Merry Christmas everyone (who I did not see in the past 3 days)! I am in NY with the parents and family and having a very good time.
Last week was busy trying to get end of year stuff done. I’m going to be working Thursday and Friday but I don’t know who else may be so I knew last week was my last real shot at getting things done in 2007 for work. As a result, I worked later and more constently all day then normal leaving zero time for blogging or reading any of my favorate blogs.
Friday started the Christmas season with a gift exchange at T&K’s. They both liked their gifts and the kids really liked theirs and they are a very hard family to shop for. Lars go Scott a T-shirt from Cafe-Press that he was very very excited about so I was expecting something cool or different and it ended up being a XL black t-shirt with two yellow ovals on it…. It is apparently from a comic they both read and Scott did in fact really like it but I told him next time he wanted yellow ovals on something let me know, I can take care of that (as could the average 10 year old).
Saturday morning it was snowing as we left… not a great start to a two airplane day, but we were early enough that we really only had a 20 min delay at MSP and that was because Chicago was having fog delays and they didn’t want to circle waiting for their turn to land. We got in and out of Chicago without a hitch and to NY about 30min after expected arrival time. The AA termanl at JFK is really nice, very modern and clean and way better then the old terminal we usually fly into. Dad was there to pick us up and the weather here was perfect and hardly counts as winter. The news said that most flights were canceled that afternoon and the next day so I’m glad we got out just in time.
Sunday was family picture day and I hid the bump behind my sister so I look pretty normal. It took almost 3 hours from arrival to departure so it ate a big chunk of the day. The photograpther had a crush on Josie and they had hung out over the summer, poor guy had to act all goofy to get the kids to look cute and his favorate catch phrases were “Say POOPIES!” and “Stinky Feet!”. He really did not have a shot with Josie before but had even less (-10) by the time we left. Lars and I were invited to Bev’s for a dinner party at 5 and there was just enought time inbetween to stop into the yaucht clup with parents and say hello to that crowd before going to the party. I was extreemly surprised to see so many of my friends there including Hailey who I had not seen in almost 10 years because we just kept missing eachother with travel and she also lived in Alaska for a couple of years. Anyway, the party was very fun, the food was great and my Mom had told me to ask everyone around to her house for coffee and visit since she had not seen any of my friends in ages (only slightly suspicious) and when I mentioned it they all agreed to come (slightly more suspicious) and when we got back to our house and it was full of baby shower! There were obviously some hints but it is much more fun to be surprised and I was. We got lots of nice baby stuff inclueding some reeeeeaaaalllly cute girl clothes so my HS friends are voting girl. I need to get some baby spesfic thankyou cards when I get home.
Christmas eve was busy with final prep and a church and a party next door and general anticipation for the big day.
Christmas morning was all adults (plus one fetus) because Sinead sister and husband and nephews went to inlaws for eve/day so we all got to sleep in. Dad served Mamosas in crystl glasses and we all opened a bunch of presents. I think everyone liked everything and it was a fun morning. We were lazy for most of the day and did a big clean up before the 30 other family memebers arrived at 6pm. We set the table for a huge amount of family, I’ll have to get a picture from one of the aunts who were taking them. Dinner was tasty and fun and loud and we all fell asleep way to late after more presents and dessert.
Boxing day we recovered from christmas and went to a party at my Grandmothers. Sinead and kids finally arrived after battling getting lost and bad traffic but it was fun to see TJ house the humas and B actually eat a bunch of blue cheese, I am glad to not be incharge of their diapers today. We did Christmas take 3 with the little boys and then stayed up too late again.
Today I’m technically working. Not too many people are at work so it should be a day of cleaning up e-mail and sending out some reports. I can’t believe it has almost been a week already and it has taken 914 words to describe my week so far (and trust me, I am leaving stuff out!)
Ah end of year – for those of you who work anywhere that has a finance group (and has to work with said group) end of year is a dreaded and horrible phrase. For the past two months I’ve tried to be proactive, for the past two weeks I’ve been pushy, for the past two days it has been dreadful trying to jump through all the hoops just to finish up the year on the right foot. My job includes invoices and pricing and budgets the three headed dog of Accounting hell. Only a few weeks left and I really am making headway but it is not my favorite activity. Yesterday after I escaped work, I got home, had a snack while relaxing and Lars finished work and got a bunch of birthday phone calls then we went out to dinner. The sushi place was ok, not great, not someplace I’ll go again. The problem was there was no taste to anything (except an overwhelming amount of cilantro in one) and it was just all dull. Our waiter also forgot to order one of my favorite rolls and we just kept expecting him to be right over with it since sushi is seldom all served in one batch but he never came back to our table, ever… We flagged him down to get the check and gave him a bad tip but with a note so maybe next time he will check on customers and bring all the food they order. Too bad because the atmosphere was cool and it was easy to get to and had cheap parking for the city. We stopped at the fancy grocery store to pick up raspberry mascarpone desserts and ate them watching tv and I fell asleep on the couch. There were presents interspersed in this evening… Lars brought me my first one in bed while I was on the phone etc and when I opened it he could not stop laughing so I was expecting something really silly. It was the cell phone I ordered myself for my 2 year free phone! He said it arrived right when he was wrapping so he could not resist. Hey, I did want it so that counts as good gift. Then I opened a few movies and books, all very fun and I’m looking forward to watching them. After dessert I opened the two last one and they are total proof I married ‘a boy’ because one was a backpack almost identical to the one I have and the other is a nifty keyboard, both things I think Lars really likes but are more funny to me then useful. The more funny part was last week when I asked him to bring me my backpack he remarked “Oh, you have a backpack?” it was funny then but way more funny now J FYI I have had this backpack for over 2 years and he was with me when I got it… and it is in very good condition still. Well, two backpacks are better then one, now I have a diaper bag. The only real bummer of the day was at 1:30 am I woke up with a massive nosebleed that was threatening to drown me. My nose blead for about 5 min straight before it dried up. I got back to sleep fine but then this morning it happened again, at work, all over a nice white shirt! I hope the blood comes out but Lars brought me another shirt so I can look respectable for all my afternoon meetings. Tonight I will enjoy not having to go to class by doing the wrapping for MN gifts, beginning to pack for the trip home for Christmas and maybe I’ll even get a second exercise session in for the week! (or I might nap)
On December 18th, Happy Birthday to me and to G1 and to Brad Pitt and guy at work…
20 years between;
Last week work was moaning about the lack of Christmas candy… today there are no complaints. I have no idea if things are slower or memory is foggy but today we are inundated with candy and summer sausage, enough that I’m feeling a bit queasy. Tomorrow is my birthday so maybe I’ll bring in something healthy to try and offset the sugar rush. Not really that fun but better for everyone. This weekend was busy, Saturday I got some cleaning, laundry, and errands done and then went to a Christmas party that night. Sunday Lars and I went appliance shopping and the fridge we wanted was on sale enough that we are getting a dishwasher too for a combined total of what we planned on spending on a fridge. Yeah Appliancesmart! We also went to two different malls, the Maplewood mall in search of jeans that actually fit Lars (not easy) and the mall of America to get the last few things for Lars’s family, I need to pack them tonight and mail tomorrow. ALL DAY shopping got to my poor pregnant back and by the end I was really feeling my extra 15 pounds. We went to motherhood maternity on the ongoing quest for a dress for Christmas and I was talked into the belly brace by Lars and the sales lady and it really does help a lot. It is like a weight belt that gives the belly and back support and it makes both feel much better. I liked it so much I wore it out of the store, and, as a bonus we even found a good dress. The unintended side effect of the belly band is that baby thinks it is a foreign invader imposing on his/her space and has been spending a lot of time giving it kicks and punches. I don’t mind too much because its nice to know the bump is healthy but I have a feeling I might be annoying the bump with this restriction on space. Today I did all Christmas card inserts and labels and tonight I will assemble and tomorrow hopefully mail. I’m not sending them to people I normally see, mostly far away family so there are only about 25 so here is the picture that I’m including. I worry that I look chubby but I suppose people will have to understand. Tonight and this week have a bunch of potential plans but many things are up in the air so I’ll do what I can do when I can do it and what does not get done will just wait!
Finally, the class is over! It was excruciating the last few weeks because not only was I at the end of my rope for tolerance for finance, the 3rd person in our group had completely proven to be a flake and the other guy and I were doing the entire project. Flake did make an appearance 3 days before the due date to try and ‘help’ but her help more or less hurt and made me mad but in the end we did fine and I think the teacher knows that she was more or less absent from the project (not that I didn’t directly tell him so… I would never do that). She also skipped atleast 5 classes out of I think 14 total so I have no clue if she even passed. I can now finally focus on other things. Yesterday also marked another important ending, Mr. Refrigerator has finally passed on… Last night it started sounding like parts were shaking off the compressor on the inside, I worry slightly that it will blow up but I believe that Kenmore probably did extensive testing to ensure their product did not actually blow up given correct consumer use. I looked back and my first mention of the fridge sounding bad was on October 30 2006 so it has made it over a year on deaths door. I don’t know if I mentioned it, but, we got the fridge looked out back then and the repair man said the springs around the compressor were going, one was probably broken already, but fixing it was as expensive as a new one so he advised to replace it. At 10pm we evacuated all frozen goods to the garage freezer and we are pretty sure the fridge part will stay cold enough to wait until Saturday (if we can’t run out on Friday) to pick one out. We do know what we want, it will be a fairly painless trip to appliancesmart. The rest of the weekend is filling up as is next week. Between parties and errands I need to keep moving to get everything done. I think I might already be late on shipping gifts but I’ll hope for the best. This weekend I’m going to finish Christmas cards and of all things, I need to renew my license in person since stupid MN has them expiring every 5 years. That is it for now – Baby counter says 111 days left so I suppose this weekend I might look at the baby stuff in the stores…
I hope everyone enjoys my new format for a bit, I thought it would be fun to play with one of the holiday templates but it has a few oddities with the sidebar so I’ll be switching again after Christmas. I added the baby counter (and it sticks out funny) so I had to move to having one post per page so if you don’t visit too often use the previous post button at the bottom to navigate through.
I think I have finally recovered from the weekend. The event itself was very fun but the logistics were a bit too much. I combined a work trip on Friday with the event so I had to have all packing done on Thursday and Friday I got up at 5am for the first leg of the trip. Flying to Appleton WI was uneventful except we were in a micro mini plane with mini seats but it got us where we were going. There was one annoyingly loud guy who talked the entire time up to the point where they forced him off the cell phone and then he immediately called them back the second we landed. I think he was leaving a voice mail the first time because he said exactly the same thing during the second conversation with the addition of “did you get my message”. I can’t help but think that since we were only on the plane for an hour between 6:45 and 7:45 the chances were slim they got his message.
Anyway, rental car fun for an hour to get to the supplier, good meeting with supplier, start 3 hour trip to pick up Konrad and Heather to find out they are delayed. I then got lost in downtown Milwaukee trying to find someplace to just hang out but really could not find anyplace I could just pull into. I then realized that my ATM card was expired (Lars’s does not expire for a year…) and I had next to no cash to do tolls to Chicago. In-case this ever happens to you, there is no way they can fix it and they are all really annoying to work with. After another 2 hours in traffic I finally just camped out in a parkinglot with my book on tape for them to finally arrive at 10:45…
2 hours more driving back north to the site to the fleabag hotel, I’ve seen worse but this one was pretty bad. Next year we are going to the comfort inn (like last year!) I only went with the stupid Super 8 because it was recommended by the site and we missed all the after event socializing last year.
Event was hectic but fun, the tournament I was hostess of went very well with 32 combatants and I think everyone had a good time. Heather was impressed with our guys, both how good everyone looked and how organized it was. At court (long court) we declared for the East officially and I think Lars and Konrad did a good job – Konrad told everyone how he has been here many times in the past years and he needs our aid and Lars replied by telling everyone how Konrad brought him to his first event and was there the first time he fought, they have fought together, got knighted together and grown up together and there is no way he could deny any aid Northshield can bring. I think it is really cool that they are both on the throne together and I think Northshield will have an awesome time at pennsic if they are open to it.
The next day I finally got everyone out of bed and we went to Chicago to see the art museum. The drive was not as good as it should have been but we got there with a few hours to spend. the museum was really cool, lots of the famous originals of famous artists but also a ton of not famous pieces from famous people (Monet, Picasso…) that I had never seen before. It was a shame we had to rush it but our planes were (allegedly) supposed to leave at 6:30.
As you might have guessed, our planes did not leave on time… Konrad and Heather were delayed until 10pm and ours was canceled due to weather. I saw no bad weather personally but who knows, I doubt they cancel flights for fun. They offered to put us on standby for an oversold flight at 9:45 or a 9am flight that routed through Detroit making a 1 hour plane ride into 3 so we opted to cancel at 6 and go rent a car. Easier said then done but after the second try we found a car and we got to MN around midnight. Last logistical issue was that we left one car at the airport and the other car at G2’s so we had to return rental car #2 of the day, get car #1 and then car #2. Home in bed by 1am.
Needless to say I did not feel great and rather then risk getting really sick I took the day off and did some homework and work work and slept alot. Today I was much better for it and ready to keep going with the week.