There’s a reason they call it work

It's just around the corner...

It’s just around the corner… (Photo credit: ecstaticist)

It sure felt like work today (and yesterday and the day before…).  On what was a day off work for a lot of folks, it was another busy day for us.  People rushing through the doors as soon as we unlocked them.  I know we had some good bargains and a lot of people have already started their Christmas shopping, but I’m just not into it yet.

Unfortunately for us, we had a huge delivery today (I know, I know…you might think they wouldn’t send a shipment on a holiday when they know it’s going to be crazy busy.  But, if you happened to think that, you’d be wrong…way wrong.).  The store did not look its best.  It really bothers me when our customers have to run an obstacle course to get to what they want.  I know I hate it when I go into a store and it looks like that.  But that’s another story for another time.

With everything going on, I was exhausted by the time I left.  And, uh, yeah…in more than a little pain as well.  I’ve taken some meds for my pain, but am still fighting it.  I think the weather may be contributing to my increased pain levels too.  They’re talking a little snow tonight.  NO!!  I don’t want snow.  But not a lot I can do about that, is there?  I guess I need to go to bed and try to get a good night’s sleep, but I’m still wide awake.  I’ve got one more day to work before I get a day off.

I know I need to take care of myself, but oh my!  I have so much that needs to be done at work.  It just seems like a lot of, oh you know, work.  I guess they really do call it that for a reason.

Candy canes…not just for Christmas

Peppermint candy cane on my scanner

Peppermint candy cane on my scanner (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was browsing Amazon earlier today.  Thought I’d look at candy (for the children, people, for the children).  I don’t know if you can get better deals on Amazon for candy.  Right now, with Halloween just around the corner, you can find some pretty good bargains in your local stores.  But while perusing the sweets, I found some pretty amazing treats.

Did you know they sell violet flavored candy?  Or rose flavored candy?  I’m assuming they taste like the flowers.  Come on, don’t turn up your nose.  I made lavender jelly once using lavender buds I’d grown myself and it was awesome.  The candy is probably equally as tasty.

Then there are various candies from Mexico, Greece, Brazil, Japan, and so on.  Not being much of a world traveler, I hadn’t heard of any of them.  And I wasn’t feeling all that adventurous so didn’t order any of them either.  But it was interesting to read about them.  No, I wasn’t bored.  I was doing research.

The candy that made my mouth drop open was the, oh, how shall I say this,  interesting flavors of candy canes.  Yep, you know those red and white striped confections shaped like a cane that you find everywhere at Christmas time?  Well, there are some unusual flavors out there. The thought of eating the pickle-flavored candy cane actually made my jaw ache.  And then there was the bacon-flavored candy cane.  Really, I’m not making this up.  I know a lot of you love, love, love bacon.  But a candy cane that tastes like bacon?  Wow.  Check it out for yourself…heck, go ahead and order it and let everyone know what it tastes like.

So, I guess it’s safe to say that candy canes aren’t just for Christmas any more.

Christmas shopping done…

English: Gift ideas for men - wrapping paper e...

English: Gift ideas for men – wrapping paper example. Please source (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

…now it’s time to get it all wrapped.  I have to admit, it’s not as difficult to “wrap” presents as it once was.  Back in the day, I would drag out the rolls of wrapping paper, ribbon, tags, tape, scissors, etc.  Then I’d have to unroll a length of paper, lay the present in the middle of it (well, after I scrounged up a box to put the gift in…I was never a fan of wrapping anything not in a box), cut the paper, carefully fold the paper around the box, making sure I’d actually cut the piece of paper big enough.  Then I’d tape the edges and fold each end, trying to make it look nice.  Once I had the box wrapped in the pretty paper, I’d try to match some ribbon to the paper.  Once I was satisfied with the ribbon I’d chosen, I’d wrap it around the box either crossing vertically and horizontally or just around the corners.  Then I’d pull out the curling ribbon and curl it with scissors, then tape it to the other ribbon.  After that was done, I’d paw through all of the gift tags I’d amassed over the years until I found one that matched both the package and the recipient.  Then I’d pen the to-from part of the tag and either tape the tag to the outside of the package or punch a hole in the tag and thread curling ribbon through the hole, then tape the whole thing into the middle of the curled ribbon already taped to the package.  And then I had to find a pretty bow (preferably not smashed) to match everything else.  Once satisfied with how the package looked, I’d set it aside and move on to the next one.

Now…well, let’s see…I gather the gifts I intend to package, some gift bags (with gift tags already attached) and some tissue paper.  Then I toss the present into the bottom of the bag, wad up some tissue paper to cover what’s inside the bag, write who the gift is for on the tag along with the from part…you know, either Aunt Patti, Patti, Momma (I’m kidding, I’m kidding…I never actually wrap the presents for the kitties…they get to them long before I could manage that)…and uh, well…that’s it.

Do I miss the old days of pretty packages sitting under the tree, twinkling lights reflecting from the shiny paper?  Umm…no, no, I can’t say as I do.  I spent an awful lot of time wrapping gifts in the old days…and it usually only took people a few seconds to unwrap them and toss the paper and ribbon to the side.  And gift bags are handy when it comes to getting all of your gifts home too.  And, of course, you can reuse a gift bag…just be sure you remove the original gift tag…take this bit of advice, I speak from experience…

Do you know what two weeks from today is?

Santa Claus

Santa Claus (Photo credit: Natashenka)

That’s right, boys and girls…in two short weeks it’ll be Christmas Eve.  Yes indeedy, the night that jolly old Saint Nick makes his rounds and rewards those of us who have been good with nifty gifts!  What?  You don’t know what I’m excited about?  What?  I haven’t been all that good this year?  What are you saying?  You think the big guy won’t be stopping at my house this year?  Well, I just…I…I don’t know what to say.  No visit from Santa?  No gifts?  Really?  Well…I’m feeling a bit distraught about this.  I tried to be good.  Doesn’t that count for something?  I mean, I was always told that honest effort meant something.  Are you telling me that Santa doesn’t care about how hard you try?  Only about whether or not you succeed?  Somehow that doesn’t seem quite right.  Shouldn’t he be a bit more forgiving and compassionate?

But wait!  I know Santa will come down my chimney…I just know it.  For one thing, he loves my cookies and I always leave him enough cookies to take back home to share with Mrs. Claus and those creepy elves.  And he always loves to stop and scratch Spooky’s head.  And now that I have Scout too…well, I’m absolutely certain that he won’t be able to stay away.  And he will so bring me some gifts.  I know he will.  And do you know how I know it?  That’s right.  I remember the year my good friend Chris was a very bad boy and he still got lots and lots of presents from Santa.

So…two weeks from tonight I’m going to go to bed early, dreaming about dancing sugar plums (whatever those are), and listening to hear reindeer hooves tapping on my roof.  And when I wake up, I’ll run down the stairs and be so thankful for all the gifts I have in my life.  Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!


What do you do when you finally get a day off work?

bah, humbug: take two

bah, humbug: take two (Photo credit: PrincessFroglips)

First, let me say this, I have been working six days a week for around 12 hours a day.  So…tired?  You bet.  The only way I could drag myself out of bed yesterday was to keep reminding myself that I had today off.

I woke up this morning at 5…yes, you heard that right…5 am!  I got up, fed the cats and called in to work to make sure they understood my notes about what they needed to be doing.  Then I went back upstairs and climbed back into my soft, cozy bed with Kindle in hand.  I read for a while, then turned the light back off and slept until 9.  Got up and piddled around for a while, climbed back into bed around 11:30 and fell into a deep sleep for another couple of hours.  Felt oh so much better when I woke up.

But I still couldn’t get up the motivation to actually do anything worthwhile.  I did a load of laundry and the dishes, then fooled around on Facebook and Pinterest…now that’s a good way to waste some time, pinning things you’d like to do instead of actually doing them…but hey, when you’re mentally and physically exhausted…

Twenty days ’till Christmas…falalalala lalalala…bah humbug!!

Christmas is coming…

English: Image of an Appalachian Bewildered Ca...

English: Image of an Appalachian Bewildered Cat dressed for Christmas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

…and I’ll sure be glad to see it get here.  I’m exhausted!  This weekend was a nightmare…super busy (okay, that wasn’t the nightmare part…being busy is a good thing) and I had so many call-ins…and today was just more of the same as far as call-ins are concerned.  I don’t know if there’s something going around or if the wonderful weather we’ve had lately (70 degrees today…what? In December?) might play into some of the call-ins.  I know, I know…I’m so cynical.

I went to work at 4 this morning and left at just a few minutes before 4 this afternoon…did get a lot done, but still have a lot left to do.  I’m going in at 5 tomorrow morning, hopefully I’ll get everything done so I can take Wednesday off.

I tried talking myself out of stopping at PetSmart after work, but finally convinced myself to just do it.  And I bought some new toys for the kitties for Christmas…well, that was the plan.  I ended up giving them their gift early.  Why do I have to be such a softie???

I really am going to try to go to bed early tonight…my body is tired and my muscles are aching…sleep…it does a body good…

Happy Thanksgiving on this 22nd day of NaNo

Thanksgiving Day Greetings

Thanksgiving Day Greetings (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Thanksgiving is here.  I hope everyone is enjoying a peaceful day with family and friends, good food, maybe some football and parades.  As for me, I’ll be going in to work pretty soon…boo!  One good thing about it, the day will be so busy that it goes by quickly and I’ve got just the best crew working with me today, so that makes it much nicer…sure does help to be the one making out the schedule..heehee!!

I went in to work yesterday morning at 5 am, worked until 2:30.  Then I went home to try to get a little rest before going back in at 6 pm to help set the ad, at least I thought I was going to go in to help…kinda worked out a little differently than I’d planned…oh well, after Christmas we’ll be doing some major training of our associates so more people are capable of doing what needs to be done.  Just a little side note there…

Anyhow, after finishing the ad set and getting out the doorbusters for today, I finally made it out of the joint around 11:30ish…a 15 hour work day…wow!  That’s…I…oh my…that’s way too many hours for this old body to be working.  Now, I’ll be going in at 3 this afternoon.  As much as I hate to do it, I have to stop at Kroger to pick up bread and ice for my associates…can’t forget to take in the ham I baked…someone might like a nice juicy ham sandwich on their break tonight.  I know I will!

I wonder if customers will be lined up on the sidewalk when I get to work…there were a few out there last year when I went in…funny what people will do to get a bargain or two…Hey, I did do some shopping today…on Amazon!  Got a lightening deal watch for myself…I think that’ll be my Christmas present to myself.

I am so glad I did all of that extra writing earlier in the month.  My cushion has all but evaporated, but at least I’m still on schedule to finish on time.  I did sit down and write a little over 1000 words today.  I was actually on a roll when Chris called.  He was driving to the store where he’s filling in as manager so we chatted while he drove (I know, I know…distractions aren’t good while driving…).  So, as far as NaNo goes, I’m at 37,600 words now with a little over a week to go.  I’m going to have to force myself to sit down every evening for a while since I’ll only have one more day off work between now and the end of the month.  But I’ll get there…it may not be early, but I will reach 50,000 words by the end of November!

Hey, Happy Thanksgiving!!  Gobble, gobble!

Oops, no NaNo for me on day 10

hoosier cardinal

hoosier cardinal (Photo credit: alandberning)

As much as I hate to admit to this, I just couldn’t make myself write tonight (well…except for this short post).  The muse has taken a day off.  And she picked an awfully nice day to take off…here in Hoosier land, it was around 70 degrees today…wow!!  The only bad thing about that was that I had to work all day…It was dark when I went in this morning and it was already getting dark when I left this evening.  But it was still really warm and pleasant!

I’ve got to go in at six in the morning…huge ad set to get done before we open!  So, once again, it’s early to bed for me.  I’m just barely able to keep my eyes open right now and it’s not even 8 o’clock.  How many more days ’till Christmas?   In case you didn’t feel like doing the math, it’s 45 days ’till Christmas…I think!!

I hope it’s nice wherever you are…if you’re in an area where you got snow, I hope you at least have sunshine tomorrow. If not sunshine, well then, how about a nice warm house and a steaming cup of cocoa?  Later, guys and gals!!

Peace On Earth

My Christmas wish for all of us is for us to find a way to coexist peacefully with one another, despite our differences.

Family Christmas

I went out of town this afternoon to celebrate Christmas with part of my family.  It was so nice to see everyone again.  I feel especially blessed that, even after my mother died, my step family is still my family.

Little Allison was so excited to have everyone there and she sure wanted to pass out (and open) the presents.  She was crawling under the tree to retrieve presents (at her grandfather’s urging) and then just bouncing over to hand them to the intended recipient.  I can’t remember if I’ve ever had that much energy!  When Larry asked her who should open their presents first, she replied, “me”…well, yeah pappy…what little 3-year-old doesn’t want to get down to the business of opening her gifts?

And Bradley, oh my, just smiling at everyone.  What a pleasant little boy.  Okay, I’m going to be honest here, I think Mommy and Daddy might take an exception to that last remark.  Poor Brian and Sarah were exhausted because little Bradley just couldn’t sleep last night…poor little guy…and poor Mommy and Daddy too.  Get some rest, you two!

And it was so good to have the chance to chat with Lori again.   It’s so hard to believe that only a few years ago, she was Allison’s age.  She’s a wonderful aunt to Allison and Bradley…seeing her with them brings back a lot of memories of my time with her and Brian when they were little kids.  What good times those were.

My step dad came over and sat down beside me and handed me an envelope.  Took me by surprise.  Then he said he didn’t know how many pictures of my mom I have, but he wanted me to have these.  Wow!  I got more than a little teary eyed when I was looking at those pictures.  I thought that was just the nicest thing he could have done for me.  And we ended up talking for quite a while, it was just really, really nice.

I got to visit with my step brother, hadn’t seen him in several years.  He’s the same funny guy he’s always been.  It was good to see his grandkids, some of whom I’d never met. 

And my step sister, Kathy and her husband, Larry…what wonderful people.  I keep up with all of the family news via Kathy.  I never had a sister, but Kathy is pretty darn close!  I feel very fortunate to be a part of this family.  Spending time with family at Christmas is priceless.