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Is it just me, or does it really not seem like the eve of Christmas Eve? Things change so much when you get older — I can’t wait to have a little one running around to reinfuse the excitement. At the grocery store today, there were hordes of chattering children, chirping uncontrollably about Santa and gifts and all things Christmas. It was a nice sound… ok, maybe a little bit annoying too, but still nice :)

I’ve been a new woman this past week or so. I don’t particularly know why – I think maybe my “suck it up & make the best of it” holiday idea finally kicked in? During the last week, I have, for the very first time, been crazy-busy making Christmas goodies. Last week, it was huge quantities of party mix and peanut butter balls. Also attempted pralines, but they were a miserable failure. Yesterday was fudge day — milk chocolate, chocolate with walnuts, and white chocolate with walnuts (my favorite). And today was a parmesan/artichoke dip and sweet & sour meatballs… all for our Christmas Eve drop-in tomorrow night. Tomorrow’s project is shrimp creole (I know it seems like an odd choice, but we’ve been eating shrimp creole on Christmas Eve for years – good stuff).

Well, now that I type it out, it doesn’t seem like that much. But trust me, this is MILES beyond anything I’ve ever attempted before.

The Virginia trip went really well – we so enjoyed visiting with Grandma & Grandpa. Maggie’s sleeping schedule was all jacked up, and Grandpa ended up sitting up with her from 4am on… but he loved it. They were attached at the hip the entire weekend – she called him “Papa”, which made him beam. I think he can see his own spunky little girl in Maggie Denise.

Pregnant cousin showed up first thing Saturday morning (yes, PLEASE be there the entire weekend so I don’t have any time to just enjoy my grandparents without your big pregnant belly around). Ugh. I detest her. Really, really detest her. Her little girl is due in 3 weeks, and she continues to refer to her as an “it.” Is it just me, or is there a serious detachment issue afoot? They haven’t even started to clear her husband’s vast gun collection out of the nursery-to-be… they both seem annoyed and inconvenienced when talking about setting up the nursery furniture. And there was once again a reference to “this thing” – she told this long, drawn-out story about how she told her obgyn that “I’m just ready to get this thing out of me.” Seriously?!!? I’m SO effing glad that people like her have perfect, healthy children… Ugh. I retreated to the back room and had a talk with myself about whether or not I should ask her to stop referring to her unborn child as “that thing” in front of me, but then I started crying, so I decided to just hide instead. And about Jennifer’s naming premonition – sure enough, she’s talking about using my grandmother’s name, which just happens to be MY middle name that I was planning on passing on to my eventual daughter. What the hell? Grandma surprised us all by telling her that she didn’t support that decision, that she feels like I should have “first dibs” on my own name… novel idea, huh? Yay, Grandma. Boo, pregnant name-thief.

And now for some great news – Sue got her first-choice dorm at CofC!! It’s only one block back from Charleston’s shopping, so hopefully she’ll be able to get a part-time retail job fairly easily, right next to the dining hall, and a super-short walk from her classes. And CVS is on the first floor of her apt building. Her apt has it’s own washer & dryer. And the best part?…. she has HER OWN ROOM!! Yep, she has her own bedroom with a double bed. CofC’s dorms have Lander and Clemson beat all to hell.

What else? Sue’s got a virus and as been yakking her guts up all day. I’ve been nursing her back to health from a distance – she shared a wretched cold with all of us last week, and I would prefer that she not share this little gem as well. And my super-fabulous Keurig coffeemaker came yesterday… it’s a great and wonderful thing. I’m becoming a single-serve junkie. I’m all about those nifty little k-cups — they come in all flavors of coffee, hot chocolate & hot tea, and there are even online Coffee Clubs where you can have selected flavors sent every 1, 2, or however many months. Craziness.

Sorry I’ve been a bit reticent lately. Just not feeling chatty… so ready for the holidays to be over, and meanwhile, just trying to enjoy it as much as possible. We leave for the cabin on Thursday — WOOHOO for being off the map for a few days!

Ok, that’s all. Happy Christmas Eve Eve, everyone!