31 December, 2007
Take the first sentence of the first post of every month this year on your blog and put them all together. So here you have it, 2007 in Non Sequitor:
So... umm... I was trying to come up with this great post topic, because it's the first one of the year and might be a sign of things to come, but then I realized that I was putting pressure on myself for no reason. I flipped over the calendar this morning and was greeted by four medical appointments and a jury duty. Can you believe it?
I promised my mom I'd put something up here before bed. Well, I had my excitement for the month last night. A big shout-out to Matthew and Kristen who
felt compelled to go down to Key West this week and come back engaged!
Does anybody know what today is? Well, July seems to have come and gone before I had a chance to wallow in the 100% humidity! It's September!
When I'm sad, or when I'm sick, he knows just what to say (nothing) and just what to do (just be with me). Yesterday I went to work at 10 am - which means that after finally falling asleep at 6:30 I got a whopping 1.5 hours of sleep... Here's my little helper monkey... erm kitty... licking stamps.
It seems to me that I spent a lot of time this year being surprised what month it was. Also, the Milo Worship might be a tad out of hand. Oh well - that's me!
30 December, 2007
...and we don't have any days off during the run of the show. So no circus for me.
28 December, 2007
Your Final Photo Shoot: Wave goodbye! Because all good things must come to an end, but I think we can leave on a high note.
Of course, I decided Milo should say goodbye, since he just loves to be exploited! So I set out to make the little monster "wave." Using a fake palm frond as a lure, I taunted him with it until he'd swat at it.
Obviously, I need to work on my framing and my timing... but it sure was a fun little project.
Well John, it's been a pleasure playing along with the Photo Shoots and the Weekend Assignments. And I'm sure Milo has enjoyed the ones he has participated in as well!
27 December, 2007
...and then I pretty much did nothing for the rest of the day. I laid in bed with the heating pad alternately over my uterus and under my back. I played on the computer. And I did 3 loads of laundry and unloaded the dishwasher. OK, that's something.
At any rate, I woke up this morning feeling so peaceful and well-rested that it's almost like I had a whole week off. Scott is still sick, and I can feel myself coming down with it. But for this one particular moment in time, I feel good.
25 December, 2007
- A December 25 Post that has Nothing to Do with Christmas
- Why Scott and Jamie Should Be Banned from IKEA
- Matching Your Shower Curtain to Your Listerine is COOL
24 December, 2007
(Scott is coming down with his first big cold of the season, and is at work, and is therefore miserable. But since he's not home yet, I'm taking this opportunity to bask in my own holiday joy)
I got up a minute before my alarm clock and was out the door by 10 am. My goal was to be at work by 10, but I didn't set the alarm earlier than 9, so I was pretty sure that wasn't going to happen. I stopped at Chick Fil A for breakfast (and yes, there is a third cup holder in the car for my giant un-sweet tea), and rolled in to work by 11.
Work wasn't quite as productive as I'd hoped. Actually, I got a lot done - just not the things I wanted to get done. Who calls a restaurant on Christmas Eve to buy a gift certificate? I have three names for you! ...but I won't share them.
I got a lot of very cool gifts from the folks I work with this year - home-made cookies and chocolates, LOTS of candy, a gift basket of random yummies, a few gift cards (Target, AMC, or Best Buy, anyone?), and I got the most random and fascinating gifts from one of our servers.
His brother is a famous writer/director who has a new movie coming out soon. And I got a promo t-shirt from the new movie and an autographed comic book of said movie. Yes - autographed! This particular writer/director has die-hard fans. I know a lot of them. And I feel like I am unworthy to possess these items. I haven't even seen the films that made him a cult legend (though I have seen and loved 2 of his more recent movies). Needless to say, as soon as I got to my car I called Scott, who was duly impressed, and Cat, who agreed that I was completely unworthy.
Speaking of Cat, we got together tonight to have some wine, torture some hapless souls in the hospitality industry who had to work so we wouldn't have to cook, and exchange gifts. But not in that order. She got me an electronic game, but we couldn't play because it needed AAA batteries. I didn't know anything took AAA's anymore! So we went to Logan's Roadhouse and had fried mushrooms with horseradish dipping sauce (wow - I never got a horseradish headache before! yum!) and big fat steaks. OK, little steaks. But they sure were tasty! And then we came back here and reminisced fondly about the year we lived together. (yeah - we gloss over the bad parts... life's too short to dwell on the negative)
So yeah, I'm all aglow with yule. Or chardonnay. Either way, I'm sure I'll be back (with pictures!) tomorrow after Scott leaves for work. I hope that anyone who reads this between now and then is having a fabulous holiday filled with good friends and cheer... or at least a good glass of chardonnay!
Happy Christmas Eve!
This is my desk. With four open bottles of wine. Sadly, none are mine - they rarely let me drink on the job! We had some finicky diners last night who only wanted sweet German and Italian wines, so the server brought me the bottles so that I could put the wines on their menus. These same half-full bottles were still sitting on my desk this morning. Hopefully they'll be gone by the time I get back on Thursday!
And this picture was taken on the way to work today. This is the inside of my car - with two potted plants in the cup holders. Though it's a nice look, it's not a permanent arrangement. I bought the Chefs, Managers, and the other reservation girls random cacti for Christmas. The Chefs got the aloe, the girls got the little mini cacti, and the Managers got little gardens (3 different plants in a short wide-mouth terra cotta pot). Since the other girls all gave out chocolate in some form, I figured I'd be different. Anyway, I have been taking the plants in a few at a time (still have 2 at home for the girls who are off until January) and these two got a ride in the cup holders.
(and yes, that IS a PEZ dispenser. it's Remy from "Ratatouille" for our head chef. because I'm cool like that!)
23 December, 2007
I got the following in a Florida DOT newsletter today:
Don't drive tired.
Safe driving requires sharp focus, good judgment and quick reactions. But, those skills are in short supply when you drive while sleepy.
Most drivers admit to being tired at the wheel at least once in the past year. And, at least 100,000 crashes annually are caused by driver fatigue.
When you drive while tired, it can lead to a number of problems.
I'm particularly amused by the "at least once in the past year" part. I admit to being tired at the wheel at least once in the past day! Don't get me wrong - I don't think I've ever actually nodded off at the wheel. But I've had those drive-with-the-windows-down-and-the-stereo-loud nights. Who hasn't?
And in case you were wondering, that's Bright House's "Yule Log on Demand" on the TV. The music was terrible, but I needed some non-commercial background noise while putting up the last of the ornaments.
22 December, 2007
(via Adventures in Juggling)
Favorite traditional Christmas song: “O Holy Night”
Favorite contemporary Christmas song: "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus"
Least favorite Christmas song: "Last Christmas..."
Christmas song that makes you cry: “I'll Be Home for Christmas”
Real or artificial tree: fake...and pre-lit this year!
Favorite Christmas edible treat: cookies! lots and lots of home-baked cookies!
White lights or multi-colored: white this year
How many Christmas parties will you go to this year: zero?
Favorite act of kindness to perform during this season: hmm... kindness? I got nothing!
Favorite sounds of Christmas: the occasional bell choir performing in the lobby of The Hotel
Favorite things to wear: well, given that it's Florida, I'll go with flip-flops and jeans
Favorite Christmas movie/TV special: The Jim Carrey Grinch movie
Favorite Christmas episode of a TV Series: I got nothing!
Eggnog or hot chocolate: bring on the 'nog
Favorite Christmas book: I once had a coloring book about Noel the Christmas Ornament...
Christmas books on my “to read” list: none really
Peppermint or cinnamon: Peppermint
What’s on the top of your tree: An angel in a red dress. She's out of proportion with this tree though, so we'll probably have a new one next year.
Traditional Christmas meal growing up: It was always breakfast - pancakes or waffles, and of course, more chocolate chip cookies. Dinner was turkey or ham or at someone else's house.
Online shopping or traditional “go to the store” shopping: I sure prefer online, but I think this year was about half and half
Something you received as a Christmas gift as a child that you still have: Christmas ornaments and lots of Cabbage Patch dolls
How many Christmas cards you have mailed so far: around 25. the only other ones I have left are for co-workers
Favorite source for Christmas ideas: probably the internet
Coordinated/themed or hodge-podge tree decorations: hodge-podge
What’s on the top of YOUR Christmas wishlist: I didn't make a list this year.
Roles you’ve played in Christmas plays/programs: I was the narrator in the 1st grade Christmas Pageant, and Elf #5 in "A Cause for Mrs. Claus" in 5th grade. Other than that, it was all choral concerts
Wrapping paper or gift bags: paper!
When do you put up the tree: this year? last Wednesday.
When do you take the tree down: some time between January and May (it was just that one year when I didn't take the tree down. usually it's by the end of January)
Do you have a nativity scene: no
Hardest person to buy for: this year, it's the generic-yet-thoughtful gifts for co-workers and bosses that have me stumped!
Easiest person to buy for: Scott... though I'm sure he could live without the random stocking stuffers I come up with!
Worst Christmas gift you ever received: Probably clothes that didn't fit
When do you start shopping for Christmas: November
Have you ever recycled a Christmas present: No, but I did recycle a few really random wedding gifts into Christmas presents.
Travel at Christmas or stay home: Home is where the heart is
Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer: yes
Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning: Christmas morning. Got that Scott? ;-)
Most annoying thing about this time of year: How darn busy I am at work. Why does everyone want to eat at a restaurant on Christmas Eve/Christmas day? Doesn't anyone stay home and cook anymore?
What I love most about Christmas: the music
21 December, 2007
What are your hopes or plans for 2008? Any big projects for the year? Anything you hope to accomplish or change? Or will you just relax? Because, you know, that's okay, too.
I'm not much of a forward-thinker. So I could make a big long list of things I think might happen in 2008, but I'd probably be wrong. Here's some things I'm contemplating:
- Scott and I are planning a trip to the Northeast around June. We're going to catch up with some of my high school friends, (hopefully) some family, and spend a few nights in NYC doing touristy stuff and seeing (again, hopefully) 2 Broadway shows. Oh - and get a cheese steak in Philly, Chinese food and pizza in NYC, and a hoagie from somewhere.
- New job? I'm flip-flopping on this one, depending on whether I'm ticked at my bosses on a given day. The fact is I truly believe I've gotten about as much fulfillment from this job as I am going to. To continue to grow, I'm going to need to move somewhere else. Maybe even somewhere with my own desk and my own phone number.
- New car! This one is pretty definite. I'm also fairly sure I've decided on another Hyundai. As much as I enjoy Scott's car, it feels like I'm piloting a school bus when I drive it. I think I'm just a compact car kind of gal! I'm going to sell off 2 weeks of unused vacation, sell my stock, and have a decent down payment.
Extra Credit: How was your 2007? I've had better years. I had a few rough months in 2007 that rival Spring semester 2000 when I totally crashed & burned. But I made it through, and genuinely believe the worst is behind me. Cheers to 2008!
I don't think this speaks to the quality of the cookies, as to the fact that I got a whole bunch of people to try one (and the least positive comment on the CP cookies was "they're interesting.") and then one of my managers ate about 6 over the course of the evening. He proclaimed them "best cookies ever," but I think that may have been exaggeration!
I also didn't refer to the corn-poop quality at all. I was calling them experimental cookies, to which a manager from a different restaurant proclaimed them EPCOT cookies: experimental prototype cookies of tomorrow.
I'll bake some more tonight to bring in on Saturday. It's going to be a busy weekend, and we'll all need the sugar!
19 December, 2007
This is our new mattress. In case you were wondering, the old mattress came up to the top of the wrought iron...at the corners! This one is at least 6" taller. And boy oh boy - I can't wait to get a good night's sleep on this thing!
Second: In case you were wondering what a plate full of love looks like, this is it.
I decided to take my experimental corn poop cookies to work, so I made some more PB&J's for Scott to take to work. Going clockwise around the plate, there are the last of the CPC's at the top, then PB&J with raspberry jam, them PB&J with grape jelly, and then you can see one of the PB&J's from the first batch.
It turns out this particular cookie recipe puffs up a little too much for decent thumbprints (first batch), so for the second batch, I rolled the dough into balls and made "belly buttons" with the end of a wooden spoon and filling them with jelly. I'm still not happy with the cookie-to-filling ratio, but I think that just means I need to make smaller cookies. Some day I will get this recipe good enough to give as gifts... along with a loaf of banana bread.
Yes, that is the sum total of my cooking prowess. Thank you for asking!
There's a "gift" there for every person who works at The Restaurant. The packages are squares cut out from empty cardboard boxes, wrapped in scraps of paper too small to wrap real presents in. The tags are printed on the back sides of old wine lists. And the tree is cardboard wrapped in an old green t-shirt. The ornaments are The Restaurant logo, straight off the back of old menu covers.
It's not going to win any awards, but it is certainly colorful and festive. And I figure that's what counts.
(oh - and the black box? that's our name plates on the door. for the purposes of this entry, I blacked out everyone except me)
15 December, 2007
Last December, we were short-staffed. I distinctly remember coming home in tears at least once a week and proclaiming that December was, without a doubt, the worst month of the year. Well this year we are staffed adequately. And by "staffed adequately," I mean I'm not having to work overtime just so that there is a body in the office. I still wish that Gayle was here. But alas, it's been 8 months, I don't think she's coming back!
Right now I'm operating in a whirlwind of sorts. I stayed an hour late last night and managed to clear off the saved voicemails. I also did everything on my to-do list that didn't involve making a phone call. And my to-do list for today still has almost a dozen things on it. I'm doing my best to not get overwhelmed. And my bosses are (or were yesterday at least) keeping me in good spirits.
I'll probably still be picking up some extra hours over the next 3 weeks. And really, I'm ok with that. After all, it is our busiest time of the year.
14 December, 2007
Yesterday Mike and Reyna asked if we would watch the girls for an hour in the morning so that they could get some shopping done. (I'm not quite sure what kind of shopping one can't do with their kids in tow 2 weeks before Christmas... maybe they were buying ingredients for cookies?) So of course I jumped at the chance to sit for my favorite 4-year-old and her little sister. I love those kids!
As soon as they got here, Autumn made a bee-line for Milo. "A CAT!" Well they have 2 cats, so I know she knows the basics of petting, etc. He allowed her to pet him for about 30 seconds and then decided that was enough and he tried to wriggle (is that a word?) away from her and was in some serious "angry cat" posture. So I discussed the cat with the parents. "Is she going to freak out if he bites or scratches her?" Yes. So they told her to leave the kitty alone, blah blah blah.
After they left, we were sitting on the floor watching Diego (why did Dora the Explorer need a male spin-off??) and Milo came over to say hi. She and I pet him, and when he had enough, he walked away.
Hooray for my wonderful cat!
He reappeared on the top of the sofa a few minutes later and when Autumn climbed up to pet him, she was rewarded with a kitty slap - and scratches on at least one arm. She was brave about it, but was making the "I really want to cry" face. We put a band-aid on the big scratch and settled back in for more TV.
Hey you - wonderful cat - you've been banished to the balcony!
And about a half hour later, after Milo's wailing forced me to let him in off the balcony, he was sleeping in the desk chair, Cadence was sleeping on Scott's lap, and Autumn had apparently forgotten the scratch on her arm. She went over to say hi to Milo and was rewarded for her friendliness with a hiss and another kitty slap - right in the face!
Well, right about the time I was wiping off her war wounds (two 1/4" cuts that looked pretty deep to me), Mike came to collect the girls. I apologized profusely again and again, but poor Autumn got the "we told you not to touch the cat" speech. Reyna assures me that she wasn't traumatized, and that she even told her big brothers about the cat. No permanent damage, I suppose.
So there you have it - my something nice for the Holiday Season. Thank goodness it's over!
13 December, 2007
This is what happens when a man whose job won't allow him to grow a beard gets almost 2 weeks off. It's gone now, since he goes back to work tomorrow (and it was itching him like mad). Figures - I was just getting used to aiming my kisses more carefully.
Well, I'm back to work today, and I have just one major question: where did my 7 days off go???
06 December, 2007
Our food was incredible. We pretty much licked the plates clean. We started with venison spring rolls and a big ol' bowl of mussels. The spring rolls had pork as well "so they aren't too gamey." They were delicious, but I didn't taste much besides the pork. And I thought the mussels were the best I'd ever had. They didn't have that dead ocean aftertaste that I find so often in bi-valves.
My entree - halibut with asparagus and fingerling potatoes and a rose beurre blanc - was absolutely to die for. The fish was tender and flavorful, and the accompaniments were cooked to perfection. Scott got the pork chop served with tilamook cheddar mac n cheese. And as soon as he ordered it and the waitress went away, he got all upset with himself because he wanted the tenderloin or the buffalo. I think maybe he had an out-of-body experience right when she was taking our orders. In the end, the chop was good - served on a big ol' bone with a balsamic reduction. The macaroni was not as good as the stuff at Jiko, but it was nice and sharp. I thought the pork was really gamey, but Scott liked it just fine.
And for dessert, he had the apple tart and I had the "coffee two ways," which was a duo of mochaccino bread pudding (tasted like chocolate bread pudding) and vanilla latte creme brulee (which tasted like heaven!).
To be honest, this is probably the second-best meal I've ever had on Disney property. However, I'm not really sure I'll go back.
Yeah, I know people reading this are probably sick of me complaining about lousy service every time I go out to eat, but when you're at a place with $30 entrees, you shouldn't have to wait for drink refills. And you shouldn't be treated like a second-class citizen because the waitress knows she's guaranteed an 18% gratuity. I was so angry about being punished for using a coupon that I genuinely felt for the first half of our meal like I was going to cry. It was only the delicious food that soothed my soul.
Well, delicious food and the fact that I was so happy to be sitting there having an anniversary dinner with my husband. That's the most important thing of all.
04 December, 2007
Yes, I do like days off!
Yesterday I went in late and car-pooled with Scott. And boy oh boy, was it heavenly having an 8-hour shift. It was (almost) over before I got cranky. That's a pleasant change!
This morning I decided pancakes would be the best way to start the day. And since we still have some eggnog (2 weeks expired, but how can you tell when it's actually bad? does it get even thicker?), I mixed that in with the milk. The flavor wasn't as strong as I thought, but they were pretty ok. And pancakes beats frozen waffles any day.
Jamie's Cooking Tip of the Day: eggnog is MUCH thicker than milk, and you'll need more liquid if you don't want crumbly rock-cakes.
03 December, 2007
02 December, 2007
01 December, 2007
One of my co-workers put a green "jingle bell" on our office door yesterday. It's cute, and the bonus is that it jingles when the door opens.
Unfortunately, I learned today that there are about 100 cats wandering the halls of The Hotel. How else would you explain the jingle jingle jingle every time anyone walks past our door? I can just hear their inner monologues: "must… touch… shiny… ball…"
It's amusing now. But does anyone want to start a pool on how many days I can go before taking the bell off the door and hiding it until January?
Here's my little helper monkey... erm kitty... licking stamps. I just didn't have the heart to tell him they are the self-adhesive kind!
Well, I'm sending out about 80% of our cards this morning. Among those not yet mailed: my grandfather, my godfather, a cousin or two, and 2 local friends (hmm... interoffice mail, anyone?).
May the force be with my little Yodas as they pay passage to such far places as St. Petersburg (FL) and Marlton (NJ).