Best Parts Of My Day: Part One

Talking with a friend and laughing over the goofiest shit for hours. She knows who she is. 🙂

Receiving the autographed Scott Stapp CD “Proof Of Life” that I won when someone else backed out of Walmart’s Soundcheck Giveaway. The CD is signed in gold and an enormous poster promoting the CD and the Soundcheck interview came separately. The poster is beautiful. All in all, a pretty cool win, and my second score during the holidays via a Facebook giveaway. I encourage people to enter these things, you never know what you might win. My first win shocked me and totally made my month. This win was a really lovely surprise. 🙂

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Receiving toys for Baby V, handmade by Megan @  https://www.etsy.com/shop/PeonyCrochet 

I took photos of all of the toys and will be showcasing them with Verity as soon as I can catch her. After I took the photos, with her permission, of course, she resumed sniffing and inspecting the toys. First she simply tried stealing the package right out of my hands. Anything with bells, man, she’ll attack you for playtime. Then she systematically snatched one right off my bed, and ran off with it in her mouth. She’s a toy beast, and she’s obsessed with these. If you have pets, check out Megan’s store on Etsy and see if she can make you something that your pet will love. V is picky, but she LOVES these. I tried taking it from her to throw it (I had to lock the others away, she tried getting into the envelope. Megan, I swear she smells Chester!) and she nearly tore my hand off. Possessive little shit. THANK YOU SO MUCH MEGAN! You know how much this means to me. 🙂

This one is my favorite: SO creative SAM_0129

Crappy part of my day? Not (legally) being able to shoot the plumber that showed up and tried to gauge me for a job that is 3/4’s cheaper than what he quoted me. The asshole then has the balls to charge me a service fee for coming out, when all he did was look in my back yard. He calls that a diagnosis of the problem?! I beg to fucking differ! I got my service fee back right away, called someone else, and hopefully this fucking mess will be handled tomorrow by one company or another. Whoever gets here first and honors the price I was originally quoted is the one that gets my business, otherwise murders WILL be committed. I am so sick of this shit. How hard is it to be where you say you will be in a timely fashion? I understand some jobs are much bigger than mine, therefore mine is lower priority since it’s not as much money, but don’t blow me off for DAYS and expect me to be all sweetness and light. Not going to happen. 

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Here’s hoping, and praying, that tomorrow leads to better days, better situations, and more reasons to smile.

When Your Neighbors Give You A Headache, Literally

When Your Neighbors Give You A Headache, Literally

http://migraine.com/blog/neighbors-give-headache-literally/

I experienced a lot of this when I lived in an apartment. I had neighbors above me who were constantly noisy as all hell, the only time they were quiet was when they weren’t home. The TV was always blaring, or video games, or music, and it was way too much for me. I can’t tell you how many times I had to ring their doorbell and tell them to take it down 20 notches. They’d do it in the moment, but a few days later they’d be back at it. It’s one of the reasons I don’t think I could ever share walls with people again. I have noisy neighbors here too, but I have no qualms whatsoever about telling them to knock it off, especially when I’m sick.

Holiday Gift-Giving & Outrageous Decorating

Unlike 98% of the people I know, I don’t celebrate Christmas. To this day people still act shocked when I say I don’t celebrate Christmas and never have. During my first year working on my ParaPsi degree, I stumbled upon Wicca. It turns out I’d been utilizing a lot of the minor nuances for most of my life, and have since adopted additional bits and bobs as a bit of a back-drop for me spiritually. Thank you Mom and your Kabbalistic teachings.

I grew up the daughter of someone who became über observant during the High Holidays, and downright neurotic during Passover. If it had been presented to me differently I wouldn’t have such an aversion to it now. I haven’t really observed the holidays over the last few years. It begins with losing both of my parents, moving into my house, and then realizing I can’t find a simple menorah, or the candlesticks that my Great-Grandmother brought with her when she emigrated from Lithuania. Technically they’re all in the house, but since more than half of it is still packed, pinpointing one or two items is exhausting. So for Chanukah, it comes down to simple gift-giving.

It’s nauseating to me how commercial the holidays have become. It’s always been over the top, but this year was definitely the worst in history, with stores opening up hours before Black Friday even became Friday. Instead of people enjoying  time with family, they were waiting on line to get into stores, acting as if they’ve never seen such wonders in a store before. It’s all the exact same stuff that was there on Monday, and unless it’s a brand new item you’ve never seen before as many new things came out at exactly 12:01 a.m. that Friday, it’s the same crap they always have, but now they’ve tweaked the prices to make everything seem extra special. It’s not.

I can’t begin to say how many people have told me that they simply dread their credit card bills right now, because in a country with so much excess, people actually feel that they have to buy every single person they know, are friends with, like, etc., a gift of some sort. It’s no longer about family, laughter, sharing, it’s all about the gifts. I realize it’s been like this for quite some time, but it’s actually never been that way for me.

Growing up, Chanukah was never about who gave and/or received the most expensive gift. It was a time where my close immediate family got together for a nice meal, my Grandmother would make enough latkes for three professional hockey teams and their families, and discussions would range from current events to complete and utter wackiness. The sounds and smells of home. For me, that’s been gone for a long time and it’s a piece of me that has died because only two of those family members remain. It is a piece of me that will be reborn when I have children of my own and become the matriarch I was born to be. Until then, it’s about thoughtfulness. A gift does not have to be outrageous, but it does have to be thoughtful. I try to give things that people would not buy for themselves, things they love, things they’ve talked about wanting, but generally things they wouldn’t spend the money on because they’ve got so much else going on that the funds simply aren’t there. I love things I can make for others, but I like to start the DIY stuff in August. It’s not some insane competition when you’ve given yourself additional time to prepare. I have so few people on my list any way, but I still like to give myself that extra time just in case I’ve procrastinated at some point.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t talk about the insanity of holiday decorations. I’m from New York City where it’s a nice blend of menorahs and Christmas lights. I love driving through the city during this time of year because you simply do not see menorahs in the suburbs. I live on a street where approximately 30 homes are decked out for Christmas. It’s pretty quiet here, for all intents and purposes. On neighboring streets the displays are bigger, louder, and a few spots in particular are horrendous eye sores the second it gets dark, which is literally by 5:00 PM. I drove past one a week or so ago and thought I’d go blind from all the action. One spot in particular is decked out to the point where you almost expect Santa to land there via helicopter. There may have even been a heli-pad on the roof, I’m not 100% sure because I had to look away fast, lest I lose the vision in my right eye! I will try to get a photo to share with all of you. It’s that obnoxious.

Living outside major metropolitan areas, you don’t get the balance of the city. Here, you might find one or two items amidst all the Christmas decorations in a store. Specialty items for decorating aren’t hard to find on the Internet. I have absolutely no idea what I’d do with an 8 foot menorah on my front lawn, or a 12 foot dreidel, but I’d love to see my neighbor’s faces if I ever do decide to purchase one and put it out before Thanksgiving even starts!

Suburban life, you’ve got to love it!