Tuesday, December 30, 2014

10 Books

10 on Tuesday made me realize that I definitely need to read more, and hopefully the Book Riot's Read Harder Challenge will help in 2015.  Being part of a book club for the first time has certainly helped me get some reading mojo, but it was still difficult reading anything more than the book for that club meeting's discussion.  Here's my list of pretty much everything I did manage to read.  I enjoyed most of them, and there were a couple that were not that great.  The duds did generate a lot of discussion which I'm totally okay with-

10.  Written in my Own Heart's Blood-the recent tome by Diana Gabaldon
  9.  Lost Lake-Sarah Addison Allen
  8.  The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
  7.  The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  6.  The Body in the Boudoir by Katherine Hall Page
  5.  The Care and Management of Lies by Jacqueline Winspear
  4.  Island Beneath the Sea by Isabel Allende
  3.  Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
  2.  Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
  1. Save the Date by Mary Kay Andrews

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

10 things still to do.

Carole's prompt has made me a little hungry.  Most of things left on my to do list aren't in preparation for Christmas Eve/Day, but things that just need to get done.

10.  Weave in ends and wrap Mom's Christmas socks (they are due on the 27th)
  9.  Buy one more gift-the wine shop was closed by the time I got there yesterday.
  8.  Waiting on one more gift to arrive and wrap.
  7.  Finish my Happiness beret-down to about 40 stitches now-deadline is the 25th so I can wear it on the 26th.
  6.  Clear out our guest room-need to move stuff into the basement for post-Christmas sorting for storage, donation or trash.
 5.  Watch a Christmas movie from start to finish-have only seen parts so far.
 4.  Address Christmas cards-they haven't arrived from Shutterfly yet-I'm getting a little worried.
 3.  Attend Christmas Eve service-pray it's not raining between 10:30 and midnight.  Hate when it's dark, cold and wet.
  2.  Attend one more family-ish gathering on the 27th.
  1.  Make to do list for after Christmas!

I was feeling a little stressed about the things that were on my Christmas to do list for a while there-several stops that had to be made on my way home from work.  I pretty much never wait until the week of Christmas to wrap gifts, but you know what?  That's okay, it got done, and it's all good.

Wishing EVERYONE a very Merry Christmas [or whatever holiday you celebrate].


Monday, December 15, 2014

A few days of (non) holiday fun

While my calendar last week was full of things to do, and there is still much to still be done, I managed some non-holiday activities that helped to re-charge my batteries. This is a good thing considering the contents of my bottom kitchen cabinets are now scattered around the dining and living rooms, and the kitchen table. Although the cookies are baked there is a bit of housework that really needs to be done.  I got an email about the Main Street Coffee's Wednesday Ladies wine tasting-a local wine store turned wine bar turned wine-coffee-gelato bar.  I re-arranged a couple thing so I could go-am very glad I did.  This place is very cozy with over stuffed chairs-low-ish tables and bar stools.  They feature Honeysuckle gelato, and while the flavors sounded delicious I didn't try any this time!  I did purchase a bottle of wine for my boss as a Christmas gift and a bottle to try at our family get together on Sunday.  I'm hoping to visit this place more often in 2015.
Thursday night was book club-a lovely bottle of wine, a very weird book, great company and conversation.  I'm really glad we didn't skip this month-not because of the book, but all the rest!
Friday night was my night to host quilt club.  It was a short night, but a lot of fun getting caught up with the girls.  Sophie was a BIG help with Kathy's quilt-she finally decided that she was more useful OFF the quilt!
Sunday I took my brother to the Falcons vs Steelers game, it was the first time he'd been to an NFL game, and he was like a little kid.  It would have been much nicer if we'd come away with a win, but what are you gonna do.  I did sit next to 4 of the cutest little boys who tried their best to help me understand the game.
The next few days are going to be crazy-dog grooming, appliance delivery, annual luncheon for 100 + at the office that I'm in charge of, counter-top installation, serious house cleaning, a pub crawl and a day with family-whew-is it Christmas yet?!  I think I need a vacation too

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

House 2.5| the granite

Maybe now that we're downsizing and purging, I'll have more to share on the blog.  I'm considering this phase of my life as House 2.5 cause it's the same house, with just some changes.  Not really sure when/where/what House 3.0 will be, so for now this is where we are at.  Yesterday I picked out the granite for the kitchen counters, there should be enough leftover to install a new sink in the guest bathroom downstairs which will add a little something there.  The granite is Saint Cecilia light, I wanted to go with something that would compliment the stainless appliances, sink, and faucet.  I love the Saint Cecilia classic, but was afraid it was too warm for the stainless.  It was a bit nerve wracking thinking that it had to work, and there was no turning back once I placed the order.  There was another slab I liked better, but since I feel like I'm purchasing this for a stranger I felt it best to stick with a more neutral piece.  I've taken before photos of the kitchen and will post them along with the after photos once this is installed which should be in a couple weeks.  Stay tuned-more to come!

Lunchtime shuffle

Since I mostly listen to my iphone music when I walk at lunchtime my10 on Tuesday list doesn't include ANY Christmas music.  Fortunately, a local radio station plays Christmas music from Thanksgiving until Christmas day, so there is no need to have those tunes on my phone.  A couple of years ago, I posted on Facebook that I was strolling down Peachtree Street listening to the Bee Gee's Stayin' Alive-which seemed strangely appropriate at the time, and my son and UK cousin found it hilarious that I was channeling my inner Tony Manero-it was really hard NOT to! Here's what's I've got-

10.  After the Disco-Broken Bells, I have no idea how this came to be on my iphone.
  9. All Summer Long-I like the Kid Rock version better, and don't know why there are 2 versions here.
 8.  Also sprach Zarathurstra-this is the theme song from 2001 Space Odyssey.  I used this when I put together a video for our graduating seniors a few years ago-clearly this gets skipped when I am walking!
  7.  Any Way you Want it-Journey
  6.  Ask the Lonely-Journey
  5. Au Font Du Lac-Feufollet- a group that Garden and Gun magazine recommended.  I really like their sound.  Reminds me of New Orleans.
  4. Au milieu des loups-Nourith Sibony-from my French music fixation
  3.  Aupres de mon arbre-Georges Brassens (see #4)
  2.  Babel-Nortec-I heard this sound track at a restaurant near my office.  They are a group out of Tijuana.  No vocals, and I love the sound.
  1.  Barcarolle-Charlotte Church

Clearly I need to update my iPhone tunes-it can be such a pain, and honestly, I skip most of these when I'm walking-depends on my mood.  Carole DID say the first 10 that popped up, so there you go, can't wait to see what others have posted.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Getting inspired and overwhelmed-

the recent Southern Living has been sitting on my desk for a while, and I've just now gotten around to looking it over.  I usually skim through the first bit and then head to the recipes.  I'm inspired to try these 2 recipes, I do love a good cake.  The Hot Bourbon Orange Tea Toddy look perfect for the cold winter nights that I'm sure are just around the corner.  Actually, I'm inspired to cook a lot more that's in this month's issue, but of course, that would be impossible.
We are also making plans to ready our house to sell-not that we're going to try to do everything now-certainly not with Christmas just a few weeks away, but some upgrades to the kitchen are already in the works.   These 2 will be delivered in a couple weeks, the cook top won't go in until the granite counter tops are installed, but I'm sorta looking forward to having a new oven and microwave.

After walking around the house with a realtor last night, the realization of what we need to do is starting to feel a bit overwhelming.  Especially when I think about all the stuff that's in our basement-some serious de-cluttering is going to have to happen sooner rather than later. 
I also keep thinking about all the holiday activities that are still on the calendar or to do list-sigh
I'll just have to keep reminding myself- it'll get done just take baby steps.