Archive for December, 2010

Well, it’s Christmas Eve and I have some time to
kill, so I’ll do a little Christmas Top 20/Bottom 10 for your
reading pleasure.

Jamey and I are a third of the
way into a Tropical Christmas Getaway. We spent yesterday in Ft
Lauderdale and today we’re on the Carnival Cruise ship Imagination,
heading to the Bahamas in just a few hours. It’ll be a very
different Christmas for us, but I think it will be lots of fun.
I’ll tell you all about it when we return (and post pix), but in
the meantime, here are your lists. Merry Christmas!

top 20

  1. Jamey, who gave me this wonderful trip for
    Christmas. Much better than a Lexus with a giant bow.
  2. Talking to all of my family members while en route to the
    Cruise terminal
  3. Champagne on the
  4. Water Taxis
  5. Christmas lights on palm trees
  6. Christmas decorations in general
  7. Facebook and Twitter Christmas greetings from around the
  8. the @NoradSanta Twitter feed
  9. 73 degrees on Christmas Eve
  10. children
    who are excited about Christmas. I really miss my niece and nephews
    this year!
  11. The US Postal Service. They were
    awesome the day I lugged all of my packages in to mail. If my
    packages don’t make it today I’ll throw them down to the Bottom 10
  12. the Hyatt Pier 66 in Ft.
  13. the Port of Miami
  14. Super Yachts
  15. multiple Christmas
    parties in the weeks before Christmas
  16. My
    fabulous baking sister Kellie (her blog is Little Bo Bakes), who
    was featured on the LaFuji Mama blog this week
  17. packages
  18. the iPhone reverse camera
    feature–it’s especially handy on vacations with just the two of
  19. my clever friends whose FB and Twitter
    status messages make me laugh every day
  20. hot

bottom 10

  1. Not being able to be in two places at once.
    I’m having so much fun, but I miss my family!
  2. uncommunicative cab drivers
  3. people
    who make wishing someone a Merry Christmas into a political
  4. hat hair
  5. forgetting my glasses
  6. Micro-managing
    travelers. There’s always someone (usually male) standing in line
    who thinks he could somehow make the line disappear if he were in
  7. insomnia when you have to get up
  8. Accidentally running into a parked car.
    Few things make you feel like more of a heel
  9. the cost of international calling plans
  10. blogging from an app!

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I’m getting flakier and flakier every week–I originally planned to post this blog every Sunday, then it kind of moved over into Monday, and now we’re up to Tuesday. But I’d like to point out that I am still posting, which is saying something.

My cat Oliver, who doesn't suffer from holiday ennui


The Christmas Rush is moving full speed ahead. I have to say that I absolutely adore buying, wrapping, and giving Christmas presents, but I abhor traffic and long lines. So I’ve been trying to do my Christmas shopping during my lunch hours and between meetings during the week, and so far it’s worked out great! I only had to drag Jamey out one night last week (to go to Outdoor World, of all places) and it wasn’t too horrible for either one of us. Now I just have to wrap all of the presents–I’m sure the cats will be more than happy to help.

I usually give out baked goods to my friends and colleagues, so this week every evening I’m baking. On the menu this year: Chocolate Chip Cookies, brownies, and the ever-popular Mexican Wedding Cookies. The chocolate chip cookies are done, and tonight I’m making the Mexican Wedding Cookies. Brownies will be done tomorrow night. I’ll have to make an extra plate for my friend Isaac’s roommate Rob so Isaac won’t have to share. My baked goods are usually a pretty big hit, and hopefully they will be again this year. Or, if people have just been politely accepting my presents and throwing them in the trash behind my back, hopefully they’ll continue doing so.

So in between wrapping packages and batches of cookies, I’m making two lists and checking them twice: this week’s top 20 and bottom 10. Enjoy!

P.S. I apologize in advance for the link in Bottom 10, item 7. If it makes you feel any better, I listened to it too, and the damn song will be stuck in my head indefinitely.

top 20

  1. gift giving

    Last year's baked goods, all wrapped up

  2. Mexican vanilla. It’s the secret to baking success in my family.
  3. My mother’s recipe for Mexican Wedding Cookies. They’re divine.
  4. Christmas lights (ours are pink and white)
  5. preparing for another awesome vacation
  6. Family pictures on holiday cards. Every year I keep meaning to frame all of the picture cards I get during the holidays; hopefully this year I’ll actually do it.
  7. holiday parties–we went to three last week, and they were all fun
  8. roasted pork loin
  9. compliments
  10. not going to City Council meetings
  11. the fact that “googled” is a verb
  12. ibuprofen
  13. spell check
  14. generosity
  15. Richard Holbrook and Elizabeth Edwards. Both did good things for the world while they were alive, and they will be missed.
  16. The Amazing Race on CBS. I love that show.
  17. Angry Birds. I’m totally late to the bandwagon, but I’m as addicted as everyone else is.
  18. candles
  19. Sarah McLachlan’s WinterSong album
  20. “The Tiger” Heineken commercial

bottom 10

  1. Holiday ennui. It’s SO hard to be motivated to work when there are so many other fun things going on

    bored, bored, bored

  2. lingering illness
  3. disappointment
  4. cookie dough under the finger nails
  5. thriftiness taken to extremes
  6. running out of contacts before the new insurance kicks in
  7. The Macarena. It’s completely ruined dancing at parties.
  8. drunk drivers
  9. being in a bad mood
  10. cold feet (the literal kind, not the figurative kind)

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I have a cold. I hate having a cold, but it was kind of inevitable, with the way I’ve been running lately. As you’ll know if you read my tweets or my Facebook updates, I totally lost my voice at Disneyland. I sounded horrible after I got back, but it was just my voice until Thursday night. Then I spent Thursday evening helping to run a little celebration called Christmas on Main Street in La Porte until 10 p.m., in the cold, with thousands of people milling about around me. When I woke up the next morning I felt as bad as my voice sounded, but I plugged along, hoping it was just temporary and that it would just go away. Sunday I helped out with the La Porte By the Bay Half Marathon (also in the cold, this time early in the morning, with hundreds of people) and yesterday morning when I woke up and immediately started sneezing I decided it was an actual cold and gave up. I stayed home yesterday, and I’m home again today, trying to drown it in orange juice and hot toddies and TheraFlu.

It’s been a while, so I’ll give you a little update on my holiday experience. My whole family went to California to spend Thanksgiving together at my sister Kellie’s house in Corona. We went to Disneyland (truly The Happiest Place on Earth) on Thanksgiving Day and literally shut the place down–our car was the ONLY ONE in the parking lot when we left. Then we had a magnificent Thanksgiving dinner the day after Thanksgiving. Dinner was scrumptious, and Kellie did a fantastic job. No one would have known she’d never hosted Thanksgiving dinner before. I think she should do it all the time now…

I’m pretty sure that everyone in my family secretly wants to be an actor. While we were in California we also had an ugly sweater contest and theme party. The sweater contest was awesome, and we completed it with really horrific family photos with cheesy poses. We didn’t actually judge the sweaters, but in my book Sarah won–hers had blinking lights and a battery pack. We also threw a belated surprise birthday party for my mom. By “we” I mean my sisters–they’re super creative and really fun, and they dressed up the house (and all of us) in 50’s paraphernalia, since my mom was born in 1950. They had hamburgers and fifties music and giant posters of Elvis and cute little records hanging on the walls. It was really a great party, and everyone looked awesome in their 50’s getups.

Since we got back I’ve been insanely busy, as usual, and I’ve already told you about my cold. So now you’re all caught up. Oh-Jamey and I also decided to go to the Bahamas for Christmas.

Now on to the lists for this week. Enjoy!

top 20

  1. Sarah, the Queen of the Ugly Sweaters

    Seeing my family. I see them all too seldom, and it was great to spend Thanksgiving with all them and to hang out with then for a few days.

  2. My mom, who turned 60 on November 21. It was so fun celebrating with her in California!
  3. Disneyland. You forget how great it is until you go back as an adult.
  4. MouseWait. It’s a fabulous app for the iPhone that tells you how long the wait time is at any given ride. Awesome.
  5. curling up on the couch with a nice soft blanket and a good movie
  6. hot toddies
  7. making a list and checking it twice
  8. PaperMart. They have everything you need for massive holiday gift-giving.
  9. The City of La Porte Parks Department. They work harder than anyone I know
  10. Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards (they’re getting us to Miami so we can go to the Bahamas)
  11. solar Christmas lights
  12. Bing Crosby’s White Christmas album. How can anyone not love “Christmas in Killarney?”
  13. Everyone who finished the La Porte By the Bay Half Marathon. I walked two miles that day and it did me in.
  14. the return of groceries
  15. being able to take a sick day
  16. down comforters
  17. tangerines
  18. Elizabeth Peters’ Amelia Peabody series. I absolutely love those books.
  19. The Disney film Tangled (which features the voice of Zachary Levi, who plays Chuck on NBC)
  20. sleeping kittens

bottom 10

  1. Diamond ring commercials. They’re getting old already, and we still have three weeks to go!
  2. small minds
  3. clogged ears
  4. Online shopping at stores that house multiple stores (e.g. Amazon and Sears). The shipping and payment process is horribly confusing.
  5. rude people
  6. sore feet
  7. freezer burn
  8. lack of energy
  9. The little Transformer graphic on Fox Sports. I don’t understand what it has to do with football.
  10. wounded pride

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