and just like that, it’s back to real life

Lately we’ve been sort of social, demented and sad but social, right? (movie quote can’t help it)

With “hermit mode” the normal MO around here hasn’t really been all about getting out much but since The Blathering we’ve been this crazy old-timey version of ourselves. The ones that actually have social type plans outside of the house with people other than each other.

The hubs has had work happy hours. I’ve had volunteer work (more on that later). We had friends over for game night, met them out at BW3 and babysat the adorable daughter of one so they could all go to that Breaking Dawn POS (No offense to y’all that like it but my opinion will not be swayed 😉 )

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Yes, I will do this dorky crap in public
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I’ll do near anything to make a kid smile
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Including finding The Fresh Beat Band on Netflix and plying her with Nilla Wafers

We’ve both done dinner with a former elementary school pal of my husband and his wife that he reconnected with at the Halloween themed wedding and who happens to live like a a mile away (which I totally stressed about the potential awk of but turned out to be really enjoyable). We did our traditional trip to Santa’s Wonderland the day before Thanksgiving.

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It’s of course very old-timey and Texas themed even with the lights everywhere and they aren’t all about the vegetarians (baked potato was cooked in brisket grease served with bacon even though I said no meat and the BBQ sauce had MEAT IN IT, OMG) so this is what I had for dinner
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A giant S’more. They have a fire pit and roasting forks and you get to make them yourself. I also had a huge bag of Kettle Korn and some coffee. Healthy up in this piece.

On the way out the door, we ran into my brother’s ex with our nephew so the boys were able to play for a little bit before we headed home.
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Thanksgiving was SO MUCH FUN that I was drinking Jack Daniels Honey over ice at mom’s later. We had to hit both families in the same day so our day was 12 hours long, required 2 hours of driving and I did cooking on two days so that I could bring things to both houses but at least be able to eat dinner at mom’s.

Nieces and nephews were cute as always.
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Although I didn’t get any pics of Luke and Connor from T-day because they were off playing at the park when we got to mom’s and I was too busy helping with dinner when they got home.

Saturday I had a wonderful 4 hour brunch with Andrea who had come into town to see her folks. It’s so nice to get to hang with a blogger, because that never happens here, but even nicer to hang out with one and seem to get along so well. I felt bad talking her ear off, though, like I should come with a “BIG TALKER” warning label.

We had big date night-ish type plans the rest of the weekend and were thwarted on Sat night because I got a monster headache and Sun because the hubs thought he was coming down with the dreaded man cold. This weekend is Santa Pub Crawl and our first ever attendance to that particular drunken festival so that should be…something.

And now I think we are reasonably caught up AND I used a whole lot of words and pictures to make up for my absence. Score!

in defense of the maxi dress

I spend a lot of time on twitter. A LOT of time on twitter. It’s like my life-line to the outside world. People on twitter are very opinionated about a wide range of topics, did you know? It’s not shocking, people in general are opinionated and it’s an easy forum to dump your thoughts on the masses at large, I do it too. (Hello all my thoughts on the HORRIBLE HOUSEWIVES THIS SEASON) Lately I’ve been seeing a lot of hate for the maxi dress rolling around and well, I just can’t get on board. I don’t care if you think they are essentially empire-waist mumus. I don’t care if you think they make everyone look pregnant. I DON’T CARE because this shit

IS COMFORTABLE. I was able to sit outside for HOURS without melting into a little puddle of Jess. I felt marginally stylish even.

I did shave my legs still (leg hair is HOT) so that isn’t my reason for wearing them it’s more that I can’t go outside without instantly getting a sunburn and it’s already NINETY FUCKING DEGREES here, so my jeans need to be retired ASAP but since the prednisone nightmare, I am so not even about to bust out shorts and sunscreen. Also, I came home and flopped directly into my bed and it was HEAVEN.

I bought two of the exact same maxi (one pink and one teal) and wore them in the exact same way over the weekend.

Cardi, dress, sandals, huge dangly earrings, pony-tail, sunglasses. I felt cute, put together and COMFORTABLE.

Plus I even tried the maxi with a blouse and belt over it and it looked good, I’ll have to photo that later. I like things that are versatile. I think this is going to be the summer of the dress (also the summer of me DYING OF HEAT OMG) so long or short, dresses are going to be on my person.

Bonus pic, me and my nephew from his b-day:

something deadly this way comes

My sister is a teacher…in Texas…where our Governor apparently feels that education is less important than leaving our HUGE rainy day fund alone. I don’t tend to get political on my blog and I’m not really going to now but suffice it to say that being a mother, to a kid that isn’t getting the same education that I got, and being a sister to a teacher that teaches BY CHOICE in one of the poorest districts we have around…I get irritated. Just a wee bit.

I also try to help her however I can. I’ve graded projects, papers, I’ve helped her get materials. I volunteer on a consistent basis to get her kids into using digital photography in their science class. I have gone up after school and worked with a group of kids on whatever little POS point-and-shoot cameras they had (and what few me and my sister scrounged- 15 kids sharing 5 cameras? NOT IDEAL) and took pictures for a digital photography category in science fair. Her kids took 2nd and 3rd!! I couldn’t be more proud. (I think someone also got an honorable mention and she got a banner for her school) A few weekends ago a small group showed up early on a Saturday morning for a nature walk in a park to work on a digital scavenger hunt and photo contest (the park is holding the contest, the hunt is for class) and I went to help the kids with their pictures and spot the items they needed.

Now, I know my Arizona wildlife. I know my Arizona Desert Biology (even took it as a class in high school natch) what I don’t know is Texas wildlife. The great outdoors of Texas hates me and the feeling is MOST DEFINITELY MUTUAL so when I saw a snake along the path sunning itself, I naturally pointed it out and we started to take pics. I bade the boys back to a reasonable distance, prevented them from poking at it with sticks (WHAT THE HELL CHILDREN?) and kept my ADHD nephew (7 yrs old by the way) in line of specific spots by planting foot prints in the brush that he couldn’t pass. The snake got agitated as the boys got rowdy so I tossed them out several times and even though it struck out, it was coiled on viney branch thing so it didn’t actually get close but hey, what do you know? That snake was deadly poisonous.


This is a Copperhead, in case you ever happen to be wandering around in Texas. Babies are THE MOST venomous but the big guys are no laughing matter. Be careful! (excuse the screen-grab of my pic, I was too lazy to do a proper export)

This is where the “The More You Know” flashes across the screen

:)

business in the front, party in the back

BUSINESS: Scarf Swap Reminder- SATURDAY 1-15 is the cut-off for getting your scarf into the mail to your recipient! Everyone should be getting their addresses and preferences exchanged if they haven’t done so already.

PARTY:Over the weekend we got ourselves out of the house for a change. Saturday we met up with friends for dinner at a Greek restaurant in midtown. I had THE BEST fried zucchini I have ever had in my life. They were sliced paper thin, like chips, battered and served with tzatziki. OMG. So freaking good. I also had my weight in salty feta, kalamata olives and this spanikopita that was beyond flaky. *sigh* Then I finished the whole thing off with hot, sticky loukoumades. I am drooling, right now, fyi.

Afterward, we actually pretended we are youngsters (like when we met) and hauled ass across town for a show. An EPIC show. A show of Mulleted Awesomeness, the likes of which you have probably not seen. Let me show you:

The Mullet Boyz
The band

The girls
Don’t we look innocent?

What?
I mean, there is nothing unusual about a group of people that pose for pics with a mullet, right?

Husband mulleted
Right?

SHOTS
Um….except there was some drinking

The chest of awesome
But dignity was maintained

Mullets for hippies

No, I don't know what is wrong with my face either.
Oh dear

Mulleting grandpa creeper
We might’ve involved creepers that repeatedly hit on Rachel

Posing with grandpa creeper
He didn’t seem to mind

In the end, our final verdict is clear
YES. That just happened

one holiday down, two more to go

Thanksgiving is over and almost all the leftovers are out of my house. It was a good dinner with the fam and relatively drama free. Wednesday night we went to Santa’s Wonderland in College Station and damned if it wasn’t a fabulous idea to go early. There wasn’t a line to get in, we were able to get front row parking for Santa’s Town and my sister didn’t have a line for her son’s pic with Santa. Last year we tried to go with friends and had to give up the line was so insanely long.

Speaking of lines…Saturday was the last day for Fest (for us) and it was beyond crowded. We stayed for fireworks and they started an hour late, it was FREEZING. Sprog wanted to give up and go home already but I wrapped him into my cloak with me and that helped soothe the shivering beast. (We also got hot chocolate but he chugged his glass) So many people stayed for fireworks and it ran so late that apparently the traffic control became non-existent. We sat in our row trying to leave the parking lot for 1 hour and 20 minutes before the sheriff’s dept showed up and got us the heck out of there. Seriously, we were the last row to be cleared and our number was 23. HOW DOES 24-36 GET CLEARED BEFORE 23? LEARN HOW TO COUNT!

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Pre-cloakage. We were watching the insult stages (one is a guy that gets tomatoes thrown at his head while he shouts insults and the other is the dunk-a-wench booth) and Connor LOVED the insult dude, of course he didn’t understand most of what he was saying, I think he just wanted to see him get pelted with fruit.

Sprog wanted to go to Sound and Fury, who does dirty versions of Shakespeare, so we left my sis and Connor to the joust for a bit.

Sunday we did a whole lot of nothing around here. I made a new necklace for the shop

before succumbing to a migraine and staying in bed the rest of the day.

Oh Friday I got the tree up and most of the other inside decorating done. Ridiculously early this year but it makes the hubs happy, so I’ll suffer it. I also helped Sprog decorate his tree (he has one in his bedroom) and instead of the sentimental ornaments he wanted it exactly like mine but in a different color. Interesting!

Expect a Style Lush post on the decor and wrapping, for this year, next week. Tomorrow’s post is all about Christmas stockings so be sure to check that out.

this year at fest

My sister came up with free tickets to Ren Fest yesterday morning and as we are trying to do as much with Connor, in wake of the divorce and his father abandoning him for Europe, as possible we hopped on the chance to go with them and spend the day.

Most of the pictures are on Candy’s phone but I have a few.

This year at Fest

Fishing

Got one

Reward

Connor got his first pair of bracers from Ravenswood leather and they look adorable on him. Candy has the pics of those, however.

Willy has been super awesome stepping in and giving Connor the male attention that he is so desperate for with his father being absent. On Friday when I babysat him, Willy played Wii Sports Resort with him until it was time to take him to the indoor jumping place for parent’s night out and then yesterday Willy rode the big swings with him, so Connor wanted Uncle Willy in the back of the car with him for the VERY LONG car ride home. We stayed for the awesome fireworks display (if you’ve never been, they put on an AMAZING display, even with the burn ban) which means that we sat for 40 min without moving in the parking lot before the geniuses let us go out the other direction and I scrambled to figure out the back roads on Willy’s Iphone to get us home. Candy and I had a great time in the front of the car with the horror movie style back roads we were on, we both kept waiting for Leather Face to jump out at any moment and try to kill us or for the road to just end over the next hill.

Meanwhile, Willy and Connor were watching The Polar Express in the back seat. When we got back to the house, Connor didn’t want us to leave, poor baby. I am thankful that he has his uncles to help him through this time and I am thankful that my husband is one of them.

over the weekend, I was on a boat

We are in the final stretch for the wedding of our friends D & Rob, which is taking place this Sunday (yes, Halloween) so this past weekend were the bachelor and bachelorette parties. Friday night was the bachelorette party, although I’m not really sure if it qualifies as a party if only three people make it and two of the three are me and the bachelorette. *sigh* Anyway, we did a murder mystery dinner on a boat in Kemah. It takes two hours, includes dinner and takes you on a tour of the bay. Pretty cool and a totally different thing to do. I got selected to be a person to act but I informed our waiter that D was the bachelorette while she was in the bathroom so they changed that for me, apparently Wes (our waiter) really took care of things because she ended up being the killer.

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Us with the Captain at the end of the evening

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D as Crystal saying her lines after she has revealed herself to be the killer

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D, Crystal, with her husband Neil Diamond

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D and Wes our manservant

Saturday night was the bachelor party and the boys had a mighty good time which required me to fetch them at after 3 am and not get home until near 4 am. I didn’t go to bed until 6 that morning because I drank coffee to be awake enough to drive. Needless to say Sunday was ROUGH but we finally figured out our costumes and have most of the pieces. There are just a couple more things I need to grab today, hopefully, and then work on tweaking what I already have. It is TOP SECRET, so no one will know what we are until the day of the wedding and y’all will get to see pics Monday after Halloween!

Shop news: First ring has been listed and three necklaces were posted yesterday, two of which have already sold!

Style Lush: Today’s post is pretty geeky, it goes up this afternoon, be sure to check it out.

in case you’ve seen the news

Continental and United are merging; it has been leaking here, in the news, over the past several days because our Mayor is freaking out about losing one of the biggest companies/contributors to our local economy.

They are now heading into the stages of getting federal approval and shareholder approval so it’s obviously not happening tomorrow but unlike the Delta merger, there isn’t that much overlap in routes, so there is a good chance it’s going to happen as planned.

Headquarters are going to be in Chicago (United is headquartered there) but our CEO is going to be the CEO.

That’s really all the info I’ve got right now, we don’t know how (if at all) Willy is going to be affected. We’re hoping for the best (ie that he’s not asked to move, Sprog already said he wouldn’t come with us and not affected by any possible downsizing) so any spare positive thoughts you have, would be greatly appreciated.

i’m just judging you

Kristabella was in town this weekend and we were able to meet up for dinner Friday night. We took her and her friend Kristina to Chuy’s for some Tex-mex and happily they were not disappointed.

We had a fabulously gay host who complimented me on the sequined flower on my gap t-shirt and then a SUPER FABULOUS gay waiter named David who we all wanted to take home with us and keep as our very own.

He razzed us a bit throughout dinner and was right out with his status with his statement about straight men hating it when he asks if they’d like a Corona Light. *LOVE*

But the best “David moment” was when he came to collect the checks and Wills was gone so I couldn’t pay. I told him that my money had left the table and he responded “I’m just judging you” OMG!

Be prepared y’all, cuz that one is staying as a part of my regular vernacular.

In other news, I am dying of sinus and am elsewhere on the net today with a post about Quinoa on Style Lush, check it out.

respect your elders, just don’t smile at them

Saturday we went to Costco, as a family, because clearly we have lost our ever-lovin minds. It was ridiculously crowded and I was bordering on the edge of a panic attack, feeling like a caged animal, within the first 20 minutes of being in the store. I totally hate when I can’t get to a clear spot and feel like no matter where I go, I am in someone else’s way. I hate feeling rushed when I am trying to make my purchases because someone else is breathing down my neck the whole time. Also, I hate that no one in the world seems to have any freaking manners and is also apparently BLIND. ANYWAY, we finally got out of the main madhouse (the front-ish area) and I started to calm down a bit and get into my shopping rhythm, when we entered the meat section. And there we happened upon a dirty old man.

Dirty old men LOVE ME. Disgusting but true fact that has been true my whole life since puberty. Which, really? It’s not like I have Pamela Anderson’s rack or matching hair color from a bottle or anything. Bleah. At any rate, I didn’t know he was a dirty old man when I smiled at him. I thought he was just a harmless old man who happened to be in my way and so I smiled. Wrong move. I could tell by the way he stared that I shouldn’t have done that, but it wasn’t until much later, at home, when Wills told me what he did as I passed him, that I truly realized the error of my ways. Mind you, Sprog was walking next to me when this took place. According to Wills as I passed the man, he checked out my ass AND THEN LICKED HIS LIPS. *GAG* I totally wanted a shower when he told me that.

It reminds me of the time when I was again shopping with Sprog and a man ON A FREAKING OXYGEN TANK asked me for my phone number.