25 December 2015

Joyeux Noël!

Fröhliche Weihnachten Ya'll!

I hope everyone is having a safe and happy holidays!  Now is the time for family and friends to gather together and celebrate the season.   

Danny TESTET: Frohe <b>Weihnachten</b>
Holzstempel "<b>Fröhliche Weihnachten</b>" mit festlich geschmücktem ...

<b>BUON NATALE</b>!! ***

Legal Marketing: Auguri di <b>Buon Natale</b> e Felice 2013

With temperatures projected to be in the high 70's, I don't think we are in for a white Christmas this year.

I'd love to claim that our shopping was done a long time ago, but, I don't like to lie and it just doesn't seem to be in my nature.  Something about hitting the stores on Christmas eve seems to be in my horoscope.  As usual, I am stuffing the bird and wrapping gifts on Christmas morning.  At least my son and his better half are home for the holidays and we get to spend some quality time together (even if he is drinking up my beer).

Have a Merry Christmas!  And remember to save room for some pie!


10 December 2015

Reset, Re-calibrate & Reboot

Test.  Test.  Test.  Is this thing on?    

Sorry guys.   I've been absent from the keyboard a while.  Kind of a self imposed hiatus from the blogosphere.  No real excuse although I seemed to have misplaced my muse.  Things have taken a different turn down here and I have been distracted from posting anything or even keeping up with everyone.  

To paraphrase something Terri said earlier, I like to think that we are working towards a new normal.  With SIL's passing back in August, life has taken some different turns.  We are slowly settling her estate and wading through the morass of legal paperwork/probate/estate planning.  Trying to close out someone's life is not something we were trained to do.  

Momma is holding up well.  Everyone is concerned with her but she is handling the situation without needing much of my help.  I am more of a moral support, providing the back and legs to whatever needs to be done.  Clearing out the storage room, going through all of the files, fixing the sprinkler system, taking supplies to the food pantry, feeding the cats (poop scooping as well), etc.  Just another day in the hood.  We are slowly closing out things at her house.  There's no real rush on our part (or, at least I am not rushing momma).  The house is only 20 minutes away so it is easy for us to go over and take care of things.  We still have way too many cats (IMHO) but we have been able to offload one to a friend.  We are looking at other options to reduce the horde, but still keeping our promise to SIL to find good homes for all of them (no shelters) - going against the advice of some "friends".  In the meantime, they continue to live in the high life in the cat house.  They ain't suffering too much (unless it's when I leave the TV tuned into the Walking Dead Marathon).           

At work, things have taken on a whole new level of intense.  We merged with another bigger company in October and, as with any merger, things are changing.  New name, new priorities, new overlords.  I have been out traveling a bit on supplier audits with a road trip to Wisconsin and California and it looks like I am going to do a bunch more next year. We were supposed to go over to France a few weeks back right about the time all of the crap went down.  We actually had people in the air to Paris on Friday when everything fell apart.  The company made the decision to cancel the meeting and send everyone home and do the conference via skype.  Things have settled down a bit but my horoscope has a road trip to France in my future for next year.

At home, we've been busy as well.  I have been able to make most of the home football games at A&M in the trailer with the dogs.  Not overly impressed with the team's performance, but at least we had a decent time camping.  

I also have been doing more doggy stuff over the past few months.  Claire & Grayson are doing well, although Claire is slowing down a bit.  Honestly, I am worried about her - her back end is weak and she doesn't have the stamina for long walks.  Have taken her to the vet for testing but, at her age (12/13), there is not really much that they can do.  We did pick up a guest for Thanksgiving week while  my brother was off shore on a cruise.  Parents/brothers did a Caribbean cruise (I passed) and I offered to take care of his fur baby.  A 7 year old Border Collie called Dot.  A very cute, intelligent and intense dog.  At first I was worried that she would not get along with my two, but they were best buddies by the second day.  Since Dot is a trained sheep dog, it was funny to watch her try to herd Grayson when they were out running.  Cute dog.  By the end of the week, momma wanted to keep her.     

Cute?  Me?

Her favorite hangout

I also wound up doing a foster run the same weekend I picked up Dot.  Got a call to meet a woman down in El Campo (1.5 hours south) to pick up a OTI (owner turn in) dog that was to be fostered by our group.  Duke was an absolutely gorgeous 18 month old Golden that was full of energy.  The woman was turning him in because her job had her travelling 5 days a week and she was moving to a place were there weren't any good options to take care of the dog.  She had the dog since it was a puppy and just wasn't able to be home enough to take care of him, so she did the right thing and chose to give him up to a family that would give him the love and attention he deserved.  One of the harder OTIs I've done.  She was heartbroken to let him go.  I only had him for the short drive back to Houston, but had decided that, if we didn't already have Dot to take care of, I would have taken him home.  I just read on our website that Duke has already found a furever home with a good family and another Golden buddy.  That's one of the reasons I stick with this foster group - the benefits far outweigh the costs.         

Say hello to Duke
I am trying to get back into the swing of things, but no promises.  One step at a time.  First order of business is to go catch up on everyone's blogs and that may take me a while.