...and I made a list at work today so I wouldn't forget anything...and left the list at work!! Yes, that is very indicative of just how discombobulated I am this week.
Of course I have barely read any of your blogs...but I will catch up as I can...maybe tomorrow. I actually kind of like having a few days to read. :-)
Let's start back with last Friday and the Firm Party. Always not so very fun...the partners don't really know how to let loose and have fun and this trickles down. There's also a very weird corporate culture that means that lawyers and staff don't really socialize very much (with few exceptions). When I first started at the Firm over 14 years ago, this really bugged me. I guess I'm pretty used to it now, but it really comes to light at the party where all the Esqs. sit with each other, all the paralegals sit together, all the assistants, etc. There is some cross-pollinating (we had a partner at our table with 3 other paralegals and their dates) but it's rare. There are no seating charts or anything...this is just how people choose to sit. Anyway, the wine is usually great because one of my bosses is a real connoisseur. This year was no exception -- he found some Australian Shiraz that was truly delicious. Unfortunately, it also had a much higher alcohol content than most wines. This we did not know until much later...
They served food late so I had had three glasses of wine before dinner. No, don't ask me how many I had with dinner...two? Three? Who knows? It could have been more, but I am no lightweight and this wasn't vodka for God's sake. However, I got SO drunk that I woke up the next morning in my bed and did not remember coming home. I was mortified. At least DB promises me that I didn't do anything bad in front of anyone from work. Monday I learned that at least two other women who drank the wine had similar experiences. And my assistant told me that the Wine Boss told her that the alcohol content in that wine was unusually high. I wish I would have had a warning!
Anyway, Saturday when I had gotten a little over my mortification, DB and I had to jam to get stuff ready for the party. We had to take delivery of a futon chaise for my upstairs office, shop, clean up, pick up some more furniture that we bought on Craigs List (a queen sized futon for our front yard -- nice to sit on and we can actually sleep out there in the summer because it is totally private!), etc. One of DB's daughters and her family arrived at 6:30 (the party was supposed to start at 7) and I didn't have my hair or make-up done! Yikes. They wanted food. Yikes X 2 as we hadn't gotten anything ready yet! Luckily they went out to get some food and came back later!
Our party was super fun. We told everyone to wear hats and most people complied. The main thing I don't like about having parties is that I don't get to spend any quality time with anyone and lots of people come that I almost never see so that makes me sad. But all our friends love chatting with each other and meeting each other and everyone said they had a great time. They loved our mod 1960s aluminum tree (we've now also gotten a real tree to decorate and smell up the house -- yay!) but, of course, no one really realized we were dressed up 60s -- DB as a hippy and me as a mod. ;-) Anyway...our last guests (except one of DB's daughters and her three kids) left at 2 am. I guess they were having fun! :-)
Sunday we spent the whole day at the house with the kids. You'll see the photo below where I was showing Princess (DB's oldest granddaughter) how to make French toast. She loves helping in the kitchen and is so cute. I love her so much! She said "Helen, don't we need aprons?" (I taught her to use an apron when she helped me with the past two Thanksgivings). SO cute. :-)
On Sunday I also made The Turkey Soup. Yum. I've been eating it all week. I'm afraid it's not too great for my waistline, but it's a tradition and soooo good!
So Monday came around and I wasn't too relaxed...and I had to deal with the identity theft some more. It's a very very long story, but I got my credit report (and we figured out that the thieves must have a copy of it) and had to call all my credit card companies as well as several companies where the thieves had applied for (and mostly gotten...I have great credit) new cards. It looks like they probably only got about $6500, but if I wouldn't have called a few places to stop it last Friday, they would have gotten at least $10,000 more. They were ordering things on-line and returning them to stores for cash. Very professional. The retailers I talked to were understandably pissed off. The policeman who came to take the report last Friday was very nice and helpful, but I haven't heard from the detective (even though I left him a message with more info) and I'm sure this is pretty low priority for them. Which pisses me off more because we had an actual address where the shipments were going and a name the guy was using (I actually got a credit card on one of my accounts in his name in the mail last Saturday!). These people know everything about me: my name, address, social security number, and even my mother's maiden name. It is very very scary. I have had to close all my credit cards (no sweat) and have changed around all my bank accounts/debit cards. I have passworded everything with new passwords (not my mom's maiden name -- you all should change this too -- it is too easy for these professional thieves to get information like that -- all they need is your SSN). Guard your SSNs, people.
I am super careful and have no idea where these people got my info. The retailer who first alerted me to this last week said it often happens right after real estate transactions because a lot of your personal info is on those papers and they go through a lot of hands at brokers and banks. I'm afraid this is what happened to me. AND these EVIL professional thieves started their offensive the day after Thanksgiving. It was comprehensive.
Work has also been super-stressful this week and it's not been easy to shop (I do a lot on-line) without my debit card. But I got a new one activated yesterday and now can shop to my heart's content!
Very sad news today. We found out this morning that DB's oldest sister's breast cancer has come back (she had it two or three years ago, did chemo and had a radical mastectomy on both sides). It is now in the chest wall and at least one lymph node and her doctor tells her it's inoperable, but "probably manageable". She starts chemo again on Monday. Her spirits seem very good and she told the siblings not to THINK of taking her week in Nearby Town (Xmas week) away from her. Her youngest child is only about 16. DB is understandably upset and I ache for him. His sister asked for everyone's prayers and, among other really inspirational things, said to remember this season is about "new beginnings". So please add her (and her family) to any prayers or talks you have with God. Thanks!
Thanks for your nice words about my red tights -- I love them -- DKNY are the best. And the first time I wore tights (or even socks) since The Franketoe happened (yes, it's better, but still not well).
Hey, do any of you know Twiglets? My best friend is Welsh and she introduced them to me a long time ago -- they're a British snack food, pretty low in calories and fat and YUMMY. Unfortunately she was in Wales for Thanksgiving and brought me some back. Fortunately, she brought a big bag with a bunch of little 97-calorie bags inside. Smart!
I don't know how I'll be at my weigh-in tomorrow. I'm feeling pretty fat even though I've been sticking with my good eating, exercise and SSO drinking. This is my period week (it's supposed to start tomorrow) so I guess I can blame it on that if it's bad...but it's probably the salty Twiglets. ;-)
Finally, I'm still waiting for the great infomercial thing to happen. If it does, I'm going to need all of your help pronto. We need to find 50 people located in west L.A. county who have at least 30 pounds to lose and are willing to eat only this food they provide (free) for 3 months. I'll let you all know details when I do, but if you know anyone who fits the criteria (area and pounds to lose), get them ready for when I post the details!!
I've missed keeping up with you all...hopefully will be able to catch up this weekend at some point. :-)