Well, the tree is up (fake, with lights built in that I purchased at Target or Kmart last year) along with my favorite ornaments - birds, ears of corn, a pickle, and this little acorn among others. My shopping is not quite done but I'm feeling pretty good about Christmas being right around the corner. My cards are going out today come hell or high water and the donations to the ASPCA that I'm sending to my aunts and uncles and their families are going to be ordered online and sent right along with the cards.
I'm excited about doing the ASPCA honor gifts. I figured instead of trying to find an inexpensive gift this year (paperwhite bulbs, foodstuffs, etc.) I would put my little bit of money to good use and make a little bit of difference in a cause I believe in and that my family supports too - they're all animal lovers. This may expand next year - I just hate buying stuff for people who already have more stuff then they need or use. Enough of my soapbox, though.
I have been a Chex Mix-making fiend (not as much of a fiend as my friend Theresa with her cookie-making marathon) and have packed and delivered little goody bags of both Ranch and BBQ flavors to the group of interpreters (tour guides) at my museum. To thank them but also to butter them up for another year of laying down new rules and being obsessive about things. That's only fair, right?
A few more boxes of the cereal are left and I'll make another batch before I head out for the holidays so I can take some to my father and grandmother too. I might keep some for myself, but after hours of making the snack mix I must admit I kind of have lost my taste for it. Must be similar to if you baked cookies for days straight (Theresa?).
Last night I attended my first work holiday party - a potluck with the interpreters. I made my friend Christine's couscous salad (simmered in lemon juice, tomatoes, cumin, broth - super easy and very yummy hot or cold). I experimented with Trader Joe's whole wheat couscous and must admit it was a little disappointing - too gummy for this dish. But everyone seemed to enjoy it nonetheless.
Today is a work from home day and I can't get my computer to log into the network. This may be a mixed blessing - I can still get e-mail remotely but it won't be updated constantly and so I might actually have some uninterrupted research time today. Very exciting.
I'm glad to be inside today - cold and rainy and the kind of weather that chills you to the bone. I'm happy to be in my little house with my comfy socks and the Christmas tree glowing.