Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Holiday Lull

Goodbye '08; I miss 'ya already! We loved you well, but are looking forward to the new year.

What's going on in the Girldom for 2009? Let's see...

Girly Stuff, my BBFF, ("B" for Blogging) is a soldier for home beautification...I think she dreams in projects and wakes up in the morning to realize them. She has some real life good stuff on the horizon that I'm sure she will be divulging soon. Her creative innards may implode with joy.

Did you already meet the Queen of Themed-Trees? Miss Priss has a collection of twelve amazing trees that she shared during the month of December. As a result, my tree-lust has me prowling for post-Christmas clearance sales. I want to bump up my collection for next year. And you gotta get up pretty early in the morning to get a head start on Miss Priss.

So if you find this set of trees at Target, grab it and buy it for me. You know who you are who have access to the less picked over Targets...

Thinking about my trees brings us back to Superstar, where we belong. I have a question that will require our collective genius. This is a real design dilemma, and I think I know the answer, but I am hoping someone can figure out a way for me to keep one pretty little prelit Christmas tree in my dining room year 'round.

Is there ANY scenario whereby this would be acceptable? I've already bought it and its so precious that I can't bear the thought of putting it in the attic and waiting a whole year to enjoy (or nine months since I'm on the professional schedule for Christmas 2009.) Still, that's a long time to wait.

What if I put little Valentine hearts on it come Jan 1st? And then I can put little Shamrocks on it for St. Patty's, and I have a string of Easter egg lights on deck...Yes? No? I've already retained a decorator, so I have to do what she says or she'll quit; she doesn't do it for the money. (She's asking "what money?" right now.) Help me convince her to say "yes" to a tree in the dining room.

We have one more little party to attend tonight. Our neighbor is hosting a New Year's Eve celebration and kids are invited to attend in their PJs. It will be fun, and I am looking forward to it. But then the festivities abruptly come to an end and I'll be crushed.

I like to hang on to the "holidays" by the last thread. I'm the kind of girl who feels a little sad every Sunday night as the weekend comes to a close. So, I hate when Christmas is over because I want to keep the good times rolling. I hate that people are already flying home and saying good-bye. I hate the depression that sets in January second, when it still feels like the holidays, but it's technically not the holidays anymore. (See, so I need a Prozac-tree.)

I do have some good things to look forward to. We are getting our upstairs bathrooms stripped of hideous wallpaper, textured and painted. Then we are replacing carpet and turning an extra bedroom into an upstairs game room. This requires knocking out walls and is something we've talked about since we bought the house five years ago. It will be great to contain Only Child's loot to a game room and reclaim my downstairs again.

Normally I never let visitors go upstairs because I'm so messy. My goal is to be less junky and purge the stuff that we don't need or use. I want to be 10 trash bags lighter by the end of January.

Additionally, we are adding whole foods to our menu and cutting out the boxed and processed junk. This is going to be a tough one because we love convenience foods. I still need to iron out the exact goals, but I am ready to feel less sluggish and eating better is the easiest way to fix that.

And, this is the year that I read every book! I missed it by half a book this year, which I may still read, but it won't happen by tonight. This year we are reading:

The Thirteenth Tale

The Shack

The Little Children


A Line Between Friends

And if you want my reading selections, here are a few books that I truly enjoyed:

The Lovely Bones

The Kite Runner

Pillars of the Earth

(*Pillars is silly and long, but fun to read)

That is all! Happy New Year. Over and out for 2008!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Nuns do '80s & '90s

The Feisty Nuns have been at it again. We just observed our annual December fete which is when we exchange books for the coming year. (M&M and I are still lobbying to drop the "book" facade, but the ranks will hear none of that talk.)

In previous years we have had cookie exchanges or gone out for dinner and drinks. It's pure merriment, whatever we do. Since I happened to host this time, I called for a theme (because, who doesn't love a costume party?) specifically "High School Flashback Night!" Isn't Picky a lovely girl?

I've never had so much fun in the foyer. It was giddy amusement to greet each girl at the door and see their interpretation of the "look" back in those days. Picky was the only one able to unearth her clothing from the era (a sweatshirt puff-painted with her name and hearts all over.)

No problem for the rest of us, though, because with time, our old clothes have become new again. Which means pret-a-porter -Target, in case you want to recreate your own glory days. Too bad it's all cut for a 'tween body (and by tween, unfortunately, that does not mean between motherhood and 40!)

So jolly were we after a few strawberry wine slushies (tried to recreate the sustenance, too) that I didn't even mind that the time frame was blurry. Our high school years straddled the decades yet our outfits were a morph of 80s icons: Madonna meets the Heathers at the Breakfast Club. Tell me that these sweet little Guess shoes would not look hot with acid-washed jeans with a little zipper down the ankle! (Or tight-rolled.)

I donned absurd amounts of mousse and gel and gave my flat-iron the night off. I'm only now appreciating that fifteen years ago when everyone else was paying good money for spiral perms, I had one au-naturale. However, I didn't use nearly enough product back then and the result was a four-year blur of frizz. I only started figuring out my hair in college and then the Rachael-cut was taking off and I almost missed the boat. Just one of the many ways I could have been living large if I knew then what I know now...

And if only I had known that I would be lucky enough to hang on to friends like Girly Stuff, M&M, Red and Picky after all this time I could have saved myself so much angst, frustration, and hassle that comes with adolescent friendships that don't last and can be especially harsh amongst the girls. Why didn't I know then that no one is cool at seventeen because we're all too worried about what everyone thinks of us?! And how did I manage to keep with such a fine group of people? It can't be coincidence or luck. (I'm not just drawn to crazies.)

A word about the inspiration for my outfit.

I bumped into a lady at Chick fil A a few months ago. We were both with our kids and I noticed her familiar face, but it wasn't until later that I could place who she was: an acquaintance from high school.

She was then, and seemed to be now, the ever-perky, always made-up, Southern debutante-type. She was the quintessential high school social climber. Pretty, coy, perpetually campaigning, pragmatic. Looking back, she was already poised and on the hunt for a husband at an age when the rest of us were just leaving behind dolls. And she knew then what we're still learning about men, if you know what I mean.

So when I was planning my outfit, hair and makeup, this young lady, as she was then, became the alter-ego that I set out to recreate. My inspiration, if you will. So, I had to laugh when GS looked at a couple of us dancing and announced "y'all look like you're on birth control." I had embodied my mistress.

So it was a success. And I have to thank M&M and her husband for nailing the music of our youth. That was a huge contribution to the festivities! I chose the same snacks Picky and I used to sneak off campus to eat and I think Picky actually ate (which almost never happens.) And while it was fun to be that girl for one night, I have to say that it's way too much work for this lazy girl.

Don't get me wrong, I like to party; but not in pinchy shoes and lots of make up.

Can you imagine being a teenager again? What from your high school days are you most happy to leave behind? What do you like to relive?