So, not my imagination

Popped into the market this morning and grabbed some ornament hooks and was joking with one of the gals that works there about how I have to buy them every year – she said she was surprised I could even find them. We talked for a few minutes and yes, holiday stuff is already quite picked over even the first week of December.

We couldn’t decide if it was less stock on hand, people going overboard for Christmas, or a combination of both…

I know at least locally from my drive to pick up dinner last night that folks are going a bit happy batshit with the outside decorations – we’re in that group, too – last year we couldn’t find outside twinkle lights at all (and the ones we had were starting to fail, cause, time) and this year I found them and let’s just say I can’t translate “66 feet per string to bushes covered” – and well, we have A LOT OF PRETTY WHITE AND MULTICOLOR TWINKLE LIGHTS OUT THERE.

What can I say, I love twinkle lights, and frankly, I’d leave them up and turned on year round if people wouldn’t bitch about it. (We don’t have a HOA, but we do have Nextdoor and it does have it’s share of “I just don’t understand why people don’t have pride in their yards…” asshats, and I’m not bringing that on myself.)

But at least I wasn’t imagining things.

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It’s only December 4th, right?

4 shops and wow, holiday stuff is already rather picked over. I did find a cute red knit star tree topper, but I will say it looked far smaller in the shop compared to all the huge lightup ones they had… It looks a wee bit ridiculous on the tree, but it’s cute and does the job. (And guarantees the little glass topper will appear in the next 24 hours.)

Top of Christmas Tree with red knit star on top.
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It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood…

Despite Covid and all the other various and sundry bullshit, the sun is shining and I have a very large cold brew, so it’s good enough.

Yesterday’s dental appointment went shockingly well – the tooth he worked on this summer is actually properly healing. I was kinda shocked, but happy – I’ve been doing brush/floss/rinse as I’ve always done (and still have the mouth of a medieval peasant) – but I’ve also added CBD oil into the mix before bed, mostly for anxiety/sleep, but it has antibacterial & anti-inflammatory properties and while I’m not saying this is what made the difference – it obviously hasn’t hurt at all. (I did not mention this to the dentist as I can tell he already thinks I’m a bit of a whackjob for the acupuncture sessions to undo the tension in my jaw.)

Today’s very exciting plans are seeing if I can’t find a small tree topper (the one that went MIA was from CVS ages ago, hopefully they or Hallmark can come through) put in the orders for the Christmas Sees Candy (YAY!) and housework.

The little sparkly lantern I got is a hit – my brother finds it very mesmerizing, LOL and he sent a video of it to a friend who was all, “WHERE DID YOU GET THAT?!” Doing my part to keep our little Hallmark store in business.

In “healthy coping methods” – I got an advent wine box! It’s 24 itty bitty bottles of wine, just over 6oz each and I’m only 3 days in and having WAY too much fun with it. Sampler boxes of tiny bottles of wine should be a year-round thing.

And now, I have to go out and be around *shudder* people. Night 4 of the wine box will be needed, LOL.

Have a lovely day!

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Well, it’s another Friday

And yet again – you made it! Well done, since the universe had added an additional difficulty level with Omicron.

Half day today, but the second half is going to the dentist, so… I’d rather work, TBH. In theory, it’s just replacing a temp crown with a permanent one, but I am certain he’ll find something else expensive and wrong – but, it’s all good, I’m finding a new in-network dentist for the new year.

I like my dentist, but he’s too damn expensive – my prior insurance paid fairly decently for out of network, but what I have through work is terrible for out of network services and my dude has definitely shifted to catering to rich folks over the years, and I am not a human ATM machine. (Gawd, health care is utterly fucked in the US – I can’t even fathom why dental work isn’t part of regular medical insurance other than someone is making a lot of $$$ keeping things the way they are.)

Welp, time to go speedrun through some bugs and steel myself for a bigassed future dental bill, LOL.

You have a great day!

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Who is a very good girl?

THE LILYMONSTER! But you probably guessed that.

Last night as I was going to bed, she was rather frantic for a bit and I only just now realized why. My brother had been in the kitchen and burned some hot dog buns (and had let me about it, so I knew there was not a fire) – but she didn’t know that.

I legit think she was trying to tell me my brother was burning down the kitchen. And once the smell dissipated – she was fine – I just didn’t make the connection until today.

Safety Kitty!
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Goooooooooood morning!

It’s fuck me it’s early Wednesday – meeting at 730AM, and then – a meeting at 9PM… So, ugly early start, but not only off earlier cause of the AM meeting, off an extra hour to make up for coming back for the 9PM meeting. Oh yes, there is gonna be an evening nap in there somewhere, I am quite sure.

Would it be really bad to be enjoying my Day 1 advent wine in the 9PM meeting? (Yes, I found an advent wine box last month. Of course I bought it.)

This morning BBC is reporting that Nairobi has found Omicron cases going back as far as October.

Travel bans are definitely a “close the barn door when the horses are 3 counties away” at this point, especially when they’re “well, *our* people can come in, just not *other* people” – as though Covid is checking passports. We’ve ALL got to get on the ball with sequencing – finding things 2 months after the fact seems not great.

If Covid wasn’t utter shit and killing people and destroying society in general, it would be utterly fascinating to study how it’s spreading and figuring out where and how and why new variants actually emerge. I kinda feel for the scientists on this, cause I know if *I’m* thinking, “Wow, what triggered *these* mutations? Where did it happen? What made conditions perfect for this?” with the curiosity that I have while also thinking “this isn’t fascinating, it’s TERRIBLE” – they must be in the same weird boat.

Alright, time to go stumble into the day. Stay safe, mask up, get boosted, don’t lick any doorknobs.

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Gooooood morning

PTO is over and it’s back to the grind, and unless one particular bug got moved to the next maintenance cycle, today could be a long one. But, it is what it is, and at least we get paid this week and have a half day on Friday. (Which has a dental appointment, boooooo.)

Good to see our newest republic Barbados! Decolonization is a long road, but it’s wonderful for them.

My Covid thoughts for today are: Omicron is stupid and I hate it, and that pretty much sums up my feelings over the last 20+ months.

I’m bleary eyed as fuck this morning, and I fear there is not enough coffee to get me through the day.

You have a good day.

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Good to have one more day off

Cause I woke up in a terrible mood – the recycling truck showed up 2 days late at 6AM with no communication from the company and after we gave up and pulled in the bin yesterday…

I love how I keep hearing “don’t panic about Omicron” – like I have the energy for panic anymore. I mean, after 3 years of 45, then a year of 45 + pandemic, then a year of pandemic + Senate Democrats – this country has pretty much broken me. (I am legit wondering where else in the world I could retire.)

And my cold brew is horrifically bitter to boot.

The plan was to bring up the Christmas tree today, but I’m not gonna lie, I’m a bit meh about it. I’ve moved all the plants already so the spot is super naked and really needs the tree – except for the fact that there is now a cat sitting there.

OK, the tree may have to wait a bit

So, to try to get my head straight, I have eaten some leftover chicken, hydrated, let the cat move, and brought the tree up. Though the tree topper has gone AWOL (no sentimental value to it, I just liked it, but it can be replaced), the lights are nice and I’m glad I hauled it up here.

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Oh, Omicron…

I think it’s safe to assume this new variant is everywhere already. My phone has been beeping all morning with the BBC telling me where they’ve found new cases. And with the massive amount of Thanksgiving travel here in the US, there is no doubt in my mind that it’s here in the US, too.

But, massive props to the folks in South Africa who found it and found it so quickly. Theoretically, that should give us an edge, but it sounds like we’re already behind the curve, what with a lack of testing on travelers (I was shocked to hear “well, we tested after we found out there was a new variant” – I really thought testing for international travelers was still a thing worldwide) and not nearly enough sequencing here in the US. I do wonder how many variants actually originated here, but were “found” in other parts of the world. (I’m looking at you, Florida.)

And Boris Johnson is still saying it’s gonna be a great Christmas. And I’m sure we’ll hear the same nonsense out of Governors across the US. And we’ll have half the country taking it seriously and half the country continuing to do whatever the hell they want.

And I’ve got Frankie Drake Mysteries and they’re dealing with a potential outbreak of the Spanish Flu… Bit too on the nose, CBC.

I’m trying not to dwell on it, cause it doesn’t change anything for me – still gonna (not) do the same stuff, just for longer it seems – but yeah, I’m FAILING at not dwelling on it. I just wanted to think that maybe, possibly, the end was in sight. HAHAHAHA.

I know the best we can hope for is to move from pandemic to endemic and dealing with localized outbreaks – but I don’t even know how we get there given how mobile we all are worldwide. The first case identified as Omicron was from an 11/9 test and it wasn’t reported to the WHO as a variant until 11/24. Two weeks minimum of worldwide spread. While I have no doubt they told that person to quarantine, who knows how long they were contagious, and honestly, track and trace everywhere has been woefully inadequate. 30 flights a day just between Johannesburg and DC – just that alone is a ton of opportunity to get a virus halfway around the world. Now multiply that by ever other international flight out there…

I’m trying to stay optimistic that this isn’t going to be a forever thing, but damn, it’s REALLY FUCKING HARD RIGHT NOW.

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Shiny Saturday

I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but here’s it’s a deceptively beautiful day where the sun is sharp and shiny but it’s cold as fuck out there. Proof positive that I have *not* bought too many hoodies/fleece jackets from REI over the course of the pandemic. (New one may have arrived this week – it was 40% off*…)

It’s basically my uniform. Jeans, short sleeved shirt, fleece jacket. Occasionally I get crazy and go with long sleeved shirt and fleece vest. Honestly, one of the great things about working from home is not having to dress up for work – rolling out of bed into comfy clothes that don’t have to be dry cleaned is so very nice.

Still unbelievably annoyed with the new variant. I mean, it doesn’t actually change anything for me, I’ll just keep hermiting and watching local case counts and act accordingly, but still, it certainly took the wind out of my sails. Just means the end of this is that much farther away, and I’m running out of interesting and healthy coping mechanisms. (It’s definitely time to get started on Lily’s quilt…)

It’s just frustrating to see so many folks acting like it’s all over – either not getting vaccinated, or getting vaccinated and not paying attention to case counts and taking all kinds of risks – and I absolutely understand, lord knows I seriously miss restaurants, but it’s that behavior that will just make this go longer. And they’ll just keep doing it and the rest of us will still be stuck. That’s just maddening.

Of course, then I wonder if I’m being overly cautious and just needlessly torturing myself.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I did go to the Hallmark store to get some gifty things for my hairstylist, shampoo gal, & acupuncturist – and got myself a little Christmas decor that is very sparkly and makes me smile.

There’s a chance this never gets put away

Stay safe, and enjoy your Saturday. I’ll be staring at my glitter lantern if anyone needs me.

*REI does these member super deals every now and again – I’ll get an email and it’s maybe a dozen items and it’s usually camping equipment – but this time, a hoodie in the mix! In my size and preferred color and very well priced! I wouldn’t have paid the original $60 for it, but $36 for something I will wear a whole lot? Sure!

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