must... wrap... presents... can't... find... tape... too... much... eggnog... hang... one... last... ornament... drowning... in... wrapping... paper... send... elves... for... backup...
i was up far far too late last night, actually into the wee hours of the morning, wrapping gifts that, as it turns out, i spent far too much money on. [editorial note: the grammarian in me still winces when i end a sentence with a preposition, altho the dictionary assures me that it's not inherently wrong, and it does sound more like me when i speak.] it makes me really mad at myself that once again, i've fucked up my budget by pissing thru my entire paycheck in three days. it's not like i'm Donald Trump, but it's no small feat. so i'm feeling widgety and cranky about that. the upside is that i did in fact finish *all* of my shopping, and am quite happy with the presents i found. okay, so i did spend stupid amounts of money at Cardullo's the other day. it was fun, tho. this always happens. i get the big gifts, then go haywire with the stocking stuffers. i swear, i must spend more on the stockings than the rest of the presents.
is it a sign of my age that i'm actually thinking of joining one of those Christmas clubs, where you set aside a little money each month to fund the end-of-year excess? that just seems very old fogey-ish. right up there with wanting to get a new slipcover for the sofa.
alright, so i'm broke. flat broke. flat fucking broke. and i don't get paid again until the end of the month. this is crazy-making. it's especially aggravating because it's all my own doing. no one said that i had to shop like a mad woman and put my shoulder out again schlepping all the goodies home. somewhere along the line, i set some pretty high internal standards for myself, and it damn near kills me to meet them.
so why not lighten up, francis? [a phrase from many years ago...] chill out and just enjoy the season. don't stress about getting the perfect thing for every single person in your life. just spend some quality time with them, and give them the treat of your charming presence. [whoops, forgot to put the sarcasm tags on that last bit!]
apparently, this is easier said than done. no matter how much i fight it, i end up channelling my nemesis, Martha Frickin' Stewart. i think my deep-seated abhorrence of her stems from the fact that i truly fear becoming her. no joke. really and truly, one of her in this universe is enough. don't you think? i mean, how many people do we need explaining to us how to guild the turkey carcass to make the Perfect Holiday Centerpiece? one is one too many.
...ahem. okay, we're back from that little segue. where was i? oh, yeah... flat flippin' broke. and i want to get some sympathy from friends, but all of us are in the same place this time of year. it feels particularly wrong to mention it to honey, who is possibly about to be in precarious straits himself, as there doesn't appear to be a rescuing angel for his company appearing on the horizon. and you know what i want to do to make myself feel better? you guessed it. retail therapy. or going out to dinner. or a manicure. now, i'm not a mall rat by *any* stretch of the imagination. i hate shopping, mostly. and i like cooking dinner at home. i'm a good cook, and it's nice to pull together a satisfying meal. and the manicure? please. i'm so not that femme. but... when the moths come fluttering out of the wallet, these are the things i want. we always seem to want the things we can't have, eh?
as for the holiday plans, it appears to be shaping up that i'll be homeless on Christmas day, but will get to see everyone the day before. mom is just struggling with the holidays, and i feel really badly for her. the idea of people staying there just makes her crazy, to coin a highly inappropriate phrase. but she seems to be alright with the idea of us stopping by during the day. so, down to see the family on Christmas Eve day, back up here for Christmas Eve, and off to some kind shelter on Christmas Day. it will be kind of nice not to have to drive hours on Christmas. and i'll have a chance to go to services, possibly even a midnight service. while i'm not a particularly 'religious' person, in that i don't think going to church every week makes you a better person (so i don't go), i do enjoy going to the Christmas services and singing all my favorite carols, seeing the church all dressed up, and celebrating with others. depending on when i get back up here, maybe, possibly i could be so lucky as to see my best friend and her family Christmas Eve. they have a wonderful tradition of listening to Dylan Thomas read A Child's Christmas in Wales every year, and i love hearing him paint word pictures as we cozy up in front of the fireplace. and sweetie and i are going to do a little somethin' somethin' just for us at some point this weekend. i've already got his stocking stuffed to the gills, hanging up by the holiday shrub. i may get a chance to hang out with his family some part of the day, which i'd really enjoy. huh. sounds like i'm looking forward to this in spite of myself. maybe i can actually get over all the damn standards and money crap, and just soak in the holiday spirit.