baa baa black sheep



I can not believe I will be celebrating Christmas with my family a mere week from now.

A week!

I feel like I am just a big huge mess, and like I haven't been blogging, and whooo, has it ever been busy for us and for everybody and how is it almost Christmas, again?

Work has been pretty busy, and at the end of this month I'll hit the end of my three month probationary period. This week I will be evaluated, and thinking about it makes me sick to my stomach for a variety of reasons, most of which involve me being a) paranoid and b) hard on myself. I assume the evaluation will be fine, FINE, but it's still making me feel all wonky and uptight. I don't know when I will be evaluated, but I was to prepare a list of professional goals for 2008 over the weekend, so hopefully it'll be over tomorrow.

I did not include "continue not dressing like a dirty hippie" as a professional goal, in case you were wondering.

Friday night we had our holiday work party, which was actually very enjoyable. It was snowing (lots of snow on top of the ice now, which is not at all slick), the booze was plentiful, and I think we all had a pretty good time. I did, at any rate, and I felt happy that my husband got to have fun with my co-workers. Warm and fuzzy!

I made fudge for the party on Thursday night, along with cookies. I posted the recipe at the holiday blog. Unfortunately, because I am really detail oriented, I lost count of how many CUPS OF SUGAR I put into the fudge, and so, I totally added a whole extra cup. The fudge wasn't very chocolaty, was grainy, and was sickeningly sweet. It also had way too stiff of a texture, and it took me FOREVER just to spread it out in the pan. Cutting it was a nightmare.

A nightmare!

It is important to note that I still took it to the party, and people still ate multiple pieces of it, and that is crazy.

Because: gross.

Yesterday morning we discovered that my faithful betta, Old Drippy, who traveled here with us from across the plains, had passed away in the night. I assume the cold from the power outage was too much for his system to handle, as he became even more lethargic than normal (which is mind-blowing, because that fish? that fish was the king of lethargic, and house guests were always whispering to me that they thought "maybe your fish is dead?") over the course of the week.

Poor Old Drippy.

I felt pretty bad about it, and I wouldn't watch my husband flush his little creepy corpse.

We ventured out into the snow to get a new fish, but I decided I wasn't ready for another betta. Old Drippy's memory was too fresh. We came home with a goldfish and a black moor goldfish, and we named them Cockroach and Kimmy Gibbler.

The goldfish, Cockroach, died this afternoon in a truly terrifying display of spazzing out followed by side swimming and then paralysis. Kimmy Gibbler is still alive, and if he dies I assume I'll get another betta at some point.

Or not.

Fish are so emotionally exhausting.

What else?

I've been slowly wrapping Christmas presents, one or two at a time, in our dining room. I've been exceptionally slow at it this year, and have been painstakingly curling each ribbon and using way too much tape. We're talking, multiple pieces of tape, and we all know each gift really only needs three small pieces of tape. Three! We all know it! There is no reason for me to use ten on each gift!

But I have!

I really am enjoying the gift wrapping this year, for some reason, and feel happy each time I sit down to wrap something up. J selected the wrapping paper this year, and he picked Charlie Brown paper and a really cluttered but awesome Christmas Story paper. I didn't even get a big bag of stick on bows, instead using multiple color-coordinated ribbons on each gift, snipping and tying and curling and getting confused and frustrated by how slippery each ribbon is.

It is a ridiculous process, and I like it.


I've been feeling really really crazy lately!

I lost a few more pounds, and I'm wondering if it's because lately the only thing I want to eat for lunch are Cheez-its and handfuls of peanuts, or if the opposite should be true. At any rate, if I lose one more pound, I will officially be thinner than my husband has ever seen me (still not "skinny" and still at an "above average BMI") and my bras are too big now and so are my pants and I know I am sooo not allowed to do this, but can I briefly complain because I can not afford clothing right now, I liked how I was just fine, and was not wanting to lose anything because HELLO, after years of working at it I HAD ACCEPTED MY BODY. Plus eating fistfuls of nuts and cookies at work and cheesy crackers for lunch and frequent bowls of ice cream at night should not equal weight loss. It seems more concerning than anything else, because, what? Maybe it's stress (although normally I gain weight when I'm stressed) or maybe it's just a fluke, that'll correct itself, or maybe Cheez-its actually are like celery. Unexplained weight loss makes me nervous, because isn't that a symptom of something? Or is it not?

Do I need to shut up, or do I need a check up? That is what I am asking. (Please don't be grumpy at me. I'm pretty sure I'm still above healthy BMI levels. I am!)

Also, I've been wondering if I've been sleepwalking again, because I keep waking up with unexplained cuts and bruises. Sleepwalking seems unlikely, because sleepwalking would involve a) crawling through the treacherous hallway of sleeping dogs (who would surely wake up and make a big racket) b) getting over the dog gate and c) not tripping on cats who would probably run around under my feet because they would be all "OH MY GOSH IS SHE GOING TO FEED US IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT THIS IS GREAT OH MY GOSH OH MY GOSH OH GEEZ AAAAAAAAAAGGGH."

The only other explanation for the bruises and cuts (including a really deep and painful one on my right breast, by the way) would be that Coltrane is trying to murder me in my sleep.

This explanation is much more likely.

That cat is so creepy. I swear she knows where the human bladder is, if her early morning dances on mine are any indication. She is way too good at getting me up to feed her, and it is mostly based on her ability to locate my bladder, jump on it enough to get me up to pee, and then when I am up she is all, "WELL? YOU ARE UP, YOU MIGHT AS WELL FEED ME. I'LL JUST MOVE ON TO FACE-TROMPING IF YOU DON'T."

I think I have never told you, Coltrane and Jelly Roll both do that weird little quivering cat tail thing. Have you seen a cat do it? I hadn't, until they started doing it several months ago. It started when one of us would get home, they'd come up and stomp their feet and their tails would quiver madly, just twitch and shake and shiver. I looked it up, because it seemed weird, and read that it is the Ultimate of Cat Greetings, that it means the cat is at the utmost level of thrilled-to-see-you-ness, that the cat loves you a ton and that not many cats will express such a deep level of happiness and affection.

Well! I thought. Well! These cats just love us so much! We are awesome!

It has become painfully obvious that now the cats only do this to us when they REALLY want to be fed. That's the only time they do it to me, when they just need to coax-beyond-all-coaxing.





I didn't even think they liked the dogs, since they both mostly ignore the dogs and sometimes scratch up the dogs' noses if we have been too lax about the Soft Paws and the dogs have been too insistent upon sniffing the cats.

But it's true: they quiver happily at the dogs, before scratching them and galloping away.

Cats are horrible animals.

So are dogs, however.

Hey, how about I talk about some dogs?

I tried to get a holiday photo of the dogs. This is the best one:

Most of the dog holiday photos were blurry, or had one dog running out of the frame, or showed one or both of the dogs acting like complete morons/jerks.

Like this one, where Cab is making a weird face and Monk has just run out of the shot:

Check this one out. Monk didn't realize I was watching him, as he is not allowed on the furniture, except for one chair. This is him being tricky and sitting on the couch without actually sitting on the couch; however, he knows this is not allowed, either. I felt very skillful to get a photo of such sneaky badness being displayed:

I've also been trying to get a photo of Cab and me. A cute photo, where we both are looking at the camera and are calm.

It is not working.

Cab has been going through a growth spurt, and he's all gangly. He's as tall as Monk now, and probably weighs about the same. His legs seem strangely long, and his feet? His feet are getting huge.

Look at this foot:


I took one of his paw next to my foot, for comparison. I have small feet, but still. Still!

A fun game is to ask your husband, after walking the dogs, if he can lift their eighty pound squirmy bodies into the air. Of course he can, but it looked hilarious:

Okay, I know.

Enough, right?

Enough of the zoo that is our house.

The only other thing that now seems important to get down, to blog, is that boy, oh boy. This time of year is hard, right? Because everything is so busy, and there's so much pressure to feel happy, and to really experience EVERYTHING. Add that to work stress and financial stress and emotional disorders and magically everything JUST FEELS AS IF IT IS ALL IN CAPS LOCK. I feel so squirmy inside--my chest and belly feel squirmy.

Rest in peace, Old Drippy. You were a good fish, and I hope you get to nap even more in the afterlife.

black sheeped

Edit, two minutes later: Kimmy Gibbler the fish has also now passed on. I'm blaming Coltrane, because I've caught her with her paw in that bowl about five times today.


Blogger Jess said...

I love the foot photos. And also, I'm sorry about all the dead fish.

I do not think you need to shut up. And I don't know about the check up. But I think it's great that you managed to accept your body, and it sucks that you now need new clothes that you can't afford. I'm in the same boat, except that for me it's worth it.

8:19 AM, December 17, 2007  
Blogger Pickles & Dimes said...

I love that silly expression Cab has in that one photo!

And Sunny does that tail-quiver thing too – when she wants to be fed. She's not happy to see us; she's happy to see us walking in the direction of her food bowl. We call it The Rattlesnake and now we make her do it before we dole out the goods.

I don't think you need a checkup either, unless you notice other weird symptoms or are feeling not yourself.

Also, I'm jealous you have Charlie Brown wrapping paper - cute!

9:22 AM, December 17, 2007  
Blogger Marie Green said...

1.Sorry about the fish.
2. Love your Christmas pooches.
4. Weird kitties....
5. Work review will go wonderfully, I'm sure.
6. Also feeling busy and scattered...
7. but I do love Chrristmas...

12:17 PM, December 17, 2007  
Blogger Swistle said...

The baby is bursting into GALES of laughter every time I even GLANCE at him, so this will be short because I have to do more glancing. Great post! Great photos!

1:46 PM, December 17, 2007  
Blogger Penny said...

I'm not one to be paranoid, but please go and check in with a doctor and mention the unexplained weight loss and bruises and, if I'm not mistaken, the random extremely high energy moments, okay? And I forget if you are on a new anti-depressant but those can sometimes cause some weight droppage.

Hurry up and get there, and then check back in. Consider it an order.

3:10 PM, December 17, 2007  
Blogger aurantifolia said...

Cab's goofy face reminds me SO MUCH of the Calvin and Hobbes cartoon where he causes his dad to waste a whole roll of film trying to get a nice pic. He's so freaking cute. And Monk's "I'm *not quite* sitting on the sofa" pic is adorable. Sneaky, sneaky boys. :D

I'm sorry about your fish, and I hope you figure out why you're being bruised in your sleep. And no, please don't shut up.

12:51 AM, December 19, 2007  

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