tee heee hee . . . . Someday, my little Mac will read this blog and go
"HEY, THAT'S MY BUTT!!!"
Where I live- it's kind of chilly right now. 5 degrees below zero with 20 inches of snow chilly. But, I don't want to talk about that. Cause, well, meh.
The Tribe Called Hall are an adventurous bunch. We plan on travel and moving and seeing all manner of topography. And here we are, in the flat lands of frozen tundra. In the summer we found all manner of state parks and nature trails. It was fun discovering what I never known about this place. Even though I grew up here. I have moved to my home town.
Then, as I drive home home from work, it is pitch black outside. 5 pm and it's so dark I can't see the inside of my car cause it's so dark outside. As I drive my mind wanders to different living locales. Places where it's not so cold and not so dark. Like Hawaii.
Last Tuesday, after a mere five minute trip, my parents show up at our new house. And the wee Mac, he hollers, "GRANDMA!!!! GRANDMA'S HERE!!!" And he hops three hops across the living room, landing squarely in her open arms. 10 feet of joy in a 3 foot toddler.
And, for the first time this year (yes, I realize it's December), Mr. Hall and I go out for a actual date. I wore a pretty sweater dress and high heel, knee high boots. It's cold out but this will not stop the fashionable Mrs. Hall!! Over dinner we make lovey dovey eyes at each other and I laughed and laughed. Then I laughed some more. Then we played footsie.
After we got home my parents left. The fact that they can come and go is beyond my wildest dreams. They come, then they go. That's the bees knees my good people.
Then, a few days later, my mother and I attend my daughter's school play. Pancake attends the same elementary school as I did. Which boggles the mind really. I never anticipated moving back here. It's not that I don't like it here, it's just that there are so many other places to see. So many other geographical locations to explore.
And we, my mother and I, we talked. We shared. We talked and shared and talked some more. And it was awesome and good. The blue birdy, she is getting full. ;)
Then, a few days later, I had my own play date. We talked and talked while eating Mongolian food. She's a grown up woman who had traveled and lived in many places. She had tried on each address like a new identity. She was trying to figure out who she was. At this point, she is very sure of who she is. She is a misses with a child. She is very much like me.
Which is a very rare find I must say. And she will, most likely, be my first friend here. Since I've moved back any way. And for this I am thankful. I like her a lot ;)
So this is my task. Not to bemoan the snow and sleet, not to whine about the chilly and cold. But to embrace this place and thrive within it. And I think I will do exactly that!!
Hope you all had a Happy Holiday. For me, it was the warmest ever :)
Tomorrow, Christmas eve day, I have a half day. Then I have four days off. Which I feel no small amount of smug righteousness about. Because I've done my time, as a nurse, working every other weekend, every other holiday, mandatory overtime because someone called in on Christmas morning, et cetera.
But I'm all grown up now, nurse practitioner now. So I work a regular schedule. With holidays off, my weeknights off, my weekends off and vacation days too. I cannot tell you how important this is to me. It's freedom my good people. And when I drive home tomorrow at noon I will yell, "Ollie Ollie Oxen Free!! It's CHRISTMAS TIME!!!"
This freedom is most important, because I am there for my kids during Christmas. And Christmas is made for kids.
So much fun will be had in the next few days. Presents, egg nog, chocolate covered cherries, fun with Grandma and Grandpa, the absolute thrill of Santa and his magic, and us, Mr. and Mrs. Hall, sipping coffee while the kids play with their toys. It's everything I've ever wanted and dreamed about. My dreams have come true. Right there, on the living room floor. OUR living room floor, hold on, gotta take a minute here, collect myself, sniff sniff . . .
All of this stuff about Christmas spirit, it means so much to me. It is my time of magic and joy. And Christmas lights. And being so thankful for everything we have. Our family, our kids.
It's almost too much for the human spirit to bear, all this Christmas joy.
I hope everyone feels the joy and magic in the next few days. Enjoy a cup of cheer, watch your favorite Christmas movie and kick back. And don't forget to enjoy some cookies ;)
Merry Christmas to all of you!!
This post is from last year and it's still very true. :)
This is Santa Claus, checking the list to see if Pancake (my daughter, age 7 and Mac ( my son, age 3)have been naughty or nice. I can guarantee you, they have been good as gold. :)
This year, my daughter believes in Santa Claus. It is a deeper and more elaborate belief than last year.
As we were shopping for sweaters on Sunday, the topic of Santa came up. She would hold up things and say, "I want this for Christmas" and then politely put it back. After two or three times, I said, you need to wait until you see Santa, then you can tell him what you want for Christmas. She came close to me, with a very serious look on her face. Then she whispered, "Mom, he can hear us now, and when you say you want it for Christmas, he knows. He's watching us right now."
I felt a rush of wow, weird and misty eyed. Then, I heartily agreed with her assessment. "Yes, you're right, he can hear us right now." We smiled.
Last night, we went to see Mr. Claus himself. She sat on his lap with her brother, not saying much, more basking in the happiness. He had to gently coax them into talking. It took a few minutes, this visit. She was beaming the whole time.
After, I asked her what they talked about. "I asked for a pony and I told him Mac is too little to ask, so I asked for an Elmo for him." I asked her what else she might want Santa to bring her. "Santa can bring what he wants, he can decide", she said smiling.
I asked her what Santa said to her, "Did he ask what your name is sweetheart?"
"Mom, he already knows who I am, silly".
Again, a mixture of Holy Good Lord, she really believes.
And to top the night off she chanted this on the ride home:
"S-A-N-T-A, SANTA SANTA! He's our man!"
The kicker though, the absolute kicker, happened when I was tucking her into bed.
"Can we get a present for Santa when he comes? I wish we can get him a present too."
Here's to the magic and wonder of Christmas all :)
I had a dream about Ted Kennedy last night. I was his caretaker, well after he had been diagnosed with the brain tumor. It was towards the end of his life. He took a shine to me and asked for my hand in marriage. I said yes, even offered to sign a pre-nup. I ask you, WHAT THE HELL???
Ted Kennedy? Really?? I am flummoxed here. I mean, why him and why now? I mean, his (and my) passion were (are) centered around helping people. But that's were the similarities end. huh. well . . .
IN OTHER MRS. HALL NEWS:
"Ovulation isn't an entirely hidden process. As your body senses the hormone shifts that indicate an egg is about to be released from the ovary, it begins to ready itself for the incoming hordes of sperm and give the egg its best chance of getting fertilized."
This is what I spend my free time reading. Because last month was not the month. But maybe this month could be the month I am knocked up for the 3rd time ;)
As long as the incoming hordes of sperm are doing their job anyway. Or as Mr. Hall says,
"I'm not paying you guys to sit around. Get to work!!"
First, before we begin, HELLO NEW FOLLOWERS! Welcome to the love fest that is Mrs. Hall!
And for those lurkers out there, I still enjoy your visits! (wink)
So- let's begin the discussion, shall we?
First, let me explain my work. I am a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. I work at a mental health outpatient clinic as an advanced practice nurse. I prescribe mental health medications and tend to my patients as a nurse. I love my job.
Next, let me explain the coworker. His name is Herb and he's a psychiatrist, one of three I work with. He is older, mid to late fifties, good looking and very laid back. He has very un-politically correct sense of humor. He is subversive and very kind to me. I liked him immediately.
Of the three doctors, I go to him the most with my newbie questions and concerns. I could say to him, "I set a patient on fire!" And he would say, "Meh, just spritz him with a bit of water and see him back in two weeks, it'll work out." He listens as I struggle. He teaches me the art psychiatric care. He shows me how to practice without burning out.
He is my mentor.
This is where it gets tricky. I am the youngest woman in the office by 10 years. He notes this. He also notices my fashionista tendencies. Not in an uncomfortable way, but he notes it. There's a line here. A weird professional line between different generations and different genders.
He is a ladies man, never been married. He's funny. And like his off color jokes, I take it all in stride. Because I know who I am.
Now let's get to the Christmas Party.
We are sitting on bar stools directly across from each other. He is gregarious and funny, as always. I am not drinking. Mr. Hall is at home, watching the kids. Herb is drinking with class. But perhaps he is drinking too much. The man enjoys his brews.
He keeps looking at his phone because he's being getting a slew of text messages. He holds the phone far away, squinting to read the text. I told you he's older.
I call him out, asking him what his girlfriend is texting him about. Because that amount of texts can only come from one place, a woman. I ask him why he's never been married. I tease him about being old. There is a slew of us, all sitting close and almost yelling to be heard. The bar is getting crowded.
He starts to talk about his girl friend. She's twenty three. Ten years younger than me. And she's a stripper. I all but do a spit take. I think he is kidding. But he's not kidding! He shows me a photo and yes indeed, there they are- her stripper boobins.
I ask him what he was thinking, dating such a young girl. He replies, "I wasn't thinking much besides she has a body that's out of this world." I smile because he is being honest and owning who he is. These are admirable character traits. He whines a bit that they don't have anything in common, nothing to talk about. I laugh because it's funny.
It's getting late and the women of the office have all but left. I stay, utterly fascinated by the men and their talk. I laugh and really enjoy myself. I really focus on being myself because I am not one of them. I am not part of a bawdy boys club. Just a coworker who blushes at such things.
And I am honest throughout this chatter. I see each of them, gauging my reaction. I am not shocked or offended. Just fascinated and happy to be there. It is a Christmas Party after all.
Then the doctor drops a bomb. He tells a really disgusting and really dirty joke. I feel it gently explode in my belly. I avert my gaze, look down, practically shutting my eyes.Everyone gives a hardy laugh. I open my mouth and mimic their laugh. And I squirmed. And laughed.
I laugh because it was funny, yet I squirm. Dirty jokes are about sex and here we are, telling jokes about sex. I am much too innocent to be here but yet here I am. And I did laugh. Cause it was funny. I closed my eyes and laughed.
And THAT'S when the good doctor leaned forward and put his hand on my knee. FOR THE ENTIRE DURATION OF THE LAUGHTER FROM HIS JOKE. A good fifteen seconds while people laughed. It was a funny joke.
It was at that point I decided it was time for me to go. Gathered my coat and switched seats. And I stayed about twenty minutes more. I stayed because the underbelly, hard drinking and carousing of men fascinate me. But . . . I knew it was time to go when they planned on hitting the club where his girlfriend worked.
And no matter how fascinated I am, that is not a place for me.
Well, not without my husband I mean.
for photos of Mr. Hall, who is not an older man, click here.
And when I get home I tell Mr. Hall all of this. He says, "Herb was just trying to comfort you, trying to make you feel comfortable."
But maybe he was just hitting on me.
YOU make the call, which is it? Was my coworker hitting on me at the Xmas party, er no?
God I love me some Christmas Time and sledding!
And with the 20 inches we just had, AWAY WE GO A SLEDDING!
ROCK MY GOOD PEOPLE!
And now, my favorite christmas song of all time :)
sorry about advert but the song is worth it ;)
On this day, when the snow is reaching 14 inches and blowing horizontal, let's step back and enjoy the largess. Shall we?
A modest hot tub came with our new house. For the past three nights, The Tribe Called Hall has been enjoying the tub in the four seasons room. Right now, the season is winter. It's going to be one degree tomorrow. And that's the high. So yes, let's hot tub.
After supper and shower, we turn off all the lights. We flip on the bulb that illuminates the water from below. Outside, the moonlight bounces off the icy white snow drifts, making the windowed walls seem lit from within. We start the jets and they whersh mightily. We all climb in, smiling and giggling.
The water warms everything, our arms, our legs, our skin. It cooks our bones. Untold reams of stress spiral loose with furious haste. I can barely say my name after a while. It's like being drunk on warm.
The kids went bananas the first two nights. Splashing and thromping. Spreading their pale limbs outward, swirling in the jet propelled water. They get wilder and we say stop. They temper their feral urges, for a bit anyway. Last night they were calm, floating and still.
Then I have this conversation with Pancake, my daughter of seven years. She says "Momma, this is sooo coool having a hot tub!" I can see the flicker of crazy in her eyes. This tiny swimming pool is her size. Like it was made for her.
"Yes sweet cheeks, it is very cool. But, ya know what makes this so special?"
"We have a hot tub and then in summer we can go swimming in our swimming pool and we can . . ."
"No. It's not the fact that we have these things, it's that we are here together, as a family. If you think about it, how much fun would it be if you were here, in the hot tub, all alone? The hot tub and swimming pool are just things. But us being here, in our house, together as a family, that's what makes all of this so special and fun."
She thinks really hard. She pauses and really, really thinks about it. She smiles. And then she says, "Yeah, like when we have fun doing other stuff".
Then her brother grabs her head and tries to pull her under for the seventh time.
OK guys, time to get out of the tub . . .
You would think that me, a person that has conversations for a living, wouldn't be so intimidated by talking with her.
Yet there it is.
When I was talking with her, I found myself repeating bits of small talk I always use. Calling up tried and true stories to get a laugh. Stories to make a quick point and encapsulate who I am. Yet when that was done, I found myself adding bits and pieces and talking too much.
This blog has spoiled me. I don't have to practice any sort of give and take with this conversation. I can talk to you and myself anytime I please. Mostly I talk to me. When I need to, I seek out the other blogs, leave a comment. It's kind of selfish.
But back to her. Last week I made it a point to fill my daughter's social needs. I arranged a playdate. And unexpentantly I found myself curious about the other mom. She sounded relaxed and assured. Kind even. Then she showed up tonight. She is cultured and unique. Has a bit of personality. Kids the same age. Cool hair and calm sense about her. She is like me.
I don't have a great track record when it comes to women friends. I seem to attract the wrong type. Either needy or mean or unstable. I had picked a few good ones when I was living in the big city. But then I left that big city about a year ago.
When I left, I left them. It was ok, we sort of new it was coming. There was really no point in keeping it up. I mean, they don't have kids. I don't anticipate ever going back to the city just to 'visit'. That city is two hours away. So we said goodbyes.
So now my task is to act on the impulse. The impulse of procuring a friendship with this woman. My social skills are a bit rusty due to the two factors noted above.
But tonight, talking to her, the more I talked, the more I talked. I talk WAY TOO much when I am nervous. I go off the written script in my head. I find myself acting even. This is no good. But she lingered. We talked. And talked. About surface things. About simple things but we talked and she was in no hurry to leave when she was picking her daughter up.
If she is who I think she is, then I want to be her friend and I want her to be mine. To take the next step with a guy is easy.
You just lay a big kiss on him.
But that is not what I am interested in.
The next step is having them over for cards. Her and her husband. My first married friend with kids possible friend. Who is cultured and unique. They just relocated from that big city we moved from.
Two blocks away.
So, that's my quandary. How do women know if they have things in common? How do we let each other know if we want to be more than just 'Mom" friends, that we want to be real friends?
jeez! Why are women so complicated?
Welcome back to YOU make the call!
This time, we examine the life of my brother's girlfriend. But before we begin . . I must say I miss blogging and commenting. I have loads of ideas and loads of responses to all your comments. But, alas . . . Just know I read every comment and am so thankful you wrote ;)
SO!! My brother and his girlfriend cohabitate in a house my brother owns. Her name is not on the mortgage. They are both teachers. They have been dating about 10 years. I doubt they will get married because my brother's an idiot. And, most likely, they never have children.
Which is fine. I am a bit judgey about the whole thing. I mean, I don't understand this "living together without a ring in sight" business. It irks me if I know the girl wants a ring. And she does want one. I know this. But, it's not my life. It's hers.
What irks me more, no, what makes me hang my head in shame, is that my brother charges her rent.
"YOU GOTTA BE EFFING KIDDING ME!!"-
Was my first thought when I heard she pays rent. And half the utilities. I was really, really offended by this. I mean, she is getting the shaft!!!
I mention this at T day dinner last week to my two sister in laws. All of us, at the table, college educated women. Educated and bossy types too.
My big sister in law drops her jaw, shocked at my being shocked. Literally does a double take. Offended at my notion that no rent should come out of my bro's girl's wallet.
I see her get flabbergasted and all feminist about it. "This isn't 1840 ya know, when men just kept women as chattel. Why shouldn't she be paying half of the mortgage?", she says.
And by the way, on a personal note, I love getting people riled up like this. Such fun!
"Because THERE IS NO PROMISE OF MARRIAGE! He's not gonna pony up a ring! He OWNS THE HOUSE!!! He should paying ALL THE MORTAGE!!"*
Again, the sister in laws and I exchange looks. I stare at them. They stare back. Disbelief is shared betwix the three of us.
SO DEAR READERS!!!
YOU MAKE THE CALL!!
Should my brother be charging his girlfriend rent? And should she be paying it? And is she or is she not getting the shaft?
Leave your answer in the comments ;)
*fyi-when Mr. Hall and I were living in sin, you bet yer sweet bippy I never payed one dime for rent!