The Christmas Insanity Has Begun!

ice-cream

Well, it’s on again for another year, Christmas!  And with that looming large comes the usual round of well meaning family insanity.

Let’s start with the first bit…

Every year Crazy Cat Boys family do a Kris Kingle.  You know, the angst inducing activity where you have to buy a gift for a family member you barely remember and have NO idea what their interests, hobbies or allergies are?  Yeah, that one.  So early in December someone takes it on themselves to send out the list.  Great, I’m buying for a 30 year old woman, I can manage that (Gift cards solve everything).  But wait, two weeks later a “revised” list comes from another family member (clearly she wasn’t happy with who “got” her so she’s shuffling the pack for a better outcome.  I’m now buying for a 60 something woman who I’ve actually met more than once – Score, but to bad if I’d already bought the other gift!

Now the part where my well meaning but with a tenuous grip on logic SIL who’s hosting Christmas lunch special planning skills kick in….

The list of who needs to bring what on the big day arrives.  Now I don’t know about you good internet peeps, but I’d ask the people who are driving from interstate over a couple of days and staying in a hotel to bring something non perishable…. crackers, nuts, dried fruit, chips, lollies, booze, 400 water balloons, whatever.  Nope, in the world where temperature does not exist and logic can be defied, I’m bringing , wait for it….

THE ICE CREAM!

Yep, 900 km in a car is apparently doable*.  Sigh…

Hold on to your hats people, it’s going to be a long few weeks until Boxing Day – Wish me well!

 

* Yes, I know i can buy it there, but really, is it just me or is that poor planning?  I know what will happen as well, they have a very small house with one freezer and I’m tipping no room for ice cream for 29 people.

 

 

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Do WE Have A Problem?

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I’ve been thinking a lot about my drinking and have “casually” discussed the need to cut back our drinking with Crazy Cat Boy, something he’s agreed with.

I thought that I was the one with the problem, but now I’m not so sure it’s just me.   I arrived home from a trip away last weekend to a lovely dinner and a waiting glass of bubbles.  This is all very romantic and I appreciate it.  However that glass turned into three bottles and a lost Sunday. That’s pretty crap, and that is precisely how I felt as well.

Last night would have been five days straight alcohol free, I even took myself off for a massage to reward myself.  When I got home CCB immediately suggested bubbles, he’d done it the night before too but I’d declined as I had to be up early to pick my boss up from the airport.  I didn’t even say yes before he was out the door to get some (to be fair, I didn’t say no either).  Now I knew I didn’t want it, I didn’t enjoy it, but drank two bottles.  That’s right inside the space of five days we’ve drunk five bottles between us.

This has to stop and now I’m worried that I’ll have not only my own potential problem to deal with but to gently find out if he is concerned about his own drinking.  I’m a bit confused and not sure how to deal with it all.

On a positive note last Friday, completely sober I had dinner with an old school friend that I hadn’t seen in 28 years.  We accidently picked a dry restaurant and it didn’t matter at all.  I can be chatty and fun without booze!  We are going to pick up where we left off with another old school friend in a next month in my home town and I can’t wait.

Do I Have A Problem?

wine-glassI’ve been worried about this for a while…

Alcoholism runs deep on both sides of my family.  A maternal aunt spent most of her adult life in an assisted living facility due to brain damage from alcohol and dad is a functioning alcoholic.

I’ve always known that I had the capacity to develop a serious problem with alcohol.  I develop patterns and habits quickly. This is great when it comes to work, I’m one of those people who employers talk about when they ask for someone who can “hit the ground running”, however it also means that sharing a couple of bottles of wine a night with Crazy Cat Boy also becomes a pattern fast.

It scares me that I can easily drink a bottle of wine and not feel any real ill effects the next day.  That isn’t normal drinking, is it?  No, don’t bother answering that, it isn’t, I know that.

Am I a drunk? I don’t drink every night, but when I do I get drunk and I’ve started falling asleep in front of the TV (or is that passing out?), I don’t drink on my own, but I’ve got a build in drinking buddy in CCB, I don’t fall down drunk in public, I don’t skip work due to hangovers, but I am less productive and tend to waste time on those days.

Today’s post is inspired by the fact that I knew I had a big day, one where I need to be creative and also hold my own with my boss on a new product that we disagree on. So the sensible course of action would have been to have one glass with the neighbour when she brought over a thank you bottle and then gone to be early.  Did that happen, hell no.  She went home; we finished the bottle and then went and got another!  As a result of that I had a bad sleep and have a mild hangover on top of bad hay fever and I’m feeling crap.

So, should I quit all together?  I know what when I don’t drink I’m calmer, more focused and I look better.  I’m also scared that I’m more concerned about what wine is doing to my hair and skin than my liver and brain, seriously what kind of mess up thinking is that?

Can I quit? That might be the even scarier question.

Crossed Wires

 

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I’ve offended someone, didn’t mean to, but I have and I’ve decided that I don’t care!  That’s a bit of a breakthrough for me, normally I would.  Here’s how it all unfolded…

Friday night I headed off to dinner with Super Sammie and a friend of hers that I’ve never met, let’s call her Jane.  Jane seemed nice enough and it turns out she spent a lot of her younger life in the same area as me.  We didn’t know each other, but we know the same people.

Normally around new people I’m pretty quiet, I let others do the talking and rarely share. Yes, I have trust issues, especially around people that have a connection to the place that I deliberately left behind and distanced myself from.   However with just the three of us there was nowhere to hide.  So after a while I shared that I’ve been reading some blogs, Mummy was a Secret Drinker in particular (if you haven’t read Sober Mummy’s blog, please do, she’s funny and engaging).  I know I’ve shared this with you dear readers, but I’ve never actually admitted it IRL before.

I’ve been concerned for a while that I have the capacity to develop a problem with alcohol and even mentioning out aloud that I’m interested in this space is pretty big for me.  That probably says more about me right?

Anyway, a nice dinner ended (Lickerish, check it out Adelaide people) and farewells were exchanged.

Monday morning I boot up the PC to find a brand new shiny blog from Sober Mummy, which was nice, she doesn’t post as often as she used to (yeah, yeah, I know, people with semi abandoned blogs shouldn’t throw verbs or nouns or whatever – I can never work out which is which).

So without thinking too much about it I shot of a quick Facebook message to Super Sammie and Jane saying “Hey ladies, this is the blog I was talking about”.    Almost immediately I get a message back from Jane, curtly asking why I’d felt the need to send this to her.    Clearly I’d offended her, so I clarified that it was just that we’d been talking about it and I thought it was good blog and that it had been nice to meet her on Friday.  I’d hoped this would calm the situation.  Instead, Jane accused me of not being truthful!

(I can only imagine her reaction if I’d sent her my other fav blog Mr Money Moustache! )

Great, just what I need to start my day.  My first instinct was to defend myself, but that sixth sense that tells you more information will only make it worse kicked in.  So I acknowledged her feelings (they are hers, she has every right to have them) and let her know I didn’t mean to offend and I’ve left it at that.

I wish Jane nothing but good things in her life but I’m not sure I want to see her again.  I hope that Super Sammie isn’t being dragged into a drama that isn’t of her making. That is the last thing I want.

Initially I was really upset by this.  I open myself up and am immediately rejected.  However as you can tell from my opening line, I’ve moved on from that to pissy.  I’m sure I’ll calm down and get to acceptance at some point, but at the moment it’s a bit raw.

What I’ll do about the rest of what I’ve mentioned above I’m still not sure.  I think I’m ok.  Speaking of ok, I do have some other blogs half written and I promise to be here more often.

Be kind to yourselves good internet peeps.

A Sledge Hammer & Good Intentions

building-1080599.jpgI’m sitting in the carnage of what was once my ensuite shower staring at the dust, chipped concrete and new scratches on previously pristine tiles.  How did you happen you ask? Good question, and it’s all my fault, let me explain…

I have a problem with “nearly done”.  It springs from growing up in a house where Dad had a 5 year plan that morphed into a 10 and then 20 year plan.  Things half built, nearly finished, never started.  The clock only reset when they moved house and the 5 year plan could start again!

It dove me nuts.  It also drove me to be very self sufficient and a strong feeling that I couldn’t rely on anyone else (but that’s probably another post).

I swore I wouldn’t be one of those women that lived in a nearly done house.  How is it then that 5 years after moving in the house is still a list of niggling things that need doing?

Crazy Cat Boy starts strong (and to be fair he tackles stuff I wouldn’t) but doesn’t finish well.  So I’m on a mission this year to “finish” everything.  This led to getting a quote for retiling the base of our shower re tiled so it drains properly.

This is where the fun started… first I had to get a tiler to show up; then I nearly had a heart attack at the quote from the one tiler that did!

Over the years Crazy Cat Boy and I’ve turned our hands to all sorts of things, with mostly okay outcomes. So we decided that we’d do it ourselves, how hard can it be?

It’s not like we dove right in with a sledge hammer and good intentions.  No we did the responsible thing: We watched some YouTube videos first. This clearly makes us qualified right?  What’s the worst that can happen?  The base will leak and our house will rot from under us, no biggie 😉

The destruction has started and we’ve managed to remove the tiles, the concrete base and the very expensive glass doors.    Now it’s a process of drying it out and using A3 sheets of paper to work out the new tile pattern and drain waste placement.   It’s now I’m also wondering if we just should have sucked it up and paid a professional.

I’m not sure how it will end, but for now it’s an adventure (or a YouTube how not) waiting to happen. Wish us luck!

Miranda Sings Award

mirandaWow, thanks Strictly Light Hearted. What an honour to be nominated for the Miranda Sings Award.  I’m new to this blogging scene and am working on getting better and following more of the amazing peeps in the blogosphere.

As per the rules, I have to list 7 things I love about myself and nominate 7 bloggers to receive the award. So here goes…

  1. I love to learn new things. New skills and knowledge excites me
  2. I’m always positive. I can generally see a way through any situation and know that I’ll come out the other side
  3. I’m loyal. Some would say to a fault, I don’t. I’m loyal, but I’m not stupid or blind!
  4. I’m organised and methodical, but I can also be impulsive
  5. I “know” things. Don’t ask me how, I just do.  I see them and they happen.
  6. I have a solid grasp on the concept of time and the benefits this brings – ask me what I’d doing in 2026, I dare you 😉 (there’s always a plan!)
  7. I love that I can trust my gut instincts; they are always right no matter how rash they might seem to others.

So who to nominate?   I’ve got a couple of bloggers that probably have no idea that I follow them and how they inspire me so I’m nominating them…

Sober Mummy over at Mummy Was A Secret Drinker

Fiona’s Saw It, Pinned It, Did It 

Jack Monroe at Cooking On A Bootstrap 

Mardene  The Fashionable Librarian  

Jackie Gower’s always great  Riches Have Wings

Thanks to all of you for sharing your stories and knowledge.

Me, neurotic, who said?

sleep worry

5 am is a weird time.  It’s too early to get up and do something but too late to go back to sleep before the alarm goes off.  So I lay there and think of all the little ways my life is not what I thought it would be.  Everyone does this right?  Oh, just me, hmmm.

I’ve got this overwhelming feeling that I’m a fraud, that I’m not good at my job and something about 5 am amplifies every little mistake to huge proportions and I worry that I’m about to be found out and will have to go back to selling shoes.  Does anyone else get this?

I wonder what happened to that girl who used to float through life with no worries, money sure as hell never bothered me – if you don’t have something it can’t be a problem right?  My biggest problem in the late 80’s was which club to go to first and if I could snag a free car park so I’d have $6 left to buy a Coke while I was out.  Now I’m staring at the ceiling worrying if Crazy Cat Boy will like the sandwich I’ve planned for his lunch tomorrow and how much the replacement vacuum cleaner head is going to cost* and if the Greenback will go up against the Aussie dollar. WTF!  I know it’s an odd collection of things to worry about, but it’s very noisy inside my head sometimes.

So this morning as I’m lying in the dark having my very own pity party Monty cat discovered that I was awake (he was on one of his periodic stomp bys that he carries out during the night hours).

I was so, he happily snuggled down for a pat. While he was making his little happy whistle purrs in my ear I wondered what I’d been worried about.  What right did I have to feel sorry for myself when I was in my warm comfortable bed with food in the fridge, a safe place to sleep and some furry creature who clearly thinks I’m ok.  So many people around the world don’t have that option for whatever reason.

Now in the cold (and boy do I mean cold today) light of day all the problems I was stressing over have melted away… kind of like the point of this blog post; sorry about that it was super clear what I wanted to say around 5.15 am.

I won’t take up any more of your time, except to say embrace the little things in your life that are positive and ignore the negative, for the most part I’m willing to bet that the former outweigh the latter.

 

*Almost  as much as a brand new vacuum it turns out, damn it!

The Harsh Truth Of Pencil Skirts

pencil skirt.jpgIt’s been a while, but I’m back baby!

Work and life have been busy and I’ve been stuck in a creative rut that there was no need to subject you to!

The work situation is still up in the air due to our Game of Thrones situation – the Iron Throne is still vacant.  The court rumour mill has it while the seat of power is attractive the gold, or lack thereof is not enough to temp an heir into the citadel.

I’m riding it out and doing as much contingency planning as I can.  I like my job but I need to accept that nothing will change in the short term.  So, I’m putting on my big girl panties, sucking it up and getting over it.

I’ve put myself on the wagon wine wise to try and get fit – ok, lose some weight, my new undies don’t fit and I had delusions of grandeur that I could wear a white pencil skirt (to go with my rashly purchased fabulous jacket that matches NOTHING I own).  Until I tried it on that is.  Why is it that white only serves to highlight cellulite? I had a long and depressing talk with myself in the change rooms at Cue a couple of weeks ago while trying to convince myself that with a bit of spanks action I could get away with the sleek white look.  Fortunately for my bank balance the realist in me won, so I don’t have yet another expensive item in my wardrobe that I can’t wear.

Another reason for the temporary wine wagon is that I’ve been reading Sober Mummy’s blog (it’s fabulous, check it out) and some other blogs in the sober sphere and thought that it would be good for me to take a break.  While I don’t drink every day, when I do I drink way more than I should.  I don’t like the path that this habit could take me down so I’m taking action.

So that’s it for me for today.  I’ll be back soon I promise!

A line in the sand and a new robe

line twoI’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately, that’s why I’ve not been blogging, it’s hard for me to write when I’m not happy.  So I’ve made some decisions…

#1, I set a deadline in my head about a situation that I want resolved at work and emailed off what I need done and by when to the two people who can make it happen.

I got an email back from my boss telling me that one aspect won’t happen until XYZ takes place which is a problem on a couple of fronts;

  1. I’m not sure I want to be involved in XYZ and
  2. There is no time frame around it happening

Unfortunately I know what will happen and I’ll be forced to take action and that will involve giving up my nice comfy telecommuting, cats on desk, sloppy clothes wearing life to get a “real” job which will suck just a bit, however I’ll get better pay as a trade off and that means retiring earlier.  I know, first world problems right?

This lead to decision #2 at some ungodly hour this morning: I got up, turned on the iPad and typed “marketing recruitment my city” into the search bar.  I scrolled through a couple and registered for job alerts with the one that looked like a good fit.

Part of me is secretly hoping that their CRM is so good that they’ll call me to see what I’m looking for. The other part is kind of terrified that they will!  LOL, I’m bad at saying no, and I’m worried that I’ll wind up in a new job before I’m sure I want to leave the old one.

After that I realised that I have another problem.  Who do I get as a referee?  I’ve been eight years in this job, everyone in my old job (which is too long ago for a proper reference anyway) has scattered to the four winds after they dismantled the newsroom. I can really ask my boss*, my colleagues for the most part are his family and it doesn’t seem right to ask my clients.  Sigh, I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.

Now I think about it referees come after the resume part!  Aw man, I haven’t had a resume in over ten years, I don’t even have an old copy kicking around.  Do I even need one these days?  Isn’t that what LinkedIn is for?  Sigh (I’m doing a bit of that today).

So while feeling thoroughly depressed about all that I decided to cheer myself up with a spot of online shopping and I’m pleased to say that after some serious web browsing my new long satin robe is winging its way from Neiman Marcus in the USA to wine country in little old Australia.

Happy days, mostly!

* I will tell him of course, once the deadline (March 30) is past. As long as I walk in with a transition plan he’ll be ok, upset, but ok.

 

Wardrobe Crisis!

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What happened to generate this eye catching, dramatic headline you ask?  It started innocently enough; I was invited to the Australian Open with friends who are also business associates.  The problem is this meant “casual”.

“Casual” has always escaped me; I’m not good with casual.  Formal I nail, my work look is money no matter where you put me, but casual???

Hmmm…the tennis, right, fine: cargos, wedges, cute top, done.  But then lunch was mentioned and that threw me, lunch where? Were my cargos going to cut it? The top I was going to wear certainly wasn’t.  What now?

In my twenties this was never a problem. Lunch with the Queen, that ultra-cute white Cue outfit with the floaty skirt and short sleeved double breasted jacket would be perfect. Impromptu ski trip, no dramas; Day at the beach, sorted; Drinks with the PM, let me change my shoes and we are good to go.  I was never short of an appropriate outfit.  Now a simple trip to a slightly swankier shopping centre can throw me.

When did I go from finger on the pulse of fashion and always feeling put together to this slightly uncomfortable feeling that my shoes aren’t quite right?  Sigh.

Well, must fly, someone mentioned afternoon drinks at their place in February and I’ve got some serous planning to do!

PS: in case you are wondering I went with a good top, skinny jeans, the wedges and was boiling hot all day. My hosts showed up in shorts and thongs!  I can’t win. LOL