Hello SA friends!
Just checking in to wish you all happy holidays. I've had a pretty good one so far; I got a 24-hour bug Tuesday but it had cleared up by Wednesday, and so far everyone is pretty healthy! First time since like 2012, I think.
I technically had Thursday and Friday off work; I went into work for a bit on Thursday and did some work from home Friday. So work didn't stop, but it did slow a little. I technically have Monday through Thursday of next week off, but I expect to work from home at least a little bit every day. Several projects had inconvenient deadlines and it's stuff that's hard to explain/hand off to a backup person, so I'm going to try and handle it myself.
That's OK. Today I did no work except read a couple documents and respond to a couple emails, and tomorrow I won't even look at my work email. It's a good year to look like a hero because some senior people are semi-retiring at my company, so as people move up the rungs there might be room for me to move too. Or at least a nice merit raise, hopefully!
Friday night I took the kids to the winter festival that's become our usual tradition, but about 20 minutes after we got there, SL gave us a scare by wandering away from my friend who had taken her over to see a display. Another 20 minutes or so went by before she was found talking to a policeman who'd been called over by some concerned fairgoers. So we had to take the kids straight home; A) I wasn't in the mood for fun and B) we had to make it very clear how bad and dangerous that was. Anyway, no harm done except for a spoiled tradition, but we have lots of other traditions during the season, so no big deal.
Today was productive but fun; I ran some last-minute errands, did a lot of cooking, helped AA clean and declutter her room. We got both girls to put a ton of stuff toward Goodwill to make way for the mountain of toys about to descend on their rooms (they have 5 sets of grandparents plus us and some aunts and friends who also like to give them gifts, so it's kind of unavoidable).
We had Xmas Eve dinner downstairs with the neighbors (we all contributed dishes) and they'll have dinner upstairs with us tomorrow. The Xmas Eve food changes every year, but this year it was pasta and related Italian dishes, and that was a big hit with everyone, so we may keep that theme and just switch out the pasta dishes for variety. I made slow-cooked green beans in garlic and tomato and there were four different pastas, plus three desserts.
Tomorrow is more "traditional"; vegetarian tofu turkey two ways, potatoes two ways, parsnips, stuffing, sweet potatoes, and a few more veg. Oh, and AS is going to try her hand at a savory mushroom bread pudding.
We've got the Santa stuff set out, so now I'm just cooking for brunch. Usually we do a breakfast pasta casserole, but I knew we wouldn't want that after pasta dinner the night before, so I'm making refried beans for breakfast burritos. Then all I need to do tomorrow is chop veggies and cook hashbrowns and we can make ourselves burritos pretty easily.
We've been pretty frivolous with the money this year; we kept gifts within budget but spent extra on lots of other things, including snacks and donating and gifts for others and taking Lyft whenever we feel like it (vs. only when it's the only good alternative). Luckily AS had some of the freelance money come in so we've got a good surplus in shared spending.
So pretty good overall. Hope everyone is enjoying their holidays too! (Or at least hanging in there -- thinking of you, Thriftorama!)
Catch you on the flip side!
Hello SA friends!