Jan. 3rd, 2009

I have many things I meant to write up, but never got around to them, and then *did* write up a long post, and lost it while I was at my mom's house.

Following up my post from before Christmas - on the topic of company Christmas parties - I count myself lucky that I look forward to spending time outside of work with my co-workers and bosses - at this time of year, I hear/read of many people who feel obligated to attend their company party, and don't enjoy it at all - and I'm fortunate that I'm not in that position.

With respect to vacationing at home - even my mom admits that my brother and I really shouldn't come home for as long as we did - we get bored because we have nothing to do. This, of course, was exacerbated this year by the Great Snowfall of 2008, but in general, I always talk myself into staying 7-10 days when I really should only go home for 3-5 days at a time.

Even with all of the bad weather and horrible airport delays reported - both my outbound and inbound flights were on time! I had no delays, did not end up stuck in lengthy lines or even have much trouble getting to the airport. My poor mother ended up parking in a foot of snow at the Vancouver airport to pick me up, and trekking cross country through unplowed drifts - the first thing she said to me when she got to the terminal was "we have to find a *different* way back to the car". We did, and the roads back to her house weren't bad - Vancouver got a lot more snow in the first dump that we did - our road was clear up until the 23rd, when we got 10 inches overnight. The morning of the 24th was a scary concept, given that I had to go pick up my brother at the airport on the 25th.

Per usual, Sat, my Polish "brother" (he has no siblings, and he was good friends with one of my brothers in high school, so we "adopted" him) was a flake, and his suggestion was that my brother "take a cab" from the airport - that would have cost probably 200$ - assuming he could even find one who would agree! His next theory was that he could go in to Vancouver, but he'd have to come to our place to get my mom's car - since the whole reason we wanted him to go, was that we weren't sure we could get my mom's car *out* of the cul-de-sac, that wasn't a useful idea either :)

But, I shovelled the snow, we got the neighbour to drive back and forth on it with his SUV, and my mom used her ninja snow-driving skillz honed by growing up in Saskatchewan, and after only 40 minutes we made it the FORTY FEET between where I shovelled and where the snow plow had gone by on the crescent outside our cul-de-sac.

Honestly, it might have been easier for me to just shovel the cul-de-sac :)

Was supposed to try to meet up with my friend in Richmond, after failing to do so in November when I was last home. Unfortunately, she had a major water problem - 2 floors above her, the sprinkler system broke and water was coming in her walk-in closet. That was on the 29th, she finally got someone out on the 2nd to get fans and dehumidifiers in place to dry her out - they were understaffed over the holidays, but it looks like things are moving along now.

The downside of being in Canada for Christmas is that I missed out on the Boxing Day sales at Target :) I wanted to pick up some more ornaments - I did get a bunch of the flat silver metal snowflakes on sale for 30% off before Christmas, but I was going to pick up a few more if they had any left. Boxing Week sales in Canada were meh this year - no good ornaments at Zellers, Walmart, London Drugs or any of the other places I checked. Seriously - Zellers had a whole WALL of *pink* ornaments with *feathers* and *pearls*. And everyone had a ton of cheap ornaments covered in glitter - I'm not a fan of the glitter.

I did stop by Target on the way home Wednesday from the airport, since I was on that side of the hill - no more snowflakes, but I did find 5-6 boxes of glass icicles on for 75% off - score! I also picked up a container of metal Christmas cookie cutters, which has all the key ones - candy cane, gingerbread man and woman, star, tree and bell. In addition it has a snowflake, holly leaf, reindeer, mitten, snowman, angel, sleigh, santa hat, wreath, gift box, and ornament - all for $3. Strings of lights for $0.49, plus I got 3 packs of blue replacement bulbs ($0.12 each) which I will use to fix the string of lights that I bought this year - it is blue and white lights, but there are 2 white lights for each blue light, and I find it to "white" - so I will replace a bunch of the white bulbs next year and tone it down.

Work was *quiet* during vacation - no crises, no panic - just a couple of minor things to keep up with. It was very nice!

I am ready to go back to work though - if only to keep me out of the stores - I'm *done* shopping for bargains now - time to save save save.

I started feeling sick on Tuesday and it developed into a full-fledged cold complete with nasty-sounding cough and a stuffed nose. So I didn't go into work on Friday - I napped instead. Hopefully by Monday the worst will have passed and I'll feel better.

I bought a ton of veggies and chicken and am planning on taking lunch to work again - I do much better at saving money and eating better when I take food to work. I bought chicken breasts on sale for $1.88 a pound, and cooked them in the crockpot today with a half bottle of salsa - pulled it all apart and now I have delicious, moist chicken to put on salads, or wrap in tortillas with some veggies and cheese.

As for resolutions? I need to cook more and eat out less. I am going to keep a journal of what I eat - it definitely keeps me on track for making healthier choices - haven't decided yet if I'm going to do it on paper, the way I did it before, or if I'll do it on lj with filters, as it's seriously boring :) I might set up a different journal on the south beach forum, but that's two places to go read and post in...so we'll see.

My other resolution is the same as last year - work less, take better care of me - I did *better* this year - I took a lot more time off, and went home a lot. But I still have a ways to go, although it's harder now, since we have fewer people to share the work, but I need to keep at it.

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