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January 2013

December 2012

Right Now. . . December

Here's what's going on in my life  . . . RIGHT NOW.


Watching . . . Movies.  Lots of movies.  This week alone, Tom and I have made three trips to the theatre.  Silver Linings Playbook.  Les Miserables.  Django Unchained.  ALL Very Good!  (We've also recently seen Argo, Lincoln, and Skyfall.  Worth seeing.  Every One.)

Reading . . . Just finished The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman.  Very difficult, but very moving.  I'm speed-reading through Turn of Mind by Alice LaPlante (a page-turner with an interesting point of view), and savoring two books of poetry by Mary Oliver (Christmas gifts from Tom).  I'm still slogging through The Stockholm Octavo by Karen Engelmann (disappointing).

Knitting . . . Ah.  My knitting.  A rather sorry state of affairs at present.  Let's just say . . . I'm on a bit of an accessories kick. . . and leave it right there for now.

Listening to . . . NOT Christmas music.  Pretty much anything BUT Christmas music, in fact.  (There just comes a point when it Has to Stop.  Y'know?)


Thinking about . . . Work, mostly.  (And in a good way.)

Dreading . . . Both Brian and Tom (AND my best pal, Sandie) have been struck low with a dreadful coughing CRUD.  So far, I have been spared.  I keep downing EmergenC. . . hoping for a full reprieve, but dreading the CRUD all the same.

Humming . . . Songs from Les Mis . . . and, in particular, "Stars" (the Inspector Javert/Russell Crowe song).  I have seen the stage production of Les Mis many, many (many!) times over the last 20 years.  I was, frankly, a bit worried about how I would respond to "movie stars" singing in the movie (and, truth be told, I was especially worried about Russell Crowe singing Javert's "Stars," one of my favorites from the musical).  But.  Not a problem.  I loved it still.  And, although some critics have not been kind about Crowe's voice, I loved his rendition of "Stars."  I thought his voice brought a real-ness, a human-ness to both Javert AND the song.  

Planning . . . Setting my 2013 planner to rights, and getting organized for the new year.


Celebrating . . . the New Year, of course!  Our plans on New Year's Eve are never glamorous or exciting.  This year, we're going to a special New Year's Eve dinner at one of our favorite local restaurants with friends ("Five Courses, No Regrets" . . . gotta love it!).  Then. . . home to watch the ball drop (without Dick Clark . . .).

Drinking . . . Pendleton Canadian Rye Whisky.  (On the rocks.)

Itching to . . . Be a lazy slob.  Forever.

Needing to . . . Write my thank-you notes, put away Christmas, and get ready to hit the ground running come January 2!

Organizing . . . My calendar for 2013.


Inspired by . . . Blank calendars and planners.  Just makes me want to fill 'em up!

Delighted by. . . Snow.  (Even though there isn't much of it.)

How about YOU?  What's going on for YOU . . . right now?


ADDENDUM:  Knitters, be sure to check this out before the end of the year!  SHARE THE LOVE!  Give yourself a wonderful holiday gift . . . a free pattern of your choosing from Tin Can Knits!

12 (Blog) Days of Christmas . . . on the Twelfth Day

On the Twelfth (blog) Day of Christmas . . . I give you The Aftermath.


I love the AFTER-Christmas days.  When you can put your feet up and relax a little.  Just sort of . . . re-group and re-cover.

That's what I'm doing now.  That . . . and taking care of my sick men. 

I'm taking a little blog-break for the rest of the week, but I'll be back on Monday to ring in the new year.  Enjoy your weekend.

12 (Blog) Days of Christmas . . . On the Eleventh Day

On the Eleventh Day of Christmas . . .  I give you food!


I think when it comes right down to it . . . my favorite thing about the holidays, really, is the food!

From cookie-baking to Christmas dinner, I love poring over cookbooks and food magazines, planning my menus, shopping for the just-right ingredients, and then doing the actual cooking and baking. 

We now have way too many cookies . . .


but the Christmas Eve Swedish Smörgåsbord. . .




was completely obliterared!

The glögg went pretty fast, too.


Christmas dinner was most excellent . . . 


finished with salted caramel cheesecakes (that most definitely did NOT look like their magazine photo counterpart. . . but tasted pretty darn heavenly).


So much YUM packed into just a couple of days!  (And now . . . I'm headed for the gym!!!)



The 12 (Blog) Days of Christmas: On the Tenth Day

On the Tenth (blog) Day of Christmas  . . . I give you memories!

So many Christmases. . .

Little Kym Xmas Card

So many presents . . .


So many memories through the years.

Late 60s Xmas with Di

On Christmas Eve, especially it seems, I remember all my Christmases past.

Tom and Kym early 80s Xmas

I remember the magic. . .

Little Erin and Little Brian Xmas 1994

and the fun.

2003 e 9th b 6th

I think about how things change . . .

2006 xmas card

and how they don't. 

Mulhern Xmas Card 2012

May happy memories of Christmases past surround YOU today!


12 (Blog) Days of Christmas: On the Ninth Day


On the Ninth (blog) Day of Christmas . . . I give you light!


It is the Winter Solstice . . . and very dark.  Here, it also snowing (just a little) and windy.  Winter may be finally arriving.

Light some candles.


Turn on the twinkle lights.


And enjoy some Shakespeare.


Enjoy some quiet light this weekend . . .




My Better Man

So.  Some of you are going to question my soundtrack selection today. 

After all. . . Pearl Jam's Better Man is a song about a woman stuck in a bad relationship. . . trapped and wasting away . . . because she can't find a better man.   

And . . . me?  Well.  I'm not.  Stuck, I mean.  Or wasting away.  In fact, I FOUND my Better Man . . . a long time ago.

But I love this song, and I actually think about my Better Man whenever I hear it.  And . . . it's been stuck in my head this week.  And . . . it's my Better Man's birthday today.   So . . . sing it, Eddie!


(If you want to hear the song - above - without the tribute-to-Pearl-Jam audience participation part, skip to about the 2-minute mark.)

Happy Birthday, Tom!


I can't imagine a Better Man. . .


to laugh with . . .


or grow with . . .


or explore with . . .


or be with.


Happy Birthday, my Better Man!



12 (Blog) Days of Christmas: On the Eighth Day

On the Eighth Day of Christmas . . . I bring you . . . gift wrapping!


I don't know about you . . . but I consider wrapping gifts . . . my Most-Dreaded Holiday Chore!  I'm not exactly sure why this is so, but I just don't enjoy gift-wrapping.  Maybe it's the sheer volume of gift-wrapping that I must do.  Maybe it's the senselessness of the exercise.  Maybe it's the tape. 

I don't really know.

But I just kind of dread the gift-wrapping thing.


On the other hand, it feels really good when it's done.  And all the gifties look so pretty . . . all in a pile!

How about YOU?  Do you enjoy wrapping gifts?  (Or do you just stuff everything in gift bags and call it done?)

12 (Blog) Days of Christmas: On the Seventh Day


On the Seventh (blog) Day of Christmas . . . I bring you images of the season.  (Which works well with Carole's Ten on Tuesday topic this week:  Ten Favorite Things to Photograph at Christmas!)

1.  Decorations that just shout out "Christmas!"


2.  Sunlight when it makes a rare appearance and washes over my space.


3.  Candlelight and twinkle-light . . . when there is no sunlight.


4.  Trees . . . inside.


5.  and out!


6.  Snow . . . when it falls.  (But this year?  Not so much.)


7.  Us . . . when we're all dressed up and ready for a night out.  (Or, even when we're not.)


8.  Food . . . like my sushi plate from a party last Friday.


9.  My house . . . in all it's seasonal finery.


10.  Traditions . . . treasured people and events.

My Star Tree . . . the "match" to my Bird Tree!

How about YOU?  What are your favorite things to photograph during the holiday season?


Join the fun!  Sign up for Ten on Tuesday here.

12 (Blog) Days of Christmas: On the Sixth Day

On the Sixth (blog) Day of Christmas . . . I give you . . . my Christmas tree!


Yeah, it's listing a bit to the left.  But it's a real beauty of a tree!

Back in the early days of our together-Christmases, Tom and I always went to an in-town Christmas tree lot for our trees.  We were poor grad students back then, and usually went for the Charlie-Brown-style trees that we could afford on our student-budget.  When the kids were little, we used to pile them into the car and head for a local tree nursery, where the kids would squabble and go Christmas-crazy, and Tom and I would stress out as we tried to pick out the "perfect" tree.  Happy times - and fun memories.

But, then. . .  things changed.  Brian started to play travel hockey -- and our lives got a whole lot busier.  Especially on the weekends, and especially in December.  We had no time for squabbling over the "perfect" tree.  We had no time for trees . . . at all!

So we purchased an artificial tree.

An articial tree that saved our lives (from a time-in-December standpoint).

But, oh, how I hated that tree!

This year, I convinced Tom (with very little convincing necessary, actually) that it was time for the artificial tree to GO!  The two of us headed to Mott's Tree Farm earlier this month . . .


where we had a great time searching for the "perfect" tree. 


I'm happy to report . . . no squabbling!  And no stress!

Just a couple of empty-nesters having a fun time at the tree farm.


They even shake, wrap, and tie your tree to the roof of your car at Mott's.


It took us over a week to actually get the tree lit and decorated!  But it's just lovely.


After all these years . . . finally!  The "perfect" tree!

How about YOU?  What's your tree like this year?