brief snapshots in time. memories and thoughts. disorganized and random.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

no pain, no gain?

what a crazy twelve months it has been. as each year comes to an end, I tend to think back over the things that have happened. review.

a year ago at this time I was still with NowEx. I thought we were happy together. he bailed on our New Years' Eve plans. I should have known then.

over the year there were various high points and low points.

New Years' Eve spent with new and old friends.

dinner with friends telling me they're knocked up.

ski trips to Winter Park with college friends that were spent on the slopes and in the ER and another with work friends.

guilty kisses with a friend, because although NowEx was gone, I didn't yet want to believe it.

the foolishness I felt when I finally let myself believe it.

ski trips to Breckenridge with friends and family. as many ski days as my back could take.

reconnecting with great freinds from the past.

trips to Hawaii for friends' weddings... yes, twice in one year. and a few other weddings, close to home.

celebrating with good friends as they finished Master's and PhD's.

throwing baby and bridal showers for friends. attending more showers and traveling to crazy Vegas bachelorette parties. and a low key mountain bachelorette weekend.

more doctor and physical therapy visits than I'd like to remember. one ER visit for myself, and, yes, that's a good thing.

jury duty and court cases.

plays and musicals and movies on the plaza. and the annual ski movie, but this year with an old friend, instead of NowEx.

pool parties and ice luges. margarita fiestas and Colorado native parties. halloween party hopping and football games. and friends in town for visits.

girls' nights and photographer's slide shows.

five first kisses. first kisses that turned into more. first kisses that didn't. and one first kiss, with hope for more.

getting back to writing, pottery class and a triathlon. and making incredible new friends in the process.

crazy trips to a music festival and towards a hurricane. reminders of other storms. and a tribute show of a friend.

beer festival turning into a run-in with the past.

a road trip with the most amazing woman I know.

excellent shows including:
BHTM2, the Nadas, U2, Glen Phillips, Keb Mo, John Hiatt and the North Mississippi Allstars, Mark Knopfler, the Fray2, Marc Cohn and Suzanne Vega, the Killers, Jonny Lang, Gipsy Kings, Jack Johnson, Tom Petty and the Black Crowes, DMB2, the Decemberists*, Paul McCartney, and of course my friend's band, many times.
other not-so-excellent shows including:
Hello Dave, Jewel, Maroon 5, TMBG, Madelleine Peyroux...
(um, yeah, you know about my little problem, right?)

and linking some off these "events" had me reading through posts of non-specific days. of many wonderful dinners with friends. of quality family time. of hanging out with TheDog. of the tribulations I perceived this year. even my silly "woe is single me" laments.

and after reviewing the events and non-specific things of the past year, something I know, but that seems to slip through the memory cracks on occasion, came back to me. I remembered that life is about moments, not events. the little things are truly those that matter.

and despite some pain along the way, the moments add up to an amazing year of wonderful memories shared with my incredible friends and family, and, of course, TheDog!

hope your 2005 was filled with love and laughter! Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

could things be falling into place?

I changed into the pjs. I lay down and put the ear plugs in. I pulled the blanket up and closed my eyes.

a short while later a voice asked if I was alright. I was. I had a positive attitude. then the noises started. the whirring and clicking. the beeping and clunking.

as I lay there trying to ignore the noise, I thought about my ruined plans for the weekend. and what I might do instead. I thought about the super response earlier. and whether it was sarcastic or sincere. and I thought about the errands I needed to run to make use of my Christmas present.

and then it was time to get up. I got dressed and waited for the images.

then I hurried home to feed TheDog and grab my new skis to dress them for the weekend (hopefully).

I stood in front of the boots. I wasn't sure which ones would fit. then up walks Jack. he fits me with a great boot. then while we're waiting for them to warm up to thermal mold, he goes to get the bindings I know I want.

they're out. so he quickly rings me up while I work the hot boots to mold to my feet so I can head to their other store. I make it just in time to pick up the bindings.

and even though I still have to take all the gear back tomorrow to have the bindings mounted, I should have my new gear in case I can head up the hill this weekend.

as I was driving back and forth I heard a familiar voice. and although he wasn't actually talking to me, just hearing his voice made me smile. and made me hope our earlier exchange ended with sincerity, not sarcasm.

to pass the time while driving, I also made a few calls. and may have found a few ways around the broken pipe that ruined the weekend plans in the first place.

so, if the images come out as I hope they do, perhaps next year will be a good one or at least start that way. I guess only time will tell.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

the stockings were hung by the chimney with care

Christmas morning we awoke to a brilliantly sunny blue-sky day. we got the big bird stuffed and in the oven. too bad in our tired state we didn't realize until a few hours later that although it was on, it wasn't working.

luckily my grandma's house is close by, so the turkey took a short trip to a working oven. a small delay, but there are days that can't be ruined no matter what happens. days filled with love and laughter and joyous moments.

my adorable niece playing with each present as she unwrapped it. her little sister smiling at the lights on the tree. the herd of dogs chasing a log in the yard. everyone happy and together. well, mostly.

my grandma decided not to make the trip this year. she's not feeling well. I missed her terribly. but I know she has a wonderful group of friends to keep her company on Christmas. we all talked to her on the phone. but it wasn't quite the same.

although it would have been better had my grandma been with us, everyone enjoyed the day. the (really late) dinner, the gifts that were (eventually) unwrapped, the (chaotic) gathering of family.

I most enjoyed watching my niece play with her new toys. she's finally old enough to enjoy it all. I was happy that my sister's face lit up when she unwrapped her gift. and even my impossible-to-buy-for brother looked pleased.

I didn't even mind when the topic of conversation turned to teasing me about my single status. only my sister knows of the kiss a few weeks ago. only she knows how excited I am about the smallest possibility of potential there.

I would love to tell the rest of my family, but not unless something becomes of it. otherwise next gathering all I'll hear is what ever happened to that guy you were so excited about?

so for now I'm content to spend the holidays surrounded by people I love. someday, I hope I can count an amazing guy among those. but for now, I'm happy to have my family, TheDog, and my new skis.

Monday, December 26, 2005

'twas the night before Christmas

and all through the house
every creature was stirring...

after rooting on the home team with good friends on Christmas Eve, I hurried home. (actually my parents' home, but for the holidays, that is home.)

as soon as I arrived, my brother (the only other one of us not currently required to do significant other things), my parents and I had a mellow Christmas Eve dinner. then my brother headed home, and my mom and I got to work.

in my family, for as long as I can remember, I've been the wrapping elf. and the toast-bread-for-stuffing elf.

so, as my mom began the Christmas dinner preparations, I wrapped. and wrapped. and wrapped some more. then after another whisper - hand incident (where ER visits were considered, but not taken), I was rendered relatively useless for various chores.

so we talked my dad into toasting. (amazing, since he's always an early-to-bed elf on Christmas Eve.) and I somewhat lamely continued to wrap.

although it was far too late, finally the elves retired for the night...

Friday, December 23, 2005

there's no place like home for the holidays

now that it's found me, the Christmas spirit just won't go away.

while shopping today, white paint was splattered by the feirce wind all over my black car. I laughed. I told the guy parked in front of me that I was sorry he was parked by me, as these things always happen to me. his frown changed. he laughed. we wished each other good luck with the paint removal and happy holidays.

so instead of wrapping up my shopping, I hurried to the car wash to be sure I didn't get a new paint job for Christmas. after checking to be sure there were no more unwanted polka dots, I resumed my shopping. finishing most of it in time to meet J for our sort of traditional Christmas Eve Eve dinner out. another fabulous dinner over wine.

on my way home from dinner, I decided to stop by the old standby, Target, to try to fill in a few gaps in my purchases. as I wandered the aisles seeing families searching for presents I was taken back, many years.

my mom and aunt took us to Duckwalls every year. the four of us kids and my one cousin. one at a time we would stand at the front of the store with my aunt, as my mom took the rest of us around the store to pick out the perfect present for the one marooned at the front of the store.

funny how I remember the fun shopping excursions much more vividly than any present I received as a result. it was acceptable sneaking around. acceptable secret keeping. and we were all there together.

I still love the fun in finding the perfect gift for my brothers or sister. love watching their face light up as they unwrap something they truly love.

so far I'm happy with what I've found for everyone except my siblings-in-law. they may not like their presents as much as the rest of the family does. I think that goes with not knowing them as well. but it's too late now. the presents are (mostly) wrapped.

tomorrow, as soon as the orange crushes the black, I'll head home. trunk packed full of turkey, ham, presents, and love. TheDog lounging in the back seat. I always look forward to going home for Christmas, even if this year it's only for a day or two.

I hope everyone's holidays are filled with love and laughter!
Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

may your days be merry and bright

despite a runaway dog, the flu, impossible work deadlines, and flaky friends. despite the fact that I have many presents left to buy, and won't get to it until tomorrow. despite ruined New Year's plans. I've managed to find Christmas again.

listening to my xmas iTunes folder has helped. with everyone from Elvis to The Fray to the Smashing Pumpkins adding to the cheer. then there's the fact that as soon as I get word back on a report and sign it, I'm out of here!

besides, runaway dog* was found (although not feeling well, due to too much dumpster diving). the flu has begun to move on. and non-flaky friends are still going with me to listen to a friend's band tonight.

in the last few days I've also managed to treat a friend to a belated birthday dinner, and have a few drinks and play foosball with a friend in town for the holidays.

and so, I hope all of you have found your holiday spirit.

Happy Holidays!

* not my dog, a dog I'm watching for a friend of a friend

Monday, December 19, 2005

need a little Christmas now

it's amazing what a kind word from a relative stranger can do. to start the day off, he simply asked if I had a hot date this weekend. I laughed. he said he wasn't trying to be funny, he just assumed I would.

then to color my drive into work, the sun shone orange through the snow-covered trees over the lake. turning to find the pink sun glinting off the snow-capped peaks.

an apology. a long, but productive day. kind wishes from many of you. friends thanking me for hosting a great party. a waggin' tail greeting home. time to actually cook dinner. channel surfing to a sappy holiday movie.

hope returns, even though the expectations are lowered. I won't trust again as easily. I can't believe again, just yet.

the holiday spirit snuck back in. perhaps helped by the holiday potluck at work. or the cards waiting in the mail. or the twinkling tree I got to truly enjoy for the first time.

or perhaps it's just optimism that a simple you too might have been sincere.

grown a little sadder, grown a little older,
and I need a little angel sitting on my shoulder...
need a little music, need a little laughter...

Sunday, December 18, 2005

I'll have a blue Christmas...

apparently I'm gullible.

I believe that people are good. I believe they say what they mean. I believe people don't intentionally hurt others. I believe that friendships last.

yes, I have even always been one of those sappy people that believes in the spirit of the holiday season. that it brings out the best in people. I'm beginning to think that may be the furthest thing from the truth.

maybe I shouldn't believe these things. maybe I'm a terrible judge of character.

some people are not good. some people lie, often. some people will intentionally hurt others if it's easier. some people use than discard friends like old newspapers.

I believed in a friend. I trusted. completely. I never imagined that opening up, believing, could rip open such a hole.

I feel naive. foolish. gullible. and very far removed from my normal happy holiday self.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Frosty the Snowman

so apparently it's not the writing about these things that jinxes them. perhaps it's just my not-so-good luck that does the trick. yes, despite a fun night out last week. then a quick call over the weekend. nothing else happened. no call. no e-mail. (yes, although they were promised.) nothing.

oh, well. at least I have my girls. yes, this is another I love my friends story.

another hilarious girls' night out in last night where we iced and decorated snowflakes, trees, gingerbread men and snowmen. we listened to the cheesy easy-listening station, since they're playing 24/7 Christmas music.

we happened upon a bottle of wine in my collection. it was one of those that sparks a memory.

we had been talking about guys, particularly the lack of anyone fantastic in my life. (most of the rest of the girls are married or dating someone.) we touched on the current lack of appropriate follow-up. then they somehow moved on to my ex. how he was never worthy. (thanks for letting me know that you thought that then.)

literally in the middle of this topic of conversation we grabbed this bottle of wine. it was my birthday present from him. I was instructed to save it for when he cooked me dinner.

so, last night the girls decided no time like the present to drink it. it was horrible. and I am absolutely not exaggerating.

we all laughed. figures.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

can help to make the season bright

I know, I know, and I don't have much to say tonight, either... except that it's awesome that I got more Christmas cards today from blogging friends than friends I know in real life. you guys are great!

and the one thing I really want to write about, I can't. I'm worried I'll jinx myself if I do.

I really want something to work out, that isn't right now. and I don't know what to do about it. but I do know every time I write about things such as this, they never work out. that is why I'm being so vague.

in the meantime, I hope everyone is much further along in their holiday preparations than I am. being as besides the tree, I've done nothing. still.

Monday, December 12, 2005

deck the halls

the lights are twinkling. the ornaments twist gently on their hooks. the tree is trimmed. the stockings are hung. I can't even describe how much I love just watching the lights. I feel truly at home. almost as if we were all on my parents' couch, waiting to open our Christmas Eve present of pjs.

pulling out the ornaments tonight. the memories snuck in. the bows and glass balls that I bought for my very first grown-up tree when I couldn't afford anything else. the ornaments my mom bought for me, after realizing I had nothing but glass balls and bows on my tree. and the needlepoint ornament my grandma made for me.

I used to think my mom was a bit of a nutcase when she'd tear up while we decorated the tree. now I think I understand. the ornaments my sister and I bought together when we first moved in together after she was done with college and I with grad school. and the one she gave me last year after she got married and moved out.

the ornaments that were presents from friends. the ornaments created amidst wine and the laughter of friends. and of course the ornaments chewed with love by TheDog last year, after ten Christmas trees left completely alone.

each decoration a memory of Christmases past. a few new to mark this Christmas. each adding a little bit of cheer. each a reminder of all the wonderful things the holiday season is really about.

and as I sit and admire the lights glinting off the ornaments, I have decided to try and remember this contentment when I'm stuck in holiday traffic or cramming most of my shopping into a few hours.

after a great night out last week, a fun weekend hanging out with close friends, and a little sentimental tree-trimming tonight, I think I've finally found my elusive holiday spirit.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

friends who are dear to us, gather near to us

party(ing) with my work "family". coffee with a friend I've known for decades. starting my Christmas shopping with a new friend. dinner and (too many) drinks with a college friend in town for the weekend. cookie exchanges and hanging out with another dear friend. those are a few of the things that kept me too busy over the weekend to decorate my still-bare Charlie Brown tree.

tomorrow. really. it's all planned. I'm buying cider on the way home from work (along with some working lights). turning up the Christmas carols. and trimming my tree. and nothing short of an extremely intriguing invitation will keep me from it...

Friday, December 09, 2005

all I want for Christmas...

had a fun-filled night out last night with my instigator friend. although at the time I was worried what she was up to, she said not to worry. she was doing it for my own good.

I still don't know exactly what was said, but I do know that we had a great time at the show. and afterward. and I woke up grinning this morning, after sleeping in for the first time in weeks.

and tonight I'll be hanging out with my work "family" similarly to how I hang out with my real one. just me. while they all have their significant others accounted for. and you know what? I'm completely fine with that.

happy even. no date to worry about entertaining. or making a fool of myself in front of. or trying to head off stories that might be told by my work friends.

and I won't feel lonely. because I know who I would want to take. it's just not the right time. perhaps soon it will be.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

think of all the fellas that I haven't kissed

my coworkers are forcing my hand. the office holiday party is tomorrow. I wasn't going to take a date, since I haven't had one anytime recently. when my friends at work found that out, they all decided that was a great opportunity to party for free with a friend. I had four offers of a "set-up" yesterday.

I'd much rather take my own friend or a gwp*, then have to sit with someone I don't know and make small talk. particularly this week, when I'm so tired I can barely string together a sentence.

BikeBoy called last night and we chatted for a while. after we hung up, I realized I should have just asked him. or maybe I should ask my friend who missed the chance to grab drinks with me last week. I suppose I could if I talk to him tonight at the show.

I'm not sure if I want to ask either one. if I worked in a different company, where the holiday party was a boring night out with a hundred people you see everyday, but aren't close to, I'd take either in a second.

but my company is like a family. I have great friends there. in fact I sincerely like everyone I work with most days. (yes, I complain sometimes, but that's about managing and workload, not about the people.) whoever I take will get the third degree. the risk of stories being told that I'd rather wouldn't be is too great.

before the work crunch of the last few weeks, I was thinking I could take one of my guy friends. but most of them have significant others that likely wouldn't be too excited I was borrowing their man. or I could take a girlfriend, but they, apparently, have lives of their own.

and even if a friend could go, I'd rather take a real date. I just don't have one this year. why is it so incomprehensible that I would go without a date? sure I'll be the only one in the company there without one, but is that so bad?

I've been good this year, maybe I should ask santa for a real date. (no, not with him, with a guy who's around more than one night a year.)

* gwp - guy with potential

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

baby, it's cold outside

it's three below. according to the car. and the car usually reads a few degrees warm.

yesterday it snowed. cold snow. tiny flakes.

today will be beautiful. blue skies. and a balmy ten degrees for a high.

perhaps tomorow I'll have to *cough* *cough* call in. then hit the slopes. afterall, it dumped in the mountains. and it's supposed to get a tad warmer after today.

ah, my deluded working-too-hard dreams. I know I'll be here, chained to my desk, at least through Friday. but can't a girl dream?

Monday, December 05, 2005

o tannenbaum

my Christmas tree arrived today. it was special-ordered and delivered. it's a little Charlie Brown. but TheDog helped pick it out, so it's perfect.

every year since my sister and I moved to Denver, she from the south and I from the north, we've gone together. we've taken TheDog and traipsed through the snow and picked out our tree.

when she got married last year, that didn't change. we still went to get trees together last year. we were supposed to go yesterday. I couldn't. I had too much work to do.

so while she and her husband and both of the pups braved the cold to find our trees. I stayed warm, inside, drinking steaming hot coffee and staring at my computer screen.

it's sad. my beautiful, bare tree stares at me. begging for lights and ornaments. but I have more work to do. and after the report is finalized I have a show to go to, and a party to attend. so, the decorating will have to wait until this weekend.

but then I plan to turn on the Christmas music, sing aloud (hopefully not scaring TheDog too much), and deck the halls. the holidays are around the corner, and soon I'll be able to enjoy the holiday spirit.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

and miles to go before I sleep

I drank way too much this weekend. so much so that I'm shaking a little now.

no, it's not what you're thinking. I only had one beer and one martini. (although Friday night a few more might have been advised.) what I am trying to say is that I'm entirely over-caffeinated.

and my over-caffeinated brain seems to have a bit of an attention span issue (which is not helping me get work done). random thoughts popping in and out of my head constantly. mostly inconsequential randomness. but something popped that made me realize something. a little something I'd mostly forgotten about.

the events of the weekend helped bring about the memory. a missed meeting Friday night. a few conversations over the weekend. and the realization that the pesky culprit, bad-timing, may have messed up things, yet again. I think there was even some mention of star-crossed in the apology.

part of our conversation reminded me of when we first met. reminded me that we exchanged numbers once before. and although he never called back then, I still might have called him had my last boyfriend not been in the picture. so along with a few other meetings, this one might have been different if I had the foresight to end things with the ex when I should have. if the timing had been different.

for now I'm not banking on hanging out with him anytime soon. I admit, I was excited to see him this weekend. but there was only a nebulous "call me later if you're out and want to meet up" that ended the apology conversation. no concrete "let's find some time soon to get together" as I had hoped.

for now, he's just a good friend. and honestly I'm happy that he is. more might be great, but it might not be. maybe someday we'll find out, maybe not. for now friendship works for me, hopefully it does for him, too. I think I'd still be open to more, but if he's not sure, I'd rather we continue as friends than start something that one of us doesn't really want.

Friday, December 02, 2005


interesting advice and words of wisdom have been spoken in my general direction lately. perhaps it's just that I'm listening more. or that the words seem more relevant to me right now.

from a friend: work hard, play harder.

and another: remember that life is short and no job is worth killing yourself over.

from a coworker: you can always find another job, it's not as easy to find another

the old standard: all work and no play makes rg a dull girl.

from one of my bosses, of all people: there's always time
to make room for life. work can wait.

also from my boss: you can sleep when you're dead.

random man in front of me in line at the caffeine addict shop after the guy behind the counter asked if I still had my job: if you're working this hard for them, they'd be crazy to let you go.

and just a few more jems:

it's all about balance.

will you remember missing a deadline and the disapproval of your boss in 10 years, or will you remember the time you spent with friends?

what happens when you drop your laptop and have nothing?

and so, to all those who have relayed to me these nuggets of "truth," thank you. but have to interject a few clarifications, first.

I want to sleep now, not just when I'm dead (anyone remember how George Costanza had his under-desk nap area arranged?). I'm not dull, even when I'm working. while the job may be killing me slowly, I sure am not to the point of killing myself over anything. and I backed up my laptop last weekend, so I only lose a week, not everything.

so, after one more crazy day, there will be light at the end of the tunnel. granted, much of that will be from the burning midnight oil as I finish up the now late report over the weekend. but my friends and family are taking priority, well, they will be, starting at 5 tonight.