Alternachicks - where's the thread to tell you that I've finished my Christmas shopping?

12-09-2002, 03:17 PM
Yes. I have pretty much finished. The kids are done. I just have my mom and dad and MIL left. My feet are KILLING me!!
I think I must have surely burned off another 500 calories shopping. I think I also burned about 500 bucks.
I need a drink.

Please tell me what you're serving for Christmas dinner. I need inspiration. Last year I balked and made chicken in white wine crepes. I really don't want to cook a turkey... any wise words?


12-09-2002, 03:22 PM
Going to mothers for dinner. We usually have turkey and sometimes roast beef too. I think I will make sweet potatoes to take out, and maybe a low cal desert.

12-09-2002, 03:23 PM
We are making a Ham with scalloped potatoes and mixed veg for Christmas day. My parents aren't big turkey people. My Mum is making the sherry trifle-it ain't Christmas without the trifle! :T

We are making the turkey (DH gets a free one from work) on Boxing day with all the usual trimmings and pie for dessert as we are having a few friends over to help us eat it.

Cripes! That means that I am entertaining three days in a row :eek: Thank goodness DH is doing a lot of the cooking!

I have half my gifts bought, the liquor store run is done, a third of the groceries are done.

12-09-2002, 04:01 PM
Could you tell an ignorant, non-Canadian what "Boxing Day" is all about?? Do I need gloves? ;)

PS...I'm done shopping for what needs to be mailed, AND mailed them...whew! Kinda halfway done with kids...still need to shop for nieces/nephews, my parents, brothers and sister and their families, bake, get a tree, decorate it, finish house decorations, send cards...

...uh, yeah, I'm almost done!

12-09-2002, 05:11 PM
I think it started in Britain or Europe. Boxing day was the day after Christmas and you were supposed to box up food and clothing and go about distributing it to the poor.

Don't quote me on this though :lol:

12-09-2002, 06:34 PM
DH's stuff to get and doggie gifts and that will be IT! Wrapping and mailing is waaaaaay behind. It may be a Purolator Christmas!

sydney veggie girl
12-09-2002, 09:26 PM
I too am almost finished the dreaded christmas shopping. I would rather give gifts through the year when i find stuff for people rather than searching for something just for the sake of it but thats life.

AS for what we have for Christmas day, hmmmmm well cause its Summer here and gets really hot usually most of the time its all cold stuff like ham, salads, huge fruit platters. Some years we do large seafood platters, were not into the hot lunch or dinner mainly due to the heat but hey if it was winter there would be heaps of stuff to make.

As Im vegie I wouldn't make ham or seafood but would probalby make salads, maybe a nut loaf with gravy and other stuff.

Hope everyone understands what Ive written im not really with it today.


12-09-2002, 09:38 PM
I am not done with shopping at all - you all are very impressive & well organized!

I have done the girlies' stockings (the 6 year old tells me she knows it isn't Santa, Santa isn't real - no one told her, she says, she just figured it out). I have got most of their presents but need to get them a few books too.

DH and I will probably give each other stockings too, and maybe buy each other some books together so we can get just what we like. I have not really done anything much towards this end. Nor have I shopped successfully for the rest of the family. I HAVE staggered around several stores in my usual amnesiac glazed state thinking "Now why the **** did I come in here anyway?" - very productive indeed!

Christmas cards are not done at all - we'll be lucky to have finished those in February!

We will get a tree in as soon as we manage to take down the balloons from last month's birthday revels (Two down, two to go!).

We are probably eating turkey, stuffing, veggies and pumpkin pie and plum pudding.

One child has requested Yorkshire pudding (I finally guessed after she said you know Mom, those brown things, from last year, they're really good! Darling, I can hardly remember what we ate last week, never mind last YEAR! I said cheerfully. But we sorted it out in the end!) so perhaps roast beast is in the offing.

I am not big on meat so I'd prefer turkey. So probably turkey and Yorkshire pudding, plus whatever else I said!


12-09-2002, 11:46 PM
I am done shopping. My dad needs help w/ one gift. Cards were all mailed out today. I will wrap sometime this week. Dinner on Xmas Eve is going to be Prime Rib. I will not be partaking. It makes my gall bladder hurt. I will enjoy the side dishes. I think Christmas day will be an easy kid friendly dinner. We will all be beat. Dad works that night, bf works first thing in the morning. Maybe a chicken in the crock pot with some baked potatos and green salad. Not festive, yummy and everyone will eat. Or maybe shredded chicken tacos with ff refried beans. Yum, that sounds even better. ~flower

12-10-2002, 07:47 AM
Yum! I will be dropping 'round to each of your homes at Christmas. So don't be surprised if you see a pudgy woman on your doorstep with a big messy bun and a beam on her face.

Kat, are "ignorant" and "non-Canadian" synonymous? :lol: I think Mauvais is right about Boxing day. And something about emptying the church boxes to help the less fortunate. All I know is that it's DH's birthday, damnit. What a time to have a baby.

One of gifts we got the kids this year is an audio book each. I bought a Roald Dahl for our six year old, and .... I forget what I picked up for our 13 year old. She's still sleeping in her brother's room because of the "suicide thing", and they're both very comfortable in there. And they occasionally listen to audio tapes at night together when they're tucked into their beds.
Anyway, we usually borrow the tapes from the library. I had no idea how expensive they are to buy!! The one for my daughter was 60 bucks!!

I've convinced mom to make steak and kidney pie for their family dinner. She makes a wicked one! I wonder if I could convince her to make Yorkshire puddings on the side. Lidian, we make ours in muffin cups... do you make one big one?

12-10-2002, 11:46 AM
Hi Ellis! We make our in muffin cups too - last time we used Jamie Oliver's recipe off the Food Network site (using mucho oil in muffin cups) but they did not turn out as high and spectacular as the ones on TV (of course he always makes it look so easy!).

I have also made toad in the hole (sausages in Yorkshire pudding batter, basically) in a single pan but it doesn't rise enough (when I make it!). I think the idea is getting the pan and drippings/oil really hot before you bung in the batter.

Toad in the hole, what a name! My DH (the Marmite-loving Brit) likes it but he doesn't get it too often cuz it has about a million grams of fat in it. I used to make steak and kidney pie for him long ago (a great idea for Christmas dinner, BTW) but that was when I was 15 years younger, less grey and had no children!


12-10-2002, 12:11 PM
You know, I've never had toad-in-the-hole. I wonder if it's a snob thing on my parents' part... must ask them. It sounds really good. :D
That reminds me... we have a tradition that I started several years ago. I'm always up first, and I make popovers for breakfast. We eat them with butter before opening our gifts. It just wouldn't be Xmas without my popovers! Oh... and they're low-fat, too! (sans butter)
Lidian... do you ever make Cornish pasties? Den? Mauvais? Ruth?
HEY!! Maybe THAT'S what I should make! I could even make them ahead of time and freeze them. Everyone loves them.

12-10-2002, 12:28 PM
Hi Ellis, Nope, I've never made Cornish pasties though I used to offer to make em (when I was younger/kinder/childless!). DH does not like them for some reason. He does like Melton Mowbray pie (raised pork pie) but you can buy these. My MIL makes a pork and hard boiled egg pie that is brilliant but I can't do this sort of thing! If I cook at all I like baking (bread, cookies, muffins!) - North American stuff!

I will make mincemeat tarts though, at Christmas. DH eats them with brandy butter (i.e. hard sauce in my native language!)


12-10-2002, 05:19 PM
NOPE!! One of my relatives makes a ton at a time and freezes them. Wish she'd give ME some!! I love 'em!! We have a place locally that sells homemade Pasties, but it is expensive.

It is funny how you get used to cooking certain things and others seem difficult. My Grannie (English) LOVES my muffins, and they seem so easy to me, but some of the stuff SHE thinks is easy seems hard to me. Actually she can't really cook much anymore. Last time my Mom went I sent a bunch of muffins in her suitcase!!!!

12-10-2002, 08:13 PM
I make my yorkshire pudding in a muffin tin too! I like them that way and everyone gets their own individual one. I think the trick is to put the oil in the muffin tin and then pop it into a preheated oven. Then you have to wait and watch carefully until the oil gets really hot, then you pull the rack out and drop the batter in and shove the tray back in.

My mum used to make cornish pasties before my dad became a vegetarian. She still occasionally makes steak and sausage pie and sausage rolls (which she is making for Christmas Eve:T )

I have only made cornish pasties once or twice. I should try to make a batch and freeze them-they would be great for lunches-better than frozen pizza pockets anyday! :lol:

One of my favorite dishes my Mum makes is "mince and doughballs" it is a stew made with hamburger meat, diced carrots and potatoes, onions and seasonings. The doughballs (made with flour, milk, butter and baking soda) are basically dumplings but you put them in the stew pot halfway through cooking so that they cook right in the gravy! :T Darn! Now I'm hungry, maybe I'll call my Mum....:chin:

12-10-2002, 09:19 PM
Ellis my dear, the folks around here are lucky these days if I make them spaghetti or open a can of soup!:lol:

If I spend a lot of time cooking something or making Cornish pasties etc, my darling girls would taste them and then say (in contemplative, sad, polite chorus): Gee thanks Mooomm, I like it but...I don't really LIKE it. (They are very sweet & honest!)

I have a friend who says when you cook for children, you should just show them the dinner and throw it out cuz that's where it's going to end up anyway!:lol:

On occasion I will make spicy Indian curried lentils because my youngest likes them & so do I - go figure! She likes bean soup too which we call 'beanie soup' (goes with 'greenie peas')!

My eldest would be pleased to live on buttered toast and cocoa, but she will eat a few other items. She likes salad, which is good, and chicken, and pasta & pizza. Not that you all wanted to know!

I have had to tell myself that what I eat has nothing to do with what the rest of them eat. DH can (& will, bless his cotton socks!) eat just about anything. Course, he does get to go out for lunch a few times a week so he doesn't have it so bad!

Mauvais, I never heard of mince & doughballs (my goodness!) but I'll bet my MIL has (she is British, just like DH, not surprisingly). I have heard of suet pudding. DH played the role of one in a school play, I think.


12-10-2002, 11:59 PM
Lidian, I'm the same with cooking. If DH comes home to a prepared dinner twice a week he's lucky.
Probably if I didn't receive so many darned complaints about dinner I'd make it more often.
My six year old loves broccoli. And parmesean cheese sandwiches. :rolleyes: That's about it.
I keep a big stock of frozen perogies, Betty Crocker mashed potatoes, and chicken breasts (deboned and skinned). And pasta. I LOVE looking at recipes, but I'm just not interested enough to get it together to actually MAKE something! :lol:

12-11-2002, 11:14 AM
Me too, Ellis! I love to collect cookbooks and read them while sitting or lying comfortably, but I'll be darned if I'm going to get up and do anything about it...

My mom was just like this too. In my younger, more ambitious days I used to think why doesn't she cook more if she likes cookbooks so much? And now I understand.

I love the Food Network too - especially Good Eats & Iron Chef!

Cutting up three heads of lettuce on Sunday just about did me in on the cooking front. But I may make pancakes this evening for the girls. Minimum effort, freeze most of them, rave reviews.

Mind you I also get rave reviews for boxed mac & cheese - oh Mom, they say, how did you make it so GOOD? Took it out of the box, sweetheart, I say modestly (looking up from Julia Child), and threw it in the nearest pot!



12-11-2002, 11:39 AM
Oh! What a good idea with the pancakes! Except I can't make them without burning them. I DO make a wicked crepe, though.
DH makes pancakes for the children every Sunday. Bribery before he takes them to church. :D

I have a wicked recipe for REAL mac and cheese, but the kids don't like it. Go figure. :rolleyes: Only the boxed will do.

12-11-2002, 11:41 AM
So would I be correct to assume that Yorkshire pudding isn't anything like Jello pudding?

12-11-2002, 11:45 AM
That's correct, Tami! It is sort of like a popover, goes with roast beef usually. The British use the term pudding more loosely than we do over in North America - steamed cakey things, popovery things, sweet gloopy things - them's puddings in the UK! And they call dessert in GENERAL that too as in "what's for pudding?" (DH asks this knowing it ain't gonna be a nice British sort of pudding. It might however be Jello pudding, I can do that!)


12-11-2002, 11:47 AM
:lol: Tamibeep.... NO!!! It's made with flour, eggs, salt and .... what else? I forget. They are wicked little things like popovers. Brown on the outside and a little gooey on the inside. You have them with roast beef. And gravy. And roast potatoes. Maybe turnips. Carrots. "Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding" is like one word. :D
They were invented way back when as a "filler". They are comfort food.

12-11-2002, 12:16 PM
Ah ha!! Thank you ellis and Lidian! I am enlightened. They sound like dumplings... big ol' gooey lumps of deliciousness that you might as well just slap right on your thighs because you gain weight just batting an eyelash at them.

12-11-2002, 12:31 PM
I don't like Yorkshire pudding. But then I don't like roast beef either. I want lamb with little roasted potatoes!!!!

12-11-2002, 12:37 PM
I would like to skip dinner and go straight to the (sweet) puddings! (I used to skip the plum pudding and dive right into the hard sauce). And then I would like a big glass of madeira or port and some chocolate brandy beans, in front of a lovely fireplace with you all, making great conversation!


12-11-2002, 02:28 PM
Sounds cozy, Lidian. Beam us up. Don't be offended if I start reading and then fall asleep. After great conversation and a great belch. :D

Den, YOU DON'T LIKE YORKSHIRE PUDDING?! What the heck is wrong with you, girlie!! :lol:
The lamb sounds lovely though. How do you make your potatoes? Mom par-boils them, then puts them in a cast iron pan with some oil and coats the pototoes with the oil. The turn crispy brown on the outside. Oh man... they are to die for.

Gee, Tami... I don't think Yorkshire puddings are fattening at all! ;)

12-11-2002, 03:07 PM
Before I too fall asleep at the fire, I may have some roast potatoes too (perhaps before the chocolate) - they sound fabulous, Ellis!

And if I eat lots of potatoes and sweets I AM going to need a nap (just like the uncles in Child's Christmas in Wales!)...


12-11-2002, 03:30 PM
Oh... that reminds me... I must reread Oscar Wilde's, The Selfish Giant... haven't read it in ages.
I'm reading an Evelyn Waugh right now. :D Cozy and amusing.

12-11-2002, 05:09 PM
That's how my folks make them too Ellis! I DON't make 'em because if I got good at it I would be making them all the time!! Same reason I don't own a deep fryer. I'd be making french fries every night!!!

12-11-2002, 05:42 PM
Okay, but when I come and visit you, can you make them for me, Den? Please? :D

Geepers... look at the time... what to make for dinner...
Hmmmm, I've got eggs. And a ham. If I had English muffins I could make those thingys...

12-11-2002, 09:20 PM
I know what thingies you mean - those are good!

I made pancakes and reheated some soup for those who wanted it. I am freezing most of the pancakes for next week when we get back from our little trip to visit the family. I am planning on just lying down for several days with a wet dishrag on my head (or over my head) after we get back!

I love French fries too - the baked ones are OK but they just aren't AS good. Or Tater-Tots, I know they are really 1960s but I love them and I cannot have them around, I would eat the whole bag! We used to have them in TV dinners back then.

Has anyone ever made homemade potato chips? I haven't but I'll bet they're really good.


12-11-2002, 09:37 PM
Lidian- My Dad's ex-girlfriend worked at a potato chip factory and she took us on a tour, and we got to stand by the conveyor belt and eat the chips still warm. They were so good!

I am so pitiful, I have yet to start my Xmas shopping, gaah! (Can you tell I read Dilbert? LOL!) I will start on the 18th though, thats my last day of exams. :dance: :cb: :dancer:

12-12-2002, 12:30 AM
HEY!! Any form of potato deep fried is okay by me! Actually, ANYTHING deep fried is okay by me!!!

Ellis-NO!! But I'll take you to my parents' house and we can make my Dad make his mixed roasted root veg. Potato, parsnip, carrot....all kinds of yummy stuff!!! (Of course HE'LL probably say "NO make it yourself." and then take 3 hours telling us the perfect way to do it!!!)

12-12-2002, 07:57 AM
Den, do you like parsnips? Ick. I can't stand them. They RUIN the taste of my potatoes. I've only made roast potatoes once. Like you, I'd be making them all the time. Also, I hate peeling pototoes. If we can buy those bags of baby carrots peeled, why can't we buy potatoes peeled? :D

I think I'm going to plan dinner tonight. Ahead of time. Maybe. We'll see.
AHA! I've got a bag of frozen "light" something or other stir fry! DH and I can have that, and ummm, hot dogs for the kids? With carrots. I'm such a gourmet. :lol:

12-12-2002, 09:07 AM
YES!! Love them!! And turnips and rutabagas too. Not too many vegetables I don't like, although once again I seem to prefer the starchy ones!!

12-19-2002, 01:52 AM
Ok... FIRST... I do not have enough money to buy all of my Christmas presents this year. Try as a might to keep things simple, people are plotting against me to make this impossible (read dh's family). :bomb: In other words, his sisters and mother keep coming up with all of these ideas without asking us (like a family portrait and an ornament exchange blah blah blah blah). My inlaws drive me INSANE. So I think I may have maxed out my credit cards.

SECOND, tonight I went to buy all these other presents that have suddenly become necessary and silly me I wear platform boots to the mall so now my feet consist of giant foot shaped blisters.:cry:

THIRD, for some strange reason the mall had the heat jacked up to 85 degrees so I am a sweaty, icky mess. :hot:

FOURTH, at Target there is only one lane and this big line. When I finally get my way up to be next in line, some twelve year old wearing a Target uniform opens up the next register and everyone behind me rushes over. Of course at this point a problem arises in my line and every single person that was behind me in line now checks out and leaves before me. :tape:

FIFTH, supposedly for my benefit the mall is open until freakin' 11:00 pm so I don't get home until 11:30 and my dh is already in bed so I have to haul all the presents into the house, in the rain, with my sore blistered feet.... four trips. :stress:

:devil: CURSES!!!!! :devil:

12-19-2002, 07:23 AM
You're not grinchy, Sojo. Just perfectly normal. Inlaws CAN be a real drag. You're usually treading on thin ice because you KNOW your DH has a strong tie with his family and you're "the outsider". Nasty. :mad: I know it well.
If I'm ever so unfortunate as to be a mother-in-law, I vow to be a good one.

Listen hon, you've got to start wearing Birks more often. :D I wore mine to the mall the other day with DH. With socks (faux pas) and jeans. There was snow on the ground, but my feet felt very good. And when I looked at other people's footwear, I noticed that they didn't look too damned comfortable. I think most of them were wearing your boots. (which look really good, by the way ;) )

Don't let your in-laws take advantage of you. Put your foot down next year and establish your OWN traditions. Tell them you think a family portrait is tacky. And catch your DH when he's in a good mood and tell him how you feel about the situation. Don't talk to him about it when you're angry. The whole "plan" will backfire on you.

You know what else? Inlaws can take even more advantage of you when you don't have kids. Just because you don't have children at the present time DOESN'T mean you're not a family. You and your DH have a special relationship, and you're entitled to "do your own thing". You ARE a family. And a very special one.

Hugs, hon. Hope today is better for you...
xoxo :grouphug:

12-19-2002, 10:10 AM
Hey Sojo-I felt Grinchy last night too! I was in a store and the Christmas music was getting on my nerves-it was Celine Dion butchering "Feliz Navidad"- a song a normally like but her version was so bad that I was praying it would end! Other customers were giving me dirty looks beceause I was complaining to DH about the crappy Christmas music :lol: and I was irritable, hot, and everyone was in my way :mad:

I am done my gift shopping :) but I still have one more trip to make to the grocery store for fresh veggies, pumpernickel bread, pate, cheese and one or two small things (aggh! it will be so crowded on Saturday!)and a trip to the beer store (even more crowded) then I am done! :cb:

I still have to wrap the pressies though and finish cleaning the house:dizzy:

12-19-2002, 11:25 AM
Sojo and Mauvais - I would like to add my grinchy groans too! I am always, always in that line where there is someone with a complex issue in front of me, who wants to pay for different items with different cards or cash; and someone who wants to chat to the cashier for an hour; and then the cashier runs out of receipt tape or nickels or goes on a break...And the terrible Christmas music blasting on! My personal grinch least-fave is The Little Drummer Boy. Apologies if you like it, but I am sticking my fingers in my ears!:lol:

Sojo, I agree with Ellis! Ellis, I agree with you!:) I wear running shoes even in the snow and I am very comfortable & grungy looking. Birks are great too. You need to be as comfortable as possible in those malls - cuz with the heat and crowds and long lines (and muzak!) they are not exactly thinking of YOUR comfort!

I could go for something deep fried today...maybe not parsnips! Velvet, those potato chips sound wonderful though!


12-19-2002, 01:36 PM
Trust me, I voice my opinion openly to dh. He agrees with me and will always take my side on stuff... but unfortunately his family is so very dysfunctional that as a coping mechanism he has become a peace maker and conflict avoider. So he is slowly learning to be more assertive with them as I point out their idiocy, manipulation, and guilt tactics. So this year we are getting this horrible, cheesy family portrait take... SIXTEEN people squashed into my sil's living room and some cheap photographer is going to come and take our picture. Of course then we have to help pay for the photographer and buy the freaking picture. GRRRR... And then the ornament exchange at the last minute... sil mentioned it to Rich who told her he wanted to talk to me first. But sil's went ahead and purchased all the ornaments so by the time I said no or one ornament only I am suddenly obligated to go out and buy six ornaments. Not to mention that his mother drives me INSANE.:headache: I literally have to meditate when I am around her as she talks at me for an hour straight. Plus she is lazy (never helps with any of the holiday meals), selfish, boring, and talks incessantly about nothing. Imagine this... within one family there is a Harley Davidson loving, leather wearing, factory working small town daughter and husband (with a ZZ Top beard)... and another sister who was in the Peace Corps along with her husband, live in San Francisco, with graduate degrees, have extensively traveled the world, who think they are very cultured and are very snobby... then another very average, conservative, small town stay at home mom sister with a very simple worldview... two parents who bicker and bark at each other... and then me and dh who are supposed to fit somewhere in all of this. Of course I'm considered the "weird one" of the family, although this is nothing new. No one has anything in common and few of us can relate on any level. Holidays are horrible.

Ok, enough of my rant... sorry for rambling on and on. But thanks for letting me get this off my chest. :D

12-19-2002, 03:24 PM
Shucks, Girlies, I am feeling really mellow about Christmas and just finished my shopping and had it wrapped!
Even the Kingston Shopping Centre was relatively un-busy and everyone was pleasant.

Sojo, I can relate to your inlaw agony! My first husband had a terrible family - I didn't meditate then but used to do Keigel (sp) exercises. I have the strongest bladder muscles now - can stop in mid-stream as needed.

And Ellis, have you resolved the assanine dog issue with your in-laws?

Just got a slightly snotty email from my DIL saying she was wondering why she hadn't heard from me about Christmas so they are going to her parents' house! Don't they always? My son neglected to tell her that I'd had two wrist operations - says he didn't know! Anyhow, we will go in there for lunch after Christmas. I usually do a big family dinner the Sunday before but it sure was not in my plan for this year.

Gotta get that tree lit and decorated and start making some goodies.

former Grinch

12-19-2002, 04:21 PM
Woof, Ruthie... you're sounding better!
Those damned DILs. I'd LOVE to have YOU for a MIL!
Keigels... that's what I should do when MY MIL is over!! Talking endlessly about nothing. Repeating herself. Over and over. Talking about people I don't know. People and their ailments...
oh, lordy... I'm getting uptight just THINKING about it!
I once sat there with tears of frustration rolling down my cheeks while she droned on and on at me in the kitchen. Naturally she didn't notice that I was in any discomfort. :mad:

Sojo, my husband's family is very similar to your husband's. I always tell him "I got the pick of the litter". ;)
Naturally MY family is perfect! :D At least I used to think it so. Now I realize they're just as disfunctional as everyone else.

Oh, Ruth... nope, haven't broached the subject to my SIL yet. Maybe I should do it soon, huh? :rolleyes:
My other fear is that, even if she DOES stay at her mom's place, that she'll bring the dogs over here every day. Oh gawd...
Why couldn't she have NICE dogs like YOURS!?

12-19-2002, 05:57 PM
To all you grinches out there, I have only one thing to say.

Can I come sit at your table?

I am SO completely tired of Christmas shopping and malls and crowds and lines and heat and stress and screaming children and people bashing one another over the head to get the last box of monogrammed golf balls, and all I want to do is go home and put on comfy pants and make a cup of tea and curl up with a good book.

Grump. Grump, grump, grumpety grump. I mean, don't get me wrong... I'm very happy that I've been able to get things for the people that I love that I know they will actually like and use and enjoy, but there comes a point when one begins to wonder whether it's worth it. And I think that point comes when you've been standing in line at Sears for thirty minutes when they have one cash register open on the entire floor, and a small child is whacking you in the kneecaps with his mother's copy of Consumer Reports.

Bah. And, might I add, humbug.

12-19-2002, 08:08 PM
Thanks for the laugh everyone! :lol: At least I know I am not the reigning queen in Grinchdom. Why do we let the holidays be this way?? There must be a better way. :?: I am soooo tired of the consumerism and materialism and spending and stress. I just read about some folks who protested these very things by setting up a giant crucifix in their front yard and nailing Santa to it. So far it has been burned down and tipped over... they keep replacing it. I actually laughed when I saw the picture and loved their point (and I am a Christian). I'll go look for the link and post it. Not that Christmas has to be all about Christianity since it is basically a secular holiday... but the fact that it is now about consumerism just makes me ill.

Ok here is the link:

:lol: Yes, I know, I have a sick sense of humor.

12-20-2002, 12:20 AM
Okay, I agree with ALL of you. Sojo, put your foot down NOW, because it just gets harder the more years you do what they want. I'm in a similar situation with my inlaws. They are actually wonderful people, but she becomes POSSESSED at Christmas!!! If I did what she wanted I'd be buying around 20 presents just for the get together at her house!!! And some of those people are just friends of family who will be joining us this year!! We cannot afford it, and as far as i am concerned NOBODY has the right to put you in debt in order to celebrate!!! I think the emphasis should be on closeness and family, not an orgy of giftwrap tearing!!!

12-20-2002, 08:58 AM
Good morning ladies,

Glad to hear that most of you have gotten your xmas shopping all done. I believe I have only 2 more gifts to buy and thats it!

Today is my dd bday. She's 9 today. We are having a bday party for her tomorrow afternoon. If all shows up who were invited, we will have 11 girls here.
Oh, is it to be expected that if one doesn't R.S.V.P. that they won't be coming to the party?

Well, I've pretty much threw my diet out the window this week. And it will probably go out the window next week too! I'm not beating myself up with trying to be stronge and avoiding the temptations. I just keep reminding myself that as of Jan 1st, things are going to change!

The weather is very mild here. We've gotten rain yesterday and it looks like we will be getting rain today too! Not sure if we will be getting a white xmas this year or not.

Well, I'm off to get some breakfast. Got alot of running around to do today!

Talk to you all later.

12-20-2002, 09:05 AM
Kelly, I hope your daughter has a wonderful birthday party! As for the RSVP... who knows! :rolleyes: Some people (okay MANY people) have no social skills...

We're getting rain, too. It's going up to 7 degrees celsius today!! Yip yip!! Come on summer!!!

12-20-2002, 10:59 AM
Kelly... my two cents worth... normally when somebody doesn't RSVP, I assume that they aren't coming. But with nine year olds, you might not hear back from everybody that's planning to show up. I would say either call the moms (if you can) and double check, or plan to have everybody show up, just in case. My mom was LOUSY about RSVPing for my stuff when I was little. :mad:

And speaking of etiquette - I have a question... I called my grandmother last week and asked her if there was anything that she needed that I could get her for Christmas because I was planning to go out shopping over the weekend. And she, of course, said "no, no, I'm just fine" and so I went and bought her a present, and then she called me LAST NIGHT and told me she'd thought of something.

So should I return my gift and get her what she asked for, or should I just tell her to stick it and enjoy the present I've already gotten her? Thoughts? Opinions?

12-20-2002, 11:22 AM
Oh dear... I don't know WHAT to tell you, Tami! Do you like your grandmother? Because if she's a *****, I'd tell her to screw it. But if she's a sweet thing whom you love dearly, I guess I'd be inclined to give in to her wishes. What a nuisance!!

12-20-2002, 12:53 PM
Kelly, I hope your DD has a great party and that you have a nice rest afterwards! When my DD had a birthday party last month we didn't hear from 2 of the 9 girls we invited. One of the moms said she didn't know if she was supposed to phone if they weren't coming, or phone if they were!!! Well, gee, it would have been nice to let me know, either way!:lol:

Oh Tami, that sounds frustrating with your grandmother's present. I guess for me it would depend on how easy it was for me to exchange it. I would probably just give her what you got, I'll bet you got her something she'll like, that she just hadn't thought of. Depends on how much time & energy you have too. Me, I'm pretty lazy. My dear mother used to give me BACK presents 6 months later, telling me she never used whatever - and she never told me what she wanted in the first place, even when I asked! Oh well...

Take it easy everyone! Boxing Day will be here in less than a week and we can all relax!


12-20-2002, 01:09 PM
Its FINALLY snowing here in Wisconsin. Hopefully this stuff will stick through Christmas. This December and last December have been so strange... no snow and too many warm days. A few days ago it was actually raining.


12-20-2002, 09:13 PM

12-20-2002, 09:20 PM
Kelly-I have found that MOST people these days do not understand the meaning of RSVP. It sure makes it difficult to plan, doesn't it?

Tami-If it were anyone BUT your grandmother I'd say stick with what you have, but it is harder with grandmothers.....

Ellis-It may be warmer NOW, but we are getting COLDER, and you should be getting THAT in a few days. Don't celebrate too much!!!


HI!! To everyone else!!

(and HUMBUG too!!!)

12-20-2002, 10:22 PM
Den, the way I like to RELAX is as follows:

I put a magazine over my face, after I have fed the girls a fabulous gourmet meal :lol: and lie down in a corner (after moving the cats, who are trained relaxation professionals) and pretend not to hear children arguing over how to play some Magic School Bus game on the computer. This usually lasts anywhere up to 30 seconds, until one of the following things happens:

1. A child will come right up near my head and say solemnly "Mom I'm sorry to bother you but something is wrong with the computer..."

2. A child will wail "She's being MEAN to me Mom!" Shouts, tears, recriminations to follow.

3. Cat starts meowing loudly, pawing my leg, unhappy with full bowl of dry food. Requests deluxe seafood menu. Unhappy with lack of response, runs to nearest upholstered item and continues with ongoing demolition project.

4. Phone rings, urgent telemarketer on the line wanting to know how I am doing and could I answer 25 really short questions.

5. Child is hungry (again, so soon? But why?). Or thirsty. Or bored.

6. Child has important philosophical/scientific question that must be resolved immediately. Such as how do light bulbs work? Why doesn't Ms Frizzle ever have to go to the washroom? (She is a cartoon character, dear, now go away...)

7. Child needs to know where small obscure toy/book/miscellaneous item is, right away. Right now. That she has not handled since last summer. But she really needs it now!

Issues 1 - 7 usually not resolved by mother continuing to hide under magazine (they know where I am, somehow!) and tension escalates. Request for help/arbitration/food/etc repeated in more urgent tones. At 60 second mark, relaxation break is over. Head reappears, hair in Bob Marleyesque arrangement, lemony expression on face.

Resume activities of day refreshed and renewed!:)


12-21-2002, 09:57 AM
You girls are killing me. :lol:

Den, I refuse to take your second-hand cold weather!! Keep the damned stuff to yourself!!

Listen, I had a dream about you last night. I bought you a jar of Marmite (I really did... it's in my kitchen), but in the dream it was in my bathroom. I went to brush my teeth, but instead of picking up the toothpaste, I accidentally grabbed the jar of Marmite and smeared it on my toothbrush. And brushed my teeth with it. BLAH!!! IT WAS HORRIBLE!!!

12-21-2002, 11:23 AM
Would it work on Tit Zits?

12-21-2002, 11:32 AM
oh my gosh... I never thought of that!
Hmmmm. Yeast extract... I dunno... might make it grow.

12-21-2002, 03:16 PM
You two are a scream!!! HEY!! A little "hair of the dog that bit you"...would Marmite work on yeast infections?!? You know, as much as I love Marmite I would NOT want to brush my teeth with it!!! (YUM!! Get that "just brushed feeling" with MARMITE!! Doesn't work!!)

I had a strange dream last night too. Bitter sweet. I was in my grandmother's house, and was looking for plates to use for our meal. My Grandmother was NOT there, and I knew she was gone. Couldn't find any plates, and the few things that were still there were mostly junk and/or broken. She died just over a year ago, and I still miss her. It was like it was nice to be in her house, but she was completely gone.

Well, she lived to be 1 month older than the Queen Mum, which I know would have pleased her!! When the Queen Mum turned 100 (a couple of months after my Grandmother!) my grandmother said, "I'm older than she is." in a VERY self-satisfied way!!:lol:

12-21-2002, 10:24 PM
Oh Den... that's kind of sad, sweetie... you must really miss her.
But what a great life your grandmother had! hugs...

Marmite on a yeast infection? My might work! As long as you didn't put the jar back on the kitchen shelf afterwards. Icky poo!!

12-22-2002, 10:50 AM
I made it through the stressful shopping season, have everything bought, paid for(well at least on Visa), and wrapped, and several already delivered.:)
I did not think I would make it this year and stress myself out to the max:( , but I always get through it. My New Years resloution, or rather promise to myself in the new year, is to start Xmas shopping very early on for family and friends and leave the kids til last as there lists change many times before they finally decide on one or two things. Hopefully my employement will be a little more steady and will not be counting pennies as often this year. However, I have learned to appreciate things much more.
Hope you are all pretty much over the stressing part of the season now, I have to clean my house and do some baking with my children, and make a few CHristmas ornaments while playing some Christmas tunes.
Big hugs to all:grouphug:
Love Virginia

12-22-2002, 12:08 PM
Good going, Virginia!! It DOES feel great to be ready.
I'm going to do the same as you... going to start shopping for next year right after Christmas. And making gifts. Of course I say that every year, but this year I'm really going to do it. :D

Too bad we can't BAKE this far in advance. I could really stock up on stuff. Although when I think of that story about those scientists eating that frozen mammoth, I don't see why my baking wouldn't keep for a year!

12-22-2002, 12:12 PM
Strange - I've just started my letter to myself for next year and am also planning to make some gifts. My sister is a real pro on making or finding the perfect gift and even makes Christmas fabric gift bags. If Martha Stewart were normal, she would be my sister Joan.

12-22-2002, 12:17 PM
Ruth... I'm still waiting for your fond memories of trashy food joints and sewing projects.
I need to hear a good story...

BTW... what are you going to make for gifts? I'm always on the lookout for some tacky new gift idea. (I didn't mean that the way it sounded..)

12-22-2002, 12:33 PM
Trashy food joints? Moi?
Well, in Orange, France, we dined at a rather sleazy place. At the end of the meal, a cockroach crept across the table. Harry did the crokinole (sp) flick and the thing flew past me and landed on the plate of the woman at the next table. Harry said "Don't turn around!" and then explained to me what had happened. We made a hasty exit. I was laughing so hard I sprained my ankle leaving the place.
It still cracks me up!

12-22-2002, 12:39 PM
:lol: Oh, that is GREAT, Ruth!!! :lol:
The same thing happened to us in New York. We were staying in a dive on Broadway (actually, it must have been gorgeous at one time), and we went down for breakfast in the morning. Cockroach on the table. I was with fellow art students and teachers. Took off my running shoe and whacked it.
Funny how your instincts kick in. I love the "crokinole flick". :lol:

12-22-2002, 12:50 PM
Vegas has tons of cockroaches. If I never see another one, it would be fine with me. But the sight of them doesn't bother me in the least. I remember my first apt. I was half drunk laying in bed and I see my lampshade move. I thought it was wierd because nothing else was moving or spinning. It happened again and I got up and went to look closer. The whole back side was covered in them!!!! I have a million more stories but I will take them to the grave with me! :) They are really gross. :)

Everything here is wrapped, cookies got done yesterday. We are all anxious as no presents are left to buy or anything left to do. We think we should just go ahead and celebrate now. Why wait???? :) ~flower

12-22-2002, 01:28 PM
My Mom had just come to the US from England, and took a very proper friend to Greektown (Detroit) for a meal. She looked over her friend's shoulder and saw a RAT climbing over a pile of plates on a buffet table!!! She said she retained her composure because she KNEW her friend would freak out completely!!!!! Another Greektown parents went, and ordered some wine with their meal. It came in coffee cups along with the admonition, "SHH!! We lost our liquor license." I LOVE GREEKTOWN!! We took my Mom's Mom there once and there was a wino passed out in the middle of the street. She REALLY didn't know what to make of that!!! ("More to be pitied than despised.")

Ellis-Yup, I'm feeling kinda bad and trying to maintain my sanity.

Virginia-NOPE!! Up until now I have been relatively stress free. MY stress is just starting. Should be over by Dec. 27th!!!

12-22-2002, 02:12 PM
I can always come here for all the classiest chitchat around - rats, cockroaches and yeast infections all in one shot! LOL

this is my kind of crowd!

Virginia, glad to see you made it!

I'm feeling a little stressed too, but in my case its from guilt. We all decided to do "holidays light" this year because we're packing and expecting to move in the next couple months. We just got a small fake tree from Target and a few gifts under it.....DH and I are very cool with that.........but now DD wishes we had put up lights, held a party, got a real tree, dug the stockings out of storage.......:( I hope she doesn't hold it against us some day when she's an adult. We're trying to sell her on the idea of the holidays as a simple time with the ones you love - it's starting to be a hard sell.....

Ok, I wish I knew what WOULD work on a yeast infection. 11 days of antibiotics have left me depleted. I tried three day cream from the drug store - not working so far :(

Terri -

12-22-2002, 03:17 PM

12-22-2002, 04:36 PM
Yes but use the non-flavoured unless................never mind!

12-22-2002, 06:38 PM
:lol: That made all sorts of silly thoughts go through my head Ruthxxx.

I am done with shopping and wrapping. Almost done baking too. I even dropped off a present already. I got the boy a few bottles of wine, he got me a Care Bear and a Slinky pen. and I am the older one. :lol:

On second thought, I am done shopping, but if I am out I may pick up a little something for my cousins. Most likely some candy or Pez to go in the little snowmen bags I have. Nothing major, and if I don't get to the store that's ok too.

12-22-2002, 07:45 PM
hi Squeak! ( long time no see! :) )

ok that the reason they call you Ruth XXX?

he he

Terri - thinking of changing my name to HoneyXXX :o

12-22-2002, 08:02 PM
When I was in grade school one of the boys brought a dead waterbug to school in a box. I too have lots of cockroaches & pals stories but I have just had dinner so maybe another time!

We had some mice at our house awhile back but the cats caught them. They have been resting on their feline laurels ever since!

Tree finally in house and in stand with minimal temper tantrums!

One more grocery trip and then it's only the wrapping and the cards to do!:)

12-22-2002, 08:05 PM
If you don't like EATTING yogurt-you may take acidopholis pills. (SP?) They are the ingredient that you need from the yogurt. Active, live cultures. Go to a natural style grocery store and you can find them in the refrigerated section. They keep lots of vitiamins in the refrigerated section. I get them from Wild Oats. If you decide on eatting yogurt make sure the side says it contains live active cultures.... And you will need 6-8 oz twice a day to make much of a difference. I hate yeast infections!!!!

12-22-2002, 08:32 PM
Actually, I didn't mean for her to eat it. You spread it on "down there". Like Ruth said, use the natural, unflavoured variety.

12-22-2002, 09:48 PM
Oh no Ellis, I thought you ate it too! Ewwww. Couldn't I just eat some yogurt instead? Or drink cranberry juice!

I would have yogurt all over the washroom you see, and then one or both DDs would come in and say WHAT are you DOING Mom? And I would have to say, in my most grownup voice, I'll explain when you are older dear!

When I say this my 6 yr old has been known to wait 5 minutes and say OK, I'm older now, can you tell me?

Not old enough, dearie!

12-22-2002, 09:54 PM
Actually my dr says to eat it, any flavor. Very funny! Guess you could try both. What harm could come of it???

12-22-2002, 10:40 PM
Tell your daughter the pussy is hungry. GEEZ!! I can't believe I said that!!!
Well, we went to a solstice party earlier today. Actually had some FUN, and bought a tree on the way home. I am feeling a BIT better.

12-23-2002, 02:56 AM
:o oh my gosh... the so-called treatment sounds almost as bad as the infection. Yuck, yuck, and double yuck. :p

12-23-2002, 07:40 AM
Den, it's about time you got that tree! :lol:
Glad you're feeling a little better, hon. hugs...

Lidian, for goodness sakes... lock the door when you're in the bathroom!! :)

Speaking of locking the door... don't read this if you're eating your breakfast.
I went to Ikea yesterday with my sister. We had a RIOT!! Anyhow, when I got back, my sweet DH was being violently ill in the bathroom. I made him unlock the door in case he... I don't know. I just didn't feel capable of breaking the door in if I was to hear the sound of a large man thudding to the floor.
So I went in, and there was red stuff in the toilet!!! My god, I immediately thought, "He's got cancer. He's going to die." Turns out he'd been drinking tomato juice. :rolleyes:

So let's figure this out. My DH has stomach flu. The bad one. Tomorrow is Christmas eve. Not what are the chances of Ellis NOT having stomach flu on Christmas day? Pretty slim, huh? I can't believe it. I KNEW we should have deliberately come into contact with that bug LAST month!! curses.

It could be my imagination, but I feel a rumble in my stomach. curses.

12-23-2002, 09:27 AM
Oh No Ellis!!
I am so sorry both for you, and your hubby! I hope he does not get too sick with it. My bosses hubby had it so badly for over a week, he had to go to the hospital and have intervenise(sp)! He had it coming from both ends. Not a pretty sight I guess.
I will be thinking of you all and hoping for the best.

12-23-2002, 10:03 AM
Nooooooooooooo!! Are you serious, Virginia?! Oh lordy...

Thanks for the best wishes... obviously we may really need them. Oh lordy...

12-23-2002, 11:23 AM
Oh Ellis, so sorry to hear about your DH - hope he is better and that none of the rest of you get it. What a time to be sick! My eldest is sitting here coughing a little but seems like a regular old cold to me so we'll just sit her in front of a movie with a cold drink.

And Ellis, our washroom door doesn't lock!:) If it did, I would. Anyway, I get less company in there now that the girls are older and understand the concept of privacy!

Den, my goodness! I don't know that I could quite say that, anyhow the kids would think I meant our pussycats, tee hee!:lol:

Oh I can't wait to go back to the grocery store and stand in a line again! But that will be the last shopping I have to do for Christmas. DH is still hunting down presents - last minute panic, yet another family tradition!


12-23-2002, 11:47 AM
Ellis - I hope your DH feels better soon!!! And that you don't get sick.

12-23-2002, 11:56 AM
Thanks Lidian and Squeak! :)

DH is comfortably esconced in bed with a bottle of ginger ale. I'm going out with DD to pick up the shawarma ingredients.

My stomach is a little churny, but I haven't had breakfast yet... what to do, what to do...
I can just see myself walking down Somerset Street and throwing up in the snow. My daughter will NOT be happy! :lol:

12-23-2002, 12:01 PM
Poor Ellis! It's a shame that you have to go out at all feeling sick. Peppermint tea sometimes helps when my stomach feels unhappy - or ginger tea with honey.

When you get home I hope you can take it easy...Maybe DD could bring you some ginger ale too!

Take good care of yourself - wish I could come do that shopping for you!


12-23-2002, 12:15 PM
Ellis-I am so sorry that your hubby is sick, and I HOPE the rest of you miraculously escape it. i have heard it is pretty nasty. Hopefully your tummy rumbles are sympathy pains and not something worse. WHAT A BUMMER!!

Lidian-I know! That is the beauty of small children, they always take the innocent interpretation. If i said that HERE (and I WOULDN'T!) my two teenage boys would be horrified and probably never speak to me again!!!

Squeak-How are YOU sweetie? Let us know what is going on with you. I hope everything is a little less stressful for you.

Virginia, Sojo, Terri, Flower, and everyone else who i have missed- HI!! Hope you are all doing okay!!

12-23-2002, 01:59 PM
Don't worry... it was probably just a touch of food poisoning, right? If you haven't gotten it yet then it was probably something he ate without you.

Praying you will be healthy and happy this holiday season!

12-23-2002, 07:29 PM
Thank you Den and Sojo. You're all very sweet. I hestitate to say this (knock on wood), but so far so good. I think my rumbling stomach was hunger. How peculiar. :D

DH is up. He's feeling a little better, so hopefully this won't be long-lasting. He's in his jammies, though. I think that seeing your spouse sick can pretty much finish off a relationship. ;)

Got my shopping done. I have spend WAY too much money this year. It's sickening. I just spent another cool 100 bucks for a quick grocery drop at the corner. I forgot about desserts... I bought a wicked chocolate fudge cake, a pecan pie and a pumpkin pie for Christmas day. And a Caramilk chocolate cake for DH's birthday. I'm damned if I'm baking.
BUT... I was just thinking (having spent all this money) that if I finish my kitchen renovations this year, I'll be able to actually ENJOY cooking and baking next Christmas. Okay, maybe not ENJOY, but you know what I mean... :D

Those of you who know me will doubt my honesty, but I just cleaned my stove and oven.

12-23-2002, 10:30 PM
TOO FUNNY!! I just cleaned the the stove top!!!

12-23-2002, 10:35 PM
my gawd... we're twins!! :lol:

12-23-2002, 10:57 PM
Not only that but we may be triplets. Mine is on auto-clean right now! Of course, I'd be the oldest triplet!

12-24-2002, 12:04 AM
Hey! I just did the pre-party stove and oven cleaning too!

Ellis-hope you and DH are going to be okay-getting sick at the holidays sucks!

12-24-2002, 08:25 AM
Quads!! Freaky, man!

Thank you, Mauvais. :) DH seems to be better today (he ate Bits and Bites last night and wanted to have sex... ha! There is no freakin' way I'm having sex with a man who has just had stomach flu!), and so far so good as far as I'M concerned!!

What exactly is it with this stove stuff? In my case, it's a matter of shame. I've had a layer of black crusty stuff on the bottom of the oven for at least six months now. (can't remember what it is, but something overflowed) I want to deceive my friends and family into thinking that I'm spic and span. Probably futile... they know me too well. I'm fooling myself.

12-24-2002, 02:01 PM
I just did the stove top becase the oven is broken. I did a REALLY good job though!!! The top is stainless steel, so I cleaned and then polished it. Hope I can get a new one soon, 'cause it is a bummer having to bake everything in the basement. Plus which only 3 of the burners work!!! The stove in the basement no one will see, so it did NOT get cleaned!!! (The oven upstairs is now storage!!!)

12-24-2002, 04:49 PM
You are reminding me that I NEED to clean the oven...but I probably won't, not yet. Maybe it will be my New Year's resolution, ho ho ho.

I wish I had a self cleaning HOUSE! Or failing that, a Swiffer!

My eldest DD is recovering from a swift onslaught of unknown nasty virus, but is much better now and reading in bed. I have just made her some junket (and some for her sister, who is in a me-too mood!).

Downstairs we are on our 6000th episode of Arthur, but I guess it beats some of the stuff they used to like, like that Barney creature. When I want the girls to screech with horror (not very often do I want or need to hear that!) I tell them how much they each loved the B word when they were 2 or 3!