Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Recap

After a much enjoyed respite from work, the internet, and the world I've got to make a quick record of our Christmas before it flitters right out of my head.
Let's see. We had plans to visit with Mom's side of the family Christmas Eve, but Lily was bearer of the Holiday Vomit and we all stayed home in quarantine. She was basically fine other than that, but I wasn't about to risk spreading it to all the little ones in the family. And frankly, while I know we missed some really good times and laughs, it was kind of a treat to be home without obligation.
So kids were tucked in bed, gifts were tucked under tree, and I had trouble falling asleep like I always do Christmas Eve. I stress so much during all that wretched holiday shopping that I can't wait to see whether I was a success or dismal failure. Will they be pleased or disappointed? And either way, it's a release, because it's over. Thank heavens it's over. And they all seemed pleased to boot.
I'd post a picture, but Lil had nothing but her underpants on for the whole thing.
Mark was rightfully proud of his gifts to me. After near 7 years of marriage he finally bought me a diamond ring. Of course, this robs me of the opportunity to tease him about that, but at least he can cross that off his list of things to do ever. I've had and worn rings this whole time that were handed down to me by his grandmother, so my teasing was basically moot. They've been better than anything I could've picked out myself. Perfect, really. And I'm not much of a jewelry wearer unless it has some sort of sentimental value, but, but, he'd bought a girl before me a ring, so it was just something I could always rag him on. Soooo now I have a ring instead, and the best part of it for him, aside from silencing me (dang it,) is haggling the store down significantly. The man loves to haggle.
And then to top it all off he offered to go horseback riding with me on the day after Christmas! I'm not sure which was better:the ride or the ring. The day was just about perfect, as far as a winter day for riding goes. It was cold enough that the horses wouldn't be too hot in their winter coats, but warm enough to go without 20 layers of clothes for a change. The ground hadn't thawed completely so the footing was pretty good and the sky was clear. Rapture!Out for 2 1/2 hours. The horses even seemed to enjoy it after a couple months off. Nikki did take a small leap off from the side of the road onto the asphalt without warning me first. Normally she does that over creek crossings so I guess the little ditch looked like a creek to her. I don't know how she didn't slide across the pavement. Definitely woke me up. On the way home she crossed the creek like an old pro, no jumping whatsoever. Go figure. I was so surprised by her gentle crossing that I must have fussed over her for five minutes, congratulating her and petting her. Mark said she looked pretty proud of herself. So it was a perfect ride, as they all are, and as soon as we'd unsaddled and fed the animals it started to rain. It held off until the very last minute.
The men are all off on their after-Christmas camping trip. Fathers, sons, grandfathers, great-grandfathers and the dogs. Up in the mountains with the outhouse. Obscene amounts of red meat and no indoor plumbing.

My dad took the girls overnight to visit my aunt and uncle, so once the boys left I was home alone. I honestly don't know the last time it's happened that I had no husband or child at home. It rarely, rarely ever happens.

First thing I did was fix the pig pen. Seriously. Before he left, Mark found that the massive amounts of rain overnight had caused the creek to flood and knock over part of the fence. He didn't have time to fix it before he left, and he said that he didn't think those particular pigs (there are only 2 out there right now) had the ambition to escape but if I wanted to, I could run a temporary repair of the electric fence with some fiberglass fence posts. Well, ya! Why wouldn't I want to?

Honestly, the weather was so unseasonably warm that I was happy to be outside. I was already junky from doing housework, so I just headed out as I was: in my pajamas. I knew I was going to get muddy. What was the sense in dirtying more clothes ? No sense, I said. I put on my handy dandy Muck boots and got busy. Thank goodness they go up to my knees because I needed every inch of them. And they look awesome with ratty pink flannel pajama pants. I only had to re-route about 20 feet of fence. The hardest part was probably carrying the roll of fence wire. It's smaller than a bag of sugar, but weighs about a hundred pounds. The quicksand was tricky too, but a little fun. Try messing about in a creek and not having fun at the same time. I'm not sure it's possible.

I think my patch job will hold up until Mark returns. It wasn't pretty but the pigs were still there today when I checked on them. Mission accomplished! After that I shoveled two wheelbarrow loads of horse manure out of the barn and into the manure spreader, fed critters, then took a much needed shower.

It took me about 5 hours to get bored and lonely without my family. Darn it! I'd already read the book Mark got me for Christmas (about the Appalachian Trail-loved it!) and didn't have one I was ready to jump in to. I read the paper. I didn't want to clean anymore. Never fails that you only get time to yourself when you don't want it and never get it when you do want it. Finally Dad brought the girls back. We camped out in my room for the night and spent all of today in front of the television. I finally quit beating myself up about it around suppertime. How often do we sit like lumps in front of the tv all day. One day won't warp our brains too much. Will it? The girls wore their pajamas all day until they got a shower after supper and put their pajamas on again. The same pajamas. I don't care. We're going all out. We shared a T-Bone steak, also. I cooked it myself, and it was good.

And that has been the sum of my holidays. Not really, but I'm going to bed now.


Camp Papa said...

Thanks for the post. We wish you all a happy and healthy new year.

Annette said...

What's Mark doing riding MY horse??? I'm sooo jealous.

I'm off to weep now.

Sara said...

Sorry, Annette!

I had to let him comandeer your fuzzy buddy. He offered a ride, and I was a desperate woman.

Desperate I tell you.

Annette said...

Well, considering that Admiral IS Mark's horse, I guess I have no grounds to complain.

But I will pout nonetheless. I'm fairly desperate, too, ya know.