo, Trouble with the Curve, Tinker Tailor Solider Spy, How to Train Your Dragon (my new favorite animated film), The Muppets, 21 Jump Street, and Coraline.

Basically, if you were curious about what I’ve been doing in the past year, I’ve been watching movies and reading books.  Sometimes I go outside and interact with something called other people. It definitely explains why I haven’t been blogging, because I’ve been reading and watching.  I am going to try to stop being such a consumer and start producing.

I did go to a few concerts – Blitzen Trapper, Patterson Hood, The Avett Brothers, Michael Franti and Spearhead, Brandi Carlisle, Miranda Lambert, Chris Young, and Jerrod Niemann.

2012 was an excellent year. It was a year full of new friendships, important re-connections, thousands of downward dogs and chaturangas, a 10k, a 5k, one of the best tennis teams a girl could ask for, abundant sunshine, oysters, shrimps, boats, coffee, beaches, bowling, late night dancing, handstands, thunderstorms (I had a dream last night I was struck by lightening, but it didn’t hurt, it just left a weird scar on my leg), Vail, Steamboat Springs (TWICE!), Williamsburg, Sea Island, Valdosta, D.C., a job I love more than I ever thought possible, and some damn good football.  And I cut all my hair off.  Everyone should try it.

I have high hopes for 2013.  I think it is going to be the best one yet.

Photo evidence of awesomeness.


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Happy Christmas Eve!

John 1 (The Message)
The Life-Light

The Word was first,
the Word present to God,
God present to the Word.
The Word was God,
in readiness for God from day one.
Everything was created through him;
nothing–not one thing!-
came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life,
and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness;
the darkness couldn’t put it out.

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(I should have written this a week ago in half as many words.  I apologize.)

The Saturday before Christmas, it poured down rain and really ruined my Christmas shopping plans.  That night, I went out with some friends, enjoyed some choice libations, and ate some good food.  I did not feel awesome on Sunday, which was unfortunate because I had put off all my Christmas shopping until that day.  I should have sucked it up and gotten off the couch and shopped anyway, but I didn’t feel good, more so than a typical Sunday hangover.  I canceled my brunch plans, and continued to wallow in my uncomfortableness while ordering Christmas presents on amazon.

At one point, Briscoe climbed into my lap and wanted to lie across my stomach on the couch.  It hurt.  A sharp pain, that caught me off guard with its severity.  I figured I could not be that sick, considering I still wanted to eat my Basil leftovers from the night before and the bojangles I had for breakfast had still tasted awesome.  That night, I had a hard time falling asleep because of a sharp pain in my stomach.  It was directly below my belly button, and felt like a hot knot was being tightened and loosened.  I decided that the food I’d eaten and the hangover had left me with some indigestion.

Monday morning, I woke up, went to work, drank coffee, ate breakfast, and went about my day.  I didn’t feel awesome, but I figured I was paying for my indulgent weekend.  At lunch, I wasn’t super hungry, so I ate a pack of toast chee and drank a diet coke (a meal that kept me alive in law school).  About 2 pm, a wave of nausea washed over me, and took me by surprise.  I didn’t know what was wrong with me, but I knew I had to go home.  I felt silly telling my supervisor the week of Christmas that I had to have the afternoon off because my stomach hurt.  It seemed too convenient.  But I must have been green by that point because she offered to drive me home and made me call her when I got there.

Once home, I wanted very much to barf.  This never happened.  I took some Dramamine and tried to nap, but the pain woke me up, which is not the way Dramamine is supposed to work.  I kept taking my temperature, but I didn’t have a fever.  I never got sick to my stomach or threw up.  I just felt like my stomach was on fire, and I had waves of uncomfortableness that would radiate through my entire system, sometimes feeling like they were coming up my throat.  I’ve never had heartburn or any problem like that, so I thought maybe this is what people complain about all the time and why prilosec is so successful.

At one point, I finally got out of bed to get some water and check on Briscoe.  The exponential increase in pain since I got into the bed was starting to freak me out.  There was something about this pain that was unfamiliar, a pain that did not have a memory of another time.  There was also a bizarre metallic taste in my mouth that I couldn’t seem to shake.  I got back in the bed, and had a conversation with Libby about my pain.  She was with Bryan, who had his appendix out in college, and after five minutes chatting with them, I knew I was in trouble and was going to have to have my appendix taken out.  At the realization that I was going to have to go to the hospital, I burst into tears.  Then I told myself I had to get it together, and got myself composed.

I am a hypochondriac.  I always have been.  I have been convinced no less than ten times in my life that I had appendicitis.  I have always been wrong.  Growing up it is drilled into your head that if you have a pain that starts in your stomach and moves to your right side, that you should seek medical attention.  I did NOT want to seek medical attention.  I wanted to go to sleep and wake up the next day and feel better.  I also knew that tons of people have had their appendix out and it isn’t that big of a deal.  I’d never had surgery before, and I didn’t want to go to the hospital.

But you know what?  No one asked me.  I called my mom, and she asked me if I could stand up straight.  Hmm, no, actually I could not stand up straight.  Or, I almost could, but it hurt like a bitch to try and I didn’t want to stand up straight.  I wanted to double it and not move at all.  My mom told me I needed to call Ashley, my sweet friend who is a pediatric hemotology/oncology fellow at MUSC.  I called Ashley, and told her I thought I had appendicitis.  Dr. Ashley told me I needed to go to the ER.  Ugh.

Jennifer and Peter came over immediately.  While waiting for them to get there, I took a shower, and put on my new lululemon yoga pants because they are the most comfortable things in the world.  I’d always been told you should make sure you take a shower every day because you never know when you might end up in the emergency room or what might happened to you after you get there.  Haha.

Peter took Briscoe home with him to have a spend the night party with Fin and Kate, and Jennifer took me to the ER around 9 pm.  The drive to the ER was TORTURE.  It was amazing how fast my pain was increasing and how painful even the smallest jolt became.  I felt a little stupid walking into the emergency room and saying, “I think I have appendicitis.”  What am I, WebMD?  As I sat in the almost desolate emergency room, I thought I would be in pain for the rest of my life.  Up until that point the pain had been troublesome, but bearable.  Bearable was becoming a distant memory.

Once in the exam room, a very young maybe doctor strolled past the door, and upon seeing two girls, did a little back track and stuck his head in.  He seemed happy to see us, and proceeded to try to figure out what was troubling me.  He asked me lots of personal questions, and mashed all over my tummy, and bent my knees around and popped my heels with his palm.  He must have been a resident because then he ordered me some pain medication and a CT.  As soon as I received the drugs through the IV, I instantly felt much warmer and more pleasant, and everything around me became more agreeable.  In fact, things became rather hilarious.  Jennifer and my young doctor friend were cracking jokes and although the pain medication made everything extremely funny, laughing was still excruciatingly painful, and I was almost in tears before I could get them to stop making me laugh.

When I remarked to the nurse that I could feel the medication, she said I must not take much pain medication because she’d only given me half a milligram.  I was dying of thirst by this point because my mom had told me not to drink anything in case I had to have surgery, which was good because I had to drink four cups of some sort of contrast stuff for the CT.  It had crushed ice in it and tasted sort of like the way water tastes right after you brush your teeth with baking soda toothpaste, and anyway, I didn’t mind because I was sort of floating in space at this point.  Jennifer fell asleep in the chair.  I kept wanting them to bring her a bed in too, but the room was really small.

Luckily, I was reading The Hunger Games, which, if you haven’t read them, you should probably not start reading them until you have a good three or four days to read all three of them, or else the rest of your life might fall apart from neglect.  I sat in the semi dark, hopped up on pain medication, and happily read about Katniss while I sipped on my toothpaste flavored ice water.  When I was wheeled back to have my CT, I was starting to think being in the hospital wasn’t that bad, even if my garbage wheel chair had a wheel that was jacked like a broken grocery cart.  The CT girl said she had a hard time finding it, because all the wheel chairs had mysteriously disappeared.

The CT took about three seconds, and was pretty cool.  I’ve had an MRI of my neck before, and let’s just go ahead and be clear about the fact that CT scans are infinitely more pleasant than MRIs, even if it did freak me out a little bit.  For some reason, the idea of having a CT of your entire abdomen is a little scary.  Like, yeah, I’m pretty sure I have appendicitis, but what if it isn’t appendicitis?  What if, in addition to appendicitis, they find some crazy growth or imperfection in my abdomen that could kill me at any moment and I just didn’t know about it?  What if it is something I have to live with and can’t be fixed?  Thankfully, all of these thoughts were rather fleeting, because it is my mom’s job to worry about such things, and I was more concerned with making sure I got my cell phone charger before the damn thing died.

Not long after the CT, my young doctor friend came back in, patted me on the foot, and told me that the radiologist said I do have appendicitis and that the surgeon would be down to talk to me soon.  He acted like the fact it was appendicitis was excellent news.  I asked if I definitely had to have surgery.  He said, yes, there was no question I would have to have surgery.  After my crazy thoughts of what else the CT could reveal and all the other possibilities, I did experience a great sense of relief at the news I would definitely have to have surgery.  I called my mom, and she said she was on the way, but wanted to make sure I told the doctor about some rare health problem a distant cousin had that could possibly interfere with my being put under anesthesia.  Great.  I discussed with Jennifer whether I wanted my mom to get my laptop from my apartment.  She remarked that worrying about a laptop would not have been top on her list of concerns if she had just found out she would have to have surgery.  We decided I did not need my laptop.

The surgeon came in, introduced himself, and his pager went off and he had to leave the room.  Jennifer and I left the door open to see what was going on, and we were able to learn that a gunshot wound to the stomach had just arrived, which we eventually learned bumped me back in the line for surgery.  When I was told that my surgery might have to wait until 7 am (this was around midnight), I asked if there was a chance my appendix would rupture between now and then.  The answer was pretty much, um, maybe?  Hopefully not.  Ha.

Before I was taken upstairs to a real hospital room, I was given more pain medication, “for the road”.  The orderly who took me from the basement to the top floor of the hospital told me all about how he’d just had his appendix out, and that it was no big deal and he didn’t even take any of the Percocet they gave him, and he was walking around a few hours later.  He said the worst part about the experience was that they blow your abdomen up with some sort of gas for the procedure, so they have lots of room to move around in there, and then the gas disperses throughout your body and has a tendency to settle in your shoulders, or under your rib cage, or somewhere else where it becomes uncomfortable.  He said it was a weird feeling and that I just needed to move around a lot after the surgery so the gas would work itself out of my system.  This was the first I had heard about my stomach being blown up with gas, and I was little disturbed by this new piece of information.

My mom finally got to the hospital, and after getting lost in the catacombs of the ginormous complex for about half an hour, made it to my room.  She brought me some shampoo, because they wanted me to take a shower with some sort of sterile soap, and I figured I might as well wash my hair while I was at it, since I wasn’t going to surgery for a while.  Jennifer was finally allowed to go home and go to sleep.

As soon as I got out of the shower and figured out how to put on the extremely complicated gown, someone stuck their head in my room and wanted to know if I was ready.  It was about 3 am, and my hair was soaking wet, and I was a little confused.  Apparently, gunshot victim didn’t take too long, and they were ready for me.  Mama dried my hair for a minute (I couldn’t because the IVs in my arm were rather restrictive), and followed me down to the OR.  My cute young ER doctor friend was waiting for me at the OR and announced happily that he KNEW I would be down here later and that he was glad to see me.  He and some other young doctor friends appeared to be playing on facebook, which made me laugh.  The gunshot victim was wheeled out of the OR as I was waiting for the surgeon.

I was given some drugs, and then the surgeon came out and talked to me, and asked me if I had any questions.  I was starting to feel a little woozy, and the only intelligent question I had was, “Um, are you any good?”  Real smooth, insult the man who is about to save your life.  He looked at me as though my remark had taken him off guard and said, “Well, I like to think so!”  This is the last thing I remember before surgery.

The next thing I remember is someone telling me that it is not time to wake up and for me to go back to sleep.  Then I remember waking up back in the recovery room with my throat on absolute fire and a mask on my face that itched like crazy.  The next half hour were the most miserable.  They kept asking me to rate the pain.  What pain?  My throat?  The itchiness of my face?  Once I was back in my room, they gave me some extremely strong pain medication that made the next two hours quite pleasant, even if my nose did continue to itch. They told me how they had stitched me up with dissolving sutures and glued my incisions shut, which I found interesting.

Around 9 am they brought me a breakfast of liquids – broth, jello, juice.  Then around noon I got to order room service from a pretty exciting menu.  They even let me order a chocolate chip cookie and a sugar cookie.  Someone came in my room every ten to fifteen minutes to check on something, and I have to say I have no idea how anyone in the hospital could ever get any rest.  Right before they discharged me, my sweet Doctor Ashley stopped by to check on me and brought me a big plush flower.  I was also instructed that I didn’t have any dietary restrictions and could eat and drink whatever I wanted over Christmas.  Which was good because Travers and Natalie were concerned about how long it would be before I could drink beer, and Libby was concerned about me missing out on Christmas Ham.  Then the nurse gave me two Percocet “for the road.”  I only took one because I was concerned that if I took both of them I wouldn’t make it very far off down the road.

When Mama and I left the hospital, I was all turned around, and took us down the wrong street.  Kate hadn’t slept in two days, and was a little delirious herself.  While turning down a street, a woman on the corner started screaming at us.  Then we realized we had turned down the wrong way on a one way street.  Opps.  Luckily, we were able to pull into a driveway before having a head on collision.  Kate tried to say she was going to go to Harris Teeter after she got me in bed, but I told her she was crazy and that after we both took a long nap we could order Mellow Mushroom.

Since then, I have recovered nicely.  I only had to take the pain meds for a couple of days, and I was at Christmas party by Thursday night.  I’ve had a hard time getting all the glue off my stomach, but at this point most of it is gone.  I can’t pick up more than ten pounds at a time until February, but other than that, I feel good.  The only real disappointment was that the silver bullet didn’t get to go home for Christmas, so she still hasn’t hit 200,000 miles.  Maybe this week?

My new year resolution is to write more, so I promise I will be updating the blog more often.  I’m excited.  I hope you are too!

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Happy Christmas!  I know it’s not Christmas yet (thank the infant baby Jesus, because I am not ready), and I still have a good bit of work left this week at real work and at home.  But this morning felt like Christmas.  It’s  a beautiful day here in the AGS, sunny, cold, crisp, but with a strong amount of humidity (75%). 

I don’t like Christmas music when the radio station starts playing it nonstop at Thanksgiving, and it sort of puts me out of sorts for Christmas music in general.  But I love the Sufjan Stevens Christmas Album and I love the John Denver Muppets Christmas too.  I really love Muppets.  Do you remember Emmitt Otter’s Jug Band Christmas?  I cry when I think about putting a hole in the washtub. 

I have on my swishy red felt skirt, that kicks when I walk, which makes me wish I was on a runway.

Speaking of runways, my parents are having my bathroom in their house redone.  After 27 years, the heart covered wall paper will be a thing of the past.  Sigh.  One wall (small wall, small bathroom) of the bathroom is floor to ceiling cabinets.  You might could call it a closet, but that would be a real stretch.  Well, there was stuff up in the top of those cabinets that hadn’t seen the light of day in ten years.  Kate pulled it all out.  It is kind of scary.  Hello, Attic Sale. 

Kate wanted me to go through the piles.  The first thing I found was my Richard Carouso Molecular Hair Setter.  Remember?  With the steam and the foam rollers? 

Sunday, before the Nalley’s Christmas party, I got the bright idea that I would curl my hair with my hairsetter.  I haven’t curled my hair in probably ten years, and I guess I sort of forgot how much my hair likes to curl.  Like, wow.  I looked like I had just walked off stage at a beauty pageant in South Georgia.  And not in a good way.  I tried to brush it out, but it just got bigger.  Finally I had to pin it up on my head in order to hid the aggressive ringlets that would not be brushed away.   

That was two days ago and my hair is still curly, but finally in an appropriate manner.  I wonder when curls like that were ever acceptable in every day life.

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12 Bands of Christmas!

Please visit The 12 Bands of Christmas website and buy a ticket to the show this Friday night and the CD!  It’s going to be awesome and benefits Pediatric Cancer research and honors seven year old Brennan Simkins who is currently battling cancer.  Brennan is an amazing kid and has a wonderful family who deserve all the support in the world!  See you there!

(I can’t get the flyer to post to the blog, I apologize, but follow the link above!  Thanks!

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Can you believe Thanksgiving is next week?  It has really snuck up on me!  I’m so excited!  Then after Thanksgiving comes Christmas!  I can’t wait to decorate my house for the first time.  It’s going to be really awesome and exciting, once I come up with an awesome decoration scheme.  All I’m sure about is that I want a big tree in my front window with lots of lights.  Lots.

You know how sometimes your birthday or Christmas rolls around and everyone says, what do you want this year?  And you really can’t think of a single thing you really want?

Yeah, me neither.  Especially this year.  I can think of lots of things I would like to get into my hot little hands.  Some of them are things I really need (in ivory, king size, please), some of them are things I think I need (size medium, thanks) and some of them are things I’m fairly sure I don’t really need but might die if I can’t have (size ten, if you are in the market), and some things that I just think are downright pretty and might want to come live at my house, with me (I’m a libra in case you were wondering).

Speaking of things I want and like, I want to amend my statement that Lie to Me is the best show on television.  It’s good, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve decided I like Castle the best.  Partially because I love it when ridiculously good looking people do mundane every day jobs on television shows, but MOSTLY because I love every single article of clothing worn by Detective Kate Beckett.  Her clothes are obviously not in the average salary range of a new york city cop, good thing her back story includes her being a park ave princess in her earlier life, you know, before tragedy struck and her mother was killed and she swore to avenge her by joining the Force.  It makes it all so much more believable, especially the part where she wears spike heels while chasing criminals through the streets.  The unbelievable part is how completely obsessed I am with all the different leather jackets she sports. I love all her coats, and her shoes.  Sigh.  So, sorry Lie to Me, until you can beef up the wardrobe, Castle is in the lead.  And a quick search of the internet leads me to believe I am not the only one who is obsessed with this aspect of the show.

I hope you have all enjoyed this installment of “I’m a materialistic fashion whore who watches too much television.”  Tune in next week for “I like to complain about things that don’t matter to anyone but me to everyone I can corner and make my captive audience against their will.”  Actually, next week might be more along the lines of “Listen to the nutty, crazy, ridiculous and embarrassing things that were said and done by my family on Thanksgiving after a few bottles of wine.”  Who knows, you just can’t ever tell.  (Note to family:  I’d never really report such things on the blog, I keep them all written down somewhere else for the expose novel I’m going to write one day about everyone I know and love).

Man, I’m cracking myself up with the jokes this afternoon. 🙂

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Merry Christmas Eve!

Briscoe and I are digging through the house today, trying to find all the presents that I've bought over the past month, and wrapping them up.  Actually, wrapping is probably a strong word, I prefer putting large bows on the gift and not using wrapping paper.  But because I'm a maker's mark ambassador (thanks to JBlanchard!), I have some sweet maker's mark wrapping paper that must be used. 

I secretly want to go to the mall today, just to see the crowds and the sales and all that jazz.  I'm not sure I have anything else to buy, which makes going to mall sound ridiculous.  I might not be able to stop myself. 

Briscoe and I are sending out Happy New Year Cards, and they are super cute, so email me your address if you want one! 

I'm going to leave you with my favorite Christmas verses, they are always the same, but they make me happy every year.  I hope you all have a Happy Christmas! 

Luke 2 (NIV)

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

The Shepherds and the Angels 
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them,
“Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.”

When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let's go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.** The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

John 1 (The Message)
The Life-Light

The Word was first,
the Word present to God,
God present to the Word.
The Word was God,
in readiness for God from day one.

Everything was created through him;
nothing–not one thing!-
came into being without him.
What came into existence was Life,
and the Life was Light to live by.
The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness;
the darkness couldn't put it out.

(emphasis added)

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It's really hot around here.  Like, 80 degrees hot.  And it has been the whole week.  And it is suppose to stay warm for a while. 

I'm not complaining, since yesterday was one of the prettiest, most pleasant days I've ever experienced.  We sat out on Travers front porch and drank beer in tshirts at 10 pm last night (I love sitting outside on warm nights drinking beer).  When it gets cold I always miss the porches. 

But even so, my clothes aren't seasonably appropriate, and like Kate said the other night  when I was sweating in my red felt skirt and tall suede boots- "It's hard to play Christmas when it's 80 degrees outside!"

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Silver Bells, Silver Bells…

My grandfather always called hershey kisses Silver Bells, which is what I always think of when I hear that song.  Chocolate.  Yum. 

So, I cut my hair last week, to my chin.  It was long enough to be cut off in a pony tail and donated to Locks of Love, which made me happy.  I have a lot of hair and love the idea of it helping a child with cancer.  What that meant for me is that over ten inches of my hair was chopped off in the first two minutes of my hair cut.  Which was somewhat traumatic.  But I love my new cute bob, and I’m relearning how to dry my hair.  I look shockingly different, I think you could walk by me and not recognize me.  I’m such an attention whore. 

Last week it was 80 degrees every day.  Very not christmas.  Yesterday it rained and rained and rained, and then after it finished raining the temperature dropped dramatically and the wind started blowing and when I woke up this morning everything was bright and clean and pretty and FREEZING.  And feels more Christmas. 

So I’m making beef vegetable soup tonight (my grandmother’s recipe) and snuggling under a blanket and addressing Christmas cards.  I bought the cards forever ago and if I can’t get it together enough to write addresses on them and put them on the mail (I’ve even already bought the stamps) then I need to make some serious changes in my life.  And I like my life and don’t really love change. 

If you wish me to send you a Christmas card – email me your address – charlsiekate@gmail.com. 

Happy Christmas!  I love you all!

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