Monday, December 22, 2008
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Well, I'm not sure if I just missed every email since September or I never got them to begin with, but I just found out Monday that my graduation ceremony - hat, tassel, crappy robe, etc. - is TOMORROW. Yeah! Time to hustle!
I did briefly consider not going through the hassle of trying to run around last minute, but then I realized, no, I've busted my ass for 5 years. I'm going to have the ceremony. Hell, if you count all of my aviation training that I also did and received no diploma/ceremony for, I've busted my ass for 10 years. Get the fuck out of my way! I'm gonna be first in line!!
So I swung past school yesterday, flashed my alumni card (giggle), and went to pick up my tickets for the ceremony. With mom recovering from chemo and grandma too old to fly -- and the fact that I just found out Monday -- as of yesterday the only person attending was going to be Husband, which was a bit sad (not that it was Husband, but the lone attendee standpoint.) Luckily KT expressed an interest in attending when I mentioned it was coming up, and desperate as it felt, I sent a note out to my friends asking if anyone else wanted to come and watch. Not quite how I thought it would go down, but fuck it. I'm graduating!
Also had to pick up my cap and gown yesterday. Talk about lack of pomp and circumstance. Small, plain plastic bag, all but wadded up in there. (Which reminds me I need to iron that thing tonight.) Then she threw in the tassle. Oooh, I'd forgotten that part. I suddenly pictured myself up on stage doing that thing where you move the tassle from one side to the other and my heart got all whoosh! and my tummy got all flutters! and I started grinning like an idiot. Then the cashier handed me everything and said "Congratulations". I just about floated out of the store.
In a way its all a bit anti-climactic; I received my diploma in the mail about a month ago, and I've been out of school for, what? Four months now? But I'm realizing now how big of a deal it actually is for me. In hooking up with my 'tribe' many many years ago, I always felt a little...less...than everyone else 'cause I didn't have a degree. We were all roughly the same age, and by no means did anyone ever say or do anything to make me feel like it was an issue. But I always felt a little dumber or that I had to try harder or whatever. Hell, I married someone who had three of the goddamned things, one of which was a Masters! Bit hard not to feel intimidated. That, plus the five-years-of-kicking-and-screaming-to-finish, yes, this is a Big Day. If you look past my weeping and sniffling, I'm actually damned proud of myself, which is not something I normally say. Go me!! Whoo hoo!
And you KNOW I am going to foist thousands of pictures on you from this!!
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
(Sleep) Walking in a Winter Wonderlaaand!
In that time-honored American tradition, roundabout our way Christmas merchandice and decorations have been appearing since, oh, September/October (thank you, Costco.) Usually its only been an isle or two and easy enough to avoid, but - of course - as soon as Thanksgiving looms, lights start twinkling and maniacs are driving home with trees on their roofs (you might say awful arbor automobile aerodynamics.)
All alliteration aside, this has caused a bit of a (snow) ball balancing act around here. On one hand, to a 4 year old, this is the excitement of the holidays. "Can we go home and get out or decorations? Can we get a tree? A big tree? Like that one? (Points to 20' flocked nightmare.) And that? Can we get one of those? (inflatable elf/reindeer porn.)" On the other hand, apparantly I'm now a crotchety old mom who thinks that Christmas should get started around, oh, Christmastime and felt like her heart was two sizes too small everytime she said 'no' to her kid. Oh, did I accidentally squash your sugarplum fairy when I dropped my bag full of coal on him -- 800 times? How clumsy of me!
Something needed to be done, so Mags and I sat down and picked a date when we would dig through the shed and find our meager box of decorations. That night was last night. First we had to go to the store and buy a flashlight, but soon we were in the cruel cold of evening (40') looking for our cardboad Christmas miracle. Victoriously we rode home through the snow under a fur blanket in our illuminated carriage singing carols ("Don't step in the mud puddle! Are you even wearing pants?!?") Mags dove head first into the box, launching stockings and ornaments and snarled lights everywhere. This went on for about 20 minutes before I realized why I was struggling so with the whole messy process.
We had no tree.
Ooops! Little detail we...sort of...over...looked...goddamit, are we really going to have to go back out and get a tree now that we've covered the floor with loose ornament hooks? F*ck! Cue second Christmas miracle, when Husband ran into a friend at the grocery store who offered us the use of a mid-size fake tree for the holidays. Perfect! We whipped that baby together in no time flat, and soon Mags was bedecking our halls (and the tree) with ornaments and... spoonfulls of shells she's collected from our southerly sailing sojurn stopped sadly this Sunday (cruise to Mexico.) Literally, there are shells balanced on the tree branches. This should be interesting.
The ornaments were not all hung, the boxes are still littering the living room, and nary a card has been signed or addressed yet. Overall our holiday season is creaking to life with the slow, painful sound of an old 33 RPM Christmas album started with the needle in place before revolving at full speed. Swimming through virtual eggnog, we are. But we've still got time. The 12 days don't start until after Christmas, rigt?
Wanted: Jew for Hire
Mags: (singing) Dredle, dredle, dredle...
Mags: Hey mom, can we celebrate Hanukka this year? And play with a dredle? And have all those (gestures up and down in a line) candles and that one big helper-candle this year?
Me: Suuuure...we...can. I just need to...talk...to some...people...first....
Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Well, I'll Never Do *That* Again!
Tried an experiment the other day while cooking a whole chicken. Historically I stand the chicken up by jamming a soup can filled with water into its butt, so that it gets brown all around, the fat drips off, and the water steams the chicken and keeps it moinst. It does all of these things just theway I want to, but the hole/soup can don't match and it ends up being a relly tight fit. Combine this with a little bit of shrinkage from cooking, and it being too hot and tender to slip off easily after its done -- well, it was more often than not just a pain inthe ass (and not just the chickens.)