Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Currently: December Edition

Hey there!  I'm back from Spain and trying to get caught up on life. Catching up has been extra challenging as I leave for a work trip to Chicago today and come back Friday, and I had my work holiday party last night. 'Tis the season to feel really thinly spread, I suppose!  I'm hoping to get some Spain recaps up on the blog next week while the trip is still fresh in my memory (spoiler alert:  it was wonderful!) but in the mean time, here's what is currently happening in my world these day!

Reading:  Edge of Eternity by Ken Follett. This is the final book in Follett's Century trilogy. I'm thankful that I'm reading it on my kindle as it's over 1,000 pages long! I love the books in this series as I learn so much about events of the past. The first book covered WWI, the second book covered WWII, and this final book covers the 60s through the 80s (so the civil rights movement, the era of the Berlin wall, Vietman, etc.). This is a period of history that I never learned about in school. It seemed like all of my history classes only make it to WWII, so it's been nice to delve more into an era of history that I know less about that I would like!

Loving: being back home. It's great to travel, but there's nothing like the comforts of home and the company of those you love. I'm honestly not at all excited to get on a plane today and spend 2 days away from Phil and Oscar! Womp, womp.

Frustrated: with my hip surgery recovery. I ran on Monday and felt pretty good during the run and my pace improved, but I had quite a bit of discomfort on Monday night and Tuesday. I have an appointment with my PT next week so we'll see what she says about my recovery. The bright spot is that other activites I do don't bother my hip. But for me, a workout regemine that doesn't include running is depressing for me, so I really want to figure out what I need to do to get back to running pain-free.  Le sigh.

Feeling: overwhelmed, honestly. Between holiday parties, other holiday-related commitments, and 2 work trips to Chicago in December, I'm feeling overwhelmed. I love the holidays and am trying to focus on the fun and excitement of the season, but I look at my calendar and see very few plan free days between now and Christmas!  I'm so thankful I did most of my holiday shopping before I left for Spain. 

Thinking: about how excited I am to get my hair cut next week.  I love my hair stylist and having my hair washed by someone else is sooo relaxing and comforting. Plus my hair looks so 'blah' right now so I could really use a fresher look!

Anticipating: hosting my annual cookie decorating party for my college friends and their kids on the 18th. This is the 7th year of me hosting it and it's such a fun tradition. We usually decorate gingerbread houses but this year we are going back to decorating Christmas cookies as the kids want to eat the houses and the packaged houses we buy taste AWFUL. I'm going to try making GF sugar cookies this year - hopefully they turn out!

Watching: Suits on Amazon Prime. Phil doesn't care for the show (he's not a fan of shows that have fast- or smooth-talking scripts) so I've been watching it on my own when he is out and about. 

Working: on finishing the scarf I'm making for Phil's mom for Christmas. I should finish it this week!

Sad: that the holiday season is so tough for the friends and family that have lost a loved one, especially a parent or sibling. I know their presence is missed 365 days of the years, but I know their presence is especially missed around the holidays. 

Grateful: that we'll get to celebrate Christmas with both sides of our families. We'll arrive at my parents on the 23rd and stay until Christmas Day. Then we'll head to Phil's mom's on Christmas day and stay there until the 26th. I love it when Christmas falls on a weekend as it makes seeing both families possible!

Listening:  to a new podcast called, Terrible, Thanks for Asking. It's hosted by a local woman who went through a string of awful, life-changing events 2 years ago (she miscarried, lost her dad to cancer, and then lost her husband to brain cancer in the span of about 5 weeks in 2014). This podcast is about acknowledging that sometimes when someone asks how you are doing, your response isn't "fine" or "good," it's "terrible, thanks for asking." Each week, she'll talk to a guest who is dealing with something challenging. I know this sounds super depressing but she manages to use humor and there have been nuggets of wisdom in the episodes I've listened to. The most recent episode about a woman dealing with a mistake she made in her career is excellent as it talks about how unwilling we are to forgive ourselves for mistakes we've made. 

Wishing: for snow!  Fellow midwesterners, don't hate me for saying this!  In my opinion, if it's going to be cold, we might as well have some snow on the ground.  I'm itching to get out on my cross country skis so hopefully we'll be blanketed in snow soon!

So I feel like I sound like a bit of a downer Debbie in this update, but I'm all about keeping it real, and right now I just feel a little bit over-tired, overwhelmed, and I'm probably still a bit jet-lagged, too! I think once I get these 2 work trips to Chicago behind me, I'll feel better about things!  I'm just soooo not excited to fly anywhere right now, even when it's just a 90 minute flight!

What are you anticipating, watching, and wishing for these days?


Charbelle said...

I think as a society we do a disservice to those who grieve by trying to put time limits on it. I also think we expect people to always be upbeat and happy. I remember when you were here in Charlotte and life just kept coming at you and it was sooo disheartening! You had to process and work through all of it. Life isn't always sunshine and rainbows, and sometimes it's much more challenging than at other times. *stepping off soap box now*
I'm so glad that you had a wonderful trip! I'm also looking forward to the long holiday weekend! The 23rd I'm taking Little Bit to get her nails done for Christmas. She told her Dad she wanted nails like mine so we figured out this could be her Christmas present, although her nails won't look "just" like mine ;) Christmas Eve is at my parents and then Christmas day I'm driving to Brian and Jenny's and spending the night. Then Monday I'm driving to Michael's to do Christmas with him and Little Bit. I'm so looking forward to it! I got him a ski pass gift card for his gift so that he can make it skiing this year!

Leigh said...

We love Suits! This season wasn't the greatest, but we still watched it :) Are you taking time off over Christmas?

Linda said...

We're both getting our hair cut next week!
I'm beginning to look stringy. :(

Jeanie said...

Oh Lisa, I don't know how you do it! Actually, I do -- you just power through. But remember, stress isn't all that great for the RA, so I'm going to sound like a mom but my biggest word of wisdom -- Prioritize! What has to be done and when. What doesn't have to be done but you want to. And everything else. Your travel schedule is insane. Just remember the best part of the holidays is enjoying them. The cookie party sounds great, time to decorate... you'll do it. But enjoy it, too.

Done with the soapbox! Yes, the holidays are tough this year. We know several who will have their first holiday without someone they love. Really tough.

I'm anticipating Rick's return from his Vegas trade show and putting up our trees; watching too much telly and not listening to enough music and wishing (don't hate me) for no snow till Christmas Eve! And then just a dusting!

Gracie said...

Welcome home! I have to agree with you on the gingerbread houses. We caved and did kits this year and they were boring and gross. Back to scratch next year.

Carolina John said...

As much as I love to travel, it does get burdensome to have trips scheduled back to back like that. Good luck on the work trip! Glad you had fun in Spain.

Marlys said...

I can imagine how "not excited" you were to fly out today! And I agree, as long as it is so cold we need snow, although we did get about 1" or so last night but nothing like the 19" they got northwest of us! We lucked out!
Advent is always such a stressful time when it should be filled with peace and joy, but one has to sneak those moments in when we can. I remember when you kids were little, we would shut the lights out except for the tree and someone would play the piano while we sang some Christmas songs in the evening!
I look forward to your Spain report!

Stephany said...

Heavens, your life sounds overwhelming! Flying out for a work trip after getting back from an international trip?? Ouch. I hope you can carve out some time for you in the midst of all the craziness! It's so hard, though, because there are so many traditions attached to December that we want to hold onto.

I am currently anticipating a few holiday parties next weekend and wishing for cooler weather. Not watching much TV lately, oops!

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said...

Oh my goodness girl, you do have a lot going on this month! I hope you are able to sneak some time in to relax. Load up on vitamins! With all the go-go-go, you don't want to get run down.

You had asked about our green curry recipe a while back, and I left a comment below you on that post, but I don't think my blog notifies you when I've done that (I am still not sure how all the tech-y stuff works). Anyway, this was my reply:

@ Lisa - for the green curry (or any curry) we usually just wing it, so we don't have a written out recipe, although I we'll keep better track next time and try to get something written up. We use coconut milk, a Thai green curry paste (not the Thai Kitchen one, rather one from an Asian grocery store in town, but I can't tell you the name of the paste, because the it's all in characters that aren't English). We then add a bunch of fresh ginger, fresh squeezed lime, sometimes a sliced red Thai chili, which we remove after a while ... something along those lines ... but usually a little different every time.

Abby said...

I am so sorry that your hip is still not agreeing with your desire to run :(

I hope you can get some good feedback at your follow up appointment this week. Keep me posted. Rooting and praying for you!!!

Your cookie decorating party with your friends sounds like such a neat tradition.

Yay for holidays with both families! We will have a Christmas with NO family this year..... yippee! I'm trying to stay positive - we have a lot to be thankful for - so am going to focus on that. But spending the holidays alone at home while Ryan works is going to be a little tough for my soul, I must say.

Kyria @ Travel Spot said...

December is always a bit of a whirlwind, and although it's filled with friends and family and fun, it's exhausting. I am already tired of the constant plan filled calendar and can't wait for January and some quiet time. I feel your pain. I fly to NYC on Wednesday for work and then will stay through the weekend so it will be fun but then I come back to a birthday dinner, two evenings with run friends and then it's basically Christmas!

Amber said...

I'm anticipating our trip to Hawaii - can't wait to get out of the snow and cold! I'm wishing for warmer weather. I don't mind snow in winter but I would like a bit more tolerable temps for being outdoors so I can get back to my daily dog walks and I am watching Drop Dead Diva. I just finished the final season on netflix. Once I'm done I will get back to catching up on Suits. I love that show!