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claire.c
12-27-2010, 12:59 PM
Thought I'd start a new thread to see the year out. So another Christmas over, can't say I'm sorry as it always seems a lot of work and trying to cook in my mother's kitchen is a nightmare. You'd think at 80 she would know things like how long brussel sprouts take to cook (she still has all her marbles and probably quite a few of mine). We still have to meet up with my elder sister and her family, they are coming down on Friday, fingers crossed I shift this flu before then. I'm a lot better today, which reminds me, I must have my green tea with added vitamin c powder after I finish writing this. I know it sounds weird but it is a pleasant drink, a sort of variation on lemon tea and very healthy.

Seems like most of the population of Britain have gone to the sales today, we had to go and buy some light bulbs and the town was heaving. I had a look for a couple of things I need but the shops seem oddly bereft of anything both useful and well made. And I just can't bring myself to try on clothes unless it is something I really like because the effort involved in taking off all the layers of warm waterproof gear and then piling it all back on again is simply not worth it. Beside, when I remove my woolly hat my hair stands on end with static and I look totally insane and have to decide "does this dress suit this mad woman?".

I hope all of you had a lovely Christmas and are enjoying the holiday and family time (I'll excuse you Pam, I hope you are surviving the family!).

Barrie
12-27-2010, 01:59 PM
I'm with you Claire, not sad it's over!! It was a great Christmas and Boxing Day, lots of presents for the kids, fabulous meals, and wonderful company!! I have to agree also with not wanting to try clothes on when you have to remove so many layers! No thanks!! Hope your weather gets better soon! Glad you're starting to feel better and are 100% by the time Friday rolls around.

The kids were overly generous with their gifts for me - I now have a breadmaker and a drawing tablet for my laptop (very high tech!). Dh and I are going to buy ourselves a new home theater system for the new tv we bought a month or so ago. It seems our current system is not compatible with the new technology and with all the sales going on, we might as well just go for it. Our oldest son didn't make it out for the family dinner this year - I was a little disappointed (knowing his new wife certainly had a hand in that), but I'm sure we'll see him soon. Freya was wearing the cutest red dress last night, and Mark's new g/f was all dressed up herself. And we had a wonderful time. There's a pic of Dayton eating whipped cream on my facebook page, and I'll have to download all the pics from my phone to the computer this week. I'm sure I have one on there of Mark, Brittany and Freya - they look very happy! lol Anyway, we're off today to the saltwater fish store - they're having a sale and dh doesn't want to miss it. Sigh! :) Have a great week all!! Hope your Christmas was a good one! :)

claire.c
12-28-2010, 02:30 PM
Up and down here, I keep thinking I'm better then try to do things and knock myself out again, sinuses are the worst atm. We had a lovely doodle meet this morning with a load of others, Leon loved it and was a very good boy. Now a very good sleepy boy, just as well as I am not planning to leave the sofa.

Barrie, I have a graphics tablet, love the ease of drawing but struggle with the buttons. It is difficult for young couples at Christmas, both families want them to be there for the celebrations, just smile and make them pencil you in for next year. I hope you had a good time at the fish store, and found enough bargains to please the dh without breaking the bank.

Barrie
12-29-2010, 10:35 PM
Ah, poor Claire! Hope you feel better soon! Glad Leon is tuckered out and will want to snooze the evening away! We took the dogs to the off-leash park yesterday - they had a great time, met some new 4 legged friends, Woody met the two-legged ones (he LOVES people!), lots of romping and running about. It was fabulous. There was one very rambunctious, rather rude-mannered boxer/cross that was WAY too bouncy for Bailey, who hid under the picnic table I was sitting at. I kept the bouncy dog from getting too close to her, and she didn't panic like she did last time. She's not the bravest dog in the world, that's for sure!! Woody & Jessie weren't too impressed with the bouncer, but they really liked the rottweiler and the two lab crosses that were there. Oh, and the corgi/lab cross! Woody really liked him, they were the same height! lol It's fun watching dh with the dogs & the unfamiliar owners - he's new to 'chit chatting' with strangers. He's getting good at it! LOL

I haven't broken out the tablet yet, things keep getting in the way. Oh, tonight we're going to bake our first loaf of bread in the new breadmaker the kids gave me. I'm excited about the smell of fresh bread in the house! Yum!! The fish store wasn't too painful, thankfully, and everything we needed anyway was on sale, so it was a good time to go. Today we bought Jessie a new winter coat (last year's shrank in the wash!), so she's all set for cold walks now. Hopefully we won't get much more cold weather!! The light dusting of snow we got today is gone now. Whew! :) Anyway, hope you all are having a great week!! Cheers!

Dawnt0721
12-30-2010, 01:08 AM
Hey everyone!

I am another that is glad the season is over! The kids made out like bandits and I'm exhausted. I spent my 4 days off at home and don't think I left even once!

Claire - yuck sorry those sinuses are acting up. We've been lucky with the sickies this season so far. My SIL called today to warn me that other SIL and her son were both diagnosed with strep throat Monday and we spent Christmas eve with them. Crossing my fingers we avoid that one.

Barrie - funny that you mention boxing day. My second grader gave me a boxing day gift. He couldn't wait until the actual boxing day and had me open in on Christmas :lol: . A new home theater system sounds like a wonderful gift to yourselves.

I got several small things I asked for: a new cell phone wallet, a speaker dock for my phone for the studio so I can hear my books over the glass equipment, a new lamp for my living room, etc. Nothing over the moon exciting but all very useful and needed.

So I've finally given up on the dogs and called a dog trainer. Bear has gotten to the point that he refuses to go into the kennel (it's really a pretty large kennel/run about 5 feet by 3 feet that sits in the corner of the kitchen. We keep the dogs in it when we're gone or when the kids are running in and out of the house during the day). He won't even go in if I offer him a bit of hot dog or bacon! He just runs off into the backyard and ignores me. If I get him in the house he runs off into the house and ignores me. If I get hold of him and try to make him go in he scratches the bloody hell out of me. When I do finally get him in he will climb the 4 foot fence and jump out. So we put a cover over the top. Then he figured out he could lift it and go under. So we screwed it to the floor. Nope he pulled the screws out. Then on Monday he found a way out of the backyard - twice. He was climbing the fence and crawling through a hole that runs along the top. DH fixed the place he was going through so he found another place he could climb. I was at my wit's end and wondering what the heck I will do next week when we all leave for school and work so I emailed the trainer who writes columns for the local paper. She's going to come by next week and have a session. Cross your fingers it works!

Bedtime for me. Have a wonderful evening and week!

TheBlueBetween
12-30-2010, 02:15 PM
hi guys, still decompressing here. Feel like I've been hit by a truck and I look around the house at all the destruction and just want to run away. She made me take "summery" pictures down and replace them with holiday wall hangings my mil sent me years ago. And moved my furniture around, and went on and on about how I should get other furniture to suit her coffee cup needs (she was so not happy when the xbox kinect made the coffee table go away). I'm going to send her a box with all the cutesy country pink ornaments she purchased for my tuscan-style kitchen... the ones I asked her please not to. The ones that she made me take her to the store three times to get more of them. On top of all the gifts she bought me that I really have no use for. Bags and bags of "stuff". She said afterwards, "you know, I always worry about what to get you and I know you don't want or need much, so I try to be good, but next year, I'm just going to get you whatever I want - I'm not going to hold back." WHAT???

I'm SO glad Christmas is over. I don't even have it in me to celebrate the new year.... what is that tomorrow night? Yeah.

Claire, I hope you are feeling better now. I'm with you - all done shopping and can't even think about trying on clothes.

Barrie, isn't that always the way, new electronics always mean more new electronics. we are waiting for the hdmi cables so we can watch movies OR play the xbox without having to switch things around every time.

Dawn, sure hope your new trainer can help you out, Bear sounds like he could use some! I still get compliments on my phone wallet every time I pull it out - everywhere I go - such a great idea - I'm so glad you turned me on to it. I'd like a black leather one, but have not found one yet.

Today: progress report for Luke's school, an invoice to send to a client, and trying to put this house back to rights. Taxes to figure out soon too. Dinner at a friend's and I'll get rid of all the rest of the unopened gifts.

Hugs to all of you, sorry I've been MIA - I feel bad but I just couldn't do it all.

:grouphug:

TheBlueBetween
12-30-2010, 02:35 PM
oh, I forgot to tell you the nice news! LOL! Frank "went to Jared's" for my christmas gift! For those of you who don't see those sappy "He went to Jared's!" commercials... it's a diamond store. I opened the box and was surprised as anything, because Frank is not one to buy nice jewelry ever, aside from my original ring... he thinks since I make jewelry he doesn't have to ever buy me any... well, for some reason, maybe my dropped hints were finally heard? he got me a channel cut anniversary band, one karat, platinum!!! And Luke.... I opened the box, saw the store name, went "huh?" in my mind and Luke pipes up with, they're not Real REAL diamonds Mom, they're just the icky diamonds! WHAT? LOL and then he starts jumping around and telling me the difference between certified LEO diamonds and my diamonds and how HE told Dad to get the LEO ones but Dad had wanted the platinum rather than the white gold which is what the LEO ones were in... blah blah blah blah... going on and on and Frank is just sitting there looking stunned... it did not go the way he thought it was going to go at all! Too funny. Lesson here, never take a 10 year old shopping for diamonds if you want it to be a romantic surprise!

claire.c
12-30-2010, 07:02 PM
Bit down today, I am feeling more or less well again, although tired, and am daunted by the amount I have to get done. It is so depressing that I have wasted half my holiday feeling rotten and now have to lose the rest doing things I don't want to do. No wonder I try to go away for my holidays, it is the only time I can get out of having to do things for other people.

Barrie, there is nothing like a sociable dog for getting you talking to people, one of my fellow doodle owners says her dog is the only one she has had who comes complete with a social life. How did the bread maker go? I've never used one, although I've eaten bread from them and it seems to work well even if the shape is a little unusual.

Dawn, I hope the trainer can work some magic, sometimes these dogs are too smart for their own good. We are lucky that Leon is very good in the house, just can be a pain in the great outdoors. Hope nobody gets strep throat, I've had it and it is nasty.

Pam, your mother is unbelievable, can't you just say "this is my house, I decorate it how I want, and you can do what you like in your own house"? And if she isn't comfortable in your house then maybe she'd better not visit again, I'm sure you could find some chintzy guest house which would suit her tastes. I had to look up Leo diamonds, seems the only difference is a few extra facets so they look blingier than they really are. Classy and understated is far more you.

Dawnt0721
12-31-2010, 01:13 AM
Pam - I had to laugh at Luke but what a wonderful surprise! Here's a leather one:

http://www.javoedge.com/reflexeshop/productCatalog/getProduct.do?poid=2397&pbmId=17681

Barrie
12-31-2010, 01:26 AM
Ah, Claire, hope the blues pass by quickly - sure sucks that you have to spend the rest of the holiday doing the unwanted. I am happy to report that the bread was a raging success!! And just my kind of cooking, throw the ingredients in, close the lid, push a button and three hours later, a delicious loaf of warm fresh bread!! The first loaf is almost gone! Apparently Cody REALLY likes fresh bread! lol Tomorrow we're going to try cheesy cheese bread (sounds good anyway! LOL).

Pam, congrats on the Jared's box! And of course the ring inside! Way to go Frank!! LOL Had to laugh at Freya today (speaking of kids saying the darndest things), Kevin is the one that bought me the bread maker for Christmas, and when Freya was here today, we were in mid-bake. She started giggling like an idiot and said 'Guess where he got that?? It starts with 'F'!!!' and she giggled some more. Huh?? So Brittni (Mark's new awesome girlfriend) and I told her it was rude to spill those kinds of secrets, just as she blurted out 'Flea Market'!! LOL Who cares where it came from, it was brand new in a box, works like a charm, I don't complain. But I was talking to Kevin a little later on the phone and he told me he bought himself a bread maker, USED at the flea market!! LOL She confused the two machines apparently, but certainly thought it was funny that Kevin bought us a used machine. Weird kid! LOL Anyway! Your mom is gone now - won't be back for a while, I'm sure. You should just pack away those tacky ornaments until the next time she visits - haul them out and decorate for her. then pack them back up when she's gone. Otherwise, who knows what kind of hideousness you might end up with next!!

Dawn, does Bear get lots of exercise? A good run before putting him in the kennel might help - sounds like he's bored. Bored dogs are bad dogs! LOL We're looking for a used treadmill for the dogs for when the weather is horrible outside. We've noticed a huge improvement in Bailey's behavior now that dh is walking them consistently. Hope the trainer has some good suggestions for you! I know how frustrating it is to have rotten dogs! LOL

Well, not much else going on here tonight. Dh just got back with the dogs after a long walk (it's very chilly outside tonight!), now it's time for a movie or something. Hope you all have a good New Year's Eve planned. We're babysitting the grandkids as usual! :) Can't wait!! Cheers!

Andee
12-31-2010, 05:18 AM
Hi all - just another quick dash through to give you some end-of-year-hugs, sounds like Pam especially (and Claire, too) could do with some!

I can't believe that my 3 weeks holidays are over - where did they go? Wasn't it just yesterday when I left the office? I haven't accomplished half of the things on my list, but the most important stuff got done, including sorting my jewellery again, adding 2 more drawers to hold all the ziplocks with necklaces and bracelets... Didn't even touch a book, didn't sleep as much as I would've liked, didn't spend even a quarter as much time here in WA as I wanted :(, didn't leave the house except for doing groceries, didn't spend any time actually thinking about things. Did start writing that book, tho. And stopped after 3 pages. I guess page 4 will never see the light of day, who would've thought it can be THIS difficult to put words to paper?

I really need to find some balance in 2011...

:grouphug:

TheBlueBetween
12-31-2010, 01:53 PM
Thanks Dawn! Exactly what I was looking for!

Claire, I could have... but then I would have had to hear her go on and on about the stupid stuff. She started out the trip telling me the story she read on the plane over. It went like this: There was a mother who loved christmas. ticky tacky and over the top santa threw up kind of love of christmas. She had a daughter who had become very successful and who swore she would never have another ticky tacky christmas in her life and did things very elegant etc. The granddaughter though, liked christmas as any kid did and had made these marshmallow snow people and wanted to put them out but the middle one wouldn't let her because they didn't go with her decorations (or something?) - and my mother told me - first thing in her visit, about this story and how it made her toes curl because she was the grandmother who loved Christmas and I was the one who liked to keep it toned down and more relaxed.... and then there was Luke. So she was feeling really bad for herself and Luke before she ever got here, even though I am not at all that way. But in her mind, she was going to "break" me of that and let everyone else enjoy Christmas. It was her goal.

Imagine her surprise when I let luke line up all his Christmas Pez's on the mantle for awhile! she was shocked!

She makes me so mad. I think I need therapy because I feel bad being mad at my mother. arg!!!

So, Barrie, you really think I should keep them and put them out when she comes? Because that is what she says I must do as well. She goes on and on about how she always puts out whatever someone gave her or wears whatever someone gave her when that person comes by. It's respectful.

And I say, fine, as long as that person has the same taste as me and bought it because they knew I'd love it and not because they are trying to give me something they think I should have even if I don't think I should have it and have said so a hundred times.

OK, I'm done! LOL she makes me crazy. Seriously don't know whether to send the stuff back to her or give it to goodwill.

Andee, Hugs right back at you. Wishing you a calm and balanced 2011.

Wishing all of you a happy and safe and healthy and calm and balanced 2011.
xoxo

Barrie
12-31-2010, 03:13 PM
LOL Pam, you need a holiday!! They're only trinkets and I suggest you keep those ones only because she doesn't expect it. It will throw her for a loop next time. And really, if you don't put them out when she comes next time, she could buy you worse ones!! lol If that's possible!! In the grand scheme of life and things, tacky knick knacks for a few weeks a year in the name of shutting your mother up is a small price to pay - though I'm sure she'd find other things to make you crazy with!! My own mom used to make me nuts, for YEARS and I would give anything for that annoyance again, even for a little while. When she passed away, I inherited her Santa Claus collection (she didn't have much else! lol), and she had this one HIDEOUS Santa/snowman - and I keep putting it out because it reminds me of how much we used to bicker over silly little things! I told her for years how freaking ugly that thing was, but she insisted it was wonderful. I do have to admit that her hideous frog collection is still sitting in a box somewhere in my basement - I don't need THAT much of a reminder! LOL

Andee, isn't that always the way, though - you run out of time, long before you run out of the things you wanted to get done?! Hope it was at the least relaxing and enjoyable to be tucked away at home!

Dawn, you're the iphone accessory queen! :) Mine is currently sporting a metallic pink/black plastic cover, but those wallets are really nice! Are they a pain to answer the phone with?

:wave: to any that drift by on this last day of 2010 - I hope you all have a wonderful New Year's Eve!! We're babysitting the grandkids - Chinese food for dinner, popcorn for snacks later, and lots of movies to watch. We'll be sleeping in the living room together, like a big camp out - wonder if Dayton will sleep in the dog bed again!? LOL See you all next year!! (I know, juvenile, but I love saying that! LOL)

TheBlueBetween
12-31-2010, 03:22 PM
Barrie, I can see your point. On the other hand, I get a box of stuff from her about every 2-3 weeks... stuff I didn't ask for, stuff she can only part with if she knows she's sending it to me... my house is FULL of her stuff. My new years resolution is to take a load of all of it to goodwill. Seriously, I don't have room for my own things anymore... it's truly that bad.

TheBlueBetween
12-31-2010, 03:24 PM
and no, those flip wallets for the phone are awesome. You get fast with it. and they fold over and it's no biggie at all to talk on the phone with it.

TheBlueBetween
12-31-2010, 03:25 PM
I can't tell if that one has slots for credit card though - they don't show a picture of the inside!

Dawnt0721
12-31-2010, 08:35 PM
I can't tell if that one has slots for credit card though - they don't show a picture of the inside!

It should. It's exactly like the white one I had in Vegas. I got the teal cherry blossom one for Christmas and love it!

TheBlueBetween
12-31-2010, 08:42 PM
I have the brown one like the teal one and love it! but I had to put my insurance cards in it and now it won't close! LOL