Saturday, December 31

2012: The Year of the Ginger

Next year will be mine. I'm sure of it. Okay, maybe not sure of it. But I feel like it'll be pretty good. I mean, hello, I just had my 28th birthday. Even-numbered birthdays are the shit. 24: awesome. 26: awesome. 28: has to be awesome, right??

Next year we'll (awesomely) ring in the anniversary of ADOPTION DAY!!

The deployment work-ups will be in full swing as multi-week exercises are scheduled, leaving me with the need to figure out how to stay sane while cooking for one. Okay, okay, I need to first find sanity in cooking. Then figure out the whole 'cooking for one' bit. But somehow I'll figure it out.

Tonight is going to be lame. Well...okay, maybe not lame, but we feel that NYE is always so anti-climatic. Last year I called it a night at 10:30pm. The New Year will be there in the morning. And morning drunk is always better than late night drunk. So that's what I did.

Now I'm taking a break from cleaning out my closet for clothes I just don't wear anymore. Tops that I've shrunk so they lost sleeve length, clothes I don't fit in anymore (not fat pants, but those extra fat pants), and things like that are going to the Women's Mission on Monday. It cleans out my closet and it helps lucky ladies rock some cute clothes.

For next year I have zero resolutions. Zilch. Because I did such an awesome job at last year's. Run a shit-ton? Nope. Read a shit-ton? Nope. Travel a shit-ton? Nope. So this year is different. No resolutions. Okay, well maybe one. Be awesome. I'll enjoy having Mr. Wookie around when he is, I'll enjoy sleeping with the dog when he's not, and I'll enjoying having all the tonic to myself and can buy the small bottles because I know I don't need a quart at a time to suffice both our needs.

I have a hammock. I have sunscreen. And I have a dog that knows she's not allowed on the hammock and instead lounges next to the house where it's not toasty warm at a perfect 78 degrees.

Have a safe and happy New Year. And remember: Don't drink and drink. You may hit a curb and spill your beer.

Friday, December 30

Mother Nature brings the beauty.

"Are you going to be home soon?"
"Yeah. I'm about to leave work soon."
"So you're not going to be home soon. There's a crazy sunset AND YOU HAVE MY CAMERA!"
"Oh, okay....well let me go and I can see what I can do."

The orange danced with the crisp blue sky as the particles mimicked a Caribbean ocean with touches of peach and bronze. I tried my hardest to pay attention to the traffic in front of me but I was bedazzled. This was gorgeous. Sometimes the Big Man Upstairs chooses the random days to make your heart skip a beat, double back, then double beat. And sometimes Mr. Wookie brings the Hawkeye Country hangar love. ::sigh::

I can't wait until the sunsets start getting later and later so I don't have to fight my way through traffic while staring at the sky's delights. I can only imagine the love I'll have this year between camera, tripod, and wireless remote. Oh, and maybe a Pooch. She really doesn't get enough attention.

Thursday, December 29

One post of sense, curses, and cents.

It's happening. I'm turning into that sad sack of limpdick that's craving Lean Cuisines for lunch at work, spends today's lunch hour grocery shopping since we were left to last night foraging our fridge for anything that went together (" rib leftover....nachos?"), and subsequently passed by the frozen meal section before saying, SELF...NOT A FUCKING CHANCE.

Apparently my vag is taking over my whole body. Because never have I felt the need for high sodium, 2-minutes-on-high with a spork in my life. So apparently a sunny lunchtime spent at the picnic table outside my building will want me to count points, wear a pedometer, and wanting to powerwalk at lunch in my suit and sneakers.

Not that I actually wear a suit anymore. Bitches....this be California. My suits are getting staler than festering tequila shots the morning after. I wear jeans. And I wear casual pants. And I wear cotton, and Birkenstocks, and pretty much work in weekend wear since all my interaction is with coworkers. No high-paying legal clients like Virginia. I'm pretty sure no one knows what a 4-piece suit is here....

Usually my lunch is leftovers, which can be boring eating the same meal within a 24-hour timeframe. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood for leftover spaghetti. Or leftover chicken. Or leftover anything. I'm bored. And PB&J can only handle this inner 5-year-old for awhile. So when today's microwave wafted of Lean Cuisine lasagna....I'm almost threw my panties at it.

But I can't do it. I can't eat that. I have pride. Lesbian pride.

It doesn't help that NO ONE EATS IN THE BREAK ROOM. No one. So I'm left to eating outside by myself. Never have a felt like a Glee freshman just wanting someone throw a slushie in my face. Because then I'd at least talk with someone. Nope. Going home for lunch or going out to eat is the thing. takes me between 18-26 minutes to get that's a waste of gas. Plus, I consider eating out every workday excessive and financially wasteful when you can easily cut meal costs by PACKING A FREAKIN' LUNCH. Seriously people....$5 bucks a day is $25 a week...which is $100 a month....which is $1,200 a year. Umm...that's like 3 sports bra in this big-boobed world (for those following the Facebook discussion).

Did this post have a purpose?? Absolutely not. I just assumed you all missed me and my eloquent ability to ramble like a drunken sailor. You now know I eat alone at work and have a love/hate relationship with Elizabeth Kostova's second novel. It's not keeping me entertained at all. But for $4 for the book (thanks to Borders for closing), I can't give up. But I just may. Because I have brain cells to survive....and I have new books on my Christmas list that sound more fascinating.

Tuesday, December 27

Deck the halls with new artwork

We're a simple people. We enjoy a good $5 bottle of wine (What can we say? Money is better spent elsewhere), we appreciate raunchy comedies like Bridesmaids, and we love when siblings give great gifts (whether books on Pinterest, new napkins and rings, or killer Etsy finds). It's time to put up the new artwork.

Don't worry. We keep calm and be awesome. And I keep calm and Ginger on.

One very merry Christmas

This year was superb. Christmas Eve began with Mr. Wookie insisting I open one gift. He does this sometimes. He makes me open one awesome gift that's necessary for the night. Usually it's a movie that hits the mark. This time, it was something else. He brought his A-game Saturday night.

I was forced to open a wireless remote. Then I was held at gunpoint to open a tripod. Then he forced us to take pictures. Maybe he's loving it that he almost made me cry. But he really does these little things. He claims that when I just ramble on and on about things I want, he's actually listening. Just don't quote him on that. So now I'm the proud owner of a wireless remote. Jealous of those, no longer.

Miss Pooch's first Christmas with us!

This year's gifts were all about necessity. Mr. Wookie was low on underoos, shirts, and a sleeping bag. So I purchased....underoos, shirts, and a sleeping bag. Oh, and a watch - since his last one was left behind at a Hail and Bail barbeque.

Thank you Mommy McD for the book!

Sweet Pea was low on affection.

So we had to torture her.

And after our little family's Christmas unwrapping, there was the need for more group photos showing the destruction of wrapping paper. I may or may not have wrapped boxes within boxes like babuska dolls in order to make the gifts look bigger. It's not about the price tag. It's about being sneaky and awesome, fulfilling those secret desires for a new 20-degree sleeping bag, a swanky new watch that's almost as sexy as a holiday beard, and cute boxers with sock monkeys, remote controls, and Christmas lights. No high-priced televisions, Apple products, or trust funds. Just good ol' fashioned you-need-this gifts.

And what's Christmas without an outtake?

Then it was time to webcam with my family located 900 miles North of a 75-degree Christmas. Little Nephew is getting quite talkative and intrigued into standing on and opening any and all presents. Oh the life and times of a 23-month old...who's recognizing his Aunt Ging via webcam.

And from there, it was deemed it necessary for Mr. Wookie to own a weed eater. Because taking scissors to edge a yard is a step above sad. And we don't do sad. Sad only happens when the vodka supply is low. Like I said, we don't do sad. We only do happy.

And now, the house is back to normal. Being a giant hippie, we reused the gift boxes we received to stash our new decorative bounty thanks to Target's 30%-off week-before-Christmas sales. I'd do post-Christmas shopping, but I don't fight crowds. I'm way too lazy.

I can't believe the next time I might see these items may be next year. Do I put up decorations next year? Will I be in the mood? Will I be able to go home? Those answers will have to come next year. Because now I'm enjoying in a house that's not full of dead needles. Although the sweet smell of anticipating is lacking.

There's still my favorite gift to blog about - but it's not here yet thanks to storms in the Midwest. Instead, I got a print out of it. And I'm excited. Mr. Wookie is too kind to me.

Saturday, December 24

Merry Christmas Eve from us!

Today was rather torturous as the weather topped out at 75 degrees. If my hammock weren't in the shade, and the days weren't shorter than a Jersey Shore skirt, I'd totally be rockin' a Santa hat while asking for another mimosa. But instead, I'm tucked inside admiring the love and merriment from family as we celebrate across the miles - spanning relationships from Oregon, to Ohio, and North Carolina, to Arizona.

Tomorrow we'll connect via Skype to experience the mayhem of my side of the family. We take Christmas very seriously in our family. Gifts are to outnumber the girth of the tree. With my ever-growing family, the gifts only increase. Not that gifts are the meaning of the season. We show love in our abilities to give great items of need, surprises of desire, and a reminder that siblings stick together and will always annoy the bejeebez out of our parents with voice modulation.

Tonight there's still breakfast to prepare so it can sit overnight. And there's a cocktail to be had in anticipation for tomorrow. This week I've been ever excited to have Mr. Wookie open the great ideas I've put into fruition.

We both agree. Christmas Eve is a magical time. The anticipation for tomorrow overlooms the reality that Monday brings a dead tree strewn with beads, ornaments, and lights. Presents gone from beneath. There's still a twinkle in my heart that Santa will come and bring me the things of yesteryear that I wanted beneath my tree. But upon waking, the reality that I'm now responsible for making Mr. Wookie's Christmas dreams a reality.

I hope he's excited for tomorrow. I worked hard to make his dreams come true.

May your Christmas be special, spent with family, friends, or a loving webcam session with those afar. If you're on R&R, may the time pass slower than molasses. If you're amidst blizzard-like conditions, throw a snowball towards me. I could use it in my cocktail shaker.

From us to you, a blessed Christmas, a great rest of Hanukkah, and a prosperous New Year.

Thursday, December 22

Christmas giving has begun!!

Disclaimer. Mr. Wookie was photog extraordinaire. Apologies for the blurriness. That and he didn't check the lens to realize it was on manual...#bloggerwannabefail

Tuesday night was delightful. My Christmas gift from Mommy McD hath arriveth at the household Wookious Naval Dictatorus. Our place. I literally blew her mind hole with these. Deemed an urban legend on Pinterest, I had her screeching like a baboon at a boot sale. Although via text it sounds like, "EEeeeeeeeeek." I forgot to address the label like "Mommy 'I love my hot black neighbor' McD" so she knew it was from me. Instead, she thought it was a gift for someone else and got shocked like a toddler sticking a fork in a light socket.

So when she told me to open her present, the favor was hers as I screeched so loud I damaged her dog's hearing. I.was.loud.

As I sat on the ground, the unearthing began into our classically styled hodge-podge presents. This is our style. We could easily make a theme...but something resembles a late-night Walmart shoplifting trip is much more entertaining...

"Neeeeedledick spatulas for eeeeeveryyooooooonnneee!!!" -My best Oprah impression

I'm obviously rockin' two new running headbands that boast, "Run now - wine later." There were needledick spatulas galore (these are the skinny ones that can make it into mayo jars, etc.). And a MICROPLANE!! She just failed to include band-aids because I know there'll be knuckle shavings into my first creations with this dangerous kitchen device.

Sunday, December 18

The tree unlittered with gifts.

Those piercing eyes are Darth. When you have an unconventional lifestyle, you have an unconventional tree topper. Or...we're still not set on angel vs star, nor have we found something that appeals to both of us. We want something art deco and something that doesn't cost a kilo of meth. Mr. Tree now has a lavish plaid skirt that once had a life as a circular table cloth. All its missing is presents. A few lie under the tree...but there are still plenty in transit. It's starting to feel like Christmas, but with The Big Day for Baby Jesus less than a week away...I'm starting to get nervous. What if things don't arrive in time??

Saturday, December 17

What's this about grandpa??

I really do love the blogging world. It's a great mash up of ladies with nothing better to do with their lives, their children have nannies, the Mrs. Wookies of the world have trust funds, and all I have to do is complain about BAH rates and I get told great information. Because when Mr. Wookie is on leave, there's no relay of information...he's busy growing his 'holiday beard.'

Grandfather?? You're not my grandfather! Are you?

Apparently we're cool. Apparently Uncle Sam has 'grandfather' capabilities to not completely deplete the vodka supply of our home. So apparently our BAH isn't dropping a dime. Or at least that's the word from my comments section. I'm stubborn, so I'll believe it when I see it.

That is a lot of mind hole to handle so early in the morning. It's early, but I'm up. Those darn Santa Ana winds woke me up as they molested my hammock. Clang, clang,'s like Casper's in the attic. But instead, he's rocking out on my hammock. Because when the Santa Ana winds aren't bitches, we can actually use it as we lounge in the tormenting December sun working on my freckles. So now I'm up, Mr. Wookie's still asleep, and I sent Sweet Pea in to keep him company....she'll just curl up with him on the bed. And I have a quiet house to myself. Muhahahaa....

You can tell we've never been stationed anywhere that's not had the standard COLA increase. Now I just feel bad for anyone checking into his station. "Welcome to California, you can't afford shit here now, so welcome to base housing. Yes, the mice are free of charge. You're welcome."

Friday, December 16

When BAH topples more than $15...

I struggle about whether or not to post this since everyone will have varying different opinions and outcomes on the matter. But for the sake of blogging and being honest, this is honesty...

Yesterday put us in a bad mood collectively. Okay, maybe not a bad mood. But a surreal mood. It was like a collectively kick to the taint. And it taint pretty. (Sorry, I had to.)

Because I'm Facebook friends with awesome milbloggers, it came 'round the circle that BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing) rates were published for the new year. On average, rates continue with the average cost of living increase. I get it. I learned about inflation in high school. It'll always be there. In some form or another. And you just learn to live with it. No more "Back in my day..." because those days are gone. Gone are the days of $1 extra large Slurpees. Those puppies now cost you $1.85. Communists...

So last night, being the curious person I am as I read the conversation that BAH at certain stations were dropping and some were rising, I had to inquire into our own well-being. I plugged in our little location and his little rank to see what little dip his BAH could possible take.

And like a blonde, I completely forgot his new BAH figure thanks to his promotion over the summer. I thought, "meh, not that bad." I read it out loud to Mr. Wookie. Ohhh......I was wrong. Hehe...woops.

Apparently this isn't good. This isn't a little dip. This is a DIP. So I feverishly Google all I can about the BAH rates for the new year. Blah...blah....a third of all duty stations are taking slight cuts. Blah blah...our exact duty station is one of the hardest cuts made to BAH across all hands. Oh, but D.C. feels the need to pad their BAH 10%....and some hole in Texas... So despite the beautiful Californian December sun, now those that are even the tightest of budgets have to figure out how to make those ends meet with this news.

This isn't good. This isn't good for anyone in our area. We live in practically Malibu which makes the cost of living and property taxes out of this world. So the chunk taken out of BAH is a solid chunk. And to compare, I looked up our beautiful location of Norfolk, Virginia. That dip is $15. I could do $15. I'd love $15. I'd give $30. But for us, he's been reduced to a rank-lower for BAH. Promotion...shomotion...

But then I was told about the promotion restructuring that's occurring. Starting sometime in the future, there are longer timeframes between commissioning and your first promotion....and then your second promotion. So what took Mr. Wookie 4 years to acquire as a new Lieutenant, will take Ensigns SIX years to acquire. Wow.

So we wallowed for a good couple hours. I think he was more down than I. But we have to look on the upside. Yes, his housing is down. But I'm working. I'm making good money. We're not near foreclosure (that and you'd have own a home to lose it...wah wah). We budget for a zombie apocalypse (not kidding about the weaponry, kidding with the Extreme Couponing). We'll be fine...I just worry about others....

Life isn't fair. Do I feel like our duty station is being axed apart without reason? Well...yes. Why our station? I know there will be plenty of sailors where this cut completely effects their livelihood. All hands are being cut at least $100 from their BAH (obviously an E-5 or an O-5 will have more cut than an E-1). For young sailors with families, this is a rough pill to swallow. A hundred dollars can be the difference in making or breaking...

And to only have a marginal removal to our hypothetical BAH in Virginia. That's mind-boggling to us. Norfolk is cheap to live in. California...that's the hidden gem of this duty station. Come here, lounge in the sun, pay for sunscreen, and expect low quality housing for high dimes. If you don't want to live where shootings and stabbings occur, you have to live in the decent neighborhoods. And when demand exceeds supply...

So goodbye 7.4% of BAH. You've apparently overstayed your welcome. Now please, take your coffee mug to the sink and softly close the door on your way out. You wouldn't want to wake the dog. She likes her sleep.

I hope others have faired better. I truly do. We're hearty, us Oregonians. This won't get us down. But there's always a fellow milbloggers that takes a larger hit. And for that I offer massive hugs, vodka tonics, and a hangover-free morning. Seriously... Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, kiss my ass, kiss his ass, kiss your ass...

Monday, December 12

Hometown, OR is getting holiday'd!

Thanks to Middle Sister, I get to see the Three Wise Men Stooges doing their act of assembling the muy tall tree. Vaulted ceilings in my parents' home means one big ass tree. Each year, there's an unwritten competition to try and guess how many spiders will navigate from the tree to the ceiling. Each year, it's usually 3-9 spiders that take up rent in the corners of the rooms. Because when you get your tree from the local U-Cut (the same one we've frequented for many years), it's bound to come with local flavor.

We've yet to work out a Skyping appointment for the big day, to make sure we each have respective time for morning gluttony of monkey bread and a healthy serving of mimosas. But we'll be reaching out again to remove the 900 miles that separate our Christmas holiday with my family.

I never really expected to be the child who didn't make it home for the holidays. I always thought I'd be able to do that, since I'd be dating/attached to a boy from the Northern Oregon area. least, that was my plan. Find a boy from Portland or so, so I could remain an Oregonian but get out of my hometown.


Instead, a boy from Louisiana found me. He had been single barely a month. I had just been broken up with via text message. Text...yes. But they say when you're not looking...things happen.

If it weren't for my (so far awesome) new job, we could take his leave period and venture for another Christmas season. Buuuuut, I'm the new employee on the block. And vacation time just isn't in the cards yet. I literally only get the day after Christmas off; that's it. And New Years to be technical. And no, I'm not complaining. I'm in fact very thankful for the new job. It's great. I'm happy. And I'm fulfilled. So the fact we're staying here this year isn't an issue.

This week will really be a morphing into the holiday spirit though. Mr. Wookie's leave block begins and this weekend will be a baking fest. I can't let our great neighbors be forgotten! In fact, we had a delivery of tamales tonight from our next door neighbor, Rufus (the first neighbors to welcome us in). I love the holiday season!

Saturday, December 10

Morphing home into holiday season!

It was last Friday night. I was feeling like crap that night. I didn't want to be at work. And I didn't want to be awake after work. But Mr. Wookie insisted...he wanted to get a tree. He wanted to get a tree that night, he wanted it home, he wanted our home to start looking the season. What he wants, he got. He knows that loading me in the car will make me in a better mood, despite my crankiness that is vocalized.

He really gets into the holidays, and he really likes to put together a happy Christmas home. We've had Pandora rocking since his post-Thanksgiving hangover. And I can't believe it. It's Christmas time again. This really is the best time of the year.

But back to Friday. It was getting late. And he wanted to get going to the tree lots before it got too late, before we got cranky, before we called it a night with a dinner of Cheerios (for me) and Scotch (for him), and before we didn't get a tree. He feels the tree is the official kickoff to festivities, which I can agree. You can garland your house, change the door wreath, and plug in outdoors lights...but until you have a dead plant shoved into an erect position in your home waiting to spew out spiders and bugs, it ain't Christmas.

First up, Lowe's.  I don't even want to dwell out the lameness that made Lowe's a bust. It sucked. They were overpriced, brown, failing, and the poor worker wasn't doing a very good sales pitch. Lowe's = suck.

Next up...Home Depot. Final stop...Home Depot. Come to mama!

We found a fabulous 7-foot Douglas Fir, grown in the great state of Oregon (hey!!), for under $35, that was still bundled (we got to unwrap it, shake it, and contemplate it with a couple other trees). Like a Pound Puppy of the 80' needed a home. It was hilarious watching everyone shake their tree. Everyone has their own method in determining a needles consistency, branch character, and trunk stability. My wiggle is a firm one, much more robust than Mr. Wookie's. But it could be that because I'm from the great state of Oregon, I know my trees. I hug them, I cut them, I wipe my toosh with them. Too far?

Three trees, three wiggles, one Mexican family's children in my way, one deep breath to not kick said unruly children, and a 15-minute wait to pay, but we finally got to load 'er on top of the car. And by "we"...I mean....Mr. Wookie loaded in on the Jeep. I was sick that day. I sat in the warm car with the heat on to not make myself even more ill. Everything in the name of my health, right?

That night was the best. I got shills up my spine as we decorated our place. There's always something about making it home to family for the holidays. You show up, everyone loves you, the home is already's like instant cheer. But when you stay home, whatever your circumstances, there's something magical about making your home the holiday centerpiece. This is our place. This is our holiday celebration. And there's nothing better than having Christmas cheer while being able to sleep in your own bed.

Our home is a steady stream of constant decoration since we both feel you can never really be done decorating for the holidays. Maybe it's new coasters in the shape of snowflakes, or new hand towels that you'll actually drape off of your bookshelf (I "won" these last year at the Wives Club Gift Exchange) - but the closer we're to Christmas, the more sales and discounts that lure us in. Okay, okay, it's an addiction.

I'm trying to be reasonable though. Although with next year being a solo Christmas for me, so the post-Christmas sales will be something I can't pass up. I'll need to get me a "deployment tree" that I've seen on blogs. This is brilliant. I will have one next year. Does it come with a crate of Kleenex though?

So far, pooch hasn't been too invested in the tree which is more than we expected. The dumb dog eats blades of grass. She'll nibble on plants. put it past her to eat tree...we didn't. But so far there's nothing interesting. The big test will be wrapped presents. The dumb dog eats paper too. So we'll see if it looks like a slobbering mutt has shown interest in our bounty. And other than the typical needle loss during standing, she's holding steady and smelling beautiful as the corner anchor in the front room. Nothing beats a live tree. Okay, well one that waters itself and takes itself outside on New Years Day for recycling.

And I know has a massive anti-following because they undercut other businesses, etc. But in my opinion, any place that doesn't charge sales tax is great. I like pretending we live in I lounge in my hammock on warm December afternoons. ;)

But let me show you our current front room mid-progress. It doesn't look too bad, does it? We've since added stocking hangers to the mantle, thanks to Target, and more childhood ornaments to the tree (thanks Mom).

Although I'm patiently awaiting our stockings from (due to arrive next week!! Eeek!). This is only our second holiday not being spent with family, so it's only about time I invest in our stockings for the two of us. And we're still trolling for a tree topper. While Darth Vader's head is applicable with a name like "The Wookiees," we haven't found an angel we like for less than $40. Apparently people drop $80 for tree toppers. Umm. No thanks. Darth works just fine for that price.

Thursday, December 8

Sweet Pea, are you enjoying us?

I was on Facebook today when I caught the glimpse of something. It was a squishy, overweight, super-smooshed face'd English Bulldog in some random LA shelter. And what caught me wasn't the fact that the poor guy (or gal) looked completely defeated along with the hound that was next to him (or her). In a 6'x6' cage sat 2 dogs...lonely. Dropped off. Deserted. Maybe they needed care that just was too much. Maybe their owners fell on tough times. And there they were. In their concrete-slabbed cell with a gated doorway of sunlight.

Then the caption.

"Someplace in LA Kill Shelter"

Gasp. Tear. In my own mind, there's no such thing as kill shelters. There aren't dogs that are put down after 4 days of abandonment. Nope. They don't exist. Not in my world. Because I want to live in delusionality. I don't want to realize that there are freezers upon freezers of dogs (and other animals) that were ditched for one reason or another.

But it's true. There are.

Thankfully the English Bulldog was pulled out by Rescue. The hound too.

It makes me realize that yes, these animals are routinely disposed off because they've served their purpose or their purpose is too expensive. Then I (obviously) think about my own pooch.

Yesterday marked 11 months with our little family. I can't believe it's been that long since she had an awkward and over-enthused ride home from Orange County (good thing her taste isn't as extravagant as Gretchen's....bitch lives the low life here). I can't believe it, but I've wanted it nonetheless. The more months she gained with us, the more she trusted us. And the more she understood us, the more the household rules started to stick. She knows a certain voice means get your ass to your bed, now. She knows "bed time" means Oooohhhhh yea, Mr. Wookie is gone! Snuggle time!

But let's not pretend it's all roses. We adopted a non-friendly dog. She definitely voices her opinion of other dogs with her great, booming bark. She can be one vicious snatch. I had the bravery of taking her over to another squadron's house to acclimate their new puppy to the world outside "everyone thinks you're cute." Enter: This bitch of a Bulldog. She didn't like him from first sight. And she let him know that. But he learned to sit there, brush her off, and give her the cold shoulder. And when we walked away, she was like, Mom, bring me to meet that weeny ass dog. I coulda had him. But I get it, let's walk now. Treats later?

And now she gets to have her first Christmas with us. I'm so excited about this - you have no idea! She's got her own lines on the Mrs. Wookie's super anal Christmas Excel spreadsheet of gifts, prices, total costs, and more. This time last year, she was stuck in a kennel. At a vet's office. Because there was no room at the Inn a foster's. It's hard to foster a non-friendly dog. But those days are long gone. No more supervised play time in the gated yard out behind the vet's. Now it's a door-open policy in our house (unless it drops below 60). In, out, playtime, naptime...whatever you want, you got it.

I can't wait to add a new Kong toy beneath the tree. Because I'm now the poor, sad soul who thinks pets should be represented under the Christmas tree. Baby Jesus, help me...

Tuesday, December 6

My Christmas Questionnaire

I, too, stole the idea from Jane @ Janey's Favorite Things. Mockery is flattery, right? And Blogger, why the weird text sizes...seriously??

Dear sunrise, I miss you. I can't wait until December 21st, because everything returns back to the glory days. But then I know Christmas is RIGHTTHERE, so I'll hold off. Thank you Home Depot for the plug-in timers. I'm now turning into my mother...

Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?
Wait for this.

Keep waiting.

I like........................................unalcohol'd eggnog. Gasp. Horror. Are you ill??? Mrs. Wookie.......................and virgin egg nog??

Colored or white lights on tree/house?
We're of the new-age with WHITE. Not icicle though. Just white. Modern simplicity.

Do you hang mistletoe?
Yes. In Oregon, you climb the oak tree in the neighbors' yard because spending $2 for a tree growth is ridiculous. That's a drive-thru coffee right there.

For 2008's Christmas meet-up in Nashville, I flew with a chunk in my purse.

Now in California, we'll be doing "night ops" for mistletoe in neighborhoods where shooting, stabbings, and muggings aren't involved. I'm not paying $5...

When do you put your decorations up?
A couple weeks before Christmas. Ideally it'd be the weekend after Thanksgiving, but we're the people that buy a real tree each year so we have to wait so needles aren't dropping before the Big Day.

What is your favorite holiday dish?
My favorite dish that causes Diabetes?? Monkey Bread - made by my dad. (yuuuuuum)
My favorite dessert?? These peanut butter balls made by the old lady neighbor a few houses down from my parents. THE FAMILY FIGHTS OVER THESE. We have to ration, they're so good. You may only get a half, but savor it...then lick your sister's fingers.

Favorite Holiday memory as a child?
The one year my parents staged with perfection Santa coming down the chimney. My Dad had stashed in the garage a pair of police motorcycle boots. Those are black. And when shoved up the chimney... SHUTTHEFRONTDOOR, ISTHATSANTA?!?!??!?!! as a child. End it with a Polaroid of said documentation... we were convinced for years. I still kinda am...

When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?
I ruined my Christmas one year checking in my mom's closet (she knows, she knows we all peeked at least one year to know what saddened disappointment felt like - she did it when she was younger too). Wah wah.

Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?
I didn't - but I love this tradition, especially when it's something like pajamas. 

How do you decorate your Christmas tree?
In reality...he Caveman-drags it in and sets it up. Then his Inner Gay gets to work putting up lights, the ribbon, and the Darth Vader mask as the tree topper (I kid you not - we're in search of something better). Then I say, "Hey baby, I think there's a bare patch there." So he volleys, "Don't worry about it. It's not done yet." So I realize I really am no help to this situation so I sit back and enjoy my glass of wine/cocktail/mug of eggnog, etc.

Do I mind this? Not really. :) His love for decoration spans over the fact that he's really good at it and he wants to make the holidays special since it's a BIG DEAL on my side of the family to have an over-the-top Christmas.

Snow! Love it or Dread it?
Love it. But maybe that's because I'm from the part of Oregon where 2 inches will shut down the town.'s a whole different story. We live for rain.

Do you remember your favorite gift?
I think I was 12. I got the first 20 books of Nancy Drew from my Aunt. Sweetness...

Oh, and last year there was my Nikon...

And in 2008, there was a my flight to Nashville to see Mr. Wookie who I hadn't seen in 7 months and 26 days.

What is your favorite Holiday Dessert?

[see above for the legendary fighting over peanut butter good]

What is your favorite holiday tradition?
I love eating Monkey Bread on Christmas morning. And don't forget the mimosas. And since we've been unable to come home a few Christmases, a giant AMENTHANKYOUBABYJESUS for Skype. Seriously.

Candy Canes: Yuck or Yum?

Yum when they're fresh. Yuck when your mom hoards ones from 1989 in the ornament box.

Favorite Christmas movie?
It's a Wonderful Life. Is there really any better Christmas movie than that?

Janey...that's an awful movie choice. Really? ;) It's all about A Christmas Story.

Saddest Christmas Song?
Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer. Way to just run up Grandma's Medicare coverage and co-pays. Don't you know she just had her hip replaced. How rude...

What is your favorite Christmas song?

Mariah Carey's All I Want For Christmas Is You. And Britney's Only Wish This Year.

What are some of your Christmas traditions?
Growing up in a family of 4 kids has caused some amazing traditions. There is the tradition of all of us sleeping in a twin bed. So yes - we had to sleep sideways on the bed. No - this was never comfortable for me. Yes - we'd rotate "watch shifts" for movement upstairs so we'd know when Santa arrived. If things came on your watch, you woke up the other siblings. We'd play with our respective Santa toys for an hour or so before succumbing to sleep-deprivation. Then we'd pass out again until much later.

But now, people are marrying off and making families of their own. Although, I may lobby for a full-family stint next year since I'll be going home to my family while our freedom is defended by Mr. Wookie.

I need to create a contract though - "I, Little Man, cute nephew, and I, Miss Emma, adorable niece, will not wake the slumbering Aung Ging with shrills, grunts, groans, or such." I can't be woken up early, can I?

Sunday, December 4

'Tis the time for Christmas Cards!!!

If it were up to the resident caveman that I live with to send out cards, we never would. That's why I exist. For the 25 days of holiday cheer and to make sure we send love and merriment to those near, far, and deployed.

Thanks to the Post Office for the super speedy self-postage machine because I'm pretty sure I've spent more time fishing for a booger than actually buying stamps. Thanks UPSP station on C St.

There are bloggers on my Christmas card list (again) this year, because there's nothing better than getting something in the mail from a blogger whom you love seeing an overwhelming amount of bulldog pictures, from a blogger who claims to have an IV of vodka at all times, and a blogger who will INYO'FACE too much about how redheads are the best genetics to have because they're bitches and dying out.

It's slowly beginning to look a lot like least to the postman.

Saturday, December 3

Look what the Santa Anas blew in...

You may have heard from national news about the nasty winds that have been plaguing Southern California. If you haven't, here's the skinny...

Winds have been a bitch. A mega bitch. Poor Pasadena (home of Middle Sister's former digs, the Rose Bowl, and some mega homes like the one in Father of the Bride) was hit with 96 mph winds. WINDS! That shit is intense. Being 50+ miles from that place, in a cute little beach town with the touch of illegal immigrants because there are farms here have only dealt with the 30+ mph winds. So not as bad.

Until I swear the punk winds blew in the cold that everyone else has picked up. I woke up Friday morning feeling like an elephant was sitting on my face. My poor sinuses... clogged... full... painful to the thought. Ugh. Where's the drugs. Do I call into work? No, I can't not go into work. It's Friday - only bitches call out on Friday. Besides I've only been there a couple months, that'd look pretty sneaky if you just don't show up on a Friday. So I trudge my ass into work. Sniffles and face o' pain...I worked a full day because I'm.not.a.bitch.

Turns out there were a few others in different departments that were feeling the ill also. Good. That means I'm not alone. I ventured over to Vons on my lunch break to stock my desk with a massive supply of Emergen-C, Clif bars (I get hungry at work - nothing to do with illnesses), and some oatmeal packets that had been recommended to me as "100 times better than Quaker." Okay, as a sucker for a 10am snack break - I'll try them out.

So today I'm just trying to continue my deluge of heavy natural medications and Dayquil. Because when the elderberry and Vitamin C can't make my face stop running like a gay man in a drag parade, Dayquil can.

Thanks to 10 hours of sleep, my standard 8-week hair trim appointment, and a solo hour in Target before the onslaught of stroller mafias hit, today has me enjoying the first Saturday of the holiday season. Now if only I can survive the Bail that's occuring tonight. I might need to hold off on the Dayquil for a few hours. Or maybe I shouldn't...