The trip to DC was long, but the plan of leaving early in the morning turned out to be a good one. We hit traffic somewhere in the middle of Virginia which added about 2 hours to our overall trip time -- 13.5 hours in total. Still, the snow was lovely, and the in-laws had dinner waiting for us, so all was well there.

The kiddo enjoyed playing in the snow, and we got several good pictures of her hurling snow-clouds (it was totally the wrong snow for snowballs) at her cousin, father and uncle. We survived the Christmas Eve service with minimal questions from the Bit (all of which I referred to her father) and just a touch of bitchiness on my end. (Really? Scared baby animals should not be used as props. Please don't.) Then home for unwrapping of the first round of presents and time spent with cousins and uncles and in-laws and general happiness.

Christmas Day was quiet and lazy. We all got a ton of books, so we sat around and read for most of the morning and much of the afternoon. We spent the rest of our visit in much the same manner, and finally made it back into town on Tuesday.

Upon arrival, we went into a mad frenzy of cleaning, straightening and organizing which, so far, has mostly only produced More Stuff in the Garage and hasn't really (for a casual observer) seemed to have an impact on the house itself. Still, things have been painted, spiffed, spruced and generally neatened, and we're nearing the point where we'll actually take on the study. (Aah, the study.)

New Years stocking-stuffing and opening was good. It's the first year that both girls seemed truly interested in stuffing the stockings, so that was happy and charming. They also very deliberately pulled everything out of their own stocking and looked at each and every thing that they got before going on to the next present. It was adorable.

We spent the rest of vacation visiting with friends, cleaning more, and relaxing. And now it's back to work for all of us. In some ways, I'm glad to be back to a routine and a schedule. In other ways, I'm still hopeful for a lottery windfall.

Here's to the end of 2009 and good wishes for a bright 2010. (2010. Really? It's 2010 already?_
Christmas dinner was at the very least, edible. In a fit of madness, you see, I decided that I wanted to cook a goose for dinner. Not that I've ever cooked a goose before, mind you. Not that I really had any idea what one did with a goose; I wanted one. Cooking AtoZ at hand, I threw myself on the mercy of my Christmas co-diners and made goose.

Pretty tasty overall. I'd probably do a few things differently -- note to other goose cookers; I had a devil of a time determining doneness -- but it went well for a first try. And there was wine and the end of Christmas sweets and presents and company and stockings and...yeah. It was a good Christmas.

[livejournal.com profile] touchstone deserves a minor medal for not only tolerating, but helping with my 4:00PM decision (company was arriving at 7:30) to completely reorganize the kitchen.

His mother deserves a medal for finding a talking toy that is not only bearable but utterly adorable. It's a snoring pig, and while I realize how that sounds, it must be seen to be understood. I want to steal it to take to work, but tLD would cry.

There was feasting and singing and cute children opening stockings. I am pleased.

Now if we can only get the child to sleep so we can straighten up the kitchen disaster.
cyllan: (Default)
( Nov. 30th, 2007 11:32 pm)
My neighborhood appears to be overly fond of the inflatable Christmas decorations. We have a plethora of snowmen, a somewhat demonically red-glowing Santa Claus, and even a enormous snow-globe that endlessly spills small white plastic beads over a cheery Christmas tree, Santa and penguins. As I believe I mentioned last year, the Bit is amazingly fond of all them, and she demands to go see them each time we get into a car.

We may have the antidote though. One of our neighbors just put up a almost realistic but not quite animatronic inflatable Santa Claus. He's sitting in a chair and waving. I find it to be one of the most creepy things I've seen in a long while. I'm afraid to take tLD by it for fear that she'll either fall in love with the thing and we'll never get her away from it OR start screaming her head off.

On the up side, my neighborhood is now sufficiently tacky that I no longer feel the urge to decorate in Georgia White Trash style.
cyllan: (Default)
( Nov. 22nd, 2007 01:57 pm)
I am grateful and thankful for so many things in my life that it seems excessive to list them all. Here then, is a small smattering.

I am thankful because,
I have a husband who challenges me to be a better person,
a daughter who is delightful even when she makes me want to tear my hair out,
a close-enough-to-count-daughter who has a smile that utterly melts my heart,
friends who make sure that I never feel like we're raising our child(ren) alone, and
because I have more than enough plenty to share.
cyllan: (Default)
( Feb. 14th, 2007 09:50 pm)
I actually went out to dinner on Valentine's day for what may be the first time ever. Alas, my husband is in a different state, but I was at least eating with my in-laws. It was...actually kinda sweet. The resturant brought me and my mother-in-law a rose each (careful, [livejournal.com profile] outlawcoon; I thought of you) with our appetizers, and there were Sweethearts on the table when we arrived. I always like seeing my husband's family, so it was quite happy.

Dinner was fried oyster stew (amazing), pumpkin ravioli (outstanding) and a brownie (tasty). I also snagged a pomegrante martini just to try one. It was good and probably far more deadly than it tasted. Generally a happy and pleasant evening.

Still, I miss my home family. Two more nights.

(Also? The pink has got to go.)
cyllan: (Default)
( Jan. 2nd, 2007 09:12 am)
Work? Huh? Oh, right. It's this place where I go and do stuff so that I can get paid. It's all coming back to me now.

Surprisingly, waking up this morning wasn't all that painful. It helped that tLD decided to sleep the entire night through, waking up briefly at 6:40ish or so and then going back to sleep until after I was out of the shower -- sometime around 7:20. Even traffic wasn't bad coming in this morning.

New Year's Eve and Day were both delightful. I spent NYE geeking with the rest of Team Darkling and appreciating a brief lack of small child. The same lack of small child meant that I got to sleep in on New Year's Day until sometime slightly after 10:00. Amazing.

We spent the rest of the day with friends and good company. We got to exchange presents, eat the traditional New Year's Foods (black eyed peas, cabbage, grapes, doughnuts) and relax for one evening more before returning to work.

Right. Work. I should go look into that now.
cyllan: (Default)
( Dec. 25th, 2006 08:32 am)
Everyone seems mostly recovered, Christmas music is playing, [livejournal.com profile] touchstone is sleeping, the Bit is dancing, and all is merry and bright.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a blessed and safe day to everyone.
It was a Good evening.

Instead of having to work until the wee hours, my code cooperated and let me leave only a little bit late. It was late enough that traffic wasn't awful, so I got home only marginally later than I normally do. [livejournal.com profile] touchstone was just getting the children into the house, so I missed very little time with either of them. And then, tLD and the Kit were both on their best of cute behaviors tonight. Kit spent much of the time running circles around the house while asking the adults to "catch me!" while tLD looked on and giggled.

At some point, the Kit asked for "b'gman!" which [livejournal.com profile] touchstone was required to sing for her. I came into the kitchen to see my husband chopping apples in time while the Kit and tLD were bouncing around the kitchen, dancing happily away to the music. They were both entertained when Mom/Aunt Lilisonna joined in the dancing. At some point in there, I think tLD actually managed a real jump, but it's hard to say.

There was exceedingly tasty chili bubbling on the stove when I got in, a good (if overly brief) chat with [livejournal.com profile] outlawcoon as she picked up the Kit, and then a run.

Somewhere on my late night run through the light-bedecked neighborhood, I got slammed by Holiday Cheer. The lights were just so damned happy that I couldn't help but smile. Even the godawful tacky red and green flashing ones...well, they make someone happy, and while it's tempting to go around putting tacky-rating cards in people's mailboxes, eh. The person who put them up must get some measure of joy out of them, and that really is the important thing. Even the oh-my-god-do-they-really-make-that Nascar Santa inflatable lawn ornament got a smile.

It's still not a perfect season. There are holes in the holiday this year, and there's sorrow there. But as I'm sitting here sipping on the last of the Irish whiskey, I'm at least feeling some measure of holiday happiness.
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cyllan: (Default)
( Nov. 1st, 2006 12:35 pm)
Halloween

I am, I confess, not so much with the trick-or-treating. It seems like a lot of stress and fuss and bother for an insufficient reward. Me, I'd be perfectly content to dress D up, sit in our house and hand out candy. But dragging her out door to door? Meh. So I was perhaps not the best person to take tLD out last night. Still, we hit one house and have a better idea for how to handle next year. We'll dress her up, take her down to the clubhouse for the local neighborhood "show off your costumes" thing and then go back to hand out candy. When she's older, we'll revisit.

Still, it was good night with pleasant company and happy (if somewhat baffled) sproglings. We managed to get a decent number of pictures, although the coon-kit wasn't down with the hat wearing. Look for September and October pictures this weekend.

--

Samhain

My Samhain was worked in and around Halloween -- mostly in the cracks of quiet and peace afforded to me by two somewhat hyperactive childen. Still, I managed to do enough that I felt like I had sufficiently honored the day even if I didn't get to do as much as I would have normally liked. I'll likely do a wrap-up this evening after tLD goes to sleep for the night which should complete everything nicely.
cyllan: (Default)
( Oct. 31st, 2006 10:30 am)
Happy Halloween!
Tags:
Initially, I was less than thrilled with the idea of hitting a Halloween party last night. Various events had conspired to force me into a non-social mood, and the thought of going somewhere was less than happy. But we had our costumes; we had the booze; we were going. [livejournal.com profile] touchstone dragged me out of the house for a walk which upped my mood and generally jollied me up.

Halloween costumes this year were courtesy of a last minute flash of inspiration followed by $5.00 at the thrift store. Hurrah for very cheap costuming. I only wish I could have found really really cheap boots to go with the outfit I found; alas.

(Note to self: you are still allergic to aqua-paint makeup. Do not try it; stick with the greasepaint, damnit.)

Makeup came out passably well (see [livejournal.com profile] outlawcoon's post for pictures), and then we were off to the party which turned out to be exactly what I needed. [livejournal.com profile] butterinthesun and J's house is utterly lovely, and there was a small enough number of folks present that I could relax. Got some good conversation in, had some wonderful pumpkin cheesecake, and got to chat with friends I don't get to see often enough. (Brunch. It works great; I should do it more often with folks.)

Came home, had some bad pizza, some more water, and then passed out until receiving the sprogling this morning. So, yeah. Good Halloween stuff. I was pleased.
.

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