Friday, December 26, 2008
Seeing this white stuff flying around outside my window makes me want to run out in the street and punch each little fluffy flake in its little fluffy face. Fast flying fists of fury!!! Righteous weather rage! I realize that this might make me look like a bit of a lunatic but oh how glorious it would feel.
On another note, I never want to hear Bing Crosby sing how he is dreaming of a white Christmas EVER AGAIN. Bing can take that song and cram it up his Bing-hole.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
On my way walking home from work (with detour for cheap 7-11 wine) the Christmas spirit made me feel a little like George Bailey. I felt like yelling out: "Merry Christmas convenience store! Merry Christmas faceless condos growing like a cancer in my fair city! Merry Christmas you old fabulous nursing home!! Merry Christmas all you people driving in the slush! Merry Christmas apartment building!"
Most importantly, a heartfelt "Merry Christmas" to all of my friends. As Clarence tells us every year on Christmas Eve (you all ARE watching aren't you): "No man is a failure who has friends".
I am truly lucky to have such wonderful friends and to have you all in my life. I hope your holidays are filled with much love and joy!
P.S. Don't worry. Snarkiness will resume shortly.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
I know some of you LOVE the snow but it has dampened the holiday spirits of most everyone I know. A little snow was pretty but a week and a half of ice and snow and not feeling like we can drive anywhere is enough. All I want for Christmas is 40 degrees and rain. Glorious, gray Seattle skies and rain. Wash this crap away.
Because of the weather we have cancelled my dad's birthday party twice. I had my traditional Christmas dinner and gift exchange with a good friend cancelled. My mother was to come up for a girl's night at Hotel Ann-Marie -- cancelled. Two different outings with two dear friends -- cancelled. Now there is a very real chance that we will be postponing our Christmas to this weekend because of the weather. UNCLE!!! UNCLE!!!
However, I know that shaking my fist at the sky and complaining won't change things so I am trying to look on the bright side.
I can't get out to visit my friends and family but at least I have wonderful friends and family I want to visit and who want to visit with me.
I can't get to the grocery store to get food for Christmas but at least I have the money to buy the food and am quite clearly not going hungry.
I might have to slog down sidewalks packed with at least four inches of ice but at least I have a good job to go to and really great co-workers.
I can't dump my garbage or recycling and it is piling up in my apartment because the city can't get here to empty our dumpsters but at least I have food, newspapers, magazines and (most importantly) Diet Coke to consume so I that I need the garbage service.
I can't get out to go anywhere but it has allowed me to spend a peaceful few days organizing the apartment, really unwinding and snuggling with the kitties.
I can't ramp up my running like I wanted to when school was over because the sidewalks are far too dangerous but I have my health so that running is even an option for me.
Thinking about this situation in these terms seems to make it a little bit better.
But Santa? 40 degrees and rain please.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Saturday, December 20, 2008
I just might make a Christmas Cocktail for myself tonight. Of course, mine will be a Roy Rogers made with diet, caffeine-free Coke and I have no footy pajamas but the spirit will be the same.
Monday, December 15, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Thursday, December 4, 2008
First, on Thanksgiving night, Kevin and I set up my little tree. Then my boss and I set up our tree and village at work the next day. It is much prettier now that we have covered the pictures with wrapping paper and big bows.
Friday night Kevin bought his first big Christmas tree. It is still pretty minimalist because he doesn't have many ornaments. I fully intend on fixing this.Since the parent's health isn't so great these days I spent Saturday decorating their tree while Matt and Kevin put up their outside lights. Six of the 18 gallon tubs of ornaments later the tree was mostly done. There was at least another tub that we were missing but we ran out of time and energy. I come by my love of the anti-minimalist tree naturally. I hope you all enjoy decorating your trees. I, for one, am quite done for the year.
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
The Edgefield is this big beautiful building that is surrounded by about 30 acres of vineyards and gardens and open space. They have kept the character of the building and fully embraced its past. This was hands down the most charming hotel I have ever been in. So much character and warmth in this old building. All the old buildings have been turned into restaurants, a spa, a distillery, winery, brewery and lots of little pubs all around the property. Former incinerator? Great place to shove a tiny little bar where you can throw peanut shells on the floor. Former morgue? Home for the pottery studio. Former power station? Pub with movie theater and meeting rooms. As with all McMenamin's properties this one had their distinctive artistic touches everywhere. Most notably was on the exposed pipes throughout the building.
There are creative touches like this everywhere. It would take years to spot them all.
We had the most relaxing weekend I have probably ever had. Lounging around doing nothing, getting a couples massage, soaking in the heated outdoor salt-water soaking pool, eating tasty food, getting ridiculous amounts of sleep, more soaking in pool, wine tasting, beer drinking, more food, more sleep, etc. etc. If you ever get the chance. . . go here! I have heard good things about the other McMenamin's hotels too and we can't wait to try them all.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
The birthday festivities continue next weekend with a three-day weekend at McMenamin's Edgefield.
Sunday, November 9, 2008
I don't think I will ever forget the feelings of anger and bewilderment of the 2004 election. Who were these people who elected this man again? Where was MY country? How dare the right wing keep telling me that me, my friends, my family weren't moral or didn't have "family values" strictly because we vote Democrat. Don't question my patriotism because I question the direction my country is headed. I was tired of our points of view being marginalized and now, with this victory, I feel like we have been heard. An America I was convinced during the caucuses would never elect an African-American has proven me very, very wrong. I have never been happier to have been wrong than I am now. I know Obama's election isn't a panacea for this country. He won't fix all of our problems and the mess he inherits will probably take generations to clean up. But for the first time in my life I feel the cynicism of politics being pushed aside a little and feelings of actual hope entering my withered jaded little heart.
One of the greatest qualities Mr. Obama has is the ability to inspire. This is a man who is doing this not just because of ego but because he truly believes he is a public servant and can make this country and this world a better place. I felt that throughout the campaign and particularly on election night. He can inspire us all to be better people and to bring about change in ourselves and our communities. The leader has been but in place but the words of another leader keep echoing in my head and I wonder now . . . what can I do for my country?
Monday, November 3, 2008
Ku Klux Donkeys. TOTALLY not my intention.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Post luau Hawaiian overkill.
Kona is filled with these darling little guys.
Geckos everywhere! They were all over our B&B that we stayed at. This little guy was at a craft booth we found. One of the ladies there feeds them every day by opening little single serving size peaches and the geckos come down and drink the peach juice. We took a long walk all around Kona including a few beaches with a few more sea turtles. That night we went to Kona Brewery for delicious food, great service from an English guy who knows his beer and many, many tasty beers for Kevin. Although, as he will point out, he never even had a whole beer. These were merely samples. Lots and lots of samples.
He was relieved to finally be able to find good beer because the islands are mostly filled with Budweiser, MGD, and Corona type beers which he hates.
The next day we were off to the eastern side of the island to visit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. On the way we stopped at Mountain Thunder coffee company where I got to taste fresh off the farm Kona coffee.Wow. Huge difference. I always have to doctor my coffee up with milk and sugar but this was so smooth and not bitter that I drank it black. True Kona is definitely worth more money. However, maybe not what they charge for it.
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park was one of the more phenomenal things I have ever seen. The volcano, Kilauea, has been erupting since the 80's which is the longest continuous eruption ever recorded. In March of this year the volcano began a large steam eruption from its crater that is still going on today.The rangers say that in this new crater the magma is only about 300 feet from the surface. At night you can see the glow from the steam vent. Watching the steam continuously curl and swirl and rise from the crater is mesmerizing. Kevin and I could have pulled up chairs and sat and watched it for hours. This is one of the best views from any restaurant I have ever been in. You get to eat your breakfast and look out on a volcanic eruption. How freaking cool is that?! You can also stay here at the Volcano House and some of the rooms have crater views. We opted for more frugal accommodations and were in darling little tiny national park cabins instead. View not so good, price so much better.
At night we drove out to the ocean where the current lava flow was entering. They keep you about 3/4 of a mile back from the flow but we got to see the steam cloud from where it was entering the ocean and the glow from the lava. As the night wore on and it got darker we were able to see globs of lava shoot up into this cloud every so often. We sat there on a previous lava flow from the early 90's through intermittent heavy rain showers for about two hours to watch this. Phenomenal. Awe inspiring. We were seeing new land being created.
If Hawaiians who were in danger of being killed could make it to this place alive they were absolved of whatever sins they had committed and were allowed to live. Sins could be something as simple as looking at the chief or walking in the chiefs footsteps. Pretty strict society.
So there is our Hawaii trip in a (big) nutshell. We are definitely going to go back some day and see and do the things we didn't get to on this trip. Aloha!