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Thursday, December 17, 2009

leaves, glorious leaves

Hello, all--Christmas is quickly approaching, and I still must get my newsletter out. I started out so well, but seemed to get a little side-tracked. I thank God for angels amongst us who have all pitched in to make sure my kids have Merry Christmas. I can't wait to see the looks on their faces when they open their gifts on Christmas morning! Mike's sister has invited us for brunch on Christmas day. I'm thinking I'll do my "overnight" coffee cake and Tony Cachere's Country Breakfast dish (dirty rice mix with eggs, mushrooms and breakfast sausage). It's what I would've fixed for the kids & me anyway. Mike will be back to work come Christmas morning, so we'll celebrate with him in the afternoon.
I thought I'd give credit where credit is due for today. Today is day 4 of Mike's vacation. I always complain that we don't optimize our time off together and get stuff done. Actually, I blame it all on Mike. Not only does he not get his stuff done, but he also keeps me from getting things done that I want to do. Today, for instance, my "plans" included cleaning my kitchen, making pralines for Alisa's teachers, picking up the living room, wrapping gifts (so much easier when the kids are still in school...tomorrow is early dismissal, so Lord knows I should've already knocked that out!) and putting up the Christmas tree, oh yeah, and paying my electric bill which was due today. What actually happened was: I took kids to school and ran by Walmart Superstore on I-30 and Eastchase parkway (they had something I couldn't find elsewhere). I came home to Mike seated at the table chowing down on a plate full of scrambled eggs, toast with apple jelly and little smokies. Would you believe he didn't fix me anything to eat? I informed him that God had granted him another wonderful day for yardwork and I offered my assistance to rake leaves or whatever. He said he could work on the yard by himself, and I could do whatever I needed to do. This was like 11 a.m. I thought I'd better reconcile the checkbook and get that Stream Energy bill in the mail. Mike needed trashbags for the leaves, so he decided we could go together to Target to get the bags and drop the bill in the mail. I called my sister to ask about a gift for my nephew and she said she had seen what he wanted at Target (sorry I'm being so vague...never know when the kids will decide to check out mom's boring old blog :-). So, I called around to compare prices, and it turns out Target was about as inexpensive as I was going to get. I ended up paying my bill on line and rolling to Target with Mike around 12:50 p.m. (Half of our last full day off together without kids had already's not even like we were having fun, so time shoudn't have been flying like that!) We fussed over which trash bags to get: I thought the 39-gallon lawn & leaf bags would be appropriate for, well, raking and bagging leaves. Mike insisted that he needed to the 42-gallon heavy duty contractor bags (22 bags for almost $8 compared to 40+ lawn & leaf bags for $5.00) I told him that's why he should run his own errands and leave me out of it. We picked up a couple of miscellaneous items as well as my nephew's gift and headed for home. It was almost 2 when we returned. I did what I could in the gift wrapping department then cleaned everything up and made myself a sandwich and chips and left to pick up kids from school. Around that same time Mike headed outside to begin his yardwork (I figured he had about 3 hours of daylight and decent weather left for the day). All of this is to say, Mike deserves a gold star for at least getting the leaves all raked up. He and Aaron didn't get around to mowing the grass, but there are numerous 42-gallon bags of leaves stacked on the curb. They didn't make it in until well after dark.
Meanwhile, I made Alisa's pralines (they didn't turn out quite like Tia's), and put chicken on to cook for gumbo, but I got way too late a start and so we had chili dogs for dinner. Alisa & I ran to Tia's house and she gave us more pralines that she had made: Alisa can mix & match for her teachers. On the way home we stopped at Kroger for hot dog buns (Mike called shortly after we had left to let me know that he and Aaron were putting a dent in what was left of the loaf of bread. Naturally, we grabbed a few more items (might as well as long as we were already in the store, right?). Tomorrow will be another day where that gumbo is concerned. For now, I've got to turn it in. Good night until next time...

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