Let's get this year over.

Happy Eve of New Year's Eve.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas (or whatever holiday you so observe).

I didn't take any vacation over the holidays because I have five kids living at my house right now.  I know you just winced when you read that.  Needless to say, I'm at work.

Obviously working hard, too.  But whatever.

2011 is almost here.  I'm sort of hopeful that it's going to be a decent year.  2009 & 2010 were kind of difficult.  But they are over (or almost over).  Let's not dwell on the past.

On Christmas Eve morning, we drove into our hometown.  Mind you, I was dreading even going there because I hate the place, I think a majority of the people are toxic & I have no reason to be there anymore.  And yes, my mom & sister live there but my mom refused to see me, yet again.  It's okay, I'm used to it.

We got into town & stopped at W's aunt's house first.  We chatted with his cousins & aunt for a while.  I was waiting to hear back from my sister about our "let's get this family back together" meeting.  We left & went to a local hole-in-the-wall for a beer.  We know the owners & W knows everyone in the damn place.  We stay for about an hour, chatting with everyone.  I never heard from my sister so I told W to drive me by her house (she was supposedly working).  Well, my mom's Jeep & my sister's car were in the driveway.  I called my sister.  No answer.  I called my mom--she answered (because until that moment, she did not know my cell number).  I ask if we're meeting & she says no, it was supposed to be yesterday.  UM, no it wasn't.  I tell her to put my sister on the phone (the one who planned & scheduled this).  I ask her if she told Mom it was supposed to be yesterday & she says no.  So my mom lied to my face (or to my phone, whatever) & apparently thought my sister would back her up.  I was furious.  I asked my sister if we were going to meet and her exact response was "I guess not."  I said gee, thanks for letting me know & hung up.  I didn't hear from any of them again.  W drove me back over to her house & I put my mom's gift in her Jeep & my sister's gift in her car (well shit, I worked hard on them & hauled them all the way there, no way was I hauling them back).  And we left.  W said my niece was watching out the window.  I didn't hear from them again.

After that, I was pretty upset.  This isn't a new scenario or anything but it upsets me every single time.  W is always floored at how they act.  He is very close to his mom (his dad died when he was 9) so he doesn't understand how my mom can be the way she is.  Anyway, I was crying & told him to just take me to his mom's house & he could leave me there while he went to do his shopping.  We go there & his stepdad is home.  I've composed myself enough to have a regular conversation with Stepdad.  W takes his stepdad's truck to do his shopping because he figured if my mom or sister saw him in our car, there would be some kind of scene.  Yes, our hometown is that small.

I hauled all the Christmas presents into the house & wrapped them while chit-chatting with Stepdad.  I'm replaying the family scene in my head--it drives me crazy but wrapping presents is a nice distraction.  I run out of wrapping paper so I leave to get more.  By the time I get back, W is home, napping on the couch.  His kids arrive a few minutes later & we proceed to have Christmas with them.  They tore into their gifts, toys were everywhere, it was chaos.  We had dinner & that, too, was chaos.  Afterward, the kids are playing in the living room & W & I are sitting (actually kinda half-laying) on the couch watching them.  I wasn't paying attention to W and by the time I realized what he was doing, there he was in front of me, on one knee, ring in hand.  "Wanna get married awhile?" he says.

HUH?  What is happening?  Are you serious?  Is that a real ring?  Yes.  Yes, this is happening & he is dead serious & the ring is very real.  And beautiful.  And there he is, holding it, watching me with his big green eyes.  He wants to marry me.  I want to marry him.  So I said "yeah.  I want to marry you for awhile."  And now I'm wearing a ring. 

Goodbye 2010 and hello 2011.  It's a new beginning.  In so many ways.

***consider this my disclaimer that you may be subjected to reading my complaints & bitching about wedding crap.  Planning is NOT my forte & neither is all the fru-fru/mushy/cute/ shit that comes along with weddings.  You've been warned.

Happy New Year, everyone.


It's been awhile.

And I apologize.  I would blame the holidays or work or whatever but really, who cares?

So have I mentioned that I hate the holidays?  I truly wish I could pass out on November 1 & wake up March 1.  Yeah, I know....that's longer than the holiday season but there's a reason:  February.  I hate it, too.  Let me backtrack & start with Thanksgiving.  It's tolerable, for the most part.  Except that I loathe traveling.  His family is 4 fucking hours away (so is mine, but that's another story).  We had planned to stay home this year.  Then he says "this is the first year I've not spent Thanksgiving with my family."  Hello guilt (sort of).  Here's what got me about that--how does a 40yo man spend EVERY Thanksgiving with family, specifically his mom?  How does that happen?  Oh yeah--you're all from the same tiny town & still live there.  Until his marriage dissolved & he left town.  So he makes that statement & guess what?  We drive 4 hours on Thanksgiving morning.  Lucky me.  But whatever....it's the holiday spirit, right?  RIGHT?????  So there's Thanksgiving.

Then Christmas.  I don't have my boys this year, they are in Florida with their dad.  Which is just fine with me.  And he & I agreed:  He'd focus on the small items on their lists & I'd get each of them their "big" present.  Whatever.  The only reason there is anything "Christmasy" going on here is because I have kids.  Otherwise, I wouldn't even give a crap.  I don't like shopping, I don't like crowds, I don't like the fact that gifts are a REQUIREMENT.    My dream Christmas?  I'd like to be in my garage (I have a woodstove in there), sitting at my table, on my laptop, drinking beer.  Merry Christmas.  Do you think that's going to happen?  NOPE.  Of course not.  We are going to drive FOUR FUCKING HOURS north.  Again.  Oh--and my sister called....in order to "get this family back together" she & my mom want me to come out to Mom's house & "talk".  Which is code for "gang up & yell".  So it's been deemed (jokingly) "My Intervention".  Which is occuring on Christmas Eve.  Merry Christmas.  I can see how this one is going to end.

New Years--just another day.  And this year, for New Year's Eve, I get to hang with three 7 yo's.  Yippee.  And then drive 2.5 hours to drop 2 of them off with their mother.  I wonder if I could somehow get out of that drive....hmmmmm.

So then there's January & I hate it because it's cold & windy but I can deal.  Fast-forward to February:  I hate it because of Valentine's Day--but not for the reasons you think.  I hate it because my dad died on Valentine's Day & his birthday was the next day.

So on March 1, I'll be a happy camper again. 

Anyway...my house has been child-free since last Wednesday evening.  My cleaning lady came on Thursday (don't judge, I figure that I work full-time & cook all the meals, I have NO PROBLEM paying someone to clean for me).  So my house is clean.  Still.  And Nickelodeon hasn't been on TV once.  And Friday night, we got to go to a friend's house for a while & have a few beers.  Saturday we ran errands & went to a Dirty Santa party Saturday night.  Then we slept & kinda puttered around all day Sunday.  Seriously.  How old is our youngest?  Seven?  So we have 11 more years until that kind of weekend can become "normal."

I envy my childless friends sometimes.

So there's my holiday rant.  I'm certain I'll have more ranting when we get back after this damn weekend.  Oh...I want to show you my Christmas Tree....which completely baffles everyone who has seen it:

Yes.  It's a Christmas Tree-Palm Tree.  And yes, it came with the lights.  But you should see it now.  Imagine red & silver tinsel along with some multi-colored lights & ornaments.  It kicks ass.