Tuesday, December 23, 2014

 Merry Christmas Adam! I am winding down my afternoon at work.  I have just over an hour to go until I am on vacation and I can't wait.

This has been an exhausting month this year.  I think the stress finally leaving with Pk getting a job has left a void where my energy used to live.  I have my pollyanna gifts purchased and waiting to wrap.  Some cookies are baked and the rest will be done tomorrow.

It's been a bit difficult to locate my holiday spirit but I think it's finally coming around.  Might be something about putting on my Santa hat (which I wore for my clients' potluck brunch this morning).  I am starting to feel a bit excited and am looking forward to having the whole family together tomorrow night and decorating the tree and eating and drinking together.

I made some walnut shell kniting baskets for the people that knit/crochet with me at work.  I've been saving perfect shell halves for months.  Pk took one of the toothpicks and made it into a crochet hook for one of my coworkers who crochets.  She loved it.  I made new ones for my tree and one for Kate and for Em. 

Otherwise, I have been slowly knitting the Rivendell socks for Pk and had to put the colorwork mittens away for a while.  Too much thinking involved.  Maybe over the vacation I'll get enough sleep and be more clear headed.

Because I am probably going to be going computer free for a few days, I want to take this opportunity to say Merry Christmas!  I hope your holidays are filled with joy and wonder.

And if Christmas is not your holiday, then I wish you a peaceful week.  And a Happy and Prosperous New Year.  I am hopeful that 2015 will bring the world some much needed Peace and tolerance. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Today is Peter Kevin's first day of work since April.  To say it felt odd is an  understatement.   I am so used to thinking "I can stop on my way home from work and.....".  And that will no longer be as simple, at least for the time being.

Pk drops me off at the train at 6:40.  I catch the train into Philadelphia.  I'll take the same train home and then get the bus from the train station home.  It's about 2 miles and will add 45 minutes to my trip at the end of the day (and about a half mile walk).  Eventually, we're hoping he can take a different train into work and then I can use the car to come home and then go back and pick him up.  It's all a bit complicated until we see how things fall out (and can buy a used truck for a second car).

Things we did this weekend:
We got our tree.  It's actually a perfect size for our living room (if by perfect you mean "something large and bushy around which we will be stumbling for the next month") and it smells like pine heaven.  We were visited by the penguinski fairy who left us two glittery penguins hanging out front.

I cut out snowflakes for my office doorThey are eye catching and very popular.

And Pk finished putting up the lights on the front of the house.  We wanted to do something different this year but since he has been out of work for so long, we'll leave that for next year. 

I've been watching the birds out of my office window.  That is an ornamental pear and it gets "berries" or berry-like growths on it in the fall.  The birds love them.  This guy is so fat that it's a wonder his little wings can carry him.  It's a robin.  I never thought of them as birds that flock but more as a solitary creature but this year, I have seen great big flocks of robins.  They are not flying south like they did when I was a kid. We used to watch for "the first robin of spring" to let us know that winter was on its way out.

And speaking of winter, we got a dusting of snow last week.  It was so pretty to watch and promptly melted as soon as the sun came out.  Pk keeps talking about having snow for Christmas but I think that has happened less than 5 times in my life.  He is optimistic. 

I have purchased my pollyanna gifts and am waiting for a few to arrive.  I also got a few small things for Pk.  We will have a small splurge in January after he gets a few paychecks under his belt.  I don't have a mountain of gifts to wrap (which makes me happy) and nothing I have to finish knitting.   The decorations are up and the cookies will get baked next weekend.  It feels like Christmas might be coming but (and maybe it's because of the job thing), it feels different.

Not better or worse, just different.  I guess until Pk actually gets paid for this new job, I don't fully believe in it.  My plan is to walk out the door from work at 3 on Christmas Adam (the 23rd) and not come back until Jan 5.  I can't wait.  I know Pete won't have the time to take like that this year but he'll have Christmas Day off (I think) and New Year's Day.  Whatever happens, it'll be joyous.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Two posts in one week!  Watch out!

I just wanted to share some good news.  Pete got a job!  It's even in his field and will probably be a challenge and also be interesting!  And now I'm talking in exclamation points!

He found out yesterday afternoon and I could hear the relief in his voice and I could see it in his whole demeanor last night.  It's like we are coming out from under a cloud.  A very heavy cloud.  His salary won't be as good as the job he left but it's a whole lot better than no salary at all.  We can adjust our style of living quite easily.

We are, needless to say, happy.  The job starts Monday. 

In other news, we went LIVE with the new version of our software at work today.  It means that when folks come in and start working, my phone will start ringing.  The doctor I work with on Thursdays had a baby yesterday so he's out for a few weeks.  This will free me up to be a computer problem solver this week.

More happy?  It was lightly snowing when I left the house.  It will only be a dusting but even that little bit makes me happy. 

Today is the day the hospital feeds us lunch so at 1:30 I am going to the cafeteria with some coworkers to eat (usually) mediocre food.  The good part is that I like my coworkers and it's an hour away from my desk.  It's been busy as all get out here.  It's the holiday season which makes people a bit edgy and the state of PA has decided to fool around with the welfare insurance program.  People get panicky when you play with their benefits.

And I managed to delete a fairly important folder in my outlook program.  I'm hoping the IT folks can help me retrieve it.

But if t hat's the worst thing that happens to me today, then it's still a Good Day. 

I hope y'all are having Good Days!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Global warming must be a reality.  Our weather has been so up and down lately.  Today, for instance, it is 26 degrees and a bit breezy.  Cold.  Last week we hit 65 degrees and were wearing light jackets/sweaters.  Today I pulled out the scarf and mittens and woolen coat.  Gotta love it.

This past month was a difficult one for us.  Pete continues to look for a job and while he has what he considers "good" interviews, the companies always "go in another direction" (hire someone else).  He had 2 really good ones last week and we are waiting to hear what happened.

I was sick the second half of November.  I had walking pneumonia and spent two weeks coughing so hard my ribs hurt.  I was so full of cold medicines and antibiotics that my brain wasn't good for much.  At this point, I still have a froggy voice and some serious coughing but I am able to sleep and so am gradually getting my energy back (remember how easy it was when we were 18 to just go to bed and wake up feeling great?)

At work, we are having inspections by the State and also our Major Payor.   Their regulations are so arbitrary but we try to follow them as best as we can.

Yesterday, while talking to Emily, she told me about this bread.  It's called My Mother's Peasant Bread and is probably the easiest bread I've ever made.  It takes about 2 1/2 hours total and requires no kneading.  It is not a complicated, fine crumbed loaf but a heavy, peasanty loaf that will soak up the butter.  I made some to go with our turkey soup for dinner and it was really good.  Surprisingly good.  It didn't look like it was going to be successful while I was making it but when I cut it, mmmmm, it smelled and tasted great. (the recipe is online)

I put up the holiday decorations yesterday.  Pk put up most of the outdoor lights while I played around indoors.  It made it easier to deal with the idea that it will be Christmas in just 3 weeks.  It still blows my mind to consider how fast the time is going.

The days are noticeably shorter.  It makes for interesting shadows, like this one from the setting sun.  It looks like an artistic rendering of a sunset. 

I don't mind the shorter days.  It makes me want to cuddle up under a blanket with something warm to drink and someone to cuddle next to.

And what's better than that?

Happy Sunday!  I am sitting here working on my sweater made with the cashmere yarn my husband gave me for my birthday last year. I’m further...