Anyone Else Smell Burning?

If you do, that's a few of my brain cells going up in smoke. I just had one of my rare outbursts at work, due to a phone call from a team of monkeys in Houston, TX.
I won't go into the particulars, but I just narrowly avoided a #%&* load of work due to some other people's incompetence. Monkey #1 wanted every file we had on a particular building and Monkey #2 assumed he couldn't open the files I had already sent them. Boss Monkey hadn't even told them to expect a CD of files I overnighted to them last night.
Few things irritate me more than having to do extra work because of someone else's idiocy.

In other news, Christmas was a little weird feeling, but good.
It felt weird because it was our first Christmas away from the family homestead. My parents sold the house we grew up in this year, so it was our first Christmas in 23 years not in that house. We had all the pieces of Christmas -- food, family, pets, presents, etc. -- but it wasn't quite the same.
My parents came up from Oklahoma and we commandeered the house of my brother's best friend. He and his wife were very nice about letting us stay there for a couple days so we could all be together. (Yay Gabe and Krissy!)
I got some nice things: silverware (hey, I'm not a college student anymore), Peewee's Big Adventure on DVD, a CD of Celtic music, a CD of awesome theme songs stolen off the internet, Jon Stewart's book America: The Book, a great snowboarding hat, and some other odds and ends. I also got a cool present [item description removed to prevent spoilers for the Australian readers] from Karen and Co.(thanks, guys!) and a hand-quilted runner from Gregg and Amy (thanks, guys!).

I still have some tidying up to do in my life before the new year, but I'm hoping in January to set a new task -- either finishing the novel I have in progress or editing the one I finished. We'll see.


Retry: Stealth Holiday

I had a nice post written out yesterday, but Blogger ate it and I didn't feel like rewriting it. Essentially it said what I was up to, buying gifts, going to holiday parties, decorating the house, etc. I've been having a good time, but have been extremely busy, of course.
The office holiday party was fun. They had a "casino" theme, and the gambling (with fake money) was a lot more entertaining than I thought it would be. Fear not, I won't be rushing out to Vegas anytime soon. If the experience taught me one thing, it was that under the right circumstances, I can lose a lot of money very fast.
I've bought all my presents, finished yesterday evening. The folks are getting into town today. This is the first Christmas in five years I don't have to get on a plane to celebrate the holidays. I must say, it's a little wierd.
Soccer's going well, though we've been losing. This higher league is tough, but we're playing better, so it's all good.
We just came back from a long lunch, where we ate, then played a couple rounds of pool. That was fun. Of the four of us, only one really played well.
Well, I'm thinking I won't get much blogging done in the next few days, so I'll just say... Happy Holidays to all my (three) readers!


Wickedly busy

I have been wickedly busy lately at work. We have a deadline tomorrow and I worked about 12 hours today. Relatively speaking, it wasn't that bad, because we haven't needed to put in that much overtime on this project before this week. I was just feeling grumpy because I was running out of gas and still had bunches to do.

Now I have to go to bed early because I have a very early dentist appt. Whoop-ee.


Busier Than Ever

What a productive weekend!
Friday night: tai chi holiday party (got a stupid purple dolphin candle in a white elephant gift exchange)
Saturday: snowboarding in the morning, Christmas shopping in the evening (got an awesome dress for the office holiday party)
Sunday: went into work, then visited my sister, then played soccer (we lost, but felt like we played well -- interesting contrast to the weekend before)

Giving up on the challenge off goofing off for the present. Too much holiday stuff to get done.

Remember I said I was having a little trouble with being unusually pissed off unexpectedly? Well, it seems to have gone away completely. I'd blame it on the old three letter acronym that starts with a P, but it lasted for months.

Things are looking up.


End of a long week

Every been attracted to someone so good-looking (in your opinion) that you can't even imagine the two of you as a couple?

Yeah, me neither. ;)

I've successfully goofed off while watching TV this week. Woo hoo!
Tomorrow I'm going snowboarding with friends and Sunday I have to come in to work.
Hopefully somewhere in there I'll be able to get some shopping done. Presents bought: Zero.
Also, hopefully, I catch up on some email that I haven't replied to because of the month of writing.

Tonight I'm going to a potluck thing given by the place I go to for tai chi. I wasn't planning to, but they're such nice people I'd feel bad blowing them off.
"No, sorry, I'm not going because I'm feeling a bit anti-social right now."


Trying to not do

Every time I've started a blog entry for the last few days, I haven't gotten much further than the opening phrase or first half of a sentance.
Why? I don't know.
Work has been busy. Outside of work I've been busy too (yes Nate, you'll notice I have difficulty not doing).
Tonight I'm going to do some pottery painting -- a mug for the office "white elephant" exchange at the holiday party.
Last night, I made honey-lemon baklava for the office cookie exchange tomorrow. While I was doing that, I watched "Angels in America" which won so many Emmy Awards last year. It was a bit peculiar. It featured lots of characters, few of whom I identified with (homosexuals, Jews, Mormons, lawyers, the mentally ill). The storylines were very interesting, though, including a reluctant prophet and a man who struggles against being something he believes he will go to hell for.
Sunday, I played indoor soccer, as usual. Our team got our butts handed to us by a very skilled team with half the number of players. I also went shopping, but didn't buy any Christmas presents and few holiday decorations. And I made catfood for the kitties. I also went to church and had brunch with the extended family.
Saturday evening I went up to Fort Collins to celebrate Max's birthday with him and Gabe and Krissy. That was fun.
And on Saturday morning...
I sat in front of the TV and watched "Frequency" (which I've seen before and liked) and "Serendipity" (which I hadn't seen before and thought it was OK).
So you see, I did goof off, for about 4 hours.


Getting a Grip

I'm trying to get used to the idea that my life is not to be spent at my desk, doggedly writing.
I've been trying to keep track of parties and get togethers. Trying to plan my Christmas gift and decoration shopping, plan shopping to restock the house in general. Trying to get caught up on emails I tagged for reply after Nov. 30.
And trying to relax. Still haven't taken that bubble bath yet.
I had forgotten how complex life is.

(And there will be no warm weather vacation in my near future. Too expensive and I have too many other needs at the moment. Latest ideas for rewards - ficus tree for the house or... darn it, can't remember.)


Post Novel World

So what did I do on my first free evening in a month?
Accomplished stuff. :) I made a present for someone (who may or may not read this blog, so I won't say who) at one of those pottery painting places and then I went home and mended some clothes. But I'd like to point out that I was in front of the TV for that last bit! I'm going to have to try a little harder at this "doing nothing" thing.
Also, I just started reading a book (Angel Fire by Ron Franscell) with some very good descriptive passages and am starting feel that with time I might be able to bring the newly finished book up to that level of quality. Things are not hopeless! Yay!
I had promised myself a reward for finishing the novel, but now, right before Christmas, I don't know if I have the dough to do it. I guess I'll have to wait till after Christmas presents are bought (to date, zero).
I had been thinking of getting one of the following: a PDA (been wanting one for years!), a new desk and desk chair (the one I have was free, but I bump my knees on it all the time), a spa package (never done it). Then, of course, there are the bazillion things I actually need: armchair, telephone w/answering machine, cell phone, etc.
My latest idea is to give myself a vacation. I have that timeshare week burning a hole in my pocket. All I'd need would be the dough to get there and for food.
The one reason I think I need a vacation is I've been noticing lately that my "anger" reactions seem a little more extreme than I really think is warranted. It doesn't happen all the time, or in all cases, but every now and then I think "Whoa, simmer down there!" and wonder where it comes from. Would taking a vacation/retreat kind of thing help? I have no idea, but it might be worth a try.