Christmas Stress and The Art Therapist (Again) and Christmas Gifts and Workity Work


Christmas Stress

9-13 (Yup, this one is super old!)

We do not drink at our house.  I think I was smart enough as a younger adult to realize that the lure of alcohol might be too tempting for me.  And I also never acquired a taste for it…It all kind of tastes like nail polish remover to me.  Dh has no interest in imbibing either…And ds is a product of our habits and had a good head on his shoulders, so he does not drink either.  (Mind you…he is not old enough to drink yet…not that that seems to stop his peers.)

So, it was a near scandal when I went into the liquor store attached to the grocery store and came out with a large bottle of vodka.  I could see it in ds’ face…And then I could see the realization and he said to me, “You’re going to make vanilla.”

Indeed.  I have started some vanilla for holiday gift giving.  I dislike Christmas and pretty much everything about it…from the blatant consumerism, to the tug-of-war between my parents and my MIL, to the fact that it is one of a handful of times each year when I cannot escape the family obligations.  Dh and I have hijacked Thanksgiving and Easter and now hosting them at our house (Which makes them sooo much better…I wish we did it years ago.) But Christmas…We have to go to our respective parents’ houses.

But…I wandered off topic….Vanilla.  Vanilla is about the easiest gift to make. You need a bottle of liquor (vodka, rum or bourbon) some vanilla beans (easy to order from Amazon) and some time.  I prefer glass bottles of vodka, somehow the plastic bottles seem too unnatural for my precious vanilla.  You cut up your vanilla beans, plop them into the liquor and shove it in the back of a cupboard for a few months, giving it an occasional shake to mix it up.  Eventually, I will order little glass bottles (Amazon again) and bottle up my vanilla into gift-giving size.

I am doing vanilla because I don’t feel like playing the consumer game this year.  This year will be a homemade Christmas.  I plan on making some vanilla sugar and orange sugar to go with my vanilla…add in a few hand-crafted items and I will have lovely little baskets to put together to appease the relatives.

The one saving grace about Christmas is that my little nuclear family does not celebrate Christmas.  Yes, we get together with our parents…but it is their holiday, not ours.  By the time December 25th has come, we have already had our celebration and have been able to enjoy it and our time together without the fucked-up dynamics of our extended family.  Unfortunately, that doesn’t make Christmas easier for me…It just means our holiday celebration is not tainted too.

The Art Therapist (Again)  (Today’s Actual Post)

I am aware that my last couple of posts have been about the dynamics of my relationship with the AT.  I’m not sure why that’s been on my mind so much lately, but clearly it has been.  I guess I get frustrated that I still struggle with trust….I mean, I have been seeing him for ten months now…I ought to have pulled myself together to be able to trust him all the way.  Sometimes, I just don’t know what’s wrong with me.

I guess I should push myself harder and take some of those leaps of faith and maybe try talking to him about some of the things that I am loathe to talk about with him…Maybe that will help build trust?  I just don’t know what the right thing to do is.

Christmas Gifts

So, as an addendum to the above old post…I have put together quite the assortment of homemade Christmas gifts for our parents.  I have my vanilla and vanilla sugar and orange sugar.  Then I also have candles and some jar mixes (gingerbread pancakes, brownies and cookies) and soaps and ornaments I made in pottery class.  For my parents, I have some dog biscuit mixes and dog treats.  My MIL has a cat and I haven’t quite figured out a cat treat recipe that will work, but I am still working on it.  I don’t think I need to add much more to the baskets, at this point, they are pretty full!

Workity Work

Another day of work.  New Guy doesn’t work on Sundays, so I don’t have to worry about him.  But Maternity Mom does work on Sundays and I adore her…so that will be a treat to see her.  SS usually works on Sundays and I would have liked to have worked with her as well, but she is taking the day off which is why I got asked to work.

Work has been going okay…It hasn’t been too stressful.  I need to dig out an article and post it, it does a good job explaining my frustrations with work and why I have to minimize my exposure…Lemme see if I can find it.  Here it is.  The Personal and Professional Cost of High Productivity In the Skilled Nursing Rehab Setting.  It is a lengthy read…but well worth it, in my opinion, especially if you want to understand my frustration with work.  The one thing about working per diem is that I don’t seem to be as tightly under the watchful eye of the productivity police…for that I am thankful!

Oh…and when I was working full time…I think this really summarized how I felt:  (And I really wanted to get this to hang over my desk…but I knew it would get me in more trouble than it was worth!)



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