Posts Tagged ‘happy holidays’

Done!

December 11, 2017

I’m done!

I’m done!

I’m done!

I turned in my last paper.

I attended my last class!

THE SEMESTER IS FINISHED!

This was by far my hardest semester, the most work, my heaviest load of work, the most classes I have carried, and the busiest time I have had in my personal life and work life.

I can’t believe I have made it through.

I was seriously thinking I was going to have a melt down.

Now I’m just a puddle of relief.

A slightly glittery puddle of relief.

I got my Christmas tree!

It was the carrot I used to get myself to come home after the last class wrapped up and do my final paper for Jungian Dream Work.

It took me a little while to get into it, the paper idea I had yesterday was just not being substantiated by the research I had outlined and the reading material I was utilizing.

So.

I wrote a completely different paper than I had thought I was going to write.

But who the hell cares?

I wrote the damn thing.

Seven pages.

2,310 words.

So happy that I got it done.

Especially since the professor had extended the due date by an extra three days so that if we wanted to work on it next weekend the cohort could.

This is a very kind thing that some of the professors will do, as my cohort only attends class on weekends and many of us work during the week.

Which means the majority of us do our homework on the weekends.

The paper was originally due this Friday, which meant, for me at least and a few others, that I would have to write it today, I have clients this week and my full-time job, plus supervision and therapy, no time really other than today to write it.

Then she extended the due date.

And part of me flirted with the idea.

Flirted pretty hard.

With the idea of not doing it until next weekend.

But in the end I knew that I really just wanted to be done.

And I cannot even begin to tell you the relief I felt when I sent that bad boy in.

It was huge.

HUGE.

I’m done.

It is such a big deal.

And it still feels a little surreal.

Five months of super hard work culminated today.

Now a month off.

Not from work, not from clients, but definitely from school.

And I will have a lot of extra down time with my clients, I had a cancellation for this Friday evening and as the days march closer to Christmas I am sure to have a few more folks not be able to make their sessions.

I’ll be taking my birthday evening off from clients, and I may see if I can sneak out a little early from my job too, as well as Christmas Day and New Years Day off.

A couple of three-day weekends, some time to recharge, some time to relax, some time to get to yoga.

It’s been too long.

I had a moment when I thought maybe today I might be able to sneak one in, but my lunch plans went a little longer than I had anticipated and I nixed the thought.

The only thing that matter was writing the paper.

And.

Yes.

Getting my Christmas tree.

Which is stupendous.

I am very, very, very happy with it.

I was like a giddy kid at the tree lot.

And I got a much bigger one than I had been thinking I was going to get, but I said, fuck it, I deserve a great big Christmas tree and I’m going to get it.

I came home and barely got it through the door to my studio.

Heh.

But its gorgeous and I’m so happy that I indulged myself.

I do like Christmas, but I’ve just been way too busy with school to even think much of it.

I got the tree situated, watered it, and strung the lights up.

I turned on some Christmas music, yes I did, I am a dork, shut up, and decorated my little heart out.

My mom had sent me a package of Christmas gifts and I tucked them under the tree and turned off the lights and just smiled.

Happy.

So happy.

I almost don’t mind that I have to get up early to go to supervision tomorrow before work.

Ha.

Almost.

Anyway.

It’s going to be a much less stressful week with the lecture done, God damn, that feels like weeks ago, but really, it was just last Tuesday, and with my classes all finished.

I got some really nice feedback from my last professor and connected with my cohort in a very sweet way today and I feel quite good about how I did.

I am going to predict another straight A semester.

Might be a little too early to say that, but it feels like it.

Oof.

What a semester.

So much going on.

I can barely believe it’s done.

I am going to sleep so well tonight.

I cannot even tell you how well I’m going to sleep.

So well.

Heh.

By the light of my beautiful Christmas tree.

Happy Holidays!

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Cozy Little Christmas

December 26, 2016

I was talking to the moms earlier and she expressed how sad she was that I was alone at Christmas.

I assuaged her.

I almost laughed, I haven’t felt lonely, despite, yes, spending the majority of the day alone.

I never felt lonely.

Sleepy occasionally.

I actually napped.

A lot.

I don’t nap often and it always feels rather epic when I do.

I blame the malingering cold.

Not enough to knock me completely flat, but definitely, defiantly still there, sitting on my chest with a nasty proprietorship that I am about done with.

Ha.

I foil you cold.

I signed up for a yoga class tomorrow, get out of my body.

I figure one more big night of sleep and some warming up and stretching will make me feel a lot better.

I didn’t get to the studio at all this past week, the weird hours at work, the onset of the cold, the holiday stuff, I got behind and nothing quite worked with my schedule.

Speaking of schedule.

I have been in contact with the new family I will be starting with on January 2nd and since I’m in town this week I’ll be meeting with them to go over the stuff and things and sign my new contract.

It’s for reals.

I am grateful for the week off.

Even with the stupid cold.

I will go to the MOMA.

I may go the DeYoung and the Legion of Honor too,  haven’t been to either in a while.

Maybe one day a ride over to Sausalito too on the ferry, it’s been a while since I have done that as well.

And as I let myself listen to a last few Christmas carols I really am reflectively happy.

Yes, I had other plans.

And I’m ok with the change of them.

I’m not upset that I spent Christmas by myself.

I’m good company.

Really good company.

I got myself a new dress for Christmas.

Oh god damn it’s cute.

From Hell Bunny.

Thank you Christmas bonus.

I don’t think it will get here in time for New Year’s but it might, not that I don’t have a dress, I did let myself get a dress from Ambiance the other day.

Two dresses at Christmas, so nice to do for myself.

I had a nice morning writing and drinking cafe au lait.

I opened cards and gifts from family and I talked to my mom on the phone and chatted and messaged with other friends and dear hearts.

I made turmeric spiced garlic brown rice and I roasted a pork roast.

Oh my god.

The roast.

I very infrequently buy pork or steak, it’s just spendy for me and if I get meat, I typically get a chicken, I can stretch a chicken into a weeks plus worth of meals, but you know, Christmas.

So I picked up a pork roast at the SafeWay the last time I shopped.

And what with the Adobo my darling friend gave me from Puerto Rico and the persimmons Santa sent me, fuck me, I made an amazing pork roast.

I seasoned it with sea salt, black pepper, the aforementioned Adobo, Spike, a tiny bit of tarragon and then slow cooked it for an hour and a half.

While it rested I made the rice.

Then I sliced up some persimmon, layered them over the top of the roast, added a tiny bit more salt, and yes, raw organic cocoa.

While the rice was cooking and the roast was resting I went for a walk down to the beach.

The waves were heavy and crumbling and loud.

There were a few folks out with their pups and one surfer trying to paddle out past the break.

I walked for a while.

Then perched in the dunes above the beach.

I was not sad.

I am not sad now.

I reflected, rather, that I have done a lot for myself, with the help of a lot of friends, over this past year.

I dis-entangled myself from a love relationship that was woefully not working.

I went to New York in May and saw all the art and things and friends.

I went to New Orleans and saw all the art and the things and made new friends.

I went to Burning Man, briefly, yes, but I went and saw all the art and the things and made new friends and saw old friends.

I rode my scooter all over the city.

I mean all over.

I successfully got through the first semester of my second year in a three year graduate school program.

I saw Mike Doughty and Paul Simon live.

I started doing yoga.

I finished a two year plus job with grace and love and got referred kindly to my next position with rave references.

I comported myself pretty damn well.

I told lots of people I love them.

I do, you know.

I sat up in those dunes happy with myself, alone, but not lonely and it struck me so resolutely how lonely I felt last year at Christmas with the man I was in love with and then the year prior with an old boyfriend, alone on Christmas as he chose to spend it with another.

I was not in pity for myself, I remember walking that same stretch of beach tears running down my face, in a white dress, my hair in braids, the wind so cold, the sun bright, brilliant, but cutting.  I took a picture of myself in the dunes that year and all the responses were the same, my god how beautiful and all I could think was my God, I’m in a relationship and alone on Christmas, my God how lonely I am.

Alone.

But not lonely this year at Christmas.

I came home from my happy gambol along the beach and lovingly put the roast in the over to sear at a high temp for a half hour and carmelized the persimmons and my goodness, my house may have never smelled better.

I read for a while then pulled out the roast and dug in.

It was beyond description.

So good.

And I had saved a Rau Raw Chocolate drink to have with it.

Best Christmas dinner ever.

Seriously.

I had a sliced persimmon after dredged in sea salt and raw chocolate, cinnamon and nutmeg, and a big mug of Bengal Spice tea with cashew milk.

I was full and happy and warm and cozy.

I read for a little while longer, so many wonderful new pleasure reading things to get through, then.

I had a thought.

My how nice a nap might be.

So.

I did.

Merry fucking Christmas.

I curled up underneath my grandma’s afghan and watched the Christmas tree.

I drifted off, warm, safe, held.

Wrapped up in love.

Alone?

Yes.

Lonely, no.

Loved and taken care of.

Loving to myself and to others.

The best Christmas miracles are always the little ones.

Seriously.

So, mama, don’t be sad that your baby was alone on Christmas.

I had a beautiful day and when I reflect on all the people who love me.

Well.

I am surely blessed.

So very much so.

Wishing you and yours the same.

Always.

And.

Forever.

 

 

Last Christmas I gave you my heart.

But the very next day you gave it away.

This year I’ll give it to someone special.

Bunny Slippers

December 24, 2016

And the Glee Christmas album.

Fuck you.

I had a hard day.

Shit.

I had a hard week, but today really took the cake so to speak, even though I told myself to not go into it having any expectations I still didn’t expect it to go the way it did.

Oh well.

It’s done.

Christmas by myself this year.

Sadness in my heart.

And.

Yes.

Thanks Santa.

A cold.

I have it off and on all week, I’ll have moments of being completely fine, then like last night, I woke myself up coughing.

Happy holidays!

And here’s some rain too.

Yay!

Fuck.

It’s actually kind of funny now that I’ve made it out the other side.

I’m home.

My Christmas tree is lit.

The house is clean.

I have my bunny slippers on and my feet are finally warming up, it rained on me on the way to work, despite the weather report showing no rain, it rained, and wet feet at work.

Yuck.

And work.

Well.

It was hard.

Hard to say goodbye.

Hard to believe it’s done.

And my time was wonky.

The mom and I had some miscommunication about my hours and I had down in my calendar totally different hours than the ones she was expecting me to work.

I mean totally off.

Even though I double checked all week-long, I guess I missed the memo and yup, my last day of work I was a half hour late.

Mortifying.

The only time I have ever been late.

My last fucking day.

And.

Instead of getting off at 1 p.m. when I thought I’d be getting off, she had me down until 3:30p.m.

There were groceries getting delivered and soup to be made.

Ugh.

I was aghast.

I mean.

I didn’t have plans per se, I was going to book myself a massage, but the place I was planning on going was closed, then I thought maybe I’ll girl treat myself and go to The Balm store on Valencia and buy some eye shadow and get a manicure.

Nope.

Instead I was making broccoli soup and roasted cauliflower.

It was not how I thought my last day would be.

The boys spent most of the day with the mom and I spent most of the day cooking and cleaning.

It was really hard guys.

I mean really awful hard.

We never had a moment alone.

I wasn’t able to take them out to the park or to the cafe or anything.

Thank God I had a lot of solo time with them earlier this week.

In retrospect, maybe it was for the best, as I burst into tears a few lines ago, I might have done that all over them.

“Carmen I hate you!” Sound of slamming door. “It’s your last day,” little sob of sadness, as the youngest did the first big cry of the day.

“Carmen, I love you, I didn’t mean that at all, I love you, cuddle me,” he demanded and crawled into my arms.

That was about the amount of cuddles that I got.

It was, like I said, an odd day.

I stood in the kitchen standing up in a corner, hiding, and crying over a pot of broccoli soup while the neighbors dropped in and the family opened Christmas presents.

The boys colored.

I cooked.

The boys did quiet time.

I cleaned.

I was sad, I am sad, but I also know how much the boys love me.

The little guy was nonplussed when I left at 3:30 p.m. today, the boys had a classmate whose parents were throwing a birthday party at the Roxie Theater and the movie was Star Wars.

The boys were dressed up.

The oldest had saved up all his allowance and had gotten a flight suit like the one Luke wore piloting his ship and he looked so handsome, it about broke my heart.

The little one was dressed up as a Storm trooper, raspy talking voice box mechanism and all.

“Tell Carmen goodbye,” his father prompted him, “she’s leaving, this is her last day.”

“She’ll visit,” he said, glibly, playing with his helmet.

“I will visit, I promise,” I kissed his forehead, “I love you, bunny, have fun at the party.”

The mom couldn’t say good-bye to me, she apologized and excused herself with tears in her eyes, “I understand,” I said as she walked back to the office, “I might be a little teary in here.  Thank you for everything, so much, thank you.”

I got my jacket on, grabbed my purse, I’d turned in my keys already, put my nanny clogs in my scooter basket liner, pulled on my scooter jacket and walked to the door.

“Let me give you a hug!” The dad jumped up, and then ugh, I did tear up, I wasn’t expecting that.

“Thank you for the last few years, you’ve been amazing, whoa, you’re like in armor!” He said and patted my jacket.

“Yup, safety first,” I smiled.

Then I looked at the older boy, he’d paused in the costuming and looked at me.

“You’re going to visit, right?” His eyes great big brown eyes saucer plates of sadness.

Ah, fuck, cue some more waterworks, I swear I am going to get through this blog, I am.

“Of course I’m going to visit, I promised you.” I looked at him, his eyes full of tears and my eyes too, he was too far away for me to hug and maybe that was alright, it has to be, it’s what happened, “I love you, I will always be in your life, I promise.”

I blew him a kiss and walked out the door.

I made it three doors down then crumpled up and cried for a minute.

Then I got on my scooter and went to the post office.

Santa had tried to get the post office to deliver me a package yesterday, as I don’t have a chimney for him to descend, but the postal person failed to get it through the gate.

So off to the post office.

Nine people in line and two grumpy, tired, over worked workers.

“What do you mean it’s too late to get it there overnight?” A woman screamed at one of them.

High, holy, hell, this package better be fucking worth the ninth circle of hell I just descended into.

Then I realized.

I’m done.

There’s no job to go to, no plane to catch, since I cancelled my travel plans, all I had to do was stand grateful in line that I had already sent my packages and cards and that I was a lucky girl to be getting packages.

Lucky indeed.

Turns out Santa sent me some end of the season persimmons.

THANK YOU SANTA!

So nice.

Christmas persimmons.

See nothing’s wrong.

In fact, I should wrap this up, “Baby It’s Cold Outside” is playing, my bunny slippers are warming my feet, and the tears are drying on my face.

Happy Holidays.

I hope where ever you are you know how loved you are.

Seriously.

You.

Are.

So.

Loved.

Brown Paper Packages

December 22, 2014

Tied up with string.

These are a few of my favorite things.

“Upcycled” is how I like to think about it when I wrap my Christmas packages in brown paper deconstructed from SafeWay grocery bags and brown paper sacks from CVS Pharmacy.

I cut the bag up, pull the handles off, flip it inside out and wrap whatever present I have at hand that needs a spiffy new look to it.

I put a name tag or holiday tag on the package.

Then the piece de resistance, green jute string.

I also occasionally use fabric and ribbon remnants.

I have a little Christmas box and it was unearthed today.

I got my Christmas tree.

It’s definitely a Charlie Brown type of fella, but he’s got some style and panache and some adorable blue lights adorning him.

Before

Before

After

After

A Few of My Favorite Things

Tied up with String

Blue Christmas

Blue Christmas

And despite the fact that my Christmas tree has blue lights, it’s not a blue holiday for me this year.

I have someone to share it with and that’s first in some years.

I quite enjoyed wrapping up his presents while he lay napping on my bed this afternoon–poor bunny’s been sick.

He did rally like a trooper and helped me go to the Sloat Garden Center and get my tree.

I warned him that I was about to dork out.

I closely inspected all the trees, the pickings were far slimmer than I recalled from last year.  Then I realized that last year I had gotten my Christmas tree far earlier than this year.

That whole weekend trip to Alaska threw my schedule off.

And despite the decorations and the lights and the Christmas carol’s being sung, the stockings all hung by the chimney with care, it hasn’t felt like Christmas until about today.

I feel settled and at ease with what is happening with my father.

I got through my birthday, which, yes, though a day of celebration was such a surreal experience as it was the day I got the news about my father, plus it’s just a loaded day.

“Don’t have any expectations about anything,” I told myself.

Which is the best suggestion I can give myself at any time.

Expectations lead to resentments for me and the last thing I need on top of my already merry-go-round mind is some resentments about the expectations I have around the holidays.

And with a few years of having done this deal and been an orphan as such, although not really an orphan, I have done a few things for myself that speaks to good self-care and holiday joviality.

Last year I worked at half day on Christmas eve, then I rode the F-Market train down from the heart of the Castro to the Embarcadero and caught the last ferry from the terminal to Sausalito and then hopped off, walked a few yards, snapped some photographs, and hopped back on the ferry to San Francisco.

The year before I was in Paris and that was both monumentally mundane, as I helped a visiting friend locate a store open in Paris on Christmas Eve that could fax some paper work to her job, and unbearably magical–walking into Sacre Couer for midnight mass and the entire church is signing the first Noel in Latin.

Yeah, that’s not really a bad way to spend Christmas Eve.

The year prior I took myself out to the San Francisco Ballet and saw the Nutcracker for the first time.

I got all dressed up and took a cab.

I was unbearably homeless and lonely.

I was house sitting for a friend.

One of the sweetest gifts I got that year was a tiny black framed print in aquamarine that says: “Happy is a home that shelters a friend.”

I was pretty much a wreck that year, but tried to muster through it.

Of course in hindsight I can look back and see that I was being stripped down of all the things that I needed to let go of so that when the opportunity arose to go to Paris I was pretty much able to up and go.

The year prior to that I was living in Nob Hill.

And that was the first year that I allowed myself a Christmas tree.

I had a small studio and it overlooked the cable car line on Washington Street at Taylor.

The cable car guys would rumble by and certain operators would wave or flirt, or ask me what I was eating, my window really was just at eye level with the cable cars.

That year I was struck dumb with love and light and joy when I turned off the lights in my little studio and the Christmas lights on my tree twinkled and winked at me and the bulbs lit up the ornaments which cast Christmas colored shadows on the walls and ceilings.

Then.

Oh then.

A full cable car rattled by and all the passengers on the car were signing Christmas carols.

I felt my heart swell and the magic of Christmas kissed my forehead as I settled down for a long winter’s nap.

I can and do get a tiny bit sentimental and I think that’s ok.

There’s love and joy all year round in my life, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t want to celebrate and decorate and do up my own tiny little scene.

I have some Christmas goodies in the fridge to make a Christmas Eve dinner: warm spinach salad with bacon and Roquefort Blue Cheese, cherry tomatoes, and chopped apples; mini-rouladen–thin sliced black forest ham, slathered with a cream cheese and rolled around a dill pickle spear; asparagus with prosciutto, (I am now seeing a proliferation of pork products in my dinner I was not aware of until just now, ha), roasted Japanese sweet potato, and filet with some of that Blue Cheese reduced down and mixed with softened butter and fresh pressed garlic sautéed with baby Portobello mushrooms.

Yeah.

I like to cook.

Then  Christmas night dinner–caesar salad with grilled chicken and bacon, berries–strawberries and blackberries– and mixed cheeses, which I am going to do a little swing through ye olde BiRite tomorrow while on the way to the park with the boys, I’ll probably get my man a small Acme batard or sweet roll, a relish plate with marinated baby artichoke hearts, black olives, cornichons, deviled eggs with organic paprika, and yes, Virginia (ham is not on this menu), a duck.

I have not ever made duck before, but I am going to give it a go.

As I said, I like to cook, if you haven’t noticed from previous blogs and I am quietly thrilled to be able to make a few things for the man.

And have a tree.

And someone to hold my hand and snuggle with while I watch the lights twinkle in the dark.

Happiness.

Happy home for the holidays.

Happy indeed.


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