debboamerik: black-and-white cat (Default)
Late summer is a strange time. The weather is more like Los Angeles than the Mid-Atlantic. Days are warm. Nights are cool, breezy, and relatively dry. Some of the trees are just starting to change - including the very top of one maple. I'm worried about my life and the months ahead.

I just received a wonderful email full of great advice from a friend. We've worked together in the past. We have similar backgrounds. I'm amazed that people can see me in such a positive light. I'm grateful to be liked so much as well.

Last night, for reasons that I don't understand, I was overcome with terror when I got off the Metro. I could hardly stand to walk home, and walked as quickly as possible. When I told her about it, [livejournal.com profile] papertigers offered to meet me at White Flint when I get off work tonight. That wouldn't have even occurred to me.

I am lucky to be surrounded by thoughtful people.

Long Day

Jan. 16th, 2010 11:49 pm
debboamerik: black-and-white cat (Mr. Miles)
I went to Aunt Rochelle's* funeral today. I didn't know her well, but it was pretty heartbreaking to see my family so badly hurt. She died quite young (cancer), and she was the first of Grandma Webster's children to die. The funeral service was Cathotist (Catholic service with Baptist preacher doing the eulogy and a Baptist choir singing a couple of songs). The oddest part was when they did the sign of peace (the priest says, "Let us offer each other a sign of peace") and I heard people behind me saying, "What do we do now?" Partly in reply, I said to one, "Peace of Christ," and hugged her. She went on to say, "Peace and grace," and hug the person behind her, which works well enough. (After that, she caught that what I had initially said was "Christ," though I think grace is also an awfully nice thing to wish someone.)

[livejournal.com profile] papertigers's brother S. came quite a long way by public transportation to give her some love and a massage. She had put away most of the Christmas ornaments. We finished undressing the tree and the house; it is all put away now.

Later, [livejournal.com profile] efbq and [livejournal.com profile] scooterbird and their younger daughter came over with games and cake and other amusements for the injured party. They bought us a few groceries and amused us over dinner and dessert, and for the remainder of the evening. They have just left. I was sternly admonished to look after [livejournal.com profile] papertigers. I'm glad there are so many other people who love her.

Tired now; [livejournal.com profile] papertigers has already gone to bed. Good night, all.



*of my DC family, not my birth family
debboamerik: black-and-white cat (Default)
My original intention was to record this Christmas season in its entirety here, but that proved difficult this weekend. Yesterday, we rinsed the henna out of my hair. My hair looks amazing. It's got a rich reddish brown color instead of the dull brown that it had turned because it's been going grey for the past several years. It's also very soft. [livejournal.com profile] papertigers and A. were happy with their work.

We finished watching Swing Time, which contains a pretty horrifying blackface sequence. (A. and I fast-forwarded through the worst of it, but not all - F.A. retains the blackface after the performance sequence is over, since in the plot he rushes straight from the stage into a situation he's trying to avoid). After that, we picked S. up in Gaithersburg and went to the mall to get presents for A., her sister, [livejournal.com profile] scooterbird, and [livejournal.com profile] efbq. We waited to take A. with us because we wanted her to choose something for herself. Teenagers, after all...

I also had my first experience with Rita's, which was fantastic. A. chose my flavor - a mixture of black cherry ice and vanilla custard. Yum.

We then took S. to have linner with [livejournal.com profile] fafou and her newish girlfriend at The Cheesecake Factory. The newish girlfriend is cute and shy and has a sense of humor, and we all rather liked her. We had a relaxed and funny waitress who also made the evening fun. We took S. home after that, and [livejournal.com profile] scooterbird came to pick A. up and bring her home. We gave him his present at that point, which he liked, and we all opened Christmas crackers.

Today, after church, we set the house up for a small but lively group of children. Our guests were: [livejournal.com profile] papertigers's niece E., who is just 6; my nieces A., 12, and L., 8; my nephew D., 11; and J. (3) and H. (1), who are the daughters of some good friends of mine whom I have known for almost a decade. We gave the kids snacks - apples, carrots, spinach dip, cheese, crackers, and corn chips - and talked for a while. Then the kids got to cut out and decorate gingerbread cookies. As usual, we were left with a lot of leftover cookies; the kids always make more than they actually want to take home. They wreaked destruction in the guest room (Legos really do go everywhere) and cleaned it up very nicely. We gave them each a Christmas cracker (they swapped the toys until each kid was satisfied) and sent them home happy and tired. It was fun.
debboamerik: black-and-white cat (Default)
Happy new year, everyone.

I worked today. There were few students, but I hope the ones who were in class got a lot out of it, for all that.

I've been thinking about 2009 as a year ever since [livejournal.com profile] melebeth mentioned something about its not being so good.

She's right. I started the year with a sprained ankle that acted like a fractured ankle. There have been health problems for me and mine - everything from cancer to bad teeth. There have been emotional upheavals. There have been family upheavals. There was even a fire.

Still, I will say that some things have gone well. I've continued to learn just how valuable my friends and (extended) family are. I've learned, too, just how strong the support of my Family-of-Choice is. [livejournal.com profile] papertigers and I have drawn closer together, and (not coincidentally) I have grown a lot less emotionally dependent on her. I have been lucky in many ways. I still have blessings to count when anxiety tries to keep me awake.

Tomorrow, we will continue our Christmas celebrations with [livejournal.com profile] scooterbird and [livejournal.com profile] efbq's oldest, redheaded child. (Though I suppose, at 16, she is almost not a child anymore!)

Tonight, we have a clean house and Christmas carols on the stereo, good food, and cute cats. We are going to have a quiet and relaxed New Year's celebration with just the five of us (two humans, three cats). That is my favorite way to mark the change of the year. I feel good about this. May 2010 be a year of blessings and favors, joy and goodness for everyone who is reading this.
debboamerik: black-and-white cat (Default)
Yesterday was the Actual Day... my birthday. [livejournal.com profile] papertigers gave me the gentlest wakeup ever, covering my face with kisses before heading out the door. I had my favorite cereal (Cap'n Crunch) for breakfast. Then I went to work... where one of my coworkers offered to take me out for coffee or a drink or something in celebration, because she's a very nice person. However, I couldn't go because I had arranged to meet my friend I. for coffee.

We had coffee near his work (he is the parish administrator for a local Episcopal church), talked, and then he gave me a tour of the church, which was built in 1913 and is really beautiful. It is small, with gorgeous stained-glass windows, a European-style choir, and walls and ceilings of dark polished wood.

I did some shopping and then went home, where I cleaned the house a bit. [livejournal.com profile] papertigers came home, bringing with her: [livejournal.com profile] dindin; a bouquet of hybrid calla lillies; and a bag of veggie Pirate's Booty. She proceeded to make mojitos (with a little help from me) and fajitas (with even less help from me). After dinner, we ate the red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting that she made from scratch. I opened presents from my maternal grandparents ($25 and a Target gift card), paternal grandfather (the usual $100), and parents (Trader Joe's gift card and a wonderful surprise). We listened to Revolver while taking [livejournal.com profile] dindin home. [livejournal.com profile] papertigers cuddled me to sleep.

My birthday continues until the Renaissance Festival on Sunday. Today, I got (from [livejournal.com profile] papertigersvolume 2 of a 2-volume set of children's literature that I'd gotten as a kid from my Uncle Jim, who owned a bookstore. Volume 2 had been lost some time ago, and I had been sad, since it was by far the better volume of the two. Now it is restored to its rightful place on the bookshelves. I have a thoughtful girlfriend.

A pleasing birthday overall.

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