#22 – STUCK IN 2nd GEAR

Apparently, it’s going to be another “recap”  “Bujo” post soooo here goes!

  • Woke up with the theme song from “Friends” bouncing around my head. Crazy because I remember no dreams having to do with “Friends” the t.v. show, the song, the cast of “Friends” or my real life friends.
    In any event, I hope this earworm wiggles it’s way out of my head pronto!
  • Father’s Day has come and gone and for those of you who were fortunate enough to celebrate with your dads, I hope it was a day of making wonderful memories.
    To those of you, like me, who have fathers that have passed on, I hope it was a day to recall wonderful memories.
    It’s always a tough day for me. A little bit sad, a little bit jealous and a whole lot of wishing for just a little more time…
  • I’ve been on a crochet kick lately. Mainly for the new grand-Diva on the way. Baby blankets, booties, hats but I’ve got some scarves going for the trees downtown for the homeless when the weather turns. One day I’ll post all of the little projects I’ve been working on. Today is not that day. I’m just too lazy to gather it all together and take pics.
  • We have new neighbors upstairs.
  • We have new neighbors next door.
  • We have new neighbors two doors down.
    That’s a blog for another day.
  • Still trying to organize my blogging. Figuring out the days to visit and read, and the days to post. This is somewhat challenging and I know I’m not alone with this.
    If there’s an easy fix please fill me in. Thanks.
  • Our weather is much like everyone else’s I suspect.
  • A happy little reminder tho…
    What’s happening with all of you? Big plans for the 4th of July?
    After a bbq or two, I’ll be at home snuggling my pup so she, along with every other dog in the neighborhood, doesn’t go nutso.
    My dog haaaattttteees fireworks, actually she’s not a fan of loud noises in general and of course. the 4th is the worst day/night for that.
    I wonder if fireworks affect other animals like they do dogs.
    I hope you’re staying cool wherever you are and whatever you’re doing. And I hope those storms aren’t wreaking havoc in your neck of the woods. It’s just heat and wildfires for us so the norm. I suspect I will never enjoy sitting next to a campfire ever again not after all these years of fire, fire everywhere!
    Be well my friends! Stay cool and stay safe!
    And don’t forget our furry friends!
    Mimi’s quote for the day –

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL

I just wanted to take a moment to wish all of you
– my readers, my friends, my Facebook friends –
a very, very Merry Christmas.

Personally, I’ve struggled through this holiday ever since my dad passed away. He was Christmas. Growing up it was his imagination and antics that made Christmas just absolutely magical. I miss that and I miss him.

I’m also missing my grandbabies more than I can put into words..

And lately, I’ve been living in a daycare. Not literally but it feels like it. First my son got sick, then me and my daughter-in-law, and so it goes, round n’ round. We’re on round two right now.

Compartmentalizing all of that as I tend to do. I’m quite enjoying the sights and sounds and festivities – AND GOODIES – here at home and throughout the city.  We’ve even gotten some significant snowfall here in the valley and more is on the way so definitely a white Christmas ahead. That makes me smile.
2017-divider-line-blue-icyI hope Santa spoils each and every one of you and gives you all that you wish for.
Again, Merry Christmas to you all.
2017-divider-line-blue-icyMimi’s quote for the day –
daddy-one-thing-that-changed-everything2017-divider-line-blue-icyfeather

FRUITCAKE’S HEAVENLY TWIN

snowflake-gray-lineI LOVE gingerbread and unlike fruitcake, the evil twin – sorry Cranky, hahahahaha – gingerbread is delicious!

Side Note: Cranky and I have both written about fruitcake. He writes lovingly because you know, with a blog named Cranky Old Man, how else would he write?
You can AND SHOULD read his fruitcake post here.
Read it and let me know if you, like me, are a fruitcake bully.

I write not at all so lovingly about fruitcake (check my tagline, “and one foot in hell..”) and other gross food, here.
snowflake-gray-lineWhen my kids were little I would attempt – key word attempt – to make gingerbread houses with them. Sadly, I have no photos but they were very basic. Gingerbread glued together with frosting, more frosting on the roof and at the seams, and then a bunch of candy stuck to it. Candy, that hours later, one by one fell off onto the table as the frosting dried and crumbled away.
snowflake-gray-lineI didn’t attempt those gingerbread houses very many times. Mainly because of this…
Whoever belongs to this mess feels my pain and I stand in solidarity with them admitting defeat as a fellow
NON-architect of gingerbread construction.
snowflake-gray-lineOn the flip side of my disastrous gingerbread house attempts are these amazing gingerbread houses…
cma-gb-house2 cma-gb-house3 cma-gb-house4 cma-gb5
I wish I had known about this one when my kids were little.
It’s not gingerbread, it’s Poptarts!
I love it!
cma-gb-poptartOf course, if after several attempts your gingerbread houses are epic fails.
Here are a few options.

You can buy a kit, which a lot of women in line at Jo-Ann’s were doing. Several at a time in fact.
I always found these questionable as far as freshness goes but the women I talked to in line said they were wonderful.
So, option #1.
cma-gb-joannsOr, option #2, altho I’m not entirely sure how lazy a person needs to be to accomplish this..
Back home we have a word for this one.
Ghetto.
cma-gb-bread-spiceOr, my favorite, option #3.
cma-gb-dinosnowflake-gray-lineDo any of you make gingerbread houses or have you at least attempted them?
If you have, success or fail, you should absolutely share the pics!

We finally got some winter weather. FINALLY. We didn’t get a huge amount of snow but just enough to get the roads wet n’ icy. I only hit one patch that caught me by surprise and almost sent me full circle down the road but my Michigan driving skills kicked in and all was well.
michigan-drivingHappy Wednesday everyone. Half way to the weekend. Any plans??
Whatever you’re doing, wherever you’re going, be safe. If you’ve got winter weather just remember, there is NO place worth dying to get to. Be late!
If you’ve got good weather. Enjoy!

I will be doing all things Christmasy today and sending happy Christmas vibes to all of you!
snowflake-gray-lineMimi’s quote for the day –
hansel-and-gretelsnowflake-gray-line feather

EVERY TIME A BELL RINGS YOU’LL SHOOT YOUR EYE OUT

cma-20-dayssnowflake-gray-lineGrowing up there were two Christmas movies we watched every year.
One was ‘White Christmas’ to which every song and dance number was memorized and acted out in the middle of our living room at least once every Christmas season.
cma-white-christmassnowflake-gray-lineThe other movie we always watched was ‘It’s A Wonderful Life.’ This became my most favorite Christmas movie of all time. I can’t remember a year of my life when I haven’t watched it at least once. In fact, I will watch it as many times as it comes on tv!
I should probably purchase the DVD.
cma-wonderful-lifeThis is such a feel good, cheer for the underdog, warm n’ fuzzy kinda’ movie. I just love everything about it and no matter how many times I watch it I always, always find myself saying out loud with Zuzu (George Bailey’s little girl),
“Every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings.”
Side Note – This is the first movie that got me really thinking about life. How just one person missing from your life, whether it’s you or someone else, would make such a huge difference.
Think about it for a moment. Take yourself out of the equation of all things that you know to be your life. How would life be different for those around you? How many of those around you now would even be here?
Interesting, huh?
snowflake-gray-lineMy second favorite Christmas movie came along in 1983, the year my oldest was born. Yikes!
‘A Christmas Story.’
cma-christmas-storyThis movie just brings back great memories of big, puffy snowsuits and being bundled up so tight you can only move in a robotic state. There was definitely no running and God help you if you fell down. You’d lay there like a turtle on it’s back waiting for a friend or sibling to take mercy on you and help you up! Not even kidding.
And the whole touching your tongue to a flag pole? Nope. Not this Michigan girl. You learn early on not to fall for that triple dog dare.

Side Note – I would totally own one of these lamps and display it proudly in the middle of the living room window WITH the matching stocking close by.
You can see the stocking here.
FRA-GEE-LEE!!!
snowflake-gray-lineHappy Monday!
Go me, I got a post done early in the morning! Woo hoo!
My Monday is all about spending the day shopping with my boy. Always a great way to spend a day.

We still have no snow. We may, in fact, have a green Christmas down here in the valley. It just seems to fluctuate between too cold to snow and too warm to snow. It’s a little crazy.

What’s on tap for your Monday? Shopping? Snowstorms?? Or just snuggling in??
Here’s to a great week ahead!
snowflake-gray-lineMimi’s quote for the day –
cma-dear-georgesnowflake-gray-linefeather

NOW BRING US SOME FIGGY PUDDING…

snowflake-gray-lineI’ve never had “Figgy Pudding,” aka “Plum Pudding” but I’d be open to a taste testing if it were an authentic figgy pudding with the original ingredients which interestingly enough did not include figs. Not that I don’t love figs. I do but originally they weren’t a part of the figgy pudding recipe.
However, raw beef or mutton fat was. I know, disgusting but hey, brandy was also a part of the original recipe so I think one cancels out the other.
According to my online source Google, you can find an authentic figgy pudding recipe here.
snowflake-gray-lineAltho I wasn’t privy to figgy pudding growing up I do remember a few of the following “gems” adorning my grandma’s Christmas buffet. And thankfully a few of them did not.

My grandma did do her Christmas hams with the pineapple and cherries. I do mine this way and my kids do theirs this way..
cma-ham
My grandma did not do this whole fish thing. Gross!

Somebody used to bring one of those Jello vegetable mold salads. It was soooo disgusting but my dad taught us to take a tablespoon of everything on the table so a tablespoon we gagged down or scraped into the trash when no one was looking!

My grandma always had cocktail weiners but she never displayed them quite like this…


And my grandma always had a couple of these.

Platters n’ platters of these and she always used those tiny silver ball decorations that were impossible to chew!
cma-cookies
Least favorite thing on grandma’s Christmas buffet?
This. Gross, gross, gross!
Waldorf salad with mayo and apples and walnuts. SO gross!
I have no idea who brought it but it was always there and always disgusting.

AND THIS!
Ugh. I can’t staaaaaand fruitcake and somebody always brings one or makes one and evvvvverybody always says, “Oh, you’ll like my fruitcake.”
Okay. No I won’t.
Not in the rain, not on a train.
I would not like it here or there.
I would not like it anywhere!
cma-fruit-cakesnowflake-gray-lineYour turn. Spill.
What were your favorite Christmas foods growing up?
What did you scrape into the trash??
Anybody ever had authentic figgy pudding?? Was it good??
snowflake-gray-lineSadly, I will not make my self-imposed shipping date of tomorrow but I’m definitely shooting for Tuesday!
Happy Sunday folks!
snowflake-gray-lineMimi’s quote for the day –
(I really do…)
cma-sleigh-full-of-fabricsnowflake-gray-line
feather

THE WHITE CHINESE ELEPHANT

christmas-23-dayssnowflake-gray-lineSome people, maybe most people, call it a “White Elephant Christmas.”
We always called it a “Chinese Christmas.” I have no idea where either of those names came from but they’re both basically the same Christmas get together game.
Sort of like Monopoly is basically the same game – depending on who you’re playing with.
snowflake-gray-lineHere are the rules to the “White Elephant Christmas.”
Just click on the pic. I chose one of the random websites of thousands that explain this game.
(These are the same rules we used for our “Chinese Christmas.”)
snowflake-gray-lineSo, hopefully, you clicked on the link and read the rules.
If not, I’m skipping a whole lotta’ shit here and jumping straight to the gifts.
Invite your people. Set a price on how much everybody spends on a gift.
Everybody brings a gift for at least that price.
You can spend more on a gift but you shouldn’t  spend less than the agreed upon amount.
The gifts can be useful, they can be a dud, they can be a pair of fucking socks – who knows.
As an example, here are some homemade/store bought “White Elephant,” “Chinese Christmas” gift ideas $20 dollars and under.
Enjoy!
snowflake-gray-lineFor the book lover on your list –

And the music lover – (Who can resist “The Hoff?”)cmas-gifts-david-hasselhoff
For the girl in your life who just doesn’t want to let summer go –
cmas-gifts-flip-flop-slippers
And here’s a handmade version – sort of…
cmas-gifts-hm-maxi-slippers
Guys always need new underwear –

And Christmas Eve is always Christmas pajama day –

Surely there’s a girl on your list who loves her shower gel –
cmas-gifts-blood-shower-gelAnd don’t forget the stocking stuffers – Students, kids starting out on their own.
cmas-gifts-hm-life-tool-kit-rock-paper-scissors
I would actually like to try this.. I love wasabi!
cmas-gifts-ss-wasabi-chapstick

And who doesn’t love a good ‘ol fashion jigsaw puzzle?
cmas-gifts-sawdust-puzzle
Oh, but wait. In case it’s a combo party. “White Elephant,” “Chinese Christmas,” AND “Ugly Christmas Sweater.”
Well then, here ya’ go!
Side Note – It appears these lovely holiday sweaters are only available in children sizes.
Mental Note – Rename family Christmas party.
“White Elephant,” “Chinese Christmas,” “Ugly Christmas Sweater,” “Bring Your Freaky Kids” Christmas party.
cmas-gifts-ugly-sweater1snowflake-gray-lineIt’s Friday folks and a late post which will end with me snuggling in and watching some ‘Scandal’ on Netflix – I may be an addict. – I finished all 12 seasons of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ and that was amazing. ‘Scandal’ appears to be as well although it does remind me an awful lot of ‘House of Cards’ with Kevin Spacey – also on Netflix.
I need a fucking life.

What’s your weekend looking like? I’ve got a quilt to start and finish this weekend and some shopping and wrapping and baking to get done. Fingers, eyes and toes all crossed that everything will be ready to be mailed out on Monday.

It’s gotten cold here and we’ve had a few flurries but so far no snow. The ground is still too warm nothing sticks. Last year we only had snow twice in the valley and it barely covered the grass. No complaints here. If we want snow it’s just a short drive away…

Here’s to a productive, warm n’ snuggly weekend!
Cheers!
snowflake-gray-lineMimi’s quote of the day –
hot-cocoasnowflake-gray-linefeather

THE HOLIDAY MIX MASH IS OVER!

snowflake-gray-lineRaise your hand if you saw this mix mash of holidays when you went into a store near you.
Now raise your hand if you’re sick of seeing this mix mash.
Yeah. Me too.
Seriously retailers, slow your roll!
This jam packing all of the holidays into one giant sales ad shopping spree is ridiculous. Is it really too much to ask to let us get thru one holiday before you’re dropping the next one on our heads??
And just a question to all of the powers that be in retail and marketing.
Do any of you have kids??
This is hell on parents!
“Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom, mom…”

#HolyFuck    #ItsOver    #NoMoreHolidayMixMash
snowflake-gray-lineSide note – Notice there’s not a whole lot of marketing for Thanksgiving??
Obviously, Thanksgiving is not a money maker to the powers that be.
Obviously, these same powers that be have never gotten the receipt for my Thanksgiving meal!
snowflake-gray-lineWhat say ye’? Do the stores pull out everything too soon?
Lemme know in the comments below!
snowflake-gray-lineIN OTHER NEWS –
I can’t believe it’s been a month since I’ve blogged. Geesh. Seems like one day runs into the next and then the next over the holidays.  I hope all of you had a happy Thanksgiving with lots of great people gathered ’round eating lots of great foods, making wonderful memories.

It was just the 3 of us – my son, his girl and me – for our feast and we made enough food to feed a small country, most of which ended up in the freezer!
But it was delicious and will be delicious again in stews and soups and casseroles and peanut butter n’ jelly n’ turkey sandwiches..
Yeah.. I pretty much never want to see food again in my entire life.
Sort of.
snowflake-gray-lineI’ve been busy with all things holidays. I did not, however, go out on ‘Black Friday’ which was really ‘Black Thursday’ for some places. Nor did I glue my ass to the computer for ‘Cyber Monday.’
Did any of you? Where were the deals?
I didn’t even look. I’ve been checking off my “list” for a while.
Now it’s just all about getting things mailed out on time.
snowflake-gray-lineI will try to be much more present in the blogging world this month.
Unfortunately, when I step away from my blog, I step away from the whole blogging realm – you…
And honestly,  it’s not that I’m not thinking of you, I am and I’m trying to get everything done so I can catch my breath on this end and catch up with all of you. In fact, I’m heading to as many of you as I can right now!
Happy December everybody! Here’s to a month of good will toward all men…
snowflake-gray-lineMimi’s quote for the day –
snowflake-gray-linefeather